When Ali the fourth Khalifa-e-Rashidun and last Islamic religious and political leader with close personal ties to the Prophet Muhammad, died in 661 AD, the Arab governor in Syria seized power. Muwaiya came from Umayya clan in Mecca and founded the first hereditary Islamic dynasty, the Umayyads.
The Byzantine and Sassanid Empires relied on money economies before the Muslim conquest, and that system remained in effect during the Umayyad period. Byzantine copper coins were used until 658, while Byzantine gold coins were still in use until the monetary reforms.
In addition to this, the Umayyad government began to mint its own coins in Damascus, these were initially similar to pre-existing coins but evolved in an independent direction. These were the first coins minted by a Muslim government in history. Gold coins were called dinars while silver coins were called Dirhams.
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