Sandstone gravestone of a woman named Fatima from Aswan


British Museum

British Museum
London, United Kingdom

The 9-line Arabic text is carved in angular Kufic, with some letters terminating in either wedge-shaped terminals or split leaves – which is characteristic of monumental scripts of this period. According to the inscription the deceased is Fatima, daughter of Ja’far, son of Muhammad the dyer, who died on 13 August 1021 (Sunday the first of jumada I in the year 412 AH). Abiding by a typical formula the inscription begins with the basmallah followed by the 4 verses of Surah al-Ikhlas (Sura 112), commonly used on tombstones from Upper Egypt, North Africa and Hijaz in Arabia. God’s blessings are then called upon the Prophet Muhammad and his family, followed by the name of the deceased and the date she died.


  • Title: Sandstone gravestone of a woman named Fatima from Aswan
  • Date Created: 1021
  • Location: Aswan, Egypt, Africa
  • Physical Dimensions: 64 x 42 x 17 cm (including base)
  • Medium: sandstone
  • Copyright: The Trustees of the British Museum
  • British Museum website: 1887,0402.1437

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