(ORDO NEWS) — Experts in ancient languages have deciphered the inscription on the stone, which was found in Saudi Arabia. As it turned out, the artifact dates back to 1419 and mentions the name of the third Caliph Usman ibn Affan.
According to Arkeonews, the stone with the inscription was discovered during survey work in Mecca, the holy city. The Saudi Arabian Heritage Authority has confirmed an earlier suggestion that the text dates from AH 24, meaning it was written 1,419 years ago.
This is one of the oldest such texts, so the artifact was immediately recognized as one of the most important archaeological finds of recent times. In fact, it is a documentary evidence of important events in the beginning of Islamic history.
The inscription contains Arabic letters written in a primitive form, without punctuation marks. Several specialists were involved in the process of deciphering it. As a result, we managed to translate the first line. It looks like this: “I Zuhair believed in God and wrote the time of death of ibn Affan in the twenty-fourth year.”
Scientists conducted a comparative analysis and came to the conclusion that this inscription is very similar to the content of a similar text found earlier in the province of Al-Ula.
In the latter, the author similarly documented the year in which the second caliph Omar ibn al-Khattab died. In this case, we are probably talking about the third Caliph Uthman ibn Affan.
It is also interesting that the found artifact turned out to be the third among the oldest accurately dated “stone” documents with Islamic inscriptions. The oldest such document is considered to be the text of Salama, found in Yanbu al-Nahla and dated to the 23rd year of the Hijri.
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