Yemen AH 1373 1/40 riyal

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from the Ma’adi Collection
from the Ma’adi Collection

The Mutawakkilite Kingdom began forming in 1890 AD, but it was not until 1911 that the local ruler (Yahya bin Muhammad, who came to power in AH 1322/1904 AD) was recognized as both the secular and religious head by the occupying (but weakening) Ottoman forces. In 1919 AD, the Ottomans officially abandoned any attempt at a military or political presence in Yemen. The first local coinage to recognize independent Yemeni rule was struck in AH 1342 (1924 AD).

The new coinage was based on the standard of the Maria Teresa thaler (import of which was banned under the Ottomans, who wished to force Turkish coinage on the population). Thus the thaler was equal to one riyal, with fractions of 1/2, 1/4, 1/8, 1/10, 1/20, 1/40, and 1/80. The fraction 1/40 riyal was known as one buqsha.

Shown is a 1/40 riyal (one buqsha). It honors the ruler al-Nasir Ahmad bin Yahya, who took power in AH 1367 / 1948 AD after his father and previous ruler Yahya bin Muhammad died in a coup attempt.

Recorded mintage: unknown.

Specification: copper.

Catalog reference: Y#12.1.


  • Michael, Thomas, and Tracy L. Schmidt, Standard Catalog of World Coins, 1901-2000, 47th ed., Iola, WI: Krause Publications, 2019.
  • Pridmore, Fred. "The Modern Coins of the Mutawakkilite Kingdom of the Yemen", Seaby's Coin and Medal Bulletin, May 1962, pp 231-340.

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