Arabic Papyrus 114A

A record about a dispute over the taxes due on an administrator’s estate. This fragment was dated by tracing the change in the meaning of words over time. Technical terms used in this fragment have been dated by collecting data from a large corpus of Arabic tax receipts and leases of agricultural lands. A term found in this document meaning “tax in kind” (dariba) in the early Arabic papyri indicates a terminal date of 798 CE, the latest dated Arabic document extant in which this term is used. Another term found in this document, for the administrative “authority” (sultan), was used no later than 835 CE in any dated document.


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circa 798-835 CE