The Reign of Aretas the Fourth
A Study Based on a Special Nabataean Coin Collection

This is a specialized study of Nabataea's coins during the reign of Aretas IV, which seeks to demonstrate the economical, historical, and cultural history of Jordan during the first century AD. This book consists of four chapters. The first contains a historical summary of the Nabataean kings beginning with Aretas IV and continuing to Rabel II. The second chapter presents a historical summary of the Nabataean kingdom during the reign of King Aretas IV, who was dubbed as the “one who loves his people”. He ruled the Nabataean kingdom from 9 BC to AD 40 and has been considered to be the most renowned Nabataean king. Y. Meshorer has stressed that the contribution of Aretas IV to Nabataean civilization was quite enormous and that he played a part in deepening the roots of the Nabataean national identity and pride. This chapter also contains some of the social achievements and political relations of Aretas IV. The third chapter touches on the beginning of the Nabataean coins and the economic changes that the Nabataeans went through. Furthermore, it demonstrates how they became the most popular trade agents in the Middle East and the ancient world as a whole. The discussed Nabataean coinages were a symbol of economic and political independence. The Nabataean coins minted by Aretas IV can be classified into four basic denominations: silver coins (4-9 BC), bronze coins (4-6 BC), silver and bronze coins (AD 1-15), and silver and bronze coins (18-34 BC). It appears that during the reign of Aretas IV Nabataean coins were widely circulated. This situation indeed reflects the economic and political situation of the Nabataeans as an independent state during this period of time. The coins from this period show that the king's main concern was to maintain the throne and remain victorious. In general, these coins were a reflection of his civilized achievements.