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Select Papyri, 2.434


LETTER FROM THE ARAB GOVERNOR OF EGYPT

Greek text:  PLond 1380
Date:   A.D. 710.

In the name of God, Kurrah ibn Sharik, governor, to Basilius, administrator of the village of Aphrodito. We give thanks to God, and to proceed, we have manifestly written to you many times about the two-thirds part of the gold taxes in your district, and we supposed that you had already paid this. Now when we ordered the secretaries to look into the books of the treasury to learn what you had paid into it, we found that your performance is inadequate and of no account and that in this matter you are behaving badly. For we did not send you to pass your time in gormandizing, but we sent you rather to fear God and keep faith and fulfil the claims of the Amir al Muminin. And neither you nor those in your district have an excuse of any kind. For the produce of the fields has been abundant, and God has blessed it and increased it twofold more than it was before, and the wheat has fetched a good price and it has been sold by the inhabitants. Now, as has been said, you have no excuse of any kind. Look therefore to the arrears of the two-thirds part of the gold taxes in your district and complete them with all expedition, not omitting a single farthing {μυλιαρίσιν}. For God knows that the way you have acted in the matter of these same taxes did not please us ; indeed we had a mind to repay you for this. If therefore there is any good in you, complete with all haste, as we have said, your district's arrears of this same two-thirds part of the gold taxes and dispatch them. For it is to the interest of the inhabitants to deliver their dues promptly and not to be left in peace until they are saddled with an accumulation of claims and are hard put to it to pay. We know that the official whose conduct is inadequate and unprofitable seeks excuses for the shortcomings of his work. Do not therefore act in that way and give us cause to threaten your life. Behold, we solemnly warn you. Written on Pauni 7 of the 9th indiction. {Docketed} + . . . , 9th indiction. Brought by Muslim, courier. Concerning the dispatch of the complement of the two-thirds part of the gold taxes.


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