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he made bears in Arabic two different meanings; the first, that the best of them was he whose daughter was married to the other man; and the second, that the best of them was he who had married the daughter of the other man (5). He then withdrew promptly lest he should be questioned farther, and the Sunnites said: "He means Abû Bakr, because his daughter Aâisha was married to the "Prophet.”—“Nay," said the Shiites, "he means Ali, because Fàtima the "Prophet's daughter, was married to him." The answer was certainly very 392 clever; had it even been the result of long reflexion and deep consideration, it would have been admirable, but coming as it did, without any previous preparation, it was still more so. It would be too long to enumerate the particular circumstances in which his character and talents appeared to great advantage. His birth is placed by approximation in A. H. 508 (A. D. 1114-5); but some accounts refer it to the year 510; he died at Baghdad on the eve of Friday, the 12th of Ramadan, A. H. 597 (June, A. D. 1201), and was interred at the gate of Harb. His father's death took place in 514 (A. D. 1120-1).—Jauzi means belonging to the port of al-Jauz, which is a well-known place (6).

(1) The khalif Abu Bakr Abd Allah was the son of Abû Kuhâfa Othmân Ibn Aâmir Ibn Amr Ibn Kaab Ibn Saad Ibn Taim Ibn Murra Ibn Kaab Ibn Luwâi Ibn Ghâlib Ibn Fihr Koraish.-(See Kosegarten's Tabari, tom. II. page 145.)

(2) Copies of the first volume of this work are not rare. It contains a short account of Muhammad and his principal companions, lists of the other companions, of the Tâbîs, and of the early traditionists, etc.

(3) The kurrása generally contains twenty pages. Arabic, Persian, and Turkish books are composed of kurrâsas in the same manner as European books are composed of sheets.

(4) Consequently a stranger would amuse them better. In the printed text are two typographical faults,

میازیبهم for میازینهم and القريب for الغريب

(5) It is impossible to turn an English phrase so as to convey the double meaning which the original Arabic here involves.

(6) The author of the Marasid notices a region called the river of al-Jauz, situated between Aleppo and al-Bîra, and containing a great number of villages and gardens; but the port of al-Jauz was probably the name of a wharf on the banks of the Tigris, in or near Baghdad.


Abû 'l-Kâsim, surnamed also Abû Zaid, Abd ar-Rahmân al-Khathami asSuhaili was the son of the khatib, or preacher, Abû Muhammad Abd Allah, the son of the khatib Abû Omar Ahmad, the son of Abû 'l-Hasan Asbagh, the son of Husain, the sun of Saadùn, the son of Ridwân, the son of Futùh, who was the first of the family who came into Spain: "Such," says Ibn Dihya, "is his genealogy as I took it down from his own lips." This is the celebrated imâm who composed the commentary on (Ibn Hisham's) Sirat ar-Rasûl, or Life of the Prophet, entitled ar-Raud al-Onuf (the gardens of delight) (1). In another work, the Kitâb at-Taarîf wa 'l-Ilâm (book of information and indications), he has elucidated the proper names of doubtful pronunciation (or derivation) contained in the Koran. He wrote also the Natâij al-Fikr (offspring of reflexion) (2); a treatise on the appearance of the Divinity or of the Prophet in dreams; another, entitled as-Sirr (the mystery), in which he examines why ad-Dajjâl (or Antichrist) is to be blind of one eye, with many other instructive disquisitions. The following piece of verse is given by Ibn Dihya, to whom as-Suhaili recited it with this remark: "I and every person who repeated it, when asking a favour from "Almighty God, obtained the fulfilment of their desire:"

O Thou who knowest the secret thoughts of man! Thou art his ready support when misfortune befals him. O Thou in whom the afflicted place their hopes of deliverance! Thou to whom they address their complaints and fly for refuge! Thou, the treasures of whose bounty are produced by a sole word of thine-Be! grant my prayer, for with Thee is all good. My only mediator with Thee is my poverty, and that is yet more oppressive, joined as it is to the need in which I stand of Thy assistance. My only resource is now to knock at thy door; and if I am repulsed, at what door shall I knock? O Thou whom I implore and whose name I invoke, if Thy bounty be withheld from me, Thy needy creature, yet let not Thy glory plunge a sinner into despair; for Thy grace is abundant and Thy bounties are immense.

He composed a great deal of poetry, and as for his other works, they are replete with information. He continued in his native place, leading a life of purity and subsisting on very slender means, till the sovereign of Morocco (Yakub al-Mansûr) heard of his merit and invited him to that city. On his arrival, he met with a most favourable reception from the prince and was treated with the greatest kindness till his death, which occurred about three years after

wards. He was born at Malaga, A.H. 508 (A.D. 1114-5), and he died at the city of Morocco on Thursday, the 26th of Shâbân, A.H. 581 (November, A.D. 1185); he was interred the same day at the hour of afternoon prayer. As-Suhaili was deprived of the use of his sight.-Khathami means belonging to Khatham Ibn Anmâr, a great tribe so called, but other derivations are given of this adjective.— Suhaili means belonging to Suhail, a village near Malaga, which received this 393 name, because the only spot in all Spain from which the star Suhail (Canopus) could be seen was on the summit of a mountain at the foot of which this place was situated.-Malaga is a great city in Spain; as-Samâni pronounces it Maliga, but erroneously.

(1) Literally: The unblemished gardens; that is: gardens which have never been profaned by the visit of any mortal.

(2) It appears from Hajji Khalifa that this is a treatise on grammar¿.


Abû Muslim Abd ar-Rahmân the son of Muslim, some say of Othman, alKhorâsâni, was the champion and assertor of the rights of the Abbâsides to the khalifate. According to some accounts, his name was Ibrahim the son of Othman Ibn Yasâr Ibn Shadûs (1) Ibn Jûdern, a descendant of Buzûrjmihr Ibn Bakhtigân the Persian (2), but he changed it to Abd ar-Rahmân at the desire of Ibrahim the imâm Ibn Muhammad Ibn Ali Ibn Abd Allah Ibn al-Abbâs Ibn Abd al-Muttalib, who said to him: "Change thy name or else our enterprise will not "succeed."—God knows if this be true.-His father belonged to a village called Sanjird, situated in the canton (rustâk) of Faridin (3); but some say that he was a native of Makhwân, a village three parasangs from Marw. This village and some others were his own property, and from time to time he exported cattle to Kûfa. He then contracted to farm the revenue of Faridin, but at one period, in consequence of his inability to keep his engagements, the government agent sent a person to bring him before the court of administration. He possessed at that time a slave girl called Washika, whom he had purchased at Kûfa and confided

to the care of Azin Ibn Bundâd Ibn Wastijan (4); her, then pregnant, he took with him, and, to avoid meeting the officers empowered to make him pay in the amount of his yearly rent, he proceeded towards Adarbijân. On his way, he passed through the canton of Fâtik, when he met Isa Ibn Makil Ibn Omair, the brother of the Idris Ibn Makil who was grandfather to Abû Dulaf al-Ijli. He stopped with Isa for some days, and had there a dream in which it seemed to him that a fire proceeded from his loins and then mounted to the sky, whence it illuminated the earth as far as the horizon, after which it fell in an eastern direction. He told his dream to Isa Ibn Makil, who replied: "I have no doubt "but that she will bear a boy." On quitting his host he went to Adarbijân where he died, and his slave brought forth Abû Muslim, who passed his first years at the house of Isa. When grown a boy, Abû Muslim went to the same school with Isa's son, and on finishing his studies there, he attracted general attention by the learning and intelligence which he displayed at so early an age. Soon after, Isa Ibn Makil and his brother Edris allowed their arrears with the state to run up so high that they avoided going to the receivers of the revenue at Ispahân, and the admil (5) of that place made the circumstance known to Khâlid Ibn Abd Allah al-Kasri, the governor of Arabian and Persian Irak. Khâlid, who was then at Kûfa, had them arrested and brought before him, after which he cast them into prison, where they found (a relation of theirs) Aâsim Ibn Yûnus al-Ijli, confined for some misdeed. Previously to this, Isâ had sent Abû Muslim to bring him the crops from the territory of a certain village in the canton of Fâtik. On his way back, Abû Muslim received information of his patron's imprisonment, on which he sold all the corn he was bringing with him and took the price thereof to Isa, who immediately sent him to lodge in his own palace, in the quarter of the city inhabited by the people of the Ijlite tribe. He then made frequent visits to Isa and his brother Idris in their prison, and it happened that a number of nakîbs (lieutenants) in the service of Muhammad Ibn Ali Ibn Abd Allah Ibn al-Abbas Ibn al-Muttalib, who had just arrived at Kûfa in company with some natives of Khorasan, devoted partisans of the Abbasides, and who went to the prison with the intention of paying their respects to the Ijlite prisoners, found Abû Muslim with them. His intelligence and knowledge, his elegant language and his learning struck them with admiration, nor were his own feelings less

biassed in their favour. Their intentions then became known to him, and he learned that they were missionaries in the service of the Abbaside family. Towards the same time, Isa and Idris effected their escape from prison, and Abû Muslim left the quarter where the Ijlites resided, and joined these nakîbs, with whom he some time afterwards proceeded to Mekka. On arriving there, they 594 went to Ibrahim the son of Muhammad the Abbaside, who had succeeded to the imâmate on the death of his father; and they presented him with twenty thousand pieces of gold and two hundred thousand pieces of silver. (Of this Ibrahim we shall speak again in the life of his father.) They then introduced Abu Muslim, and Ibrahim, struck with his language, intelligence, and instruction, said to them: "This youth will be a calamity to crush the foe (6)." From that moment, Abû Muslim remained in Ibrahim's service, accompanying him in his travels, and staying with him wherever he took up his residence. After some time the nakibs called openly on the people to espouse the cause of the imâm, and they asked Ibrahim for a man capable of directing the proceedings of their party in Khorasan. His reply was: "I have put this Ispahanite to the "test, and know his interior as well as his exterior; he is the whole rock of the "earth (and will crush all before him)." He then called him in, and having appointed him to the direction of affairs, he dispatched him to Khorasan. Such was the commencement of Abû Muslim's public career. Previously to this, Ibrahim had commissioned Sulaimân Ibn Kathir al-Harrâni to proceed to Khorasan and make an appeal in favour of the People of the House (7). On sending Abû Muslim thither, he directed his partisans in that province to obey him as their chief, and at the same time he ordered Abû Muslim to obey Sulaiman Ibn Kathir; Abû Muslim then became the envoy who kept up the communications between Sulaiman and the imâm Ibrahim.—The khalif al-Mâmûn once said, on hearing Abû Muslim's name mentioned: "The greatest princes of the earth "were three in number, and each of them caused an empire to pass from one dynasty to another; I mean Alexander, Ardashir (8), and Abû Muslim the "Khorasanite." [During (9) a number of years, Abû Muslim continued his appeals to the people in favour of a person belonging to the family of Hâshim (10), and performed in Khorasan and the neighbouring places those deeds which are too well known to require relation here (11). Marwan Ibn Muhammad (the last of the Omaiyides) employed every artifice to discover the true nature

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