Page images

kind. Though extremely concise, it contains a great quantity of grammatical matter, and this particularity distinguishes it from all previous works on the same subject. It has drawn the attention of many learned men, some of whom composed commentaries to explain it, and others made collections of examples to illustrate its rules; but all their labours are not sufficient to render the book intelligible, and those grammarians who have not read it under the tuition of a person well qualified to point out and explain its peculiar difficulties (1) acknowledge their inability to seize the meaning of the writer : the fact being, that it is all enigmas and obscure allusions. I even heard a grammarian of great note say : “ I do not understand this introduction, but it does not therefore result that I “have no'knowledge of grammar.” In a word, it is a most original production. I have been informed that he made dictations (2) on grammar, but that they were never published. I saw also a work of his, containing an abridgment of the commentary intitled al-Fasr, which Ibn Jinni (vol. II. p. 192) composed on al-Mutanabbi's poems. It is stated that he had also some knowledge of logic. Having made a journey to Egypt, he studied under the tuition of Ibn Bari (vol. II. p. 70), whose authority he cites in some passages of the Mukaddama; and a modern author says : “Al-Juzůli read the Jumal under Ibn Bari and consulted “ him on various points connected with the different sections of (Sibawaih's) Kitab (vol. II. p. 396) and obtained satisfactory answers. These questions having

given rise to discussions among the other pupils, some useful remarks were “elicited which al-Juzûli wrote down in a separate book. These materials “ served to form the Mukaddama, an obscure work, abounding in difficulties full “ of subtle meaning, and indicating the principles of grammar by ingenious al“ lusions. This treatise, with its signification, he taught to his scholars.” He then adds : “ I have been told that, when he was asked if he had composed that “ work himself, he replied in the negative; being prohibited by his strictly reli“ gious sentiments from claiming as his own the results of a discussion which 550 “ were in fact the offspring of many minds. It was even said by his master Ibn “ Bari that, although the work went under his name because he had drawn it up, “ he could not possibly claim it as his own.” Al-Jazůli then returned to Maghrib after performing the pilgrimage, and took up his residence at Bijàya ( Bougia), where he remained for some time, giving lessons to numerous pupils, with some of whom I was afterwards acquainted; and he died at Morocco (Marrákush), A. H.

610 (A. D. 1213-4). Such is the date given me by various persons, but I since met with an account of his life, by Abù Abd Allah Ibn al-Abbâr al-Kudài (3), wherein it is stated that his death occurred in A. H. 606 or 607.-Yalalbakht and Yamarili are Berber names.-Juzůli means belonging to Juzâla or Kuzúla (4), a tribe of the Berbers.—Yazdaktani means belonging to Yazdaktan, a branch of the tribe of Juzula. I have since found the following passage among my rough notes: alJuzůli filled the place of khatib, or preacher, at the principal mosque of Morocco. The tribe of Juzula is nomadic, and inhabits the plains of Sús, in the farthest extremity of Maghrib. As a teacher of the Koran-readings, grammar, and philology he held the highest rank, and he gave public lessons in the great mosque. He wrote a large volume as a commentary on his Mukaddama, containing much curious and instructive matter.- One of his scholars relates that he went to him with the intention of reading over Abû Amr's (vol.II. p. 399) edition, or reading, of the Koran under his tuition, and that a person present asked him if he wanted to take lessons in grammar from the master ? He replied that he did not, and another asked him the same question and obtained a similar answer; then the shaikh said to him : “ Answer them thus : ” and recited these verses :

I did not come to you for grammar, and have no wish to learn it. Leave Zaid to mind his business, and let him go wherever he likes. What have I to do with a man who is always beating his neighbours ? (5)

He died at Haskúra (6) a canton in the kingdom of Morocco.

(1) Literally: Who have not read it under a muwakkif. The verb wakkafa, of which this is the active participle, means to cause a person to notice and comprehend.

(2) See page 159 of this volume.

(3) The hå fiz Abû Abd Allah Muhammad Ibn Abd Allah Ibn Abi Bakr al-Kudài, surnamed: Ibn al-Abbâr, the author of the Takmila, or completion of Ibn Bashkuwal's Silat, was a native of Valentia in Spain, and secretary to different princes of the Hafside dynasty. He was put to death by order of al-Mustansir, the sovereign of Tunis, in the month of Muharram, A. H. 688 (Dec.-Jan. A. D. 1259-60). Ibn Khaldun gives an account of this event in his History of the Berbers, a work which the writer is now publishing for the French government.

(4) The true pronunciation of this name is Guzala, with a hard G.

(8) This is an allusion to the well-known grammatical example : daraba Zaidon Amran (verberavit Zeidus Amrum). )

text. All the secondary MSS. which I have consulted write this name wrong

in the printer بهسكورة Read



Abù 'l-Kâsim Isa, surnamed al-Faiz, was the son of az-Zàsir Ibn al-HaGz Ibn Muhammad Ibn al-Mustansir Ibn az-Zahir Ibn al-Hakim Ibn al-Aziz Ibn al-Moizz Ibn al-Mansûr Ibn al-Kaim Ibn al-Mahdi. We have already spoken of his father and other members of the family, and related how his father was murdered by Nasr Ibn Abbâs (vol. I. p. 222 ), the same person who took away the life of al-Aảdil Ibn as-Sallâr (vol. II. p. 350), and, in our notice on the latter, we have indicated Nasr's origin. On the morning which succeeded to the night of az-Zafir's death, Abbâs went to the Castle to pay his pects as usual, without appearing to have any knowledge of what had occurred, and asked to see the prince. The people of the Castle were not yet aware of his death, for he had gone out secretly, as has been mentioned in the article to which we have just referred. As none of them knew that he had left the Castle, the 551 eunuchs went in to ask his permission for Abbâs to enter, but they found him not. They then proceeded to the hall of the harem, but were informed that he had not passed the night there. In short, they sought for him in every part of the Castle where he might be expected to be found, but they could discover no sign of him, and they acquired the conviction that he had disappeared. Abbâs then ordered the two brothers of az-Zafir, Jibril and Yûsuf, the father of al-Aadid (vol. I. page 222, vol. II. page 72 ), to be brought forth and addressed them thus : “ You two have murdered our imam, and it is from

you alone that we can learn where he is.” They replied with great earnestness and perfect truth that they were innocent, but Abbâs put them to death on the spot, with the hope of thus diverting every suspicion from himself and his son. He then sent for al-Faiz, the son of az-Zafir, a child of about five years old—some say, only two-and having seated him on his shoulder, he took his station in the palace-yard and gave orders that the emirs should be introduced. When they had entered, he said to them: “Here is the son of your mas“ ter; his uncles have murdered his father, and I put them to death, as you may

perceive. What is essential now is, that the authority of this infant should be “fully recognised.” To this they replied : “We hear and we obey!” and they uttered one single shout, so loud that the child was stunned by it and urined on




Abbâs's shoulder. They then gave him the surname of al-Faiz (the successful ) and sent him back to his mother; but that shout had troubled his reason, and ever after, he suffered from constant attacks of falling-sickness and trembling fits. Abbàs now proceeded to his own palace and, taking the direction of the state into his own hands, he ruled with uncontrolled authority. The secret of az-Zàfir's murder was discovered, however, by the people of the Castle, and they secretly plotted the death of Abbâs and his son Nasr. They wrote also to as-Sâlih Ibn Ruzzik the Armenian (vol. I. p. 657) who was then governor of Munya tibni Khasib in Upper Egypt, asking his assistance for themselves and their master, and encouraging him to revolt against Abbâs. They cut off their hair (as a sign of mourning) and sent it to him in the letter, which was coloured in black (for the same reason). On reading the contents, as-Sålih communicated them to the soldiers who were about him, and consulted with them on the subject. Having obtained their promise to support him, he drew over to his cause a troop of nomadic Arabs, and they all marched in a body towards Cairo, dressed in black (mourning). On their approach, the emirs, soldiers, and negro troops went forth from the city to join him, and Abbâs, finding himself totally abandoned, left Cairo without a moments delay, and fled with a portion of his riches. He was accompanied in his flight by his son Nasr, the assassin of az-Zahir, and by Osåma Ibn Munkid (v. I. p. 177), who, it is said, had given them the counsel of murdering their sovereign. Of this we have already spoken in the life of Ibn as-Sallàr, but it is God only who knoweth things hidden! They set out with a small band of followers, and took the road which leads to Syria through Aila (1). It was on the 14th of the first Rabi, A. H. 549 (May, A. D. 1154), that they left Cairo, and Ibn Ruzzik entered the city without meeting any resistance. His first act was to dismount at the palace where Abbâs made his residence, and which then bore the designation of the dâr or palace of al-Mâmûn al-Batâihi (2), but which now serves as a Hanifite college and bears the name of al-Madrasa as-Suyûsiya (3). Having then sent for the little eunuch who had been with az-Zafir when he was murdered, he told him to show where the body was interred. The eunuch pointed out the spot, and, on tearing up the pavement which had been placed over it, they brought forth the corpse of az-Zahir and those of the persons who had accompanied him and had been slain at the same time. The bodies were carried out, and the people cut off their hair (in sign of mourning), whilst Cairo was filled with grief and lamentation. As-Salih Ibn Ruzzik, accompanied by all the persons in the city, walked on foot before the bier to the funeral chapel appropriated to the family, and which was a conspicuous object within the precincts of the Castle. He then took charge of the child al-Fâiz and administered the state in his name. The sister of az-Zafir wrote to the Franks at Ascalon (4), offering a large sum of money in case they arrested Abbâs. This induced them to sally forth to meet him, and in the combat which ensued, he lost his life, with his treasures, and his son was taken prisoner. Some of their companions escaped to Syria and, amongst the number, Ibn Munkid. The Franks then placed Nasr, the son of 532 Abbàs, in an iron cage and sent him under escort to Cairo, where the promised reward was immediately paid into the hands of their envoy. Nasr being then delivered up, was deprived of his nose and ears, paraded through the city, and finally attached to a cross at the Zawila Gate. The body was taken down and burnt on the day of Aashûra ( 10th of Muharram) A. H. 551 (March, A. D. 1156). This, though rather a long relation, is only a summary of what passed. -Nasr, the son of Abbâs, was taken into the Castle of Cairo on the 27th of the first Rabi, A. H. 550; and he was brought out on Monday, the 27th of the latter Rabi of the same year. In the interval, his right hand had been cut off and his body torn with pincers. Some say, however, that he was brought out to be exposed on Friday, the eighth of the month.-As for al-Faiz, he did not reign long; his birth took place on Friday the 21st of Muharram, A. H. 544 (June, A.D. 1149); he was raised to the throne on the death of his father (in Muharram, A. H. 549), and he died on the eve of Friday, the 17th of Rajab, A. H. 555 (July, A. D. 1160). He had for successor al-Aâdid, of whom we have already spoken (vol. II. p. 72) and who was the last prince of the dynasty.

(1) Aila, or Akabat Aila, is the fortress situated at the extremity of the eastern bifurcation of the Red Sea.

(2) Ab Abd Allah Muhammad Ibn Mukhtâr Ibn Bå bek al-Batâihi, surnamed al-Mâmûn, was elected vizir by the emirs of Egypt on the death of al-Afdal Shâhanshåh. He was arrested and put to death by the Fatimite khalif al-Aamir, A. H. B19 (A. D. 1125-6). It was for al-Bataihi that Abu Bakr at-Tortushi composed his Siraj al-Muluk.-(Nujům.-Husn al-Muhadira.)

(3) See vol. I. page 223, note (1).
(4) The relation which follows agrees in many points with that of William of Tyre (I. sviii, c. 9).

« PreviousContinue »