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him from going, in order that the Ierosolymites might see that they were despised, and beneath his notice. Ali was of a very different opinion, urging that the Mussulmans had endured great hardship in so long a siege, and suffered much from the extremity of the cold; that the presence of the caliph would be a great refreshment and encouragement to them, and adding, that the great respect which the Christians had for Jerusalem, as being the place to which they went on pilgrimage, ought to be considered; that it ought not to be supposed that they would easily part with it, but that it would soon be reinforced with fresh supplies. This advice of Ali being preferred to Othman's, the caliph resolved upon his journey; which, according to his frugal style of living, required no great expense or equipage. When he had said his prayers in the mosque, and paid his respects at Mohammed's tomb, he appointed Ali his substitute, and set forward with a small retinue; the greatest part of which, having kept him company a little way, returned back to Medina. He rode upon a red camel, with a couple of sacks; in one of which he carried that sort of provision, which the Arabs call sawik, which is either barley, rice, or wheat, sodden and unhusken; the other was full of fruits. Before him he carried a very great leather bottle (very necessary in those desert countries to put water in), behind him a large wooden platter. Thus furnished and equipped, the caliph travelled, and when he came to any place where he was to rest all night, he never went from it till he had said the morning prayer. After which, turning himself about to those that were with him, he said, " Praise be to God, who has strengthened us with the true religion, and given us his prophet, and led us out of error, and united us (who were at variance) in the confession of the truth, and given us the victory over our enemy, and the possession of his country. O ye servants of God! Praise him for these abundant favours; for God gives increase to those that ask for it, and are desirous of those things which are with him; and fulfils his grace upon those that are thankful." Then filling his platter with the sawik, he very liberally entertained his fellow-travellers, who, without distinction, ate with him all out of the same dish.
Whilst he was upon this journey, at one of his stages, a complaint was brought before him of a man that had married
two wives, that were sisters by the same father and mother also; a thing which the old Arabians, so long as they continued in their idolatry, made no scruple of. This is clear from that passage in the Koran, where it is forbidden for the time to come, and expressed after such a manner as evidently proves it to have been no uncommon practice among them. Omar was very angry, and cited him and his two wives to make their appearance before him forthwith. After the fellow had confessed that they were both his wives, and so nearly related, Omar asked him what religion he might be of, or whether he was a Mussulman? 66 Yes," said the fellow. "And did you not know, then," said Omar, " that it was unlawful for you to have them, when God has said, neither marry two sisters any more?”* The fellow swore, that he did not know that it was unlawful; neither was it unlawful. Omar swore he lied, and that he would make him part with one of them, or else strike his head off. The fellow began to grumble, and said, "that he wished he had never been of that religion, for he could have done as well without it, and had never been a whit the better for it since he had first professed it." Upon which Omar called him a little nearer, and gave him two blows upon the crown with his stick, to teach him better manners, and a more reverent way of speaking of Mohammedanism, saying, "O thou enemy of God, and of thyself, dost thou revile Islamism, which is the religion that God and his angels, and apostles, and the best of the creation have chosen?" And threatened him severely, if he did not make a quick despatch, and take which of them he loved best. The fellow was so fond of them both, that he could not tell which he would rather part with; upon which some of Omar's attendants cast lots for the two women. The lot falling upon one of them three times, the man took her, and was forced to dismiss the other. Omar called him to him, and said, “Pray mind what I say to you; if any man makes profession of our religion, and then leaves it, we kill him; therefore, see you do not renounce Islamism; and take heed to yourself, for if ever I hear that you lie with your wife's sister, which you have put away, you shall be stoned."
Passing on a little further, he happened to see some poor tributaries, whom their hard masters, the Saracens, were Koran, chap. iv. 27.
punishing for non-payment, by setting them in the sun; a punishment very grievous in that torrid zone. When Omar understood the cause of it, he asked the poor people what they had to say for themselves? They answered, that they were not able. Upon which he said, "Let them alone, and do not compel them to more than they are able to bear; for I heard the apostle of God say, Do not afflict men; for those who afflict men in this world, God shall punish them in hellfire at the day of judgment." And immediately commanded them to let them go.
Before he got to his journey's end, he was informed of an old man that suffered a young one to go partner with him in his wife; so that one of them was to have her four and twenty hours, and then the other, and so alternately. Omar having sent for them, and upon examination found them to be Mussulmans, wondered at it, and asked the old man, if he did not know that what he had done was forbidden by the law of God? They both swore, that they knew no such thing. Omar asked the old man, what made him consent to such a vile thing? Who answered, that he was in years, and his strength failed him, and he had never a son to look after his business, and this young man was very serviceable to him in watering and feeding his camels, and he had recompensed him that way; but since it was unlawful, he promised that it should be so no more. Omar bid him take his wife by the hand, and told him, "that nobody had any thing to do with her but himself. And for your part, young man," says he, "if ever I hear that you come near her again, off goes your head."
Omar, having all the way he went, set things aright that were amiss, and distributed justice impartially, for which he was singularly eminent among the Saracens, came at last into the confines of Syria; and when he drew near Jerusalem he was met by Abu Obeidah, and conducted to the Saracen camp, where he was welcomed with the liveliest demonstrations of joy. In the morning after Abu Obeidah met him, for he did not reach the camp on that day, he said the usual prayers, and if we may take my author's word for it, preached a good sermon. In the course of his address, as he quoted this text out of the Koran; "He whom God shall direct is led in the right way; but thou shalt not find a friend to direct him aright whom
God shall lead into error,"* a Christian priest that sat before him stood up, and said, "God leads no man into error;" and repeated it. Omar said nothing to him, but bid those that stood by strike off his head, if he should say so again. The old man understood what he said, and held his peace whilst Omar proceeded in his sermon.
Omar having met with some of the Saracens richly dressed in silks that they had taken by way of plunder after the battle of Yermouk, spoiled all their pride, for he caused them to be dragged along in the dirt with their faces downwards, and their clothes to be rent in pieces. As soon as he came within sight of the city, he cried out, "Allah Acbar: O God, give us an easy conquest." Pitching his tent, which was made of hair, he sat down in it upon the ground. The Christians hearing that Omar was come, from whose hands they were to receive their articles, desired to confer with him personally. Upon which the Mussulmans would have persuaded him not to expose his person, for fear of some treachery. But Omar resolutely answered, in the words of the Koran; "Say, "There shall nothing befall us but what God hath decreed for us; he is our Lord, and in God let all the believers put their trust.' " After a brief parley, the besieged capitulated, and because those articles of agreement made by Omar with the Ierosolymites are, as it were, the pattern which the Mohammedan princes have chiefly imitated, I shall not think it inappropriate to give the sense of them in this place, as I find them in the author of the History of Jerusalem, or the Holy Land, which I have mentioned before.
The articles were these; 1. "The Christians shall build no new churches, either in the city or the adjacent territory. 2. They shall not refuse the Mussulmans entrance into their churches, either by night or day. 3. They should set open the doors of them to all passengers and travellers. 4. If any Mussulman should be upon a journey, they shall be obliged. to entertain him gratis for the space of three days. 5. They should not teach their children the Koran, nor talk openly of their religion, nor persuade any one to be of it; neither should they hinder any of their relations from becoming
MS. Arab. Pocock. No. 362
Koran, chap. xviii. 16. + Ib. ix. 51.
Mohammedans, if they had an inclination to it. 6. They shall pay respect to the Mussulmans, and if they were sitting rise up to them. 7. They should not go like the Mussulmans in their dress; nor wear the same caps, shoes, nor turbans, nor part their hair as they do, nor speak after the same manner, nor be called by the names used by the Mussulmans. 8. They shall not ride upon saddles, nor bear any sort of arms, nor use the Arabic tongue in the inscriptions of their seals. 9. They shall not sell any wine. 10. They shall be obliged to keep to the same sort of habit wheresover they went, and always wear girdles upon their waists. 11. They shall set no crosses upon their churches, nor show their crosses nor their books openly in the streets of the Mussulmans. 12. They shall not ring, but only toll their bells: nor shall they take any servant that had once belonged to the Mussulmans. 13. They shall not overlook the Mussulmans in their houses: and some say, that Omar commanded the inhabitants of Jerusalem to have the foreparts of their heads shaved, and obliged them to ride upon their pannels sideways, and not like the Mussulmans."
Upon these terms the Christians had liberty of conscience, paying such tribute as their masters thought fit to impose upon them; and Jerusalem, once the glory of the east, was forced to submit to a heavier yoke than ever it had borne before. For though the number of the slain, and the calamities of the besieged were greater when it was taken by the Romans; yet the servitude of those that survived was nothing comparable to this, either in respect of the circumstances or the duration. For however it might seem to be utterly ruined and destroyed by Titus, yet by Hadrian's time it had greatly recovered itself. Now it fell, as it were, once for all, into the hands of the most mortal enemies of the Christian religion, and has continued so ever since; with the exception of a brief interval of about ninety years, during which it was held by the Christians in the holy war.
The Christians having submitted on these terms, Omar gave them the following writing under his hand.
"In the name of the most merciful God.
"From Omar Ebn Al Khattab, to the inhabitants of Elia. They shall be protected and secured both in their lives and