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them.' And Laqit went away without The Exploit of Rahrahan. ransoming Mabad. When Khalid was killed, Harith, the - The conquerors, it is said by some, son of Zhalim, took flight, and, after rang- interdicted him from water, and treated ing the world, came to seek refuge with him so ill that he died of inanition : but, Mabad, the son of Zourârah, of the tribe according to others, Mabad refused to eat of the Banou-Tamim. At this time Zou- or drink, and perished voluntarily of thirst rârah no longer existed. Mabad having and hunger. Amir, the son of Toufayl, promised his aid to the fugitive, the Ba- alludes to this fact in the following verse. nou-Tamim said to him, 'What art thou “We have quenched our long resentthinking of, to receive this unlucky one? ment against the tribes of the Absides, Wouldst thou draw on us the wrath of As- and amongst us has Mabad died for want wad ? The Tamimides therefore separa- of food.'” ted their cause from that of Mabad, excepting, however, the Banou-Mawiyyah and the Banou-Abdallah ibn-Darim, who of Rahrahan in ihe following verses.
The poet Djarir has celebrated the day both protected the stranger.
“Laqit, another son of Zourarah, com posed on this occasion a satiric poem,
“And in the night that succeeded the passing in review the numerous families affair of Rahrahan, what disorder was of the tribe of Tamim, and castigating yours, oh children of Tamim! You thought each in turn. The families of Adiyy and no longer of the spoils. Taym were the worst treated by him. “You abandoned Mabad to his chains Nothing more pitiful than the children
and which of your brethren in of Adiyy and Taym, in the hour of dan- captivity have you not abandoned ?" ger. It is in vain to seek for champions amongst them.
Another poet has said, “When their lances gleam above the horizon, with Zayd at their head, the ene
“At Rabrahan, the day after Mabad was my are at ease: they have long known that the lances of Zayd do no harm.'
made prisoner, the conquerors espoused "Ahwass, in the mean time, the son of without having first paid the dowry to
your daughters, oh children of Tamim !Djafar, the son of Kilab, and the brother
their fathers." of the assassinated Khalid, being informed of the place where Harith, the son of Zhalim, had sought refuge, came to attack
We must take another instance which, Mabad, his protector. The encounter took in M. Fresnel's opinion, "displays the Beplace at Rahrahan, not far from Oukazh, douin character in all its purity." We in the Hegiaz. The Tamimides were put doubt if this word should not be atrocity. to flight, and Mabad, the son of Zourarah, taken prisoner. He was captured by two Abs, had a difference with Qays, the son of
Rabi, the son of Ziyad, of the tribe of brothers, Amir and Toufayl, sons of Malik, the son of Djafar, the son of Kilab.
Zouhayr, and therefore his own sovereign, “Laqit, the son of Zourârah, came to respecting a coat of mail claimed by both. them to treat for the ransom of his bro- Rabi had carried it off, but had fled to the ther, and said: 'I have two hundred cam- Banou Fazarah, part of the tribe of Dhoubels, 'take these. The sons of Malik an- yan, for protection. The king, on the swered him: Thou art the chief of Ilyâs, other hand, revenged himself by taking the and Mabad, thy brother, is chief of Mou- milch-camels belonging to Rabi, and exdar. We will take for him only the ran- changed them for arms at Mekka. Rabi som of a king.' But Laqit would not hear and his brothers were distinguished for of any increase on the offer. “Our father ordered us,” he said, and it was one of their worth, and every where named Kahis dying injunctions, not to add one sin- mahlah, or, the Perfect. gle camel to the two hundred, which have Hostilities having commenced meantime long formed the amount of our ransoms.' between the tribes of Abs and Dhoubyan, Then Mabad said to Laqit, Desert me by the death of Malik, the son of Houdhaynot, oh Laqit! for I swear by God, if thou fah, of the family of Fazarah, the Absides leavest me to day in their hands, thou wilt never see me again.' 'Have patience, my
hastened to pay the price of blood to the brother,' said Laqit, 'for, if I give way, parents of the slain, and gave them one what will become of our father's injunc-hundred camels, which were accepted by tion, which said-Leave not yourselves to Houdhayfah. But subsequently the latter, be eaten up by the Arabs, and raise not still nourishing resentment, surprised and the sum of your ransoms above the price killed Malik, the son of Zouhayr, and brousually given for a warrior of your people, ther of Qays. Then the Absides said to lestyou be attacked by the ravening wolves the Fazarides: “ Malik, the son of Zouthat infest the country, and who will be attracted by the feast that you wi!l thus offer hayr, goes for Malik, the son of Houdhay
fah, so return us our camels:”—but this I has entirely overlooked the necessity of Houdhayfah refused.
separating truth from falsehood, and preAt the return of the party forming the serving a continuous narrative of the acts ambuscade by which Malik the son of of his ancestors--a fact so strange that it is Zouhayr had been slain, in the presence of certainly calculated to awaken our suspiRabi the Fazarides who had stayed at home, cions. addressed those who had gone on the ex Major Price, in his elaborate Essay on pedition.-" What have you done," said the early History of Arabia, has dwelt at they, “ with your wild ass ?-—" We have some length on the paucity of his materials, not neglected it," they answered. Rabi, and declares, that alter all his labors "the who was under the protection of the ene- opinion which the author had early formed mies of his tribe, but ignorant of the recent that, anterior to the age of Mahommed, the murder, inquired the sense of these myste- Arabs possessed, in fact, no authentic rerious words: “ It means that we have kill. cords of their history, remains, however, ed Malik, the son of Zouhayr." "Ye hare unaltered ; and, considering that so distincommitted infamy then,” cried Rabi; “ye guished ai orientalist as Dr. Pococke have accepted a composition; ye were sa- could advance no further, the author must tisfied therewith and called it sufficient; yet abide in the belief that, without launching afterwards
-But ye are faith into the ocean of conjecture, into the mazes “ Wert thou not our guest,” replied of an ever-varying speculation, all attempt the Fazarides, " we should have slain ihee to produce a regular History of Arabia, an. at the first word: thou hast still three* iecedent to that period, will, if the truth be nights to pass in our tents.” Rabi fled, acknowledged, ever terminate in a specia and the Fazarides pursued him, but in vain, men, or an essay.” At the conclusion, too, and the fugitive rejoining his tribe, made of the volume he explicitly states,his peace with his king.
The value of these records, however "In the preceding essay it has been our small, may be more justly appreciated by endeavor through the mazes of traditional, calling to mind, that of such materials in and we fear in too many instances, of fathe infancy of nations throughout the East bulous narrative, to discover, if possible, were composed the histories on which some of the traces of rational history; and
it is to be regretted, although not by any alone we must rely. They serve to illustrate the former earliest literary state, not that, at a period so little remote from our
means an extraordinary circumstance, of their proper country only, but also of own times, we should have been compelled Persia, Tatary, and China. The poems in our search after truth, to occupy the ator songs from which Ferdousi compiled a tention of the reader so extensively with large portion of his Book of Kings in the the fictions of romance. Yet, should the first (see F. Q. R. No. XXXV. p. 119 to success of our researches neither corres150); the traditionary records that were
pond with our early hopes nor with the suffered to perish in the second, after the just claims of an enlightened age, it will be
a still more discouraging reflection to find, great Persian poet had achieved his immor- that the failure is ascribed to want of dilital work (No. XXXVIII. pp. 403, 404); gence on the part of the writer, rather than and those fragments of former times which to the total absence of competent materiwere collected by the care of the sage Con- als. To seek for more sober or better aufucius in the last, and to which we have thenticated information among oriental elsewhere slightly referred already, and historians would, nevertheless, as far as may possibly turn for closer examination it has been our lot to discover, be a hopehereafter, render it, therefore, almost cer- professed belief in the East being in close
less and unavailing pursuit, the general tain that the earliest history of eastern na coincidence with the abstract above comtions in general is not to be found in their piled. Neither is it understood that, preextant historical works.
Amongst other vious to the time of Mahommed, during points of resemblance that we formerly no-what his followers have contemptuously ticed (No. XXXV. pp. 125, 127, and No. designated the period of ignorance, folly, XXXVII. pp. 201, &c.), we may now re
or absurdity, the Arabians were in posmark also the singular fact, that the Arab, history, unless such were contained in the
session of any authentic records of their like the Brahmin, while he appears to have poetical effusions, the Moallekaut, suspencultivated his language, and the general silia, or prize poems, suspended in the sciences, with no ordinary degree of care, temple of Mekkah. And if, again, we re
cur to the collateral notices, scattered at
distant intervals through the pages of * This was the shortest period that could be
Greek and Roman story, little more is to granted to a protégé.
be gathered than occasional testimonies to the lofty and intractable spirit, the inex
tinguishable love of independence, which
We may, however, afford a few lines to and which have doubtless contributed in a great degree to preserve to the genuine and generally considered to be the same as
The patriarch Eber, grandson of Shem, antiquity than is to be found in any other the prophet Houd, was the father of Yoknation upon earth.”—pp. 247, 248.
tan, Joctan, and Kahtan, as by a slight
transposition his name is commonly proHis assertions are amply illustrated by nounced. Yarrab, or Arab, (for it is but the single fact, that except the monstrous the gutteral a), was the son of Kahtan, and and extravagant fictions of the Rouzut-ul- the inventor, as already stated, of the lanSuffa, and the Khoulausset-ul-Akhbar, guage. He is the progenitor of the Arabs themselves obviously taken in great mea- of Yemen, or the Happy Arabia, whose sure from misunderstood foreign accounts colonies or tribes occupied Bahrain, on the and traditions, the bulk of his work is sus- Persian Gulf, Nedjid, Yamama, and Yathtained by the Tarikh Tabiri, a Persian reb or Medina (by pre-eminence the City), chronicler, and is in itself less a history of and to the borders of Hegiaz. AbdulArabia than of Persia, in which incidental Shems, the Slave, or worshipper, of the notices of the former country are occasion- Sun, was the Son of Yarrab, and possessed ally given as connected with the existence the sovereign authority over Yemen. He of the latter.
left three children; Kahlaun, who succeedOf their boasted antiquity the Arabs ed him, and became the parent of the Beniknow absolutely nothing beyond what they Lakhim and the Ghassau races; Mezza, have borrowed and disfigured from extra- whom Price considers, with great probaneous sources. They have little, Tabiribility we think, to have been Madhaj, the nothing whatever, to fill the space between grandson, not the son ; and Hamyar, from Ishmael and Moses, whom they consider to whom are descended the Flamyarites or have undertaken his divine mission in the Homerites, so celebrated in Assyrian histo60th year of the reign of Menuchehr, kingry, and who ruled over Yemen to the time of Persia ; and another void intervenes of Islamism. The 21st in descent from from the time of the great Hebrew legisla- Hamyar was Harith, surnamed Al Raysh, tor to the magnificent period of Solomon, who united the different tribes under his king of Israel and Ginnistan! When Ara- rule, and first assumed the well-known apbian history really commences, it is in pellation of Tobbah. With a slight notice great measure confined to Irak-Arabi, colo- of a few of his desendants, the Arabian aunized by their countrymen not long after thor carries us down to the time of Balkis, the reign of Alexander; and long and idle the Queen of Sheba in the days of Solotales of impossible achievements occupy, mon,---found by the lapwing searching for even then, the place of legitimate history, water. down nearly to the birth of Mahomined. Before the time of Mahomet the Arabs It is no way to be wondered at, therefore, were divided into two nations; one claimthat they boast an unconquered freedom, ing their descent from the Kahtan aforesince they have no means of preserving the said ; the second holding generally the cenrecords of their conquerors; nor that they tral and western parts of the country, the should have entirely lost all traces of the Hegiaz and Tihamah. These are the victorious expedition of Ælius Gallus, the proper wanderers of the Desert, whose traRoman prefect of Egypt, so late as the time ditions M. Fresnel is now examining: but of Caligula, into Yemen. The conquest (they themselves yield the precedence unof that country by the Abyssinian kings, questionably to the Arabs of Yemen and about A. D. 500, as given in the Kholaus- of the race of Kahtan. These last are conset-ul-Akhbar, is sufficient, however, to re- fessed by their brethren to be the Arabs of fute their boast of freedom, even without Arabs, while they themselves are but deknowing, as we do from other sources, scendants of Ishmael, and only Moustahow entirely they were at the mercy of an ribes; deriving this humbler appellation enemy that chose, in any age, to overrun from their being engrafted on the original a country divided into tribes continually race by the marriage of one of its daughwarring with each other, but never uniting ters to their own progenitor Ishmael, son long against a hostile force; and whose of Abraham. Before the 20th ancestor of fiercest battles scarcely deserve the name Mahommed, the most enlightened of the of skirmishes, as they fed at the loss of two nation confess the questionable nature of or three men of their number : not, like their historical genealogies of Mecca,the Parthians, to return for deeper ven- that mount up to Maan, and, by a single 3eance.
step, from him to his father Adam. The
name of Ishmael, indeed, seems to have Having brought these men to his prebeen little known to them, and but by indi- sence, Rebbeiah called upon Setteiah first rect intercourse with the Jewish tribes, till of all, separately, to explain to him the the appearance of the Prophet in the tribe circumstances of the dream which had
occasioned so much uneasiness; and the of the Koreishites, who reckoned only
sorcerer described to him, with little hesitwenty generations between him Adam! tation, that what he had seen was a thick Mahommed, in his extracts from the He- darkness from the bosom of which there brew Scriptures, raised to its present im- issued a mighty flame of fire, which cleavportance the name of Ishmael, the wild Be ing to the earth, and reducing it into burndouins of the Desert having till then been ing cinders, consumed all the inhabitants contented to distinguish themselves by the of Yemen, Acknowledging the precision
with which the circumstances of his dream appellation of the Sons of Maad, the son of had been described to him, the prince now Adam; while their superior brethren demanded that he might be furnished with claimed, as we have seen, their descent the interpretation; and Setteiah proceedfrom Kahtan. Such is the vaunted preci ed to explain, that his country would be sion of Arabian antiquity.
invaded by the monarch of Habbeshah, or The details that foiled Price, Pococke, Abyssinia, who would subjugate the inand others, in their researches after histo- habitants, subvert the Jewish religion, and ry, are in truth but idle narrations of transfer the sovereign power to the Abys
sinians. In short, that these latter, a satreachery, cruelty, coarseness, and vice; ble race, should subdue the country with while the tone of exaggeration they indulge fire and sword, and render themselves in may be judged from the circumstance, masters of Yemen. Rebbeiah then den that the roseleaf of the Sybarite is swelled manded if he were able to furnish any ininto the monstrosity of having absolutely formation as to the events which might torn and drawn streams of blood from the follow; and the sorcerer added, that, at
the expiration of a certain period, a person side of a princess, who had lived only on
would then arise of the name of Seyf-ben the marrow of calves and lambs, baked to Zy-ul-Yezzen, or Yazzen, who should consistence with butter and honey; and on
wrest the power from the Abyssinians; ambergris, or other aromatics, for bread.
but that he should also perish by a violent The singular facts narrated by Mr. death, and a prophet would appear among Lane, in his admirable work on modern the Arabs, by whom a code of laws would Egypt, regarding the magicians, corrobo- be established in Yemen, that should prerated, as they seem to be, hy the extraordi- vail to the end of time. 'On the day folnary details given lately in a justly popu- lowing, the other master-sorcerer, whose lar journal, and which equal, if they do not the presence of Rebbeiah, and being also
name was Shekk, or Shekka, appeared in exceed, the incredible exploits of Indian examined apart by that prince, furnished jugglers,* attested hy so many witnesses of precisely the same replies, without the unquestionable veracity, induce us to add, slightest variation in point of fact and infrom Major Price's volume, the following terpretation, as had been given by Setteiaccount of the Kauhens :
ah."--pp. 194, 195. “ The Kauhens mentioned here are de
This narrative from the Tarikh Tabiri scribed as a class of men, of whom, at this is confirmed on all material points by the period, many were to be found both in veracious Kholausset-ul-Akhbar, which Arabia and Syria, professing to give in- add the following particulars to the account formation on things unseen, not yet in ex-of Setteiah:istence, or to come to pass at some future period; to discover thefts, to describe the circumstances of an untold dream, and to it is alleged that, with the exception of his
“His father's name was Mussãoud, and furnish the interpretation; in short, with skull and the ends of his fingers, he was out any kind of previous explanation, to entirely without bone in any part of his give to individuals in all the occurrences body. According to others his head was of life, a satisfactory reply to every in- in his bosom; that, when under the influquiry.' In Arabia, these sootlisayers bore the name of Kauhenan, but the Oustauds, and it was then only that he was able to
ence of rage, his body became distended, or masters, in the occult profession, at the sit erect. He could not, however, at any period under consideration, were two per- time be made to stand upon his feet, but Sons of the name of Shekk and Setteiah, when it was necessary to move him from to whom all in Arabia looked up for in- place to place, they folded him like a manstruction in the mysteries of the art.
tle; and when there was occasion to con-
profession, it was the practice to roll him * See Major Price's note to the marvels related backwards and forwards upon the floor, in Jehanguire's Memoirs.
like a skin of milk, for cheese or butter,
until the answer was obtained. From the the tribe of Fahm, and of the family of account given by himself, Setteiah derived Schabâbah, the Schabâbides gave Schanhis supernatural knowledge from one of fara to the Salamanides in exchange for the Jinn, or Genii, who had surreptitiously the prisoner they had made. overheard some of the communications “Schanfara was long amongst the Bavouchsafed by the Supreme Being to Mo-nou-Salaman, who treated him exactly as ses, and who instructed the sorcerer in the if he had been one of their children, when disclosures which he was thus prepared the daughter of the Salamanide who had to make to those who applied to him for brought him up grew angry one day with information. It is further stated, that the the youthful captive. Schanfara, deemlife of this extraordinary individual ex-ing himself a child of the house, had said tended to the period of 600 years.”—pp. to her, ‘My little sister, wash my head.' 196, 197.
The young maid, who disdained him for
a brother, was enraged at his freedom and The labors of the Baron de Sacy are struck him. Schanfara, indignant and not unknown to the generality of readers. mortified, sought the man who had reWe need therefore only refer to them in ceived him from the Fahmides in exthe case of Schanfara; and our space re
change for their prisoner, and adjured minds that we must draw towards a con. Thou art," he answered, " of the family of
him to speak the truth regarding his birth. clusion.
Iwas, the son of Houdjr.' 'If so,' returned We must now therefore turn our atten. Schanfara, 'I will leave you no rest till I tion to Schansara.
have killed one hundred men of your tribe Schanfara was of the race of Azd (or for holding me in slavery.” Asd), and of the tribe of Iwas (A ws), the son of Houdir, the son of Hinw (Houn), He composed the following verses on rethe son of Azd. Amongst the verses he ceiving the blow. composed the following have become popular.
“Why, (since, alas! what is done, is
done,) why has the hand of the young " Oummou-Amr was resolved upon go
maiden struck the cheek of the noble ing; she is gone without bidding adieu to stranger who lived beneath the same roof? her neighbours.
Noble, at least, on his father's side. “Oummou-Amr has left thee, wretched
“Had Qacoûs seen my family by the lover! even whilst thy heart was a prey to side of his own, my ancestors with his, he desire. Farewell then to happiness!
would surely have abated of his pride. “I am charmed with this maid, for her
“For I am sprung from one of the best veil slips not aside as she walks ; and her stems of Houdjr; and my mother, - hadst head turns not to the right or to the left. thou known her, O Qacoûs !-my mother
“Her eyes are bent upon earth, so that was the child of free parents.” you would say that she is searching for
Schanfara (the thick-lipped) was the offsomething she has dropped in her path. If ever she ventures to address thee, be spring of a slave, either black or of mixed sure that modesty and shame will soon re- blood; and Fayrouz-abadiyy has inserted duce her to silence.”
him in the catalogue of the poets called
Aghribat Alarab, or, the ravens. The faThe following are extracts from the par-mous Antar, more properly Antarah, was, ticulars given of the hero-poet; and the it may be remembered, of ihe same origin, authority is thus stated,
the son of an Abyssinian slave, Zabibah.
Schanfara quitted the tribe of Salaman for “I receive this history from Amr, the the Banou-Fabm of the tribe of Schababab; son of Abou-lala, the Haramite, who had and from their dwellings he was wont to it from Abou-Yayâ-Mouaddib, and from issue accompanied by them, or alone, on Ahmad, the son of Abou ’lminhal, the Mouhallabide ; who had it from Mouarridj,
his murderous expeditions. He was wont who had it from Abou-Hischam Mouham- to address such verses as these to the Salamad Ibn-Hischam, the Namiride.
manides whom he assailed. “Schanfara was of the tribe of Iwas, the son of Houdjr, the son of Hinw, the son of "I rest not contented until I have overAzd, the son of Ghawth. In early youth whelmed with my dust all that wear the he fell into the power of the men of the pos- Kiça or the Bourd* in the tribe of Sala. terity of Schabâbåh, the son of Falım, the man. son of Amr, the son of Qays-Aylân; and "I will spend life, if needful, in chasing remained amongst them till the men of the through the desert the noblest of the Salaposterity of Salaman, the son of Moufridj, the son of Awf, the son of Maydaan, the son of Malik, the son of Azd, the son of Ghawth, having made prisoner a man of| * Military mantles.