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By Percy Molesworth Sykes

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Extra resources for A History of Persia (Vol.2)

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The ancient Arabians had seven temples, dedicated to the seven three of They planets. are whom also mentioned worshipped goddesses, the Koran under the in 2 names of Allat, the special idol of Mecca Al-Uzza, the also a sacred There was stone. planet Venus and Mana, an idol for every day of the year in the temple at Mecca. The centre of worship at Mecca was the The Kaaba. ; ; Kaaba. 3 This sacred temple contained, embedded in the eastern corner, a reddish-black stone, which is believed to be a meteorite ; it is semicircular in shape and very small, measuring only some six inches by eight.

As at Badr, the Moslems had the advantage in the single combats, but in the general hand-to-hand contest which ensued, the superior numbers of the Kureish won the day. Mohamed was wounded, and but for his foresight in fighting with his back to some crags, there might well have been an irretrievable disaster. As it was, he lost seventy-four warriors, and his THE ESTABLISHMENT OF ISLAM XLV 17 lowered. But his burning eloquence prestige was sensibly his followers that these reverses were persuaded gradually but to test them, and in the following year he strengthened by driving out the second of the Jewish The Beni Nazir were agriculturists, and when tribes.

We read that XLVI ISLAM UNDER FIRST FOUR CALIPHS 29 " " in there were more than one thousand Companions its ranks. Organized into four divisions, with a total strength of 30,000, apart from a reserve of 6000 men marched north, and working independently eventually threatened Syria from Hebron on the west to Damascus on the east. Heraclius despatched four armies to overwhelm the detached divisions, which thereupon united on the left bank of the Yermuk, an eastern tributary of the Jordan. There the two hosts faced one another for months, withAbu Bekr in great out risking any decisive action.

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