Page:EB1911 - Volume 02.djvu/809

This page has been proofread, but needs to be validated.
763
AṢMA‘Ī—ASMODEUS

of transubstantiation, and created some stir in Lincoln by her disputations. According to Bale and Foxe her husband turned her out of doors, but in the privy council register she is said to have “refused Kyme to be her husband without any honest allegation.” She had as good a reason for repudiating her husband as Henry VIII. for repudiating Anne of Cleves. In any case, she came to London and made friends with Joan Bocher, who was already known for heterodoxy, and other Protestants. She was examined for heresy in March 1545 by the lord mayor, and was committed to the Counter prison. Then she was examined by Bonner, the bishop of London, who drew up a form of recantation which he entered in his register. This fact led Parsons and other Catholic historians to state that she actually recanted but she refused to sign Bonner’s form without qualification. Two months later, on the 24th of May, the privy council ordered her arrest. On the 13th of June 1545, she was arraigned as a sacramentarian under the Six Articles at the Guildhall; but no witness appeared against her; she was declared not guilty by the jury and discharged after paying her fees.

The reactionary party, which, owing to the absence of Hertford and Lisle and to the presence of Gardiner, gained the upper hand in the council in the summer of 1546, were not satisfied with this repulse; they probably aimed at the leaders of the reforming party, such as Hertford and possibly Queen Catherine Parr, who were suspected of favouring Anne, and on the 18th of June 1546 Anne was again arraigned before a commission including the lord mayor, the duke of Norfolk, St John, Bonner and Heath. No jury was empanelled and no witnesses were called; she was condemned, simply on her confession, to be burnt. On the same day she was called before the privy council with her husband. Kyme was sent home into Lincolnshire, but Anne was committed to Newgate, “for that she was very obstinate and heady in reasoning of matters of religion.” On the following day she was taken to the Tower and racked; according to Anne’s own statement, as recorded by Bale, the lord chancellor, Wriothesley, and the solicitor-general, Rich, worked the rack themselves; but she “would not convert for all the pain” (Wriothesley, Chronicle i. 168). Her torture, disputed by Jardine, Lingard and others, is substantiated not only by her own narrative, but by two contemporary chronicles, and by a contemporary letter (ibid.; Narratives of the Reformation, p. 305; Ellis, Original Letters, 2nd Ser. ii. 177). For four weeks she was left in prison, and at length on the 16th of July, she was burnt at Smithfield in the presence of the same persecuting dignitaries who had condemned her to death.

Authorities.—Bale’s two tracts, printed at Marburg in November 1546 and January 1547, are the basis of Foxe’s account. See also Acts of the Privy Council (1542-1547), pp. 424-462; Wriothesley’s Chron. i. 155, 167-169; Narratives of the Reformation, passim; Gough’s Index to Parker Soc. Publications; Burnet’s Hist. of the Reformation; Dixon’s Hist. of the Church of England; Dict. Nat. Biogr.

 (A. F. P.) 

AṢMA‘Ī [Abū Sa‘īd ‘Abd ul-Malik ibn Quraib] (c. 739-831), Arabian scholar, was born of pure Arab stock in Basra and was a pupil there of Abū ‘Amr ibn ul-‘Alā. He seems to have been a poor man until by the influence of the governor of Baṣra he was brought to the notice of Harūn al-Rashīd, who enjoyed his conversation at court and made him tutor of his son. He became wealthy and acquired property in Baṣra, where he again settled for a time; but returned later to Bagdad, where he died in 831. Aṣma‘ī was one of the greatest scholars of his age. From his youth he stored up in his memory the sacred words of the Koran, the traditions of the Prophet, the verses of the old poets and the stories of the ancient wars of the Arabs. He was also a student of language and a critic. It was as a critic that he was the great rival of Abū ‘Ubaida (q.v.). While the latter followed (or led) the Shu‘ūbite movement and declared for the excellence of all things not Arabian, Aṣma‘ī was the pious Moslem and avowed supporter of the superiority of the Arabs over all peoples, and of the freedom of their language and literature from all foreign influence. Some of his scholars attained high rank as literary men. Of Aṣma‘ī’s many works mentioned in the catalogue known as the Fihrist, only about half a dozen are extant. Of these the Book of Distinction has been edited by D. H. Müller (Vienna, 1876); the Book of the Wild Animals by R. Geyer (Vienna, 1887); the Book of the Horse, by A. Haffner (Vienna, 1895); the Book of the Sheep, by A. Haffner (Vienna, 1896).

For life of Aṣma‘ī, see Ibn Khallikān, Biographical Dictionary, translated from the Arabic by McG. de Slane (Paris and London, 1842), vol. ii. pp. 123-127. For his work as a grammarian, G. Flügel, Die grammatischen Schulen der Araber (Leipzig, 1862), pp. 72-80.

 (G. W. T.) 

ASMARA, the capital of the Italian colony of Eritrea, N.E. Africa. It is built on the Hamasen plateau, near its eastern edge, at an elevation of 7800 ft., and is some 40 m. W.S.W. in a direct line of the seaport of Massawa. Pop. (1904) about 9000, including the garrison of 300 Italian soldiers, and some 1000 native troops. The European civil population numbers over 500; the rest of the inhabitants are chiefly Abyssinians. There is a small Mahommedan colony. The town is strongly fortified. The European quarter contains several fine public buildings, including the residence of the governor, club house, barracks and hospital. Fort Baldissera is built on a hill to the south-west of the town and is considered impregnable.

Asmara, an Amharic word signifying “good pasture place,” is a town of considerable antiquity. It was included in the maritime province of northern Abyssinia, which was governed by a viceroy who bore the title of Bahar-nagash (ruler of the sea). By the Abyssinians the Hamasen plateau was known as the plain of the thousand villages. Asmara appears to have been one of the most prosperous of these villages, and to have attained commercial importance through being on the high road from Axum to Massawa. When Werner Munzinger (q.v.) became French consul at Massawa, he entered into a scheme for annexing the Hamasen (of which Asmara was then the capital) to France, but the outbreak of the war with Germany in 1870 brought the project to nought (cf. A. B. Wylde, Modern Abyssinia, 1901). In 1872 Munzinger, now in Egyptian service, annexed Asmara to the khedivial dominions, but in 1884, owing to the rise of the mahdi, Egypt evacuated her Abyssinian provinces and Asmara was chosen by Ras Alula, the representative of the negus Johannes (King John), as his headquarters. Shortly afterwards the Italians occupied Massawa, and in 1889 Asmara (see Abyssinia: History). In 1900 the seat of government was transferred from Massawa to Asmara, which in its modern form is the creation of the Italians. It is surrounded by rich agricultural lands, cultivated in part by Italian immigrants, and is a busy trading centre. A railway from Massawa to Asmara was completed as far as Ghinda, at the foot of the plateau, in 1904. At Medrizien, 6 m. north of Asmara, are gold-mines which have been partially worked.

See G. Dainelli, In Africa. Lettere dall’ Eritrea (Bergamo, 1908); R. Perini, Di qua dal Mareb (Florence, 1905).

ASMODEUS, or Ashmedai, an evil demon who appears in later Jewish tradition as “king of demons.” He is sometimes identified with Beelzebub or Apollyon (Rev. ix. 11). In the Talmud he plays a great part in the legends concerning Solomon. In the apocryphal book of Tobit (iii. 8) occurs the well-known story of his love for Sara, the beautiful daughter of Raguel, whose seven husbands were slain in succession by him on their respective bridal nights. At last Tobias, by burning the heart and liver of a fish, drove off the demon, who fled to Egypt. From the part played by Asmodeus in this story, he has been often familiarly called the genius of matrimonial unhappiness or jealousy, and as such may be compared with Lilith. Le Sage makes him the principal character in his novel Le Diable boiteux. Both the word and the conception seem to have been derived originally from the Persian. The name has been taken to mean “covetous.” It is in any case no doubt identical with the demon Aēshma of the Zend-Avesta and the Pahlavi texts. But the meaning is not certain. It is generally agreed that the second part of the name Asmodeus is the same as the Zend daēwa, dēw, “demon.” The first part may be equivalent to Aēshma, the impersonation of anger. But W. Baudissin (Herzog-Hauck, Realencyklopädie) prefers to derive it from ish, to drive, set in motion; whence ish-mīn, driving, impetuous.

The legend of Asmodeus is given fully in the Jewish Encyclopaedia, s.v. See also the articles in the Encyclopaedia Biblica, Hastings’ Dictionary of the Bible, and Herzog-Hauck, Realencyklopädie.