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Page:Early Christianity in Arabia.djvu/15

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treasures of Solomon himself were drawn from the mines and warehouses of Arabia.[1] The wealthy and the noble lived in the same magnificence and luxury that has ever been characteristic of the princes of the east, and we may parallel the writing's of Arabs and Greeks in describing the pride and splendour of their domestic life,[2] and their political prosperity. [3] But, although they bore the character of a soft and luxurious people, they still preserved that of being free, liberal, and brave. After having been successively subjected by Ethiopean and Persian conquerors, they still enjoyed the same character, "exulting," says a Persian writer, "in their liberty, delighting in eloquence, acts of liberality, and martial achievements, and thus making the whole earth red as wine with the blood of their foes,

  1. 2 Chron. ix. and 1 Kings, x.
  2. Ergo incolæ ejus lautissimam et mollissimam vitam degere, unctissimo in statu lautissimoque eodem. Mesoud, p. 160. كان لهم من التيه والعجب والكبر علي ساتر الامم—fastu, jactantia, et superbia reliquos Arabiæ populos superabant. Geogr. Arabs, Clim. 2. pars 6.—

    Arabesque molles.—Catull. Od. xi. 5.

    Thuriferos, fœlicia regna Sabæis.—Valerius Flace. Argon, lib. vi.—Conf. Agatharchidem, supr. citatum.

  3. &c. وكانت—Istæ autem regiones in proverbium olim missæ, pulchris florentes institutis eorum, qui mores rectissimos et virtutum præstantiam assectarentur, &c. Mesoud, p. 162. See Agatharch., Athenæus, &c. Μοναρχουσι δε παντες, και εισιν ευδαιμονες. Strabo, lib. xvi. p. 385.