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Page:Early Christianity in Arabia.djvu/33

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IN ARABIA.

or Latrippa, the modern Medina, was at this time occupied by a colony of Jews, who are said to have been descended from those who fled from Palestine and Syria, before the armies of Baktunusser, or Nebuchodonassur. Having reduced the greater part of Hedjaz, Assaad left his son Algabtoun as governor at Yatreb, and is said to have been pursuing his march towards Syria, when he was overtaken by messengers who informed him that the Jews of Yatreb had rebelled, and had put his son to death. Assaad returned, vowing that he would not leave a Jew alive in Hedjaz, but he was met by some of the tribes from about Yatreb, who came to expostulate with him, justifying their conduct by representing to him the injuries and oppression which they had suffered from his son. By these excuses the anger of the tobbaa was appeased, he being, according to Arabian writers, no lover of injustice. He was also met by the tribe of the Hudeilites, who urged him to attack Mecca, and plunder the Caabah, tempting him with their account of the unbounded riches it contained. But the people of Mecca also succeeded in diverting his hostility by the accounts they gave him of the sanctity of the place, persuading him that it was under the peculiar protection of the Deity, and that those who had incited him to this sacrilegious action only aimed at his destruction. He remained several months at Mecca, offered every day magnificent sacrifices in the Caabah, and adorned it with tapestry, affixing to