The Apostle Was Placed, It Is
Said, Under The Bed Where He Had Given Up The Ghost, By Ali And The Two
Sons Of Abbas, Who Dug The Grave.
With the life of Mohammed the
interest of Al-Madinah ceases, or rather is concentrated in the history
of its temple.
Since then the city has passed through the hands of the
Caliphs, the Sharifs of Meccah, the Sultans of Constantinople, the
Wahhabis, and the Egyptians. It has now reverted to the Sultan, whose
government is beginning to believe that, in these days when religious
prestige is of little value, the great Khan's title, "Servant of the
Holy Shrines," is purchased at too high a price. As has before been
observed, the Turks now struggle for existence in Al-Hijaz with a
soldier ever in arrears, and officers unequal to the task of managing
an unruly people. The pensions are but partly paid,[FN#33] and they are
not likely to increase with years. It is probably a mere consideration
of interest that prevents the people rising en masse,
[p.360]and re-asserting the liberties of their country. And I have
heard from authentic sources that the Wahhabis look forward to the day
when a fresh crusade will enable them to purge the land of its
abominations in the shape of silver and gold.
The Masjid al-Nabi, or Prophet's Mosque, is the second in Al-Islam in
point of seniority, and the second, or, according to others, the first
in dignity, ranking with the Ka'abah itself.
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