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- Tel Farazdak," said be, “ to overwhelm Jareer sad his family with ridicule :” showing “ the ruling passion strong in death."

Abulfaraj, the author of the Kitab al Aghani, does not appear to place Akhtal on a level with Farardak and Jareer: Abu Obeyda, Abu Amru Sberbani, and Hammad Arraweeh, elevate him above them. Akhtal himself made no scruple of cisiming the first rank. According to Medayni, he said, “ The tribe, in which poetic talent is most genaal, is that of the Benu Cays Ebn Thalabeh ; the family, which reckons the most distinguished poets is that of Abu Selma; and the best poet is the individual in my shirt."

Jarær, although his enemy, did him justice. When asked what he thought of the merits of Farazdak, Akhtal, and himself, he replied : “ Farazdak, in contending with me, has undertaken a task which is too much for him. As to Akhtal, he has more boldness than either of us, and knows better how to wound his adversary in the tenderest parts." Upon another occasion, Jareer, dining with his son Nooh, was asked by the latter whether he thought himself superior to Akhtal. Jareer was troubled; he laid down the piece of food he had in his hand, whilst that in his mouth almost suffocated him. “My son," said he, "your ques

tion has given me both pleasure and pain ; pleasure, because it convinces me of the interest you take in the glory of your father; pain, because it awakens in me the remembrance of a man who is no more, and who has caused me many a pang. Know, my son, that, when I entered the lists with Akhtal, he had only one canine tooth left ; if he had had two, he might have devoured me. But his age and his false religion gave me a double advantage over him.”

The opinion of the celebrated grammarian, Yoonis, is cited in favour of Akhtal. He conceded to him the preference over his two rivals, because, said he, his poetry is in general more elaborate and more correct, and because he has composed most pieces of a certain length which are good from beginning to end, and in which no blemish can be discovered. Abu Obeyda declared that, after careful examination, he had found ten irreproachable poems in the works of Akhtal ; after which might rank ten others very little inferior to the former: and that he knew but three of this character in the works of Jareer, and none in those of Farazdak.

The partizans of Akhtal further remark in his praise, that he has contrived to give pungency to his epigrams without in the slightest degree offend

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His grandfather Sasaa and his father Ghaleb are both highly esteemed. A few particulars repushing them will exhibit a picture of the manners the age in which they lived.

Anterior to Islamism, a barbarous practice prealal amongst the Arabs. Such as were poor and spotected frequently buried their daughters dhe

, the moment they were born, in order to vid the expense of rearing them and the shame Thich might come upon them if they should happa to be carried off and dishonoured by their

Feries. Sasaa was celebrated for the generous philanthropy which impelled him to rescue a vast umber of these innocent victims from death, whence be obtained the surname of Muhyi al Novódát

, “ one who gives life to girls (condemned to be) buried alive. He has himself left the folbring anecdote :*I presented myself one day before Mahomet. Le proposed to me that I should embrace Islamism. I did so, and the prophet taught me some verses d the Coran. I then said to him: I have heretofore done certain actions, for which I desire to know whether God will reward me. What are they ?? Mahomet asked." I had lost, I replied, *two she-camels about to have young. I mounted a he-camel in order to seek for them. I perceived

His grandfather Sasaa and his father Ghaleb were both highly esteemed. A few particulars respecting them will exhibit a picture of the manners of the age in which they lived.

Anterior to Islamism, a barbarous practice prevailed amongst the Arabs.

Such as were poor

and unprotected frequently buried their daughters alive, the moment they were born, in order to avoid the expense of rearing them and the shame which might come upon them if they should happen to be carried off and dishonoured by their enemies. Sasaa was celebrated for the generous philanthropy which impelled him to rescue a vast number of these innocent victims from death, whence he obtained the surname of Muhyi al Mawúdát, 'one who gives life to girls (condemned to be) buried alive.' He has himself left the following anecdote:

“ I presented myself one day before Mahomet. He proposed to me that I should embrace Islamism. I did so, and the prophet taught me some verses of the Coran. I then said to him: I have heretofore done certain actions, for which I desire to know whether God will reward me.' they ?' Mahomet asked. “I had lost,' I replied,

two she-camels about to have young. I mounted a he-camel in order to seek for them. I perceived VOL. III.

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a-far off two tents near to each other. I proceeded towards them, and found in one an old man, of whom I inquired whether he had seen two shecamels big with young, and near their time, with such and such marks. “ They are here," he replied; “ we have helped them in their labour; they give suck to their young ones, and their milk has been a great relief to a poor family allied to you by blood, for we are descendants of Modbar." Whilst he thus spake, a cry came from the adjoining tent, that the woman was delivered. “Of what sex is the child ?" said the old man; “ if it is a boy, we will divide our fare with him; if a girl, let her be buried.” “ It is a girl,” cried the woman. “ What !” said I to the father, “ must she then die ? Spare her, and I will be her purchaser." “ Brother," replied he,“ how can you make such a proposal to me, that I should sell my daughter ? Have I not told you that I am an Arab of noble race, a descendant of Modhar?" " My object," I rejoined, " is not to require a property in her, and to possess her as a slave; I wish merely to redeem her life, and to prevent you from killing her."_" What will you give me?"_“ My two she-camels and their young ones.”—“ This is not enough; I must have likewise the camel on which you ride."_“ I agree, provided you let it carry

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