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M.Besant E.Walter
Jerusalem, the city of Herod and Saladin

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M.Besant E.Walter
Jerusalem, the city of Herod and Saladin
page 447



oppression. The chief Câdhi was also included in the indictment, as having given corrupt decisions in the interests of the governor. The latter purchased immunity by paying off upon the spot all claims that were made against him, and was retained in his office by the Sultan, who, however, intimated that if a single complaint were again made he would have him cut in halves. The Câdhi narrowly escaped corporal punishment, and was dismissed ignominiously from his office, and compelled to leave the city. In May, 1476, orders came from the Sultan to arrest all the Christians connected with the Churches of the Holy Sepulchre, Sion and Bethlehem, in revenge for the capture of four Muslims by the Franks at Alexandria.* The orders were executed, but we are not told what became of the prisoners. Towards the end of 1477 the plague, which had been raging for some time in Syria, reached Jerusalem, and lasted for more than six months, causing a terrible mortality. In 1480 a great disturbance took place in Jerusalem in consequence of the governor having imprisoned and put to death some Bedawin of the Beni Zeid tribe. A crowd of ferocious Arabs bore down upon Jerusalem determined to revenge the death of their comrades, and the governor, who was riding outside the city at the time of their arrival, narrowly escaped falling into their hands. Setting spurs to his horse he dashed through the Bâb el Esbât, rode across the courtyard of the Mosque, and escaped through the Bâb el Maghâribeh. The Bedawin swarmed in after him with drawn swords, utterly regardless of the sacred character of the place. Finding that their victim had escaped they followed the method adopted on similar occasions by European agitators, broke into the houses and shops of the neighbourhood and plundered all that they could lay their hands on, and then broke open the jail and let loose the prisoners.


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