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CHARLES J. ROSEBAULT. Saladin. Prince of Chivalry

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CHARLES J. ROSEBAULT.
Saladin. Prince of Chivalry
page 46



The entire area of the Noble Sanctuary, two thousand feet long by seven hundred wide, was paved with stones whose joints were set in lead, and dotted with other domed edifices and lesser buildings, each with its legend of miracle and inspirational incident; and the Moslem pilgrim must have been in ecstasy equally with the Christian at the sight of the walls of the Holy City. Enclosed within great walls of its own, this space at the southeast corner of the city was a treasury of sacred history for the children of Islam. The very name of the Dome of the Chain recalled King David's receiving from the Angel Gabriel the means of telling whether a witness was truthful or the reverse. Some said it was à rod, which spanned his Judgment Hall, and on this hung a bell which, touched in turn by plaintiff and defendant, rang for the righteous one. Others, and to these the Caliph who built the Dome must have inclined, said it was a chain, and not a rod, and eliminated the bell altogether. This chain had the magic property that only the one who spoke the truth could grasp it, while it eluded all efforts of the unveracious. Then there was the Talisman of el Aksa, the double inscription in the marble behind the pulpit — " Mahomet is Allah's Apostle," and " In the Name of Allah the Merciful, the Compassionate " — which made harmless the bite of serpent or scorpion. Ebn Asaker is said to have read in an ancient book that there were many of these deadly pests in Jerusalem, and certainly they were much feared, for the Christians had


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