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tower of light

April 2017

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tower of light



在深刻反省了“把一代英雄萨拉丁叫成‘美人’是不对的”之后,接下来心中浮现出的念头是:我也要去做一件那样的礼服!>_< 黑底金边银刺绣!紧身!长袍!(然后意识到,下次到中国不知道是什么时候……于是泪奔。)

到图书馆借了两本书出来读。一本是Amin Maalouf的《The Crusades Through Arab Eyes》,另一本是H.A.R. Gibb的《Saladin: Studies in Islamic History》。前者通俗,后者学术。(结果吃午饭的时候被旁边大叔问,“你是学伊斯兰研究的咩?”…… = =|||) 前面一本里面的萨拉丁啊,简直萌得令人发指……

Despite its somewhat sketchy title, Saladin: All-Powerful Sultan and the Uniter of Islam by Stanley Lane-Poole is a highly readable and historically rich account of of Saladin's life. At 400 pages, it's a long read—but I plan to bring it with me on the upcoming trip to Phoenix.

Typed up two excerpts.

On the strength of Saladin as a ruler:

The Emperor was dead; the Kings had gone back; many of their noblest followers lay buried in the Holy Land; but Jerusalem was still the city of Saladin, and its titular king reigned over a slender realm at Acre.

All the strength of Christendom concentrated in the Third Crusade had not shaken Saladin's power. His soldiers may have murmured at their long months of hard and perilous service, year after year, but they never refused to come to his summons and lay down their lives in his cause. His vassals in the distant valleys of the Tigris may have groaned at his constant requirements, but they brought their retainers loyally to his colours; and at the last pitched battle, at Arsuf, it was the division of Mosil that most distinguished itself for valour. .......

...... Brother, sons, nephews, old comrades, new vassals, shrewd Kady, cautious secretary, fanatical preacher—all had their share in the general verdict, all helped their Master loyally according to their ability, but not a man of them ever forgot who was the Master. In all that anxious, laborious, critical time, one mind, one will was supreme, the mind and the will of Saladin.

The death of Saladin:

On Tuesday night the faithful secretary and chancellor were summoned to the castle, but they did not see the Sultan, who was sinking fast. There was a divine with him, repeating the confession of faith and reading the Holy Word; and when he came to the passage "He is God, than whom there is no other God—who knoweth the unseen and the seen—the Compassionate, the Merciful," the Sultan murmured, "True"; and when the words came, "In Him do I trust," the dying man smiled, his face lighted up, and he rendered his soul to his Lord.

Saladin died on Wednesday, the 4th of March, 1193, at the age of fifty-five.

They buried him the same day in the garden house in the Citadel of Damascus, at the hour of the asr prayer. The sword which he had carried through the Holy War was laid beside him: "he took it with him to Paradise." He had given away everything, and the money for the burial had to be borrowed, even to the straw for the bricks that made the grave. The ceremony was as simple as a pauper's funeral. A striped cloth covered the undistinguished bier. No poet was allowed to sing a dirge, no preacher to make oration.