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    E.G. Browne
    Materials for the Study of the Babi Religion


    The Beginning is in the Name of the Eternal Lord,
    whom I praise, and whose Word I glorify, and
    whose Grace I thank, since He hath taught me by
    His Wisdom that wherein is my deliverance, my
    salvation, and my life in His Everlasting Kingdom.
    I ask Him to strengthen me in the service of His
    Pure Law, to endow me with steadfastness, and to
    fortify me, so that I may ever devote myself, according
    to His commands, to that which is of service to my
    fellow­creatures, and of advantage to Me and My
    brethren both Here and Hereafter. Verily He is
    the Almighty the Inspirer, the Helper!


    On the 2nd of Muharram A. H. 1233 (November 12, 1817) was born our Great Master His Holiness Birth of Baha'u'llah (to whom be Glory!). His original name was Mirza Husayn 'Ali, son of the well­known Sayyid Mirza 'Abbas, one of the Ministers of the Royal Court of Persia, entitled "Mirza Buzurg," a native of the district of Nur in the province of Mazandaran one of the provinces of *Persia. He was born in Tihran the metropolis of the Persians.

    Manifestation of the Bab, May 24, 1844.

           When he reached twenty­seven years of age there appeared His Holiness the Harbinger, whose noble name was Mirza 'Ali Muhammad, and who is entitled the Bab and the First Point (Nuqta-i-Ula who declared himself to be

    *p. 2.


    the Promised Qa'im (He who shall arise) and the Mahdi, whose advent is expected in Islam. This event happened on the 5th of Jumada 1, A.H. 1260 (May 24, 1844).

    "He whom God shall manifest” foretold by the Bab

           From the very beginning of his Manifestation, the Bab began to give good tidings of the imminence of some Great Event and the advent of some Promised Benefactor, of whom he made mention in his writings with great emphasis, even as John the Baptist foretold the appearance of the Lord Christ, whom he mentions with the utmost veneration and respect in the Gospel of Matthew, ch. iii, verse 11: “I baptize you with the Water of Repentance, but He who cometh after me is stronger than I, whose shoes I am unworthy to bear, He shall baptize you with the Holy Spirit and Fire." And he (the Bab) gives good tidings to his followers of the Universal Manifestation, whom he describes as "He whom God shall manifest," or He who shall appear," which expression is contained in most of his writings. He lays great stress on His celebration, description and Manifestation, while he himself, notwithstanding his claim to the highest of stations, reckons himself only a servant in relation to Him so mentioned and described.

           The Bab put to death at Tabriz on July 8, 1850

         Moreover this announcement was continued from the beginning of his Manifestation (in A.D. 1844) until he was crucified in the city of Tabriz, the chief town of the province of Azarbayjan, together with one of his disciples, Mirza Muhammad 'Ali, a native of Zanwaz near Tabriz, on the 28th of Shaban, 1266 (July 8, 1850). But since the author of the abridged history entitled A Traveller's Narrative1 has recorded the details of the birth

    1The Persian text of this work, which has been ascribed to 'Abbas Efendi, together with an English translation and copious historical



    of His Holiness the Harbinger (ie. the Bab), his Manifestation, and the chief events of his life, and Mr. Browne, the Oriental scholar, has translated this book into English, and printed and published it, there is no need for me to repeat what is recorded in it.


          When our great Master Baha'u'llah reached the age of thirty­two, he set out for the place called *Badasht in the direction of Mazandaran, where he met His Holiness Hajji Muhammad 'Ali al-Mazandarani (or ­Barfurushi], who was entitled Janab­i­Quddus and Qurratu'l­'Ayn, and others of the Friends.
    Shaykh Tabarsi

          When he was thirty­three years of age he went to the place called Shaykh Tabarsi in Mazandaran, where he suffered at the hands of the Shi`a divines and their followers, and was imprisoned in the town of Amu], one of the dependencies of Mazandaran and was much afflicted, and despoiled of his property.
    Attempt on the Life of Nasiru'd­Din Shah May 17, 1852

          When he reached the age of thirty­five, being at the time in one of the summer resorts of Shimiran on the outskirts of the city of Tihran, there happened the attempt on the life of the Shah (Nasiru'd­Din), which was as follows. One of the sect [of the Babis] named Sadiq, after the execution of His Holiness the Harbinger (i.e. the Bab), conceived the idea of exacting revenge without taking counsel with any man of sense; and, meeting Nasiru'd­Din Shah on
         the 28th of Shawwal, 1268 (May 17, 1852) while he was out riding, discharged at him a fire­arm

         notes by myself, was published at the Cambridge University Press in 1891 under the title of .4 Traveller's Narrative, written to illustrate the History of the Bab * page 3.
         1Also called Janab­i­Tahira, the Babi poetess and martyr.


    without food, and none of his companions knew where he was until a definite time which will be mentioned, and he has made mention of this in a Tablet in Persian which he addressed to the sister of his wife named Maryam and entitled “the Red Leaf " (al­Waraqatu'l­ Hamra), some portions of which I shall cite in this place to seek a blessing and for the better information [of my readers]. He says (may my life be his sacrifice!) :

    Epistle to Maryam.

          "O Maryam! The wrongs which I suffer have obliterated the wrongs suffered by my First Name from the Tablet of the Universe. 0 Maryam! From the Land of Ta’ (Tihran) after afflictions which cannot be enumerated, we reached 'Iraq­i­'Arab by command of the Tyrant of Persia, where, after the fetters of foes, we were afflicted with the perfidy of friends. Thereafter God knoweth what befell me, until I chose solitary exile, cut off from my household and what it contained, and from the Spirit and what is connected therewith. I journeyed through the deserts of Resignation, travelling in such guise that all men wept over my strangerhood, and all things shed tears of blood over my sorrows. I kept company with the birds of the plain and dwelt with the beasts of the field, passing beyond this transitory world like spiritual lightning, while for two years or rather less I avoided all beside God and shut my eyes to all but Him .... Until God's Predestination reminded some of His spiritual servants of this youth of Canaan, and they began *to make enquiry and to establish correspondence with all places and persons, until they discovered a sign of that signless one in a mountain cave. Verily he guideth all things into a straight path."

          In short, after His Holiness our Master Baha’u'llah had left Baghdad the conditions underwent a change, the

    *page 6.



    ardour of this community was cooled, and sloth overcame them. This period of absence endured two years or rather less, and it wanted but little that the harmony of the companions should be broken up, the name of the First Point (ie. the Bab) obliterated, and the Light of Religion extinguished. Then arose the brother of our glorious Master, Aqa Mirza Musa who was entitled Kalim ("the Interlocutor")1 and the father of his wife Shaykh Sultan a native of 'Iraq, and His Honour the Servant of the Presence Mirza Aqa Jan (of Kashan)2, and some others, to make investigations and enquiries. They began, therefore, to ask for news and information from every traveller and sojourner until they found their way to His Holiness, our Master Baha'u'llah and ascertained that he was in the mountains of Sulaymaniyya in Kurdistan. Thereupon they sent the above­mentioned Shaykh Sultan, with a number of letters from the faithful in different lands, to wait upon him;

    Return of Baha'u'llah to Baghdad.

         and His Holiness our Master returned to Baghdad in consequence of the urgent representations of the above­mentioned (Shaykh Sultan), and his entreaties and prayers. His arrival on this occasion effected a great improvement in the community, and an important extension of the Word, inasmuch as he devoted himself with all his energy to their purification and the improvement of their characters and conduct both by tongue and by pen. His influence was far­reaching, his doings were noised abroad in all regions, and there hastened to him those members of the community who were scattered abroad throughout the lands.

         1This is also the title given to the Prophet Moses Musa by the
          Muslims, because he talked with God.
         2Commonly entitled by the Baha'is Janab­i­Khadimu'llah ("His
          Honour the Servant of God ").



    Suicide of Sayyid Isma'il of Zawara, A.H. 1274 (A.H. 1857-8).

         Amongst the strange events which happened during the days of our great Master's sojourn at Baghdad was the sacrifice of himself of one of the Companions named Aqa Sayyid Isma'il of
         Zawara, a dependency of Isfahan. The detail of this is that the above­mentioned man came from his country to Baghdad and after *having had the honour of being presented to His holiness our great Master, and the lapse of some days, his state underwent a change, and there appeared in him an ecstasy, rapture and ardour beyond the bounds of computation.
          One night he had the honour of meeting His Holiness our great Master outside the house, and he bade him sit down beside him. Meanwhile our Master asked for a page of Writing and a lamp, and began to peruse it, while the attendant stood holding the candlestick in his hand before his Countenance. After a little while there appeared a complete change and a violent perturbation in the Sayyid above mentioned. The Master turned to him, commanded him to he tranquil, and entered his private apartment ; and the Sayyid set out for his lodging in the house of Aqa Muhammad Riza of Isfahan, known as al­'Ariz. Each day he increased in love, longing and rapture, until His Holiness our great Master honoured with his presence the house above mentioned, at the invitation of Aqa Muhammad Riza al­'Ariz. Now there were set before our Lord fruits and divers sorts of sweetmeats, which our Master divided amongst those present; and he called the afore­mentioned Sayyid Isma'il to give him a share thereof. But when he came he said to him, "Verily I ask you for a spiritual food." After. some days he resolved to sacrifice himself, but informed no one of his purpose. So one day in the

    *page 7.



    morning he went to the house of His Holiness our Master, and began to sweep outside the house, measuring the space, which was more than forty paces, with his turban. Then he placed his face on the ground, and measured the two places above mentioned, and departed at noon to a place outside Baghdad in the direction where lies the road to Kazimayn. And first he came to the Shattu'l­'Arab, where he performed the ablution with water and then lay down on his back with his face turned towards Baghdad, and cut his throat with a razor for shaving, and laid the razor on his breast, and yielded up his pure spirit. Now when the local government was informed of this, it sent officials to convey the martyr in a coffin *to the governor's palace; and the governing classes gathered round him, looking at him and weeping. And the military guards informed the local government about this event, and of how he came alone, and performed his ablution, and set out for the place of his death. This event happened in the year A.H. 1274 (A.D. 1857­8).


    Baha'u'llah invited to become a British subject.

         And amongst the events of those days was that the Consul­ General of the British Government, Colonel Arnold Burrowes Kemball,(1) entered into a friendly correspondence with His Holiness our great Master, his object being to adopt our Master as a British subject and to place him under the protection of the British Government. His Holiness, however, would not accept this proposal, though the British Consul­Generalsaid to him, “If you do not like to live in England, you can journey to India, which is indeed an Oriental and Muhammadan

         *page 8.
         1 According to the Dict. of Nat. Biogr. Sir A. B. Kemball became Consul­General at Baghdad in 1859, but according to the Alm. de Gotha in 1857.


    country, where you can dwell in any spot which is agreeable to your taste in the utmost honour and ease." To be brief, however, our Master would not accept this proposal, preferring to abide in the Ottoman dominions; a decision whereof the wisdom will not be hidden from men of sagacity, if they consider the events which happened subsequently.

    The Iqan composed and published

          At this juncture one of the relatives of the Bab on the mother's side named Hajji Mirza Sayyid Muhammad, a native of Shiraz, came to Karbala and Najaf. When he reached Kazimayn which is distant one hour from Baghdad His Holiness our Master Baha'u'llah sent to him one of the most eminent of his Companions, named Hajji Sayyid Jawad of Karbala to invite him to Baghdad. He accepted the invitation, and, when he attained the honour of an interview, asked some questions about the appearance of the Promised Qa'im whose advent Islam awaits. Our Master thereupon issued in reply to him a perspicuous book entitled Kitabu'l­Iqan (the "Book of Assurance")1 and when he had read it and acquainted himself with its contents, he acknowledged the truth of this matter and returned to his country.

    Enmity of Shi`ite divines towards Baha'u'llah

          *This notoriety which accrued to this community became a cause of the hatred of certain doctors of the Shi'a sect who dwelt at Karbala and Najaf. Amongst these was Shaykh 'Abdu'l­Husayn of Tihran who had been appointed by Nasiru'd­Din Shah to repair the Holy shrines. He agreed with the other doctors who were resident there to assemble at Kazimayn and order the common people to revolt against this community. Therefore he started an agitation

    1 This book has been translated into French by M. H. Dreyfus under
         the title of Le Livre de la Certitude (Paris, 1904). * page 9.


    there, and invited all the doctors to the place prepared for the banquet. Amongst those invited was the great Shaykh Murtaza al­Ansari who was one of the most famous mujtahids, a pious, learned, accomplished, devout and just man. So when the company was collected, the abovementioned Shaykh 'Abdu'l­Husayn disclosed his purpose, and asked for a fatwa from Shaykh Murtaza al­Ansari on this subject. But when Shaykh Murtaza heard his words, he did not give a fatwa according to what was sought, but said, "I have not yet acquainted myself with the ideas of the Babis; how then can I give a fatwa against them?" Then he rose up and returned to Najaf, whence he sent a message to His Holiness our Master Baha'u'llah declaring his affection for him, and excusing himself because he had not been aware of the intentions of the doctors, else would he not have been present with them, and adding "Verily I pray for you and ask God to preserve and help you." So when Shaykh 'Abdu'l­Husayn and the other doctors found themselves thus disappointed, they had recourse to another plan. And there was amongst them an eloquent and fluent man named Mulla Hasan 'Amu who was celebrated for his gift of speech and eloquence. So they agreed to send him to His Holiness Baha’u’llah to prove him, supposing that he would prevail over him by his fluency and eloquence. Him, therefore, they sent; and he chanced to arrive on a day when His Holiness Baha'u'llah was invited to the house of Mirza Hasan Khan one of the notables of Persia. Thither did the above­mentioned Mulla Hasan direct his steps, and demanded permission to enter, which was granted him. But after he had met our Master, and had seen his dignity, *majesty and awfulness, he did not dare to disclose the intentions of the doctors, but said,, that he had been

    * page 10


    sent on their behalf to investigate the claim and proof. Then our glorious Master said to him, "During the period of our sojourn in Iraq we have been hoping to meet the doctors in some assembly that they might question us concerning the claim and proof, and that we might answer, in accordance with the texts of the Scriptures and the arguments of reason, concerning the Holy Babi Law, so that the Truth might be distinguished from its opposite." Then His Holiness began to prove logically and historically that His Holiness the Harbinger [ie. the Bab was the Qa'im and on this subject he set forth a detailed explanation to those who were present. When he had concluded his discourse, the above­mentioned Mulla Hasan made representation to him as follows : "Verily the learning, wisdom, eloquence and fluency [of the Bab's words] are admitted, and there is no doubt about them, nor can they be exceeded; but let not the position of the doctors be misunderstood, for they are not satisfied with scientific proofs, but require some heavenly sign and demand a miracle." His Holiness our Master Baha'u'llah replied: "Well dost thou speak ! Go to the doctors and bid them agree on one thing and one miracle on recognized conditions that God, glorious is His state, may display it, and may complete this Proof to His creatures." Then the Mulla Hasan arose, expressing his joy and gratitude, and returned to the doctors full of gladness, and explained to them the state of the case. Some while elapsed after this, and no reply was received from them. Then Mulla Hasan sent a message to His Holiness, explaining that the doctors bad fled from the field, and would not accept this arrangement. So he departed into the land of Persia and made mention of this matter to all men in every province, admitting the collapse of the doctors.


    Intrigues of the Persian Consul at Baghdad, Mirza Buzurg Khan

          After this event the above­mentioned Shaykh 'Abdu’l-Husayn had recourse to another trick and stratagem, and misled by means of worldly wealth Mirza Buzurg Khan of Qazwin who was the Consul­General of the Persian Government in Baghdad, *and conspired with him to thwart His Holiness our Master Baha'u'llah. So they began to correspond with Nasiru'd­Din Shah and his ministers and the nobles of Persia, and frightened them about the increasing, numbers of the Babis in Baghdad, and their power and influence. They also stirred up the dregs of the Persian population in Baghdad to kill His Holiness our Master Baha'u'llah who, however, never attempted to conceal himself, but still continued to consort with the people of Baghdad, and to go out, generally alone, from his house, and to visit a place in Baghdad specially designed for men of learning, scholars and magnates to meet. Only after his arrival there would his attendants overtake him. The anxiety of his enemies to kill him or hurt him, and his disregard of them, was a source of great wonder to the public.

    The Author at Baghdad.

         In those days the writer was in attendance, enjoying the honour of entering the presence of His Holiness our Master Baha'u'llah but after four months permission was accorded to him to return to his own country.
         In short, the persistency of the above­mentioned Shaykh 'Abdu'l­ Husayn and the Consul­General and the mischiefmaking divines impelled Mirza Husayn Khan the Persian Ambassador at Constantinople, to request the Ottoman Sultan 'Abdu'l­'Aziz to assign to His Holiness our Master Baha'u'llah some residence remote from Baghdad, which is adjacent to Persian territory and is the resort of numbers of

    * page 11.


    Shí'ite pilgrims, Accordingly the Ottoman Government decided to bring His Holiness from Baghdad to Constantinople. The late Námiq Pasha, who was subsequently doyen of the ministers (Shaykhu'l­ Wuzara' was at that time Governor [of Baghdad]. He informed His Holiness our Master Baha'u'llah of this matter, and of the determination of this journey. He [ie. Baha'u'llah] was at this time forty seven years of age, and had sojourned in Baghdad eleven years and more.


    Baha'u'llah leaves Baghdad, April 20, 1863, f0r the Garden of Rizwan

         On the 3rd of Dhu'l­Qa'da 1279, on the thirty­first day after the Persian New Year's Day, *on April 20, 1863, in the afternoon, he set out from Old Baghdad wherein was the Most Great House set apart for His Holiness our Master, for the Garden of Najíb Pasha, called Rizwan and situated in the new quarter of Baghdád. He crossed the Shatt[u'l­'Arab] In a boat, entered the above­mentioned garden, and abode there for twelve days, which are called Ayyamu’r-Rizwan. Thither the townsfolk, including the Sunní doctors, the local notables and the Government officials came daily in crowds to visit him to present their dues of affection and farewell, returning afterwards to their houses in exceeding grief and sorrow. ln those days His Holiness our Lord Bahá'u'lláh declared his Mission in his writings ; and this is reckoned a second declaration, as is fully set forth in more lengthy treatises on this matter.


    Baha'u'llah sets out from Baghdad for Constantinople, May, 1863

         To be brief, His Holiness our Master Baha'u'llah set forth on his journey at noon on the twelfth day from the above­mentioned garden, this being the 13th of Dhu'l­Qa'da, 1279, corresponding with the 1st of May, 1863. He was accompanied by his three sons (al-
    * page 12.


    Aghsanu'th­Thalatha), Abbas Efendi, Muhammad `Ali Efendi, and Mahdi Efendi, his wives and family, his brother Aqa Mirza Musa, the Servant of the Presence,1 Mírza Muhammad­quli, and a number of the disciples in his service. That was a memorable day: wailing and lamentation arose from all sides; the people grieved over his departure as he rode forth on his horse, exhorting and admonishing them, enjoining on them patience and dignity, and consoling them with words and expressions which attracted their hearts and minds. His Holiness our Master alighted at a place called Furayjat, distant two hours from Baghdad, where he abode a week. Each day his followers appeared before him to visit him and then returned [to Baghdád], while he enjoined on them patience, *composure, virtue and courtesy. After the lapse of a week he continued his journey by way of Kerkuk, Mawsil and Diyár Bakr towards Constantinople, until he reached the town of Samsun situated on the coast of the Black Sea; and the duration of this journey was four months. There he issued a Tablet entitled the "Tablet of the Howdah " (Lawhu'l­Hawda), in which was contained information as to certain future events. Then he embarked on the steamer and reached Constantinople, where a number of carriages were provided by the Ottoman Government for him and his following. In these he and his companions drove to the Government Guest­house; but since this did not provide sufficient accommodation, another more spacious house, called "the House of Veysí Pasha," was assigned to His Holiness our Master and his following at the charges of the State, while Shemsí Bey was appointed

    1 ie. Mirza Aqa Jan of Kashan commonly called Janab­i­ Khadimu’llah

    *page 13.



    on behalf of the Government to arrange for their entertainment.


    Baha’u’llah resides for four Months at Constantinople

          His Holiness our Master abode in Constantinople for four months, during which period he associated with no one of the Ministers of the State or its leaders or officials. One of these called Kemal Pasha one day observed to His Holiness our Master in the course of conversation that the current custom was that every important person coming to the Government, that is to say being received as its guest, should visit the Prime Minister and  the Minister for Foreign Affairs on the second or third day after his arrival, to set forth his aims and objects, and should, if necessary, request an interview with his Majesty  the Sultan. To this our Master replied, "I am not unaware of the current customs; but inasmuch as we have no need and no request to prefer, and our trust is in none save God alone; and since the Government desired our presence here, and we, in obedience to it, journeyed hither, so that it might be apparent to it that we have no aim except the well­being of the State and the Nation, therefore are we are unwilling to cause it further trouble." *So Kemál Pasha was silent, nor did anyone thereafter speak words of like import.


    Intrigues of Mirza Husayn Khan the Persian Ambassador

          Mirza Husayn Khan, who was mentioned a little while ago, kept watching for some opportunity to trouble the minds of the [Ottoman] statesmen in regard to this community; and, finding the moment propitious, he hinted to the Ministers that these excuses really arose from pride and arrogance, not from mere independence of spirit and trust in God ; and since there existed between him and


    Fu'ád Pasha, the Minister for Foreign Affairs, and Alí Pasha, the Prime Minister, a great friendship, he devoted all his energies and state­craft with them and others to changing their ideas and disturbing their thoughts, until an Edict was promulgated by the Ottoman Government to the effect that the dwelling­place of His Holiness our Master Baha'u'lláh and his following should be the city of Adrianople, known [amongst the Bahá'is] as the "Land of theMystery" (Ardu's­Sirr)1, which was formerly the capital of the [Ottoman] Empire.

    Baha'u'llah arrives at Adrianople, Dec. 1,2, 1863.

         Our Master Bahá'u'lláh and those who accompanied him set out from Constantinople riding in carriages for Adrianople, which they reached at the beginning of the month of Rajab, A.H. 1280, corresponding with the 12th of December, 1863, and were lodged at first in a Khan, whence His Holiness our Master was transferred to the house known as the Muradiyya, and, after a few days, to another house called the "House of God's Command " (Baytu Amri'llah), The great men of the district and its officials and divines visited him there, paying respect to his rank. But those who accompanied him dwelt in other quarters.


    Mirzá Yahyá [Subh­i-Azal]

         Now as for the circumstances of Mirzá Yahyá [Subh­i-Azal], who has been mentioned before, the facts are that His Holiness our Master, during the days of his sojourn in Persia, enjoyed great celebrity and supreme importance in this matter with the Ministers of State and notables of the people, the eyes of all being directed towards him. Then there came before him one of the leaders *of this community, named Mullá

         1The words Sirr (Mystery) and Edirne (Adrianople) have the same numerical equivalent, viz. 260.
         * page 15.


    'Abdu'l­Karím of Qazwin and entitled Mirzá Ahmad1, accompanied by his [Baha'u'llah's] brother Aqa Mírza Musa, and represented to him that the hatred and violence of the doctors and lawyers of Persia exceeded all that could be imagined, while the hatred of the Prime Minister Mirzi Taqí Khán also was fierce and his influence great, and the Government likewise despotic in its commands. In these circumstances His Holiness our Master Baha'u'llah was in great peril, and consequently it was necessary that the regards of these persons should be directed towards some other person. And since, for various considerations, they did not deem it expedient to appoint a stranger, Mirza Yahya [Subh­i­Azal] was chosen to this end, and His Holiness our Master Baha'u'llah wrote letters to His Holiness the Harbinger "the First Point " [ie. the Báb] about Mirzi Yahya, his brother above­mentioned, to which answers were duly issued; and His Holiness our Master began to instruct him, and his name became celebrated [as a leader of the sect],


    Subh-i-Azal proceeds alone from Baghdad to Mawsil

          To be brief, the diligence of His Holiness our Master in publishing the Word in 'lráq, and the fame of his renown throughout the lands, became the of envy to the above­mentioned  [Subh­i­Azal], who was secretly moved thereby to opposition and frowardness. Now when  he was in Persian territory, and His Holiness our Master Baha’u’llah was at Baghdád, he was hidden from men's sight, and none of the Companions used to see him; while in Baghdad he dwelt in a house apart with his wife and children, and used often to visit His Holiness our Master, until, when the journey to Constantinople was decided on, His Holiness our Master ordered him to take with him the

         1 See my Traveller's Narrative, ii, pp. 41-2 and n. 2 ad calc.



    writings of His Holiness the Harbinger [i.e. the Báb], and to go to Persia to have them copied and published. But after the departure of His Holiness our Master, he left the above­mentioned writings in the house of His Holiness our Master and went with one of the Companions, an Arab named Záhir, to Mawsil, which he entered before the arrival there of His Holiness our Master, having adopted the name of Mírza 'Ali. And since those [believers] who dwelt there did not know him personally, they supposed him *to be a guest, until they reached Constantinople. After their arrival there, those who had accompanied His Holiness our Master knew him and understood his case; and, since they used to associate with him continually, they gradually became cognizant of his character and condition, and found him to be the contrary of what they had supposed; until they reached Adrianople, where Mirzá Yahya again dwelt in a place apart, his expenses being at the charge of His Holiness our Master, while what used to arrive from the different countries was given to him, though matters were at that time greatly. straitened and embarrassed. But after allowances had been assigned by the [Ottoman] Government, there was apportioned to him and to those who were with him sufficient for their needs and more.


    Baha’u’llah promulgates the Lawhu’l-Amr in 1863.

          Yet, notwithstanding all this attention, the fire of his [Subb­i­Azal's] envy was not quenched, but was rather increased every moment, until in A.H. 1280 (A.D. 1863) there was promulgated [by Bahá'u'lláh] the "Tablet of Command" (Lawhu'l­Amr), which openly gladdened all men with the tidings of the Advent of Him who was promised in the Bayan; and His Reverence the Servant [of God]1 bore the

         *page 16.
         1i.e. Mirza Aqa Jan of Kashan.



    above­mentioned Tablet, which was in the writing of the Holy Pen, according to the instructions of our Master Baha'u'llah, to Mirzá Yahyá, and read it to him.


    Schism between Baha’u’llah and Subh-i-Azal

         Mirzá Yahya did not openly reject the Tablet, but the fire of envy blazed forth in his bosom more than before, and there appeared then the schism mentioned in the Holy Tablets, and the days named "the Days of Stress " (al­Ayyamu'sh­Shidad), and there befell "the Supreme Separation" (al­Faslu'l-Akbar), and His Holiness our Master, together with his sons (al­Aghsan) and wives and the Servant, went forth from amongst the community, took up their abode in another house, left all and ceased to converse and associate with them, and for some while met none of the Companions.
    Alleged attempt to poison Baha’u’llah.

         Amongst the events which happened in those days was Mirzá Yahyá's attempt to give poison to His Holiness our glorious Master Bahá'u'lláh. 'I'his, in brief, was as follows. Before the "Supreme Separation" had yet taken place, Mirza Yahya one day invited His Holiness our Master to his house to drink tea with milk, according to the custom of the Persians; and he had arranged this *before the arrival of Baha’u’llah, and had set apart certain special cups for His Holiness. So when one of the cups above­mentioned was offered to him, our Master drank some of it, and gave the remainder to one of the wives of Mirzá Yahya who was present. She drank of it, and subsequently there appeared in her symptoms of poisoning, though the poison was not in sufficient quantity to threaten her life. After the above mentioned event, the health of His Holiness our Master was greatly disordered, to such a degree that one of the faithful

         * page 17.


    physicians feared for his life when he visited him, and prayed that the sickness might be transferred to himself, and that His Holiness our Master might be healed. And it seemed as though his prayers were answered, for he fell sick and was confined to his house, and after a little while his pure spirit left this transitory life. And his name was Dr Chupan. The illness of His Holiness our Master continued for a long while, but eventually his health was restored for the accomplishment of the thing predestined, which was the completion of the Proof to mankind, and the manifestation of the Dispensation promised in the former Scriptures.


    Alleged attempt to assassinate Baha’u’llah in the bath.

         Now as for the cause of the " Supreme Separation," this was that one day Mirzá Yahya entered the bath attended by Master Muhammad `Alí of Isfahán the barber, according to custom. And in the bath Mírzá Yahyá endeavoured to persuade his attendant to kill His Holiness our Master Bahá'u'lláh, saying, "When thou waitest upon His Holiness Bahá'u'lláh in the bath and art preparing to shave his throat, cut it." But Muhammad 'Alí after leaving the bath reported the matter, which was bruited abroad amongst the Community, so that great disquietude appeared amongst them, in consequence of which His Holiness our Master enjoined on all patience, quietude and gentleness, and himself went forth from amongst them and lodged in another house.
    Sayyid Muhammad of Isfahan

         After this event Sayyid Muhammad of Isfahan, who was ever bent on opposition and schism, and who was finally expelled on account of some of his actions, thought the time propitious, and united himself *to Mirzá Yahyá. The two busied themselves

         * page 18,


    with mischief and frowardness, both within and without (the community] ; but although they left nothing undone in the way of enmity and opposition, His Holiness our Master used to treat them with the utmost kindness and courtesy until one day Mirza Yahya, instigated thereto by the above-mentioned Sayyid Muhammad, sent one of his women to the Government House to demand an allowance and to complain of His Holiness our Master Baha’u’llah saying, "He has not given us the allowance apportioned to us by the government, yea, he withholds from us bread and water." To such extreme meanness and such great injury to God's affair did he consent, while enjoying all sorts of favours and obtaining all the means to honour and comfort! This thing they did to injure the dignity of His Holiness our Master Baha’u’llah; and they wrote letters to the different countries ascribing all their own deeds to His Holiness, and devoting themselves with all their energies to falsehood and calumny.


    Open rupture between Baha’u’llah and Subh-i-Azal, Aug. 26, 1867.

         On the 26th of the Second Rabí', A.H. 1284 (August 26, 1867) a little before noon one of the Persians named Mír Muhammad of Shiráz presented himself, saying that he had come from Mírzá, Yahya who desired that a meeting should take place between him and His Holiness our Master Baha'u'llah, and that the ordeal by cursing should be performed, so that a discrimination might be effected between the True and the False, and that the Truth might  become apparent to all. And when this matter had been submitted in detail to His Holiness our Master, who was preparing to take his midday rest, he arose forthwith and went forth from the house, saying to the above­mentioned Mir Muhammad, " Go, and bid Mírzá Yahyá come to the Mosque of Sultan Selím, where he will find us." And from



    the moment of his exit frorn the house until he entered the above­mentioned Mosque, in the streets and markets, he continued to utter verses in an audible voice so that all who saw him and heard the verses were astonished. In short, soon after he had entered the Mosque, Mír Mubammad arrived saying, "Mírzá Yahyá asks to be excused because to­day it is not possible for him to present himself. He therefore begs you to appoint another day, and to write a note to this effect, signed *and sealed, that whoever does not present himself at the appointed time is an impostor." So His Holiness our Master Bahi'u'lláh wrote a Tablet, and sealed it with his noble seal, and delivered it to one of his disciples named Mírzá Muhammad and entitled Nabil (he it was who cast himself into the sea a little while after the ascension of His Holiness our Master), arranging that the meeting should take place in the Mosque of Sultán Selim. The author [of this book] was there at the time, and was present when His Holiness. The Author our Master commanded Nabíl to take the at Adrianople, above­mentioned holy Tablet to one of the followers of Mirzá Yahya named Hasan Aqá that he should give them the Tablet when they had given him a note sealed by Mírzá Yahyá in accordance with the agreement above mentioned ; but that otherwise he should keep the Tablet and not hand it over to them. Some days elapsed after this, and they gave him no such note, nor did they appear at the trystingplace; for there is no doubt that the Darkness and the Light can never meet.

         *Page 19.
         1Nabil (noble) is numerically equivalent to Muhammad (both words yielding, in the abjad notation, a total of 92), and is sometimes substituted for it by the Babis. The Bab himself, whose name was 'Ali Muhammad, often calls himself 'Ali before Nabil.



    Alleged intrigues of Sayyid Muhammad and Aqa Jan Kaj-Kulah at Constantinople

         After the " Supreme Separation " Sayyid Muhammad of Isfahan, who has just been mentioned, went to Constantinople to lay a complaint, and there foregathered with a man named Aqá Jan and nick­named Kaj­Kalah ("Skew­cap"). These two left undone nothing in the way of dishonour, mischief, falsehood and calumny, and the Persian Ambassador Mirzá Husayn Khan, already mentioned, found in them a suitable means for carrying out the design which he constantly harboured in his bosom, to wit the injuring of His Holiness our Master Baha’u’llah, and making mischief between him and the Ministers of the Ottoman Government. He therefore made them instrumental in disturbing the understandings of the Ottoman statesmen, and led them to suppose that many of the people of Adrianople were followers of His Holiness our Master Baha'u'llah. By these false statements, in short, they  troubled the minds of the Ottoman Ministers and caused the issue of an edict by Sultan 'Abdu'l­'Aziz banishing His holiness our Master with three other persons to 'Akká, *this measure being effected by the energy of the above­mentioned ambassador, the Prime Minister 'Alí Pasha, and the Minister for Foreign Affairs Fu'ad Pasha. The three persons who were to accompany His Holiness our Master were his brother Aqa Mirza Musa, Mirza Muhammad­qulí who subsequently rose up in opposition, and Dervish Sidq 'Ali of Qazwín, one of the servants of His Holiness our Master.
          One morning the soldiers of the Government surrounded the house of Ill's Holiness our Master on all sides, and sentinels were set over the inner and outer doors to prevent  any one from going out or coming in; while such of the Companions as were without the house they arrested and

          * page 20.


    brought to the Government House.

    The Turkish Government decides to transfer Baha’u’llah to Akka

    They also arrested seven of the Companions at Constantinople and imprisoned them, A week after this event His Holiness our Master Baha'u'llah set out on his journey. And during the above­mentioned week every day the Consuls of foreign Powers and some of the spiritual leaders [of the Muslims] used to wait on His Holiness our Master and show their love for Him and their favourable disposition towards Him. Their primary object was to seize upon some pretext to cancel the order of exile, which was without any adequate reason, moral or political, rendering it necessary. They unanimously demanded of His Holiness our Master that he should write a note which might serve them as a pretext for helping him and arresting the order of exile; but His Holiness our Master would not consent to this. At this time the author of this book had enjoyed the honour of being in attendance on him and dwelling in his neighbourhood for a year and a fraction over.

    Khurshid Pasha intercedes for Baha’u’llah

         To be brief, Khurshid Pasha, the Governor of Adrianople, when he saw the edict issued for their exile, disapproved of this measure, and corresponded with the Ottoman statesmen repeatedly on this matter, demanding that it should be altered, and emphatically declaring, "There is absolutely no truth in what hath been said to you against this community." His hopes, however, were disappointed, for they did not accept his statement and insisted on *the execution of the order. But since he loved His Holiness our Master, he was ashamed to convey the order to him, so hid himself, giving out that he had gone out of the city, and appointed the Registrar

         * page 21.



    (Daftardar) to act in his place, who conveyed the purport of the edict to His Holiness our Master, and the journey was decided on.

    Baha’u’llah’s companions insist on accompanying him.

          When this matter was settled, His Holiness our Master Baha'u'llah forbade all the Companions to journey with him, saying to them, "Let me journey alone, for it is uncertain what will befall me in this journey." The object of the Government in ordering this journey was, indeed, to scatter the community, for it ordered the transportation of four persons only, as has been already mentioned. But when the Companions heard what His Holiness our Master had said, their voices were raised in weeping and wailing, and they clung to every pretext whereby separation might be avoided and they might all accompany His Holiness our Master.


    Attempted suicide of Hajji Ja`far of Tabriz

         At this juncture one of the Companions named Hajji Ja`far of Tabriz cut his throat with his own hand in the Mahall-al-Barrani in the house of His Holiness our Master at the second hour of the night. At that moment the author of this book was sitting with a number of other  persons in another room. Suddenly we heard a terrifying noise. We rushed out, and beheld the above­mentioned disciple at a window, having cut his throat with a shaving razor, the blood spilling forth and the razor fallen from his hand outside the house. A surgeon named Muhammad, who lived in the neighbourhood, was at once sent for, while those persons who were at the gate informed the local government, some of whose representatives came. When the surgeon examined the wound he found that the [carotid] artery had not been cut, and bandaged the man's throatwith a handkerchief. Those present on behalf of the



    Government enquired of him the cause of this action. He replied that the cause of it was that His Holiness our Master had forbidden them to journey with him, and that he, finding this very hard to bear, was content *to part with his life, but was not content to part with his Master. "If I get well," he added, "and am forbidden to go forth with him, I shall cut my throat again." In short, the abovementioned Hájji Ja'far remained there for treatment, and his brother Karbalá'í Taqí with him, by the express wish of His Holiness our Master, both having received permission to go, after Hájji Ja'far had recovered his health, to the town of 'Akká, the place of banishment.

    Baha'u'llah Leaves Adrianople for 'Akka

          After a sojourn of five years or less at Adrianople His Holiness our Master Baha'u'llah set out therefrom on the sixteenth of the Second Rabi', A.H. 1285 (August 5, 1868), accompanied by his sons (al-Aghsan), his family and his disciples, sixty-eight souls in all, and an official specially appointed by the local government named Hasan Efendi, a captain, with a number of soldiers, riding in carriages and bound for Gallipoli. On that day there was a wonderful concourse of Muslims and Christians at the door of our Master's house, and at the moment of departure it was a memorable hour. Most of those present were weeping and wailing, especially the Christians.

    Publication of the Lawh-i Ra'is

          And on the fourth day they entered Gallipoli, When the soldiers surrounded the house His Holiness our Master Bahau'llah began to promulgate a Holy Tablet named the "Tablet of the Premier" (Lawhu'r-Ra’is), which he completed at

    *page 22.
         1 In the margin are added the words "or four months," that is, four months under the five years, for they reached Adrianople in Dec. 1863 and left it in August 1868.


    Gyawur Kyuy situated near Gallipoli, at a distance of four hours therefrom. In this Tablet he mentioned certain matters and events, of which some happened after its promulgation, while others remain hitherto unfulfilled, whereof the occurrence is awaited.

    Baha'u'llah at Gallipoli

          On arriving at Gallipoli they alighted at a house which the Government had prepared for them, and Hasan Efendi, the captain appointed to take charge of them, handed them all over to another officer who had come to Gallipoli with a number of the Companions from Constantinople. This was a major named 'Umar Efendi. After handing them over, Hasan Efendi presented himself and asked permission to enter the presence of His Holiness our Master Baha'u'llah to bid him farewell. On receiving this permission, he entered and seated himself with the utmost politeness, and His Holiness our Master communicated to him orally the prophecies which bad been revealed to Him in the Lawhu’r-Ra’is. The purport of these was that Adrianople and the surrounding territory would shortly pass out of the hands of the Ottoman Sultan that affairs would undergo a great change; that earthquakes would appear; that lamentation would arise and strife become manifest in the land, because of the oppression which bad befallen them without due reason. The above-mentioned Hasan Efendi was greatly affected, and kept repeating continually " If God so please." And His Holiness our Master ordered him to conceal what had been told him until the time for its fulfilment should come.



    Fulfilment of Prophecies in the Lawh-i Ra'is

          Some years after the arrival of His Holiness our Master Baha'u'Ilah at 'Akka, 'Ali Pasha the Prime Minister was dismissed; Fu'ad Pasha, the Minister for Foreign Affairs, died; Sultan 'Abdu'l-'Aziz was deposed and killed; and lastly the Russo-Turkish War took place, and there happened those troubles and calamities which His Holiness our Master Baha'u'llah had foretold in the Lawhu'r-Rais. On the second day in Gallipoli Major 'Umar Efendi notified His Holiness our Master that he was commissioned to send four persons only to 'Akka and the remainder to Constantinople. Great God! On that day there appeared such trouble as cannot be described in speech, and there rose up the sound of weeping and wailing from all the family and Companions in such manner as the pen is unable to depict. On the next day His Holiness our Master Baha'u'llah summoned the above-mentioned 'Umar Efendi and said to him,." If you cut these people in pieces it is impossible that they should separate from us." So the above-mentioned officer informed the Sublime Porte of this by telegraph, and a reply arrived that they should all be sent to 'Akka.

    Baha'u'llah and Some 70 of His Followers Embark at Gallipoli

          So after the lapse of some days in Gallipoli, at the end of the month of the Second Rabi' [A.H. 1285= August 19, 1868) His Holiness our Master and those who accompanied him embark at Gallipoli four of his sons (Aghsan), family, kinsmen and followers who *were about seventy souls, embarked in boats for the Austrian-Lloyd steamer and set out for 'Akka by way of Smyrna and Alexandria.

    Death of Mirza Aqa of Kashan

          Now one of the leading Companions called Mirza Aqa of Kashan and entitled Janab-i-Munir had been ill for some time, and when

          *page 24


    the steamer anchored in the harbour of Smyrna he took a turn for the worse. So His Holiness our Master ordered some of the Companions and one of the officers to carry him to the hospital at Smyrna.

    The Author with Baha'u'llah on the Steamer

          This transference took place before noon, and after noon 'Abbas Efendi, the author of this book, and two of the Companions went into Smyrna to visit him at the hospital. We found him in the death-agony; and as the steamer was about to weigh anchor, and the officials who accompanied us kept urging us to return, we returned to the steamer perforce, leaving him in that state. We subsequently learned that shortly afterwards the sick man passed away to God's Mercy, and the hospital attendants carried him forth and buried him in the Muhammadan cemetery. And at the close of that day the steamer departed for Alexandria, where we transhipped into another Austrian steamer.

    Nabil Imprisoned at Alexandria

          Nabil, who has been already mentioned, was at this time imprisoned at Alexandria in consequence of a plot which will shortly be mentioned. He had converted in the prison a certain Christian named Faris, who was an intelligent and cultivated man. So when the steamer cast anchor in the harbour at Alexandria, he sent by special messenger to His Holiness our Master Baha'u'llah a letter containing certain questions, and our Master issued in answer to him an incomparable Tablet, which he sent back by the messenger. And at the close of the day the steamer sailed for Port Said, Jaffa and Hayfa.

    Hajji Mirza Husayn of Shiraz and Other Baha'is Exiled to Sudan

          Now as for the cause of' Nabil's affliction, this was that in A.H. 1284 (A.D 1867) he went by permission *from Adrianople to Egypt. Shortly before his arrival there Hajji

    * page 25


    Mirza Husayn of Shiraz and several others of the Companions had suffered at the hands of Mirza Hasan Mirza Hasan Khan, the Consul-General of Persia, who had handed them over to the Government which had exiled them to the Sudan. In consequence of the coincidence of Nabil's arrival with this event, they arrested him also, sent him to Alexandria, and after imprisoning him there for a number of weeks, expelled him from Egypt.

    Cause of the Banishment of Certain Baha'is to the Sudan

          But as for the affliction of the Companions in Egypt, the account thereof is as follows. Hajji Mirza Haydar 'Ali of lsfahan and Hajji Mirza Husayn of Shiraz,1      after they had the honour of meeting Baha'u'Ilah at Adrianople in A.H. 1283 (=A.D. 1866), went by his permission to Egypt, took up their abode at Mansuriyya, and converted to this faith a number of people, amongst whom was Hajji Abu'I-Qasim of Shiraz, a highly considered Persian merchant, who, after entering this religion, journeyed to Adrianople, and had the honour-of being personally received by His Holiness our Master Baha'u'llah. After his return to his home2      a great commotion arose amongst the Persian merchants, who went to the above-mentioned Mirza, Hasan Khan, the Consul-General of Persia, a native of Khuy, and complained to him of the Babis, describing to him the increase of their numbers there. After this the above- mentioned Consul-General invited the two Hajjis mentioned above and some others of the Babis to his house, intending

    1 These two men were the first notable Babis whose acquaintance I made in Persian in the early part of 1888. See my Babis of Persia, I, pp. 487-9, 494-5; and my Year Amongst the Persians, pp. 210-212, 271, 301 et seqq.
          2 i.e. as the context shows, to Egypt, not to Persia..



    guile; and late at night after supper he arrested them and imprisoned them in his house, and went by night to their houses and confiscated all the writings and papers which he found there.1 Next morning he lodged a complaint against them with Isma'il Pasha the Khedive of Egypt, and the Ministers and doctors of Egypt assembled, examined the writings, and condemned the two Hajjis above mentioned to perpetual banishment, without any question or *answer, and transferred them by night from the house of the Consul on foot, escorted by mounted troopers, to the shore of the Nile, where they were imprisoned in the estuary underground in the prison set apart for murderers and thieves. After the lapse of a month they were sent by the landward route to Khartum, accompanied by a squadron of soldiers. Their journey lasted six months, and when they entered Khartum the people of that city came out to gaze at them. They were seven in number, and their names were Hajji Mirza. Haydar 'Ali of Isfahan, who latterly set himself to oppose the Truth;2      Hajji Mirza Husayn of Shiraz; Hajji 'Ali of Kirman; Mirza Husayn of Kashan; 'Abdu'l-Wahhab of Zanjan; Aqa Muhammad Hashim of Niraq; and Hajji Abu'l-Qasim of Isfahan. There they remained nine years, during which period His Holiness our Master Baha'u'llah sent to them two of the Companions to enquire after them. After the lapse of this period they were released and restored to freedom, by spiritual means and the Lord's predestination
          1.Compare the account of these events given to me at Shiraz in the spring of 1888 by Hajji Mirza Husayn himself, in my Year Amongst the Persians, pp. 331-3
          * page 26
          2. In the schism which ensued after th death of Baha’u’llah in 1892, Mirza Haydar ‘Ali took the part of ‘Abbas Efendi (`Abdu’l-Baha), while Hajji Mirza Husayn, like the author of this book, attached himself to the party of Muhammad ‘Ali.


    and will, by the instrumentality of the famous Gordon Pasha. Hajji Mirza Haydar 'Ali and Hajji Mirza Husayn after their release travelled by way of Mecca to 'Akka in A.H. 1290 (A.D. 1873) and had the honour of being received by Baha'u'llah.

    Return of Baha'i Exiles from Khartum

          After the lapse of some months they journeyed into the land of Persia. The remaining exiles continued in the Sudan, where some of them passed away to God's Mercy. The first trouble which happened and the first martyrdom which took place in Persia after His Holiness our Master had made manifest his affair occurred at Tabriz, and was as follows.

    The Author Arrested at Tabriz

          Shaykh Ahmad, Mirza 'Ali Naqi and Sayyid Muhammad, all natives of Khurasan, arrived at Tabriz intending to travel thence to Adrianople. The Government arrested them, together with the author of this book, Mirza Mustafa of Niraq and some arrested others of the Companions. The Governor of Azarbayjan in those days was [the Crown Prince Muzaffaru'd-Din [afterwards] Shah,1      and his chief Minister was Mirza Qahraman.

    Three Babis Put to Death at Tabriz

          He communicated by telegraph to the capital news of this matter to his father His Majesty Nasiru'd-Din Shah and his minister the Sardar 'Aziz Khan. After the lapse of a month orders arrived to put to death Mirza Mustafa, Shaykh Ahmad and Mirza 'Ali Naqi, and on the 2nd of Ramadan, A.H. 1283 (8th of January, 1867) they brought forth these men into the Maydan-i-Haft Kachal in Tabriz and cut off their heads, and after they were dead the people of the city burned their bodies with fire,

    1. He succeeded to the throne of the assassination of his father Nasiru’d-Din Shah in 1896 and died, after granting the Constitution, on January 8, 1907.



    while from the author of this book they took much money and then let him go, together with the rest of those arrested.

    Mirza Muhammad Ali of Zanjan put to Death

          This event above described was noised abroad through all the provinces of Persia and led to the persecution of some other Baha'is, amongst them Mirza Muhammad 'Ali the doctor of Zanjan, whom they arrested in Zanjan and imprisoned, and, after some days, cut off his head in the prison on a charger.

    Aga Najaf 'Ali of Zanjan Put to Death

          Another of them was Aqa Najaf 'Ali of Zanjan, who was in constant attendance on His Holiness our Master Baha'u'llah from the days of Baghdad until Adrianople, and who in A.H. 1283 (A.D. 1867) received permission to go to Persia. When he entered Tihran the Government arrested him, seized such of the Holy writings as he had with him, and afterwards let him go, without, however, restoring to him the confiscated writings. He, however, was not content to be released without having these writings restored to him, and began to importune the officials to restore them, doing this repeatedly. So they arrested him a second time, and, acting on a fatwa given by Hajji Mulla 'Ali of Kand, cut off his head in the square set apart for executions, after they had tormented him for some days with all kinds of torments current amongst barbarous peoples. His whole body was covered with wounds so that he was unable to put on any clothing save an Arab shirt.

    Sayyid Ashraf and Abu Basir Put to Death at Zanjan

          Another of them was Aqa Sayyid Ashraf and Abu Basir of Zanjan, whom the Government arrested in their native town of Zanjan and condemned to death. But because Sayyid Ashraf was the Hashimite Sharifs, *some were

    p. 28


    unwilling to kill him. They therefore sent his mother to the prison to remonstrate with him, that perhaps, after meeting her, he might be moved to compassion for her, and might utter some word proving their innocence of this doctrine, that they might make her a means for releasing him. But when they met his mother addressed him, saying, "0 my son, today is the day for steadfastness and endurance! If thou dost not sacrifice thy life in God's Way, or if thou returnest safe from the arena of martyrdom, I will not make lawful to thee my milk nor be well pleased with thee." So the ulama, seeing matters thus, ordered both of them to be put to death, and they were accordingly decapitated in public by command of the Government in A.H. 1287 (A.D. 1870).


    Attack on Babis at Baghdad

         On the 1st and 2nd of the month of Muharram,1      which are the anniversaries of the births of His Holiness the Bab and our Most Glorious Master Baha'u'llah, such of the community as were in Baghdad in A.H 1285 (A.D. 1868) had assembled in the garden of Mirza Musa al-Jawahiri and 'Umar Bey to amuse themselves and enjoy the air But the Shi'ites who were in Baghdad imagined that the Babis had organized this assembly in despite of their religion, since they consider the month of Muharram a month of mourning, because in it the Imam Husayn, the Chief of Martyrs, was slain at Karbala, together with most of his household, at the hands of the Umayyad soldiers. They therefore made a complaint to Shaykh 'Abdu'l-Husayn of Tihran, the Mujtahid, and Mirza Buzurg Khan, the Persian Consul at Baghdad, both of whom have been already mentioned; and the 'ulama pronounced sentence of death

    1. April 24 and 25, 1868



    against them, being supported and aided by the above- mentioned Consul. These stirred up the lowest and vilest of the Shi'ites to do them injury: the fire of strife was kindled, and whenever the Shi'ites found any of the Companions in the markets or streets they used to beat them with intent to kill them.

    Abdu'r-Rasul Murdered at Baghdad

          One morning whilst one of the Companions called 'Abdu'r-Rasul, a native of *Kashan, was carrying water from the Tigris on his back for the garden of the house of His Holiness our Master Baha’u'llah, the Shi'ites attacked him with knives and daggers, wounded him grievously, and cleft his belly in such wise that his bowels protruded; yet would he not abandon the water-skin, but gathered up his bowels in his hand and in this plight entered the house, placed the water-skin on the ground, and yielded up his pure spirit (April 1868). After this event, the Companions communicated by telegraph with his Holiness our Master Baha'u'llah, enquiring as to their duty; and the answer came to them from Adrianople "It behoves you to show fair patience." And when the Governor of Baghdad, Taqiyyu'd-Din Pasha, perceived how the Shi'ites had risen up against this community, he summoned the Companions and detained them in the Government House for their own preservation, and informed the Sublime Porte by telegraph of what had happened.

    Babis Banished From Baghdad to Mawsil

          The Sublime Porte answered him by ordering the community to be banished to Mawsil, in order to extinguish the fire of strife, and thither the Governor sent them under an escort of soldiers. Their expulsion coincided with the time when His Holiness our Master journeyed from Adrianople to 'Akka.

    * p. 29


    Death of Some Baha'i Persons in Persia

    Mulla 'Ali Jan Put to Death at Tihran

          Another of the martyrs of this community was a learned and accomplished man of Mazandaran named Mulla 'Ali Jan, whom they arrested with nine others, and brought to Tihran. This happened in A.H. 1301 (A.D. 1883). After the lapse of some days they put the above-mentioned Mulla 'Ali Jan to death, while another of them named Ustad Nuru'llah died in prison. The rest they let go.

    Mulla Kazim Put to Death at Isfahan

          Another of them was one named Mulla Kazim, whom they arrested in Isfahan in A.H. 1295 (A.D. 1878), besides another man named Sayyid Aqa Jan. They beheaded Mulla Kazim, mutilated his body, and burned it, by command of Shaykh Baqir the Mujtahid and the Governor of Isfahan Prince Mas'ud Mirza Zillu's-Sultan, brother of Muzaffaru'd-Din Shah. *As for Sayyid Aqa Jan they tormented him grievously and expelled him from the city.

    Hajji Nasir of Qazwin Dies in Prison at Rasht

          After this there was trouble in Rasht, where they arrested and imprisoned a number of Babis, amongst them Hajji Nasir of Qazwin, who died in prison, being an old man of feeble health, unable to endure so many hardships. After his death the people subjected his body to all sorts of insults and savage deeds, plucking out his eyes, cutting off his nose, and Anally stoning him with stones.

    The Martyrs of Isfahan

          No great while had elapsed ere another strange occurrence took place in Isfahan, the account of which is as follows.1      Mirza Muhammad Hasan and Mirza Muhammad Husayn were of the most noble of the Sharifs of Isfahan, and the former was a most

    * p. 30
          1. Concerning these “Martyrs of Isfahan” see my Babis of Persia, I, pp. 489-491, and my Year Amongst the Persians, pp. 213-214.


    distinguished Sayyid, noble, highly considered, and influential. The Imam-jum'a of Isfahan, who was named Mir Muhammad Husayn, hated the above-mentioned Sayyid for private reasons, and strove to injure him, wherein he was aided by Shaykh Baqir the Mujtahid. So these two agreed with the above-mentioned Governor to kill him and his brother and to plunder their possessions and property. So they arrested them and cast them into prison, and after some days beheaded them by sentence of the Imam-jum'a and Shaykh Baqir afore-mentioned, who plundered their property, even to the trees and flowers in the garden of their house.

    Martyrdom of Mirza Ashraf of Abada

         Another of them was Mirza Ashraf of Abada, a dependency of Isfahan, whom they strangled in Isfahan by sentence of the Imam-jum'a and Shaykh Baqir in A.H. 1306 (A.D. 1889). After he had been strangled the people of Isfahan stoned his body.1     

    Martyrdom of Hajji Abdu'l-Majid at Mashhad

         Another of them was Hajji 'Abdu'l-Majid of Khurasan, a native of Nishapur, who was the father of Janab-i-Badi, who carried the letter of His Holiness our Master Baha'u'llah to Nasiru'd-Din Shah.2      He suffered in Mashhad, the chief town of the province of Khurasan. After his arrest they exerted themselves to induce him to repudiate this faith, so that they might let him go; but he would not consent, and laid down his life in the way of his Master in A.H. 1296 (A.D. 1878).

    Three Babis Put to Death at Shiraz

          *In Shiraz also they arrested Mirza Aqa, Mirza Rafi, and

    1. An account of Mirza Ashraf’s martyrdom will be found in my Babis of Persia, ii., pp. 998-9.
          2. For an account of Mirza Badi` see infra, pp. 47-9.
          * page 31.


    'Abdu'n-Nabi the tailor, and strangled them by night in the prison by sentence of Shaykh Husayn The tyrant and by command of the Governor. They were strangled by forcing handkerchiefs at Shiraz into their throats, and it was given out that they had committed suicide in prison.1     

    Five Babis Put to Death at Sultanabad

          Amongst them also were Mulla Ibrahim, Mulla Muhammad 'Ali, Rahmatu'llah, Muhammad' Ali Nawshad and Sayyida Bibi. These they put to death arrested in Sultanabad and slew four of them by sentence of Sayyid Baqir the Mujtahid who himself slew the above-mentioned Mulla Ibrahim with his own hands in the assembly. As for Sayyida Bibi, they sent her to Tihran, where she was strangled in prison.2

    Martyrdom of Mirza Baqir of Kirman

         Another of them was Mirza Baqir of Shiraz, who attained martyrdom in the Way of God in Kirman and latterly, in A.H. 1308 (A.D. 1891) took place the persecution at Yazd,3      which was as follows.

    Persecution of Babis at Yazd

          Eight of the Companions assembled in the house of one of the believers named Aqa 'Abdu'r- Rahim, where they occupied themselves with reading verses. But one who hated them, being aware of their meeting, went to the Governor Prince Jalalu'd-Din Mirza, son of the Zillu's-Sultan, and informed him of their assembly. Thereupon the Governor ordered an officer to go to them, with as many private soldiers as might be necessary, and arrest them. And when they perceived what was happening, the master of the house and one of the eight visitors hid themselves, but the other seven

    1. Cf. my Year amongst the Persians, p. 516
          2. For an independent and fuller account of this event by one who participated in it see my Year amongst the Persians, pp. 514-517.
          3. A full account of this persecution is given in Section VII.


    were arrested and brought to the Government House and there imprisoned. After some days Prince Jalalu'd-Dawla summoned to his presence Shaykh Hasan the Mujtahid of Sabzawar and others of the Shi'ite doctors, and also the seven Baha'is mentioned above, and questioned the latter about their faith and creed in the presence of the two theologians mentioned above. They admitted that they belonged to this persuasion, whereupon Shaykh Hasan the Mujtahid and the other doctors pronounced them infidels and sentenced them to death. They were taken back to the prison, and after some days the Governor sent for them, and, turning to one of them called *Aqa 'Ali Asghar, the son of Mirza Abu'l-Qasim, ordered him to revile and curse his Master, or else sufer death. "O Governor," replied the man, "thou hast no power over my [spiritual] essence, but my bodily frame is thine: do with it what thou wilt." Thereat the Governor was angered, and ordered Aqa 'Ali Asghar to be strangled in his presence, and he was strangled accordingly. Then he ordered the rest of them to be slain, each one in one of the quarters of the city. So they took them forth with soldiers and drums, and beheaded one of them named Mulla Mahdi near the telegraph-office. Then they beheaded Aqa 'Ali the son of Aqa Muhammad Baqir. And when they approached the house of Shaykh Hasan the Mujtahid, they wished to kill Mulla 'Ali of Sabzawar. And he said, " O people, the Chief of Martyrs the Imam Husayn cried in the land of Taff, 'Is there any helper who will help me?' but I say, 'Is there any spectator who will behold me?"' And they beheaded him. 'They also slew Aqa Muhammad Baqir near the Mihriz Gate; and afterwards they brought the two brothers Aqa 'Ali Asghar and Aqa
          * page 32


    Muhammad Hasan to the Maydanu'l-Khan (Square of the Inn). The executioner advanced to cut off the head of the elder brother Aqa 'Ali Asghar. The younger brother Aqa
         Muhammad Hasan pressed forward, saying, "Cut off my head first!" But the headsman did not accede to his request, but beheaded the elder brother. The Khan who was superintending the executions exclaimed, "How strong is the heart of this lad, and how great is his boldness!" Then he ordered the executioner first to open his body and bring him his heart to look at; so he cleft open his body and plucked out his heart and his liver, and afterwards they bore him to the Maydan and cut off his head. He was only twenty-one years of age, and was newly wedded. After the martyrdom of these seven the roughs stoned their bodies and burned them with naphtha, after which they compelled the Jews to carry these slashed and charred bodies away and throw them into a pit in the plain called Salsabil. Afterwards the Governor Jalalu'd-Dawla ordered the *city to be illuminated with lights, and the people began to display their joy and delight. Shortly after this event one of the Companions named Ustad Jawad the cotton-carder was missed, and they found his body outside the city. Prince Jalalu'd-Dawa also took one of them named Hajji Mulla Ibrahim outside the city, where he and his satellites hewed him in pieces by the light of the moon.1     

    Departure of Baha'u'llah from Alexandria for 'Akka

          Let us return, however, to the topic which was engaging our attention, to wit the steamer in which were His Holiness our Master Baha'u'llah and his family and servants.

    * page 33
          1. concerning the “Martyrs of Yazd” see Section VII infra, where I shall give translations of several narratives received at the time. See also the Rev. Napier Malcolm’s Five Years in a Persian Town, pp. 155-6, 176, etc.


         It sailed at the close of day from Alexandria for Port Said, Departure of Jaffa and Hayfa, and on the 12th of the First Jumada, A.H. 1285 (August 30, 1868), about for One hour after sunrise, the steamer cast anchor in the harbour of Hayfa. Major Efendi, the officer in charge, landed, and informed the local government of the arrival of our Master and those of his company. When he returned and communicated to him the orders as to his debarkation at Hayfa. So his women and sons and family first embarked in the boats and after them His Holiness our Master.

    Four Baha'is Sent to Cyprus

          Orders had been issued from Constantinople for the banishment of four of the Companions, who had been persecuted there, to Cyprus. These had come to Gallipoli under the escort of the above-mentioned ‘Umar Efendi, and they were Mirza 'Ali, known as “the Traveller" (Sayah); Mirza Husayn the calligraphist, known as Mushkin Qalam; Aqa Muhammad Baqir, coffee-maker to our Master; and Aqa Abdu'l-Ghaffar known as 'Abdu'llah But when the officer in charge consigned them to the steamer to send them to Cyprus, and the above-mentioned (Abdu'l-Ghaffar saw himself parted from his Master, he cared no more to live and cast himself from the highest deck of the steamer into the sea, crying, "O Baha, Baha!" At that moment our Master was in the boat and had not yet arrived at the *port, and one of the sailors dived in and rescued him alive, and they again put him on board the steamer. And His Holiness our Master Baha'u'llah entered the city of Hayfa about noon on the

    1. Full details concerning these men and their families, derived from the Government archives in Cyprus, are given in my Traveller’s Narrative, ii, pp. 376-389.
          * page 34


    12th of the First Jumada, A.H. 1285 (August 30, 1868), and by his entry were fulfilled the promises contained in the Scriptures concerning Mount Carmel and Sion.

    Baha'u'llah Arrives at 'Akka

          A sailing-vessel had been set apart by the Government of Hayfa for the passage of His Holiness our Master to 'Akka, for in those days there were 170 carriages between Hayfa and 'Akka. And His Holiness our Master and those of his company entered the vessel shortly after midday, and in the course of the afternoon arrived at the harbour of 'Akka. His Holiness our Master was at that time fifty-two years of age. And on that day there assembled at the harbour most of the inhabitants of 'Akka to see the sight and gaze on the captives. And since the military barracks at 'Akka were at that time empty, the local government assigned them as a lodging for His Holiness our Master and those who bore him company. So the barracks had the honour of receiving them, and they locked the doors and set military sentinels over them. That night we could obtain no water to drink, save such stale and stagnant water in the tank there as was absolutely unfit for drinking. The community also remained without food that night until morning. After that, however, there were assigned to each one three leaves of bread, but they were utterly unfit for food, and used to be exchanged in the market for two [better] leaves so that it might be possible to eat them. In all ways matters went hard with this community. Ten soldiers were always on guard at the gate of the barracks, and each morning a number of the captives used to go to the market, escorted by some of the soldiers, for necessary business, but if it was requisite for any one to go to *the market a second time, they used to

    * page 36 (really 35, but this number has been accidentally omitted in the pagination).


    prevent him. Some time passed in this fashion, until the government altered the allotted dole of bread to a small daily allowance of money.

    Sufferings of the Baha'is on Arriving at 'Akka

          Since the arrival of His Holiness our Master Baha'u'llah and those who were with him at 'Akka took place in the summer season, when for various reasons the climate of 'Akka was very bad, twenty-eight of them fell sick, and their sickness was so grievous that in the course of a few days three of them died.

    Death of Three Baha'is

          One of these was named Abu'l-Qasim, a man of Sultanabad; the second was Muhammad Baqir; and the third Muhammad Isma'il. 'These two last were brothers, and their deaths took place within a few hours of one another. At this time their means of livelihood mere greatly straitened, and there was nothing to pay for their winding-sheets and burial; so a prayer-carpet was pawned and thereby money was obtained for the winding-sheets and burial. Afterwards the Companions bore forth their bodies, and as the Muhammadans would not consent to their interment in their cemetery, native workmen dug a grave to the north of the Muhammadan cemetery and buried the two dead exiles in one tomb. In short the weakness of sickness overcame these people, great and small, men and women; alike to an extent which cannot be described, and there was fear for all by reason of the violence of successive illnesses. Their sighs and lamentations rose up, until His Holiness our Master promulgated by his Holy Pen a prayer, which he commanded them to read with perfect sincerity and detachment. And after they had continued to read it for a time, matters improved and health and healing resulted, by the abounding Grace and Mercy of God.
          Here is the prayer:


    Prayer for Preservation From Sickness

          In the Name of God the Forgiving. "Though my evil state, O God, hath rendered me deserving of Thy scourge and chastisement, yet do Thy gracious regards and gifts require Thee to pardon Thy servants and to be merciful to Thy slaves. I ask Thee, therefore, by virtue of Thy Name which Thou hast made *the King of the Names, to preserve me by Thy Sovereignty and Power from every affliction and evil thing, and from everything which Thy Will hath not willed. Verily Thou art Powerful over all things."

    Mirza Badi` Comes to 'Akka

          In the year A.H. 1286 (A.D. 1869) there came to 'Akka. Aqa Buzurg of Khurasan, who was named by the Supreme Pen al-Badi' ("the Wonderful")1      and "the Pride of Martyrs," and had the honour of being received in the military barracks by His Holiness our Master Baha'u'llah. Thereafter he craved permission to carry the King's Letter " to Nasiru'd-Din Shah, and set out for Persia alone, carrying the holy letter above mentioned.2      Agreeably to the commands of his glorious Master Baha'u'llah, he did not associate on the way with any one of this community, nor make himself known to one of them, until he entered

    * page 37
          1. Badi` is one of the most popular and most celebrated of the Baha’i martyrs. See my Babis of Persia, ii, pp. 956-7; my Year amongst the Persians, pp. 101, 397; and my translation of the Traveller’s Narrative, ii, pp. xiv, 102-5.
          2. The Persian portion of this celebrated document is given in the text of the Traveller’s Narrative, I, pp. 135-183 (=ii, pp. 108-151 of the translation), while the translation of the Arabic exordium and of the instructions to the messenger referred to in the next sentence is given at pp. 390-400 of Vol. ii of the same. The date of this event (see p. 392 loc. cit.) was July, 1869.


    Tihran the capital of Persia. And on a day when the Shah, surrounded by his cavalcade, was going out to Shimran, he stood in the way, and when the Shah approached he presented the letter with his two hands with the utmost humility, respect, reliance [on God], and detachment [from all worldly hopes], saying, "I have come to thee with a Tablet from Baha." And when the Shah looked at him, he knew that he was one of this community, and was troubled, because ever since an event which happened at the beginning of the affair,1      as has been already mentioned, he went in fear of this community. So he asked for water thrice in a short space of time, after which he ordered his servants to take the letter from Badi'. But he refused to part with it, saying, "I am commanded to convey it to His Majesty the King, from my hand to his." They said to him, "Call it not a letter but rather ‘a petition.' " But he refused, and while so doing perceived that the Shah was fearful of him. So he lifted up the skirt of his mantle which he was wearing and showed them that he was carrying no arms. Then after they had searched him well they brought him to the Shah, and he handed the letter to him.

    Badi` Is Tortured and Put to Death

          Then they arrested him by the Shah's command and tormented him much with all sorts of tortures that he might make avowal of his associates, if he had any such; but he would not confess anything, for, according to his Master's command, he was isolated, and had not held converse, either during *the journey or during his sojourn in the capital, with any one of this community. They photographed him sitting on the ground

    1. viz. the attempt on his life by three Babis in the summer of 1852. See pp. 5-6 supra; Traveller’s Narrative, ii, pp. 49-51 and the references given in the foot-note on p. 50, and pp. 313-334.
          *page 38


    with the utmost dignity and majesty, chained with a heavy chain, and on either side of him the tormentors, holding in their hands the ends of the chain; and this picture1      was taken by the Shah's orders after he had been tortured to the full. Then the Shah ordered him to be put to death, and they slew him, though no crime can be charged against an ambassador, and, according to all laws and ordinances, it is unlawful to slay such an one. But after the Shah had read the above-mentioned letter, he repented of killing the messenger when repentance was of no avail.

    Death of Baha'u'llah's Son Mirza Mahdi

          In A.H. 1287 (A.D. 1870-1) His Holiness "the Branch"2      Aqa Mirza Mahdi was walking on the roof of the building wherein dwelt His Holiness our Master Baha'u'llah and the Holy Family in the barracks, communing with his Lord, when, in a fit of absent-mindedness and in the gathering darkness, he came, in the course of his preoccupation with his prayer and supplication, to a window in the middle of the roof for the admission of light and ventilation, set his foot on the aperture, and fell prone on the level ground. At the sound of his fall on the paved floor the Holy Family, hastening out, found him lying on the ground in a swoon. Their voices were upraised in wailing and lamentation, and they carried him in. After a while he recovered consciousness, and next day he asked to see the Companions, whom he received with kindness, gentleness and love, and on the next night his pure spirit ascended into the Eternal Kingdom. Let it not be hidden from the

    1. A reproduction of it will be found in Vol. Ii of Ibrahim Khayru’llah’s book Baha’u’llah (Chicago, 1900), facing p. 420.
          2. Ghusn (“Branch,” pl. Aghsan) is the title given to the sons of Baha’u’llah, as the similar title of Afnan (which also means “Branches”) is given to the relatives of the Bab.


    discerning what sorrows befell the Holy Family in this severe affliction, while they were already overwhelmed by the hardships previously mentioned. In short, after carrying out the necessary preparations, they bore him forth, escorted by the guards, and deposited his body beyond the wall to the north of the station of the Prophet Salih; for a slight earthquake had taken place at that time.
          After the lapse of some months the hardships which befell them gave rise to doubt in the minds of those *who were of the company of His Holiness our Master, and they began to turn aside from the path of truth and steadfastness, and to forsake loyalty and love, save a certain number who continued in faithfulness, sincerity and fidelity, by the grace of the Eternal Lord. The schism was fierce. Nor do I care to discuss it in detail, whoever desires to understand it in full, let him read a Persian Tablet revealed by the Supreme Pen in these days concerning this trouble.

    Different Quarters Assigned to Baha'u'llah in 'Akka

          After His Holiness our Master had continued in the military barracks for two years and twelve days, a body of reserve troops came to the barracks for instruction, and there was assigned to our Master by the Government the house of Andraos Malik, which was in the western quarter of the city. He abode there eight months, and [subsequently in the house of Mansur al-Khawwam four months, and in the house of ar-Rabia four months. Thence he was transferred to the house of Udi Khammar, while some of those who were with him lodged in other houses, and the remainder in the Khanu'l-'Awamid ('the Inn of the Columns").

    Sayyid Muhammad of Isfahan's Opposition

         When His Holiness our Glorious Master Baha'u'llah resolved to leave the City of Baghdad and to go to Constanti-

          p. 39


    nople agreeably to the command of the Ottoman Sayyid Muhammad of Isfahan was one of those who bore him company until his arrival at Adrianople. Then he dwelt in the Mahallu'l-Barani in the Holy House; but after a while he began to display a contentious spirit, and went to the Shaykh of the Mevlevi dervishes, took up his abode there, allied himself with Mirza Yahya known as Azal [i.e. Subh-i Azal], and embarked on a course of falsehood and calumny, both within and without [the community]. Then took place the "Supreme Schism," and His Holiness our Master Baha'u'llah left his house called Baytu Amrillah ("the House of God's Command"), and took up his abode in the house of Riza Bey, closed the gate of intercourse to all, and left them to their own devices. When the above-mentioned Sayyid Muhammad of Isfahan, seizing the opportunity, went to Constantinople and there allied himself with Aqa Jan entitled Kaj-Kulah ("Skew-cap"), who resided there, *and embarked on a course of lies, calumny, sedition and intrigue with the Persian Ambassador, Mirza Husayn Khan of Qazwin, and the Ministers of the Ottoman Empire in regard to His Holiness our Master Baha'u'llah, in connection with the malevolent efforts of the above-mentioned Persian Ambassador to influence the Prime Minister 'Ali Pasha and the Minister of Foreign Affairs Fuad Pasha. So an edict was issued by Sultan 'Abdu'l-'Aziz banishing His Holiness our Master Baha'u'llah from Adrianople to 'Akka, and the Sublime also banished the above-mentioned Sayyid Muhammad and Aqa Jan from Constantinople to 'Akka, where the local government lodged them also in the military barracks. But after some days they requested the Government to let them live in the town, and, on receiving its

          p. 40


    permission, they transferred their abode to the town of 'Akka.

    Alleged Mischief-Making of Sayyid Muhammad and Mirza Riza-quli

         After our most Glorious Master had left the barracks, and, together with those of his company, taken up his abode in the town, one of the followers named Mirza Riza-quli of Tafrish and his sister, together with the above-mentioned Sayyid Muhammad of Isfahan, began to make mischief, and busied themselves in actions calculated to excite and arouse the native population against His Holiness our great Master and those who accompanied him. Amongst these actions was that they concocted a treatise of certain holy verses culled from many different tracts and tablets, inserting therein phrases calculated to excite hatred between different nations, and of this they made numerous copies, which they distributed amongst high and low. People belonging to civilized countries may, perhaps, not perceive any great significance in what has been mentioned as to the compilation by the malignants of this treatise or the publication of copies of it in the city, nor behold in it a means of exciting hatred, having regard only to what they enjoy in the way of civilization, liberty, ethical latitude, education in religious freedom, and lack of prejudice against any sect but if they consider the conditions obtaining in Eastern countries, their lack of religious freedom, the blood shed in consequence of religious fanaticism, and the ruin which hath encompassed these lands in consequence of sectarian differences, they will recognize what hath been mentioned as the greatest incentive *to mischiefs, hardships and calamities, since thereby hatred is stirred in men's hearts, the fire of strife and sedition is enflamed amongst

    * page 41.


         the people, and the fiercest persecutions befall those who utter a new message or express a new opinion at variance with the opinions of former churches. Indeed there does not exist in uncivilised countries any source of afflictions greater than that whereof mention hath been made, as is proved by what hath befallen this community in the land of Persia during a long period of fierce persecutions, as has been briefly indicated in this little treatise. To be brief, their numerous efforts to stir up mischief and their provocative actions caused bitter sorrows to all the Friends, and grievous trouble befell them, because they conceived these provocative actions and designs to have caused the efforts of the people to hurt His Holiness our Gracious Master, and feared the occurrence of some great mischief whereof the hurt might chiefly affect our Master Baha'u'llah.

    Actions Against Sayyid Muhammad Meditated By Certain Baha'is

         It therefore occurred to them to deal themselves with the evil of these persons, and they began secretly to scheme for this. But since this was contrary to the will of His Holiness our Master they did not venture to disclose their purpose. At this juncture one of the Companions, an Arab of Baghdad named Nasir and commonly called Hajji 'Abbas, was in Beyrout, and when he became cognizant of the actual circumstances he set out for 'Akka to deal with the evil of these persons. On his arrival he submitted the details [of his plan] to His Holiness our Glorious Master who summoned him and stringently prohibited his design, issuing for him a special Tablet in his own holy writing, which ran as follows :

    "HE is the Helper.

         I bear witness that thou hast helped thy Lord, and art one of the helpers. To [the truth of] my testimony all things testify: this indeed is the root of the matter, if thou


    art of those who know. What thou dost by His command and approval is indeed the duty of help in the sight of thy Lord the All-knowing and All-understanding. Go hence *and do not perpetrate that wherefrom mischief will result ! Put thy trust in God: verily He will take whomsoever He will: verily He hath power over all things. Verily we have accepted what thou didst intend in the Way of God. Return to thy place: then commemorate thy Lord, the Mighty, the Praiseworthy."

    The Author Forbidden to Take Action Against Sayyid Muhammad

         And when the above-mentioned Nasir had read this holy Tablet, he abandoned the plan which he had conceived and returned to Beyrout, the place where he dwelt. But some of the Companions held a secret conclave to deal with the evil of the persons above mentioned, and the author of this book was with them, concurring with them in their ideas. One day he asked permission from his Mighty Master to enter his presence, and when he appeared before him he submitted to him the ideas of the Companions, one of whom, called Aqa Muhammad Ibrahim of Kashan, was present. But His Holiness our Lord Baha'u'llah strictly forbade the author [from pursuing his design], and ordered him to go and remain in his house and not meddle in such affairs. Then the above-mentioned Aqa Muhammad Ibrahim made representation to His Holiness our Lord, saying, "Verily our silence and patience have encouraged the boldness of the adversaries and their persistence in mischief and sedition." Then His Holiness our Master commanded one of those present to expel the above-mentioned Aqa Muhammad Ibrahim from his presence, and he expelled him, while the author of this book confined

          * page 42


         himself to his house, and withdrew from those who were resolved to deal with the evil of these malignants.

    Assassination of Sayyid Muhammad And Other Azalis by Baha'is

         Now those who were agreed to execute the plan which hath been mentioned were Ustad 'Abdu'l Karim the turner, Ustad Muhammad 'Ali barber of Isfahan, Ustad Ahmad and his nephew Mirza Husayn the carpenter of Kashan, Aqa Muhammad Ibrahim of Kashan, Mirza Jafar of Yazd, and Aqa Husayn of Kashan the cook. These began to consort with the malignants under a semblance of sympathy and concord, for the better execution of their plans, and continued for some time to converse and associate with them. Then they came in unto them one afternoon in a house which was opposite to the dwelling of the mutasarrif of the town, and killed Sayyid *Muhammad, Aqa Jan, and Mirza Riza-quli afore-mentioned on the 12th of Dhu'l-Qa'da, A. H. 1288 (January 22, 1872).(1) The local government being apprized of the matter arrested the seven persons above mentioned, and also all the Babis domiciled at 'Akka, most of whom, when this event took place, were busy with their professional avocations in the markets of the town.

    Arrest of Baha'u'llah and His Sons

         The administration assembled them all in the Government House, and likewise summoned thither His Holiness our Master Baha'u'llah, his two sons 'Abbas Efendi and Muhammad 'Ali Efendi, Mirza Muhammad-quli, and Janab-i-Khaddimullah [Aqa Jan of Kashan. At the fourth hour of the night they removed His Holiness our Master, his two sons (al-Ghusnayn) and Mirza Muhammad-quli from

          * page 43.
          1. Concerning the murder of these Azalis, see my Babis of Persia, I, p. 517, and ii, p. 995; Traveller’s Narrative, ii, pp. 370-1; and my Year Amongst the Persians, pp. 512-514.


         the Government House, and lodged our Master and [his son] Muhammad 'Ali Efendi in a chamber in the Shah-verdi Khan beside the harbour, 'Abbas Efendi [his other son] at the harbour, and Mirza Muhammad-quli in another place. But Janab-i-Khadimullah and the Companions generally passed the night in the prison of the Government House, wearing chains on their feet. But since His Holiness Musa Efendi(1) was in bad health, and there was no one else to watch over and make arrangements for the wives of the Companions, they left him and his son Majdu'd-Din Efendi, who had not yet reached years of maturity, in his lodging at the Khan, where most of the Companions dwelt. But when the Governor Subhi Pasha was informed of this transaction, he was displeased with Salih Pasha, the commandant of 'Akka, for what he had done to His Holiness our Master in transferring him from his house and lodging him in the place above mentioned, and reprimanded him for this. Next day, therefore, they assigned a room overlooking the harbour, set apart for the quarters of the Artillery major, as a lodging for His Holiness our Master, with whom were his two sons above mentioned, and Mirza Muhammad-quli. On the afternoon of the third day they brought His Holiness our Master and those who were with him to the Government House, and, after interrogating them, to the house [assigned to them]. On the way thither His Holiness our Master called to his Servant *who was imprisoned in the Government House with the other Companions and took him with him; and the above-mentioned period [of his detention] was sixty hours or more.
          Now His Holiness our Great Master when he was at the Government House, was questioned, as

          1. The brother of Baha’u’llah, entitled Musa Kalim, because, like the original Moses, he conversed with God, i.e. Baha’u’llah.
          * page 44.


    is customary, concerning his name and country. To this he replied, " My name is Baha'u'llah and my home is Nur " (or "the Light "), alluding to his native country in Mazandaran which is called Nur. Then His Holiness our Master addressed those who were present in the assembly there, and said, "O people of the assembly, you have adopted your own principles and have cast behind you the principles of God. What ails you that you will not understand? But since his Honour the Servant of God hath written a detailed account of this event, the author of this book will content himself with this summary.

    Imprisonment of Baha'is on Account of Assassination of Azalis

         The period of detention of the Companions in the prison of the Government House lasted six days, and on the seventh day they sent the seven murderers to the harbour, and the remainder of the Companions to the Shah-verdi Khan, which is situated beside the harbour and is set apart for military purposes. These were sixteen in number, and their imprisonment lasted six months and six days. Towards the end of this period there issued from the Supreme Pen a prayer for deliverance, and a command to the Companions to recite it; and by his Help and Grace they were all released, and reoccupied their lodgings as they were before. This prayer was as follows:
          "O Lord of the Names and Creator of the Heaven ! Deliver Thy friends from the prison of Thine enemies! Verily Thou art the Ruler of Destiny, who ariseth from the horizon of apparition. O Source of Immortality, by the Life of Baha cut not off hope, but help these [Thy servants]! Thou orderest what Thou wilt, and in Thy hand is the Kingdom of Creation. The fangs [of foes] are whetted for the flesh of the Friends: save the Companions, O Lord of the necks [of all men] and Ultimate Judge!"


    Punishment of the Seven Assassins

         As for the seven murderers above mentioned, they were condemned, according to the law, to imprisonment, one for seven years, two for ten years, and the remaining four for fifteen years, but during the years of their imprisonment they obtained a mitigation, according to the custom current in this country, namely, the remission of a third of the period on certain special days. But His Holiness our Master Baha'u'llah, notwithstanding the fact that, apart from his spiritual control and inward power, he had enough external influence and authority to release these seven, or to alleviate their duresse, did nevertheless abandon them to their legal punishment, and did not seek to obtain for them any release or mitigation, because their action was taken without his approval or consent, and contrary to permanent and decisive commands, as when he says, "That ye should be slain in pleasing Him is better for you than that ye should slay"; and again, "If anyone is angered against you, oppose to him gentleness; and if anyone reviles you, revile him not."

    Baha'u'llah Takes up His Residence Outside 'Akka

          *Nine years elapsed after this event during which His Holiness our Master Baha'u'llah never went outside 'Akka. But when it was the 12th of the First Jumada, A.H. 1294 (25th of May, 1877), he went to the Garden of Rizwan, which lies between the two rivers to the east of the town, where he remained nine days and then returned to 'Akka. And towards the close of the year above-mentioned he rented the palace of 'Abdu'llah Pasha which lies to the north of 'Akka at a distance of about an hour and a half from the town; and at times he used to live in the town and at other times in the Palace, until the year A.H. 1298 (A.H. 1880), when he rented the Palace of 'Udi Khammar

          * page 45.


    situated in a northerly direction at a distance of half an hour from 'Akka. Most of his time he passed in this palace, in the company of his three sons and his family and his Honour the Servant of God, while 'Abbas Efendi with his sister and children remained at 'Akka. Sometimes he used to visit the town, and while he dwelt outside the town visitors, whether pilgrims or [resident] Companions, used to have the honour of seeing him after permission had been obtained by them, and used to spend some days and nights there, and then return by permission to their dwellings
         at 'Akka.

    Baha'u'llah's Excursion in the neighbourhood of 'Akka

          Many spots in the town were honoured by the approach of our Master Baha'u'llah, and likewise numerous places and villages outside it, all of which are mentioned in another history by the author more detailed than this. So likewise he visited Hayfa four times, and on the last occasion he honoured with his presence the White House of Elias (Bayt llyas al-Abyad) in A.H. 1308 (A·D. 1890), and abode there three months. He also honoured Mount Carmel, and went one day to the French monastery on the Mountain, where be remained until the close of day. There he issued a Tablet in which he made mention of His Holiness the Spirit [of God](1) and His sufferings.

    Improvement of Conditions at 'Akka

         In the later years of his sojourn at 'Akka external conditions *were the opposite of those which first prevailed, for his fame waxed great power, majesty and triumph were apparent; and the at 'Akka eyes of all were watching this community with veneration and respect. His Holiness our Master Baha'u'llah remarked one day, "Sultan 'Abdu'l-'Aziz banished us to this country in the greatest abasement, and since his object was to

          1. i.e. Jesus Christ, who is so called by the Muhammadans.
          * page 46.


         destroy us and humble us, whenever the means of glory and ease presented themselves, we did not reject them."
          In short, notwithstanding these circumstances and materials of glory, ease and joy, we used to discover signs of sadness in His Holiness our Master Baha'u'llah to an extent which neither writing nor utterance can express, and which hath never been witnessed at any time, as appears from sundry Holy Tablets. Thus in one of these he says:
          "O thou who circlest round my Throne and art present before my Face, dost thou weep for God's own self working for His purpose, or do I weep with mine eyes for it? By God's Life, all things weep for what hath befallen this oppressed one at the hands of those who deny, after we had created them for pure Truth, and had taught them the clear, straight way of God. If one should ask thee about Baha, say, 'Verily he is under the claws of hatred. Alas, alas for what hath befallen me from every tyrant, from every sinner, from every liar, from every careless one, from every deluded one, from every suspicious one, from every deceitful trickster!' If one should ask thee about the Lote-tree (Sidra), say, ' Verily it is under the swords of all mankind.' Alas, alas for what hath befallen this oppressed one from the hosts of the wicked! The smoke of vain imaginings hath overwhelmed some men: therefore doth the eye of my spirit lament and the groaning of my heart rise up. We ask God, most Blessed and most High is He, to cleanse His servants from the defilement of doubts and the dust of vain imaginings: verily he is Powerful over all things."
          And in another passage he says:
         In my Name the Oppressed, from my most great Prison. *By my life, and my sorrow, and my affliction, if the Supreme Pen had addressed itself with the invocation ‘O much-
          *page 47


         wronged one!' from this moment until the day which hath no end, it would have the right so to do. Oppression in all its kinds and forms hath descended upon the dawning places of the Light and the day-springs of the Theophany, both of old time and now; but there hath descended on this Oppressed one that which hath no likeness and no similitude."
          He also said repeatedly, addressing same of the Companions :
          "I desire a dark and narrow dwelling, that I may lament and weep over my wrongs."(1)
          All men used to wonder at beholding these grievous sorrows, not knowing what was their cause or who their originator, for how should there occur to the heart [of any one] the events and circumstances which became known [only] after [the death of] His Holiness our Master?

    Baha'u'llah Falls Sick

         On the 12th of Shawal, A.H. 1309 (10th of May, 1892) His Holiness our Master Baha'u'llah was attacked by a fever, which ceased after two days. Subsequently, however, another attack of fever supervened, and a general disturbance of health resulted.

    Baha'u'llah's Death

         The period of this sickness lasted nineteen days, and his Ascension [i.e. death] took place on the second night of the month of Dhu'l-qa'da at dawn, A.H. 1309 (May 28, 1892) in the Palace of 'Udi Khammar at [the Garden of] Bahja.(2) Alas ! how can I describe this awful calamity, this supremely

          1. Compare Tennyson’s Maud:
          “Always I long to creep
          Into some still cavern deep
          There to weep, and weep, and weep . . .”
          2. This means “Joy,” but Bahja is said to be a corruption of Baghcha, the Turkish word for a garden. See the Traveller’s Narrative, ii., pp. xxxvii—xli.



    terrible event, whereat tears flowed unceasingly and lamentations arose from all sides.

    This Work Composed About 1904

         Even now, though twelve years have passed (1), the author's eyes weep when he sets himself to describe it, his heart throbs, and his spirit suffers so violent a perturbation that naught can exceed it. God knoweth and witnesseth what I say !

    Place of Burial of Baha'u'llah

         The resting-place of his Holy Temple [i.e. body] is the most northerly house of the three houses lying to the west of the Palace above-mentioned, namely the House of Hajji Sayyid 'Ali Afnan (2), the son-in-law of His Holiness our Great Master, in the northernmost room of that house. The body was there laid to rest before the last prayer on the third *night of the month of Dhu'l-Qa'da [A.H. 1309 May 29, 1892].

    Wives And Children of Baha'u'llah

         When His Holiness our Master Baha'u'llah had completed his eighteenth year the
          mother of 'Abbas Efendi, whose name was Nawwab, enjoyed the honour of being received into his presence, in the year A.H. 1251 (A.H. 1835) She bore him first of all a son named Mirza Sadiq, who was born in Tihran the capital of Persia, and died there after three or four years. Secondly,'Abbas Efendi, who was born in Tihran in A.H. 1257 (A.D. 1841). Thirdly, a daughter, Bahiyya Khanim, who was born in Tihran in A.H. 1260 (A.D. 1844); and these two are still living. Fourthly, Mirza 'Ali Muhammad, who was born in Tihran, lived seven years, and died in Mazandaran. Fifthly, Mirza Mahdi, who was born in Tihran and died in the military barracks at

          1. This indicates A.D. 1904 as the date of composition of this work.
          2. The Bab’s kinsman, whom I met at ‘Akka in April, 1890. See Traveller’s Narrative, ii., pp. xxxvii-xxxviii.
          * page 48


         'Akka in A.H. 1287 (A.D. 1870-1). Sixthly, Mirza 'Ali Muhammad, who was born in Baghdad lived two years, and died there.

    Baha'u'llah's Second Wife, Mahd-i 'Ulya And Her Children

         In A.H. 1266 (A.D. 1849) the mother of Muhammad 'Ali Efendi, whose name was Mahd-i-'Ulya, enjoyed the honour of being received into the presence of His Holiness our Master Baha'u'llah. She bore him first Muhammad 'Ali Efendi in Baghdad in A.H. 1270 (A.D.1853), who is still living. Secondly, a daughter, Samadiyya Khanim, who was born in Baghdad, lived 49 years, and died in A.H. 1322 (A.D. 1904) in the Palace of Bahji [at 'Akka]. Thirdly, Mirza 'Ali Muhammad, who was born in Baghdad, lived two years, and died there. Fourthly, a daughter named Sadhajiyya, who was born at Baghdad, lived two years, and died at Constantinople during the days when His Holiness our Master was sojourning there before he went to Adrianople. Fifthly, Ziya'u'llah Efendi, who was born at Adrianople in A.H. 1282 (A.D. 1865), lived thirty-four years, and died in A.H. 1316 (A·D. 1898) at Hayfa, whence his holy body was conveyed to the Palace of Bahji outside Akka, and was laid to rest within the Holy Place in a little space beneath the feet of His Holiness our Master. Sixthly, Badi'u'llah Efendi, who was born in Addanople in A.H. 1285 (A.D. 1868), that that is in the last year [spent in that city], and who is still living.

    Baha'u'llah 76 Years Old at Time of His Death

         His Holiness our Master Baha'u'llah abode in the World of Creation 76 [lunar] years and 10 months, of which period 24 years were spent in the Most Great Prison [Akka]. During his sojourn there he issued letters to the great kings, leaders of

          1. This means “the Most High Cradle,” and is the title generally given to the kings’ mother.
          * page 49.


    men and doctors, in each of which he explained his Manifestation and the objects he had in view.

    His Writings: Sura-i- Haykal, Kitab-i-Aqdas

         All of them were collected, headed by an Introduction, and [collectively] entitled Suratu'l-Haykal. He also issued the Kitabul-Aqdas (" Most Holy Book"), in which are contained addresses to certain kings and men of leading, and likewise many other books and letters, amounting, with what he promulgated before his arrival at 'Akka, to a hundred volumes. In all these writings he commanded all men to reform their morals and conduct, to associate with mankind in love and harmony with spiritual faculties, and, in short, enjoining all that would advantage them and forbidding all that would hurt them, both in secret and in public. For a blessing the author will here set down some of his lofty utterances, so that his readers may take cognizance of them.

    Selected Quotations From Baha'u'llah's Works

         Amongst other passages he has one in Persian of which this is the translation:
         "I swear by the Sun of Truth, which ariseth and appeareth from the horizon of this Most Great Prison, that the Beauty of Eternity desireth not strife and contention, or aught whereby men's hearts are troubled. Refer to the Tablets, where he says: 'Consort with [the adherents of] all religions with spirituality and fragrance.' The purpose of this Theophany is that the fire of Hate, which hath been kindled in the hearts of the creeds, should be appeased and extinguished by the Heavenly Water

          1. See my Babis of Persia, ii., pp. 954-8; and Baron V. Rosen’s Collections scientifiques, Vol. vi, Manuscrits Arabes, pp. 191-208. Also the Index of my Traveller’s Narrative, ii, and especially the Corrigenda on p. lv.
          2. This well-known quotation is from the Kitab-i-Aqdas.
          3. Kawthar, commonly believed by the Muslims to be the name of a fountain or river in Paradise.


         of the Divine Counsel and Celestial Admonition. In this very year, which is the year A.H. 1306 (corresponding to the year 1888 A.D.) there was revealed a *Tablet in the writing of this Oppressed One wherein this most exalted Word shone forth from the horizon of the Supreme Pen: 'O people ! Speak well of [men your fellow-] servants, not evil, nor that whereby their souls may be saddened.' All mention of evil, too, is forbidden in this law, because the tongue [exists] for the commemoration of the Truth, and it is an admonition that it should be defiled with evil speaking, or should utter words [apt] to cause sorrow to God's servants or to grieve them."

         Again :

          "The most glorious fruit of the Tree of Intelligence is this lofty Word: 'All of you are the fruit of one Tree and the leaves of one Branch. It is not for him who loves his country to be proud, but [rather] for him who loves the whole world.' "

         Again :

          " O people of Baha ! Ye are the Rising-places of love and the Day-springs of the Divine Grace. Do not defile the tongue with the vituperation and cursing of any one. Keep the eye from that which is not seemly. Be not the cause of sorrow, much less of strife and sedition."

         Again :
          " There hath been revealed and manifested the Religion of God and the Faith of God From the Heaven of the Divine Will for the unity and concord of the people of the world. Make it not, then, a cause of difference and strife."

         Again :
         "The Object of all that hath been shown forth is

          * page 50.


    that men's ears should be prepared to listen to this lofty Word, which is ,'O people of the earth, make not God's Religion a cause of hatred! Say, "By God's Life, the Doctrine of God and His Religion have come for unity and concord, not for difference and strife. To this witnesseth the Mother of the Book."(1)

          Again, in the "Book of the Last Testament" (Kitabu'l Wasiyya) :
          "The object of this Oppressed One in enduring hardships and afflictions, revealing verses, and manifesting proofs is to extinguish the Fire of hatred and malice, that perchance the horizons of men's hearts may be illuminated with the Light of Concord, and may attain to true Peace. The Light of this declaration hath shone forth and arisen from the horizon of God's 'Tablet. Let each one, then, regard it ! O people of the World ! I enjoin on you that which will conduce to the exaltation of your stations. Take hold of the fear of God; cling to the skirt of virtue ! I say, 'The tongue is for the commemoration of the Good; do not defile it *with foul speech. God hath pardoned what hath passed. Henceforth it behoves that each one should speak according to what is fitting, avoiding cursing and reviling, and that whereby man is rendered sorrowful.' "

         And again:
          "O people of the world ! The way of God is for love and unity: do not make it a cause of enmity and discord ! There hath been revealed from the Supreme Pen what shall conduce to the preservation, and cause the peace and ease, of God's servants with those who possess the greater insight and the larger outlook."

          1. Ummu’l-Kitab, i.e. the original Scripture, before it is translated by the process of revelation into any human tongue.
          * page 51.


         And again:
          "It is hoped that the people of Baha will have regard to the Blessed Word, 'Say, all are from God. This sublime utterance is as Water to extinguish the Fire of the hatred and malice enshrined and entrenched in men's hearts and bosoms. Through this one word the different races shall attain to the Light of true unity. Verily He speareth truly and guideth men into the right Way."

         And again :
          "By the Most Great Name, if one of the Companions vexeth any one, it is as though he had vexed God Himself. Ye are forbidden strife, quarrelling, sedition, murder and the like thereof with a stringent prohibition in God's Book."

         And again:
          That which advantageth the world is acceptable and desirable in God's sight, whatever it may be; and all else is repudiated, whatever it may be, because this Manifestation is for the salvation of the world, its reform, its unity, its concord and its comfort."

         And again :
          "I swear by the Sun of the Dawning of the Divine Unity, if the Friends of God be slain it is better in the eyes of this Oppressed One than that they should injure anyone. O my servants ! The Beauty of the All-merciful hath appeared for the quickening of the world and the uniting of its people, not to give rise to differences and the shedding of blood."

         And again:
          "Say, 'O people of God and ye divers peoples of the World ! Strive to help, and purify the world of love and Affection from the defilement of discord and hatred, that perhaps the souls of men may be at peace and may attain to true Freedom ! I swear by the Sun of Truth that Baha


    neither hath sought nor seeketh aught but the purification of the world from all matters which conduce to hurt, harm and despair. Arise in the strength of the Supreme Pen*, that perhaps this aim may become manifest, and may save the world.'"

         Again :
          "The Supreme Pen hath commanded the Saints, both during the nights and the days, to do good, and hath forbidden them to do evil. In one Of the Tablets this lofty word hath been revealed: 'Blessed is that soul which heareth and doth not speak. If they see good from anyone let them strive to reward him, and if they see injury, let them be patient and leave [him] to God. Striking, cursing, war, strife, slaying and plunder are the actions of the wild beasts of the dens of cruelty and Ignorance: the people of God are purified and freed from all these things. It is necessary that all should strive to reform the world. The world is one country, and God's servants are one family, did they but know it. All must work in perfect unity and concord for its amelioration. He is the All-knowing Counsellor and the Wise Exponent.'"

         Again :
          "Say, O my Saints, cling to piety and take hold of good actions, Adorn your heads with the diadem of justice, and your bodies with the robe of trustworthiness and equity. Forsake strife and contention, and occupy yourselves with unity and concord."

         Again :
          "O diligent servant! It is hoped that the people of God may hearken to His counsels, and may not do in any age or generation aught but what God hath commanded them, but may be steadfast in well-doing and reform, in such

          * page 52.


         wise that though the greater part of the people of God should agree in any matter, and thereafter the savour of mischief Should [be perceived] from it, they should avoid it, for the following of such company is unlawful in God's sight. Ye are forbidden sedition and strife in the Book of God with a Stringent prohibition. O people of Baha, unite in well-doing, and agree in the reformation of the world ! "

         Again :
          "The object of this Oppressed One from the beginning of days until now is that men should not make God's religion a cause of hatred, but should consort and deal with all who are on the earth with Spirituality and fragrance."

         Again :
         "O people of God, do not concern yourselves with yourselves: take thought for the reformation of the world and the purification of its peoples. The reformation of the world will be [effected] by good and pure deeds and gracious and well-pleasing virtues. Deeds are the ally of religion, and virtues its aider. O people of Baha, cling fast to virtue. This is what this Oppressed One hath decreed, and what this Sovereign One hath chosen."

         Again :
          "Happy that soul which weepeth in its bed, while its hurt is illuminated with the love of the people of the world!"

         Again he says in Arabic (1):
          "Look to what is beside you (2) as ye look to yourselves. This is the Way of God, if ye are of those who know, and this is the Religion Of God, if ye are of those who hear."

          * page 53.
          1. Thus far the citations are, apparently, taken from Baha’u’llah’s Persian writings, translated by the author into Arabic.
          2. i.e. to your other fellow-creatures.


         Again :
          "O my friends, ye were not created for yourselves, but for the world. Put aside what advantageth you [only], and adopt that whereby the world is advantaged."

         Again :
          "O son of man, if thou lookest for virtue, put aside what advantageth thee, and adopt that thereby [God's] servants are advantaged; and if thou lookest for justice, choose for others what thou choosest for thyself. Verily at one time humility exalteth man to the Heaven of Glory and Power, and at another [it abaseth him] to the lowest station of abasement and contrition."

         Again :
          "O people of earth, make not God's Religion a cause of difference amongst you ! Verily He hath revealed the Truth for the concord of all who are in the world. Fear God, and be not of the ignorant. Blessed is he who loveth the world sincerely for the sake of His Gracious Lord."

         Again :
          "Blessed is he who devotes himself to the service of the world."

         Again :
          "O my saints, verily We have enjoined on you righteousness and piety, and have forbidden you rebellion and sin, and everything whereby [God's] servants are saddened in the sphere of humanity in creation. Devote your energies to the help of [God's] servants and that whereat your hearts shall rejoice."

         Again :
          "Beware lest the lusts of the flesh and passion should separate you. Be like the fingers on the hand or the limbs in the body. Thus doth the Pen of Revelation admonish you, if ye be of those who surely believe."


         Again :
          "Verily we counsel [God's] servants *in these days wherein the Face of Justice is darkened and the cheek of ignorance is brightened, and the veil of understanding is rent, and comfort and faithfulness have decreased, and trouble and affliction overflow; and wherein covenants are violated, and ties are broken, and no soul knoweth what shall cause it to see or make it blind, or what shall lead it astray or guide it aright. Say, 'O people, abandon villainies and adopt virtues: be a good exemplar amongst mankind and a page whereby men shall be admonished. Whosoever sets himself to serve this dispensation, it is for Him to show wisdom and strive to diminish ignorance from amongst mankind.' Say, 'Agree in your speech and be at one in your judgement. Make your morning more excellent than your evening, and your tomorrow better than your yesterday. The virtue of man is in service and perfection, not in luxury, affluence and wealth. Sanctify your sayings from crookedness and passion, and purify your deeds from doubt and hypocrisy. Say, 'Do not spend the coin of your precious lives in carnal appetites, nor limit your actions to [the attainment of] your personal advantages. Spend when ye find, and be patient when you are in want. Verily after every hardship cometh relaxation, and with every trouble calm. Avoid slothfulness and idleness, and take hold of that whereby the world shall be advantaged, both small and great, old men and widows.' Say, 'Beware lest ye sow the tares of enmity amongst mankind, or the thorns of doubts in pure and luminous hearts.' Say, 'O friends of God, do not that whereby the purity of the River of Love shall be perturbed or the fragrance of Charity shall be cut off. By my Life, ye were created for love, not for hatred and frowardness. There is no glory

          * page 54



    in loving yourselves, but in loving your fellow-creatures. There is no virtue in loving your country, but in loving the world. Be chaste in your glances, faithful in your hands, truthful in your tongue, *and mindful in your heart. Do not degrade those who are learned in [the faith of] Baha, nor disparage the worth of the governors who exercise justice amongst you. Make justice your army, reason your armour, and forgiveness, virtue and that whereby the hearts of the saints rejoice your distinctive characteristic.' "

         Again :
         "And those who work mischief in the earth, and shed blood, and consume men's property wrongfully, from such we dissociate ourselves, asking God that He will not cause us to foregather with them either in this world or the next, unless they repent unto Him : verily He is the most Merciful of the merciful. Verily he who turns to God, it is necessary for him to be distinguished from all others in his actions, and to follow what is enjoined on him in the Scripture. Thus hath the matter been decided in a perspicuous Book."

          There are many exhortations, injunctions and wise sayings after this sort, for which, did the author wish to collect them, this brief treatise would not suffice, but rather it would need the compilation of many volumes. Therefore he hath contented himself with this amount.
          The loftiness of the teachings and counsels of His Holiness our Great Master Baha'u'llah in His days produced a great effect on the character of His Companions and showed far-reaching results, so that they attained in virtuous attributes, good manners, humane conduct and spiritual qualities to a station where they were seen, on occasions of afflictions, sorrows, calamities and troubles, [to be] patient, acquiescent,

          * page 55


    thankful, acting according to the purport of this Blessed Verse of the Kitab-i-Aqdas:
          "Whosoever is angered against you, meet him with kindness, and he who revileth you, revile him not."
          And this verse:
          "That ye should be slain for His good pleasure is better than that ye should slay."

    Assassination of Hajji Muhammad Mirza of Isfahan

         In short, by the elevating influence of His Holiness our Master Baha'u'llah they used to meet the oppressor with gentleness, the aggressor with pardon, and the vituperator with love. In many lands they were slain but did not slay, notwithstanding their power so to do on some occasions, as *happened at 'Ishqabad (Askabad) in Russia (1), where the Shi'ites dwelling there one day murdered one o this community named Haji Muhammad Riza of Isfahan in the public thoroughfare with cutting, wounding iron weapons, such as daggers, knives and the like. The crime was proved against them in the law-court, and sentence was pronounced by the Russian Government that the two murderers (2) should be hanged. But when the gallows was erected for their execution, the Companions [i.e. the Baha'is] went to the Governor and begged that intercession might be made with His Majesty the Emperor for their release and pardon. So the Governor interceded, and the sentence of death was commuted, by command of the Emperor, to banishment to Siberia.

          * page 56.
          1. Concerning this event, which happened on September 8, 1889, see my Traveller’s Narrative, ii, pp. 411-412, and for a fuller account, with the pièces justificatives, Baron Victor Rosen’s Collections scientifiques, Vol. vi, Manuscrits Arabes, pp. 249-250.
          2. Their names were Mashhadi `Ali Akbar and Mashshadi Husayn.


    Lamentation Over Degeneration of Baha'is

         But alas, alas for what we see today ! All these spiritual virtues and humane practices have undergone a complete change. Concord has been replaced by dissension, constancy by cruelty, and affection by enmity. Dissent and mutual avoidance have appeared in this community, and their concatenation hath been dissolved and their assembly dispersed.

    Denunciation of 'Abbas Efendi (`Abdu’l-Baha)

         All this that hath been mentioned hath happened by reason of the love of self and seeking after supremacy emanating from "the Most Mighty Branch” (al-Ghusnu'l-A`zam) Abbas Efendi, and his opposition to the last Testament of His Holiness our Great Master Baha'u'llah. For the [Baha'u'llah] says in Persian (my life be sacrificed to his utterance!): "Every soul from which the scent of existence (i.e. love of self) is perceived today is the cause of discord." He hath also informed us in most of His Tablets that His object in making manifest His dispensation was to cause religious hatred to disappear from the World, and to diffuse love and concord and kindliness amongst the nations. But after His Ascension [i.e. His death] events took place and sayings became current which produced great discord and mutual avoidance within the community, by reason of what issued from 'Abbas Efendi, as has been stated, so that antagonism and separation arose between father and son, brother and sister, *husband and wife, and so forth; nay, God be our refuge! even enmity and hatred.

         In this connection I will mention certain events and matters which gradually came to pass after the death of His Holiness our Great Master Baha'u'llah, some of which I beheld with my own eyes, while others I heard from

          * page 57.


    trustworthy witnesses.

    Instances of 'Abbas Efendi's Alleged Ambitious Actions

         These I will mention briefly, lest the reader be wearied, so that the Guardians of the Divine House of Justice and all just and fair-minded people may be the better informed and admonished, and may set themselves to amend what hath, happened.

    Part of Baha'u'llah's Testament Held Back by 'Abbas Efendi

         The first difference which happened after the death of His Holiness our Great Master within this community was that 'Abbas Efendi concealed some part of the book of [Baha'u'llah's] Testament entitled "the Book of my Testament, which book was given to him by Baha'u'llah in his own holy writing.

         The detail of this is that on the ninth day after the Ascension [i.e. the death of Baha'u'llah] 'Abbas Efendi chose nine persons from amongst the Companions, one of whom was the author [of this book] and disclosed to them this document, concealing, however, a portion of it with a blue leaf [of paper] without any reason or justification, and gave it to them that they might enjoy the blessing of its perusal. One of them, named Aqa Riza of Shiraz, read it at a sign from him down to the place concealed by the blue leaf, whereupon 'Abbas Efendi said to the persons above mentioned, "Verily a portion of this book is concealed for a good reason, because the time doth not admit of its full disclosure." On the afternoon of that day Majdu'd-Din Efendi read it again, by command of (Abbas Efendi, in the Holy Place, before a company of the Aghsan (sons of Baha'u'llah), Afnan (kinsmen of the Bab), Muhajirin (Exiles), Mujawirin (settlers in 'Akka) and Musafarin (temporary visitors), down to the afore-mentioned passage, as narrated above.

          1. The Arabic text of this Testament has been published in Russia. See Section III infra.



         Let it not be hidden from persons of discernment that the injunctions set forth in the above-mentioned book all refer *to this community generally; how then could it be right for Abbas Efendi to disclose what he wished and conceal a portion thereof ? For there is no doubt that if what was so concealed had not been suitable [for general publication] His Holiness Baha'u'llah would not have written it in His august writing. The duty of sons is to carry out the testamentary instructions of their father, not to reveal a portion and conceal a portion thereof, according to their private ideas and opinions or personal inclinations, for His Holiness Baha'u'llah says: "O [Divine Beauty! Verily I have spent my soul and my spirit for the glorification of the Word and the exalting of the Dispensation of thy Glorious and Beneficent Lord. If we see one of the 'Branches' (Aqsan, that is sons) otherwise than as God willeth, we will rightfully drive him away: verily I am the Mighty, the All-Powerful."

         No Further Manifestation to Take Place for 1000 Years The second difference was that His Holiness our Great Master hath said in numerous places in his Holy Scriptures, plainly and explicitly, that no fresh Manifestation shall take place until a full thousand years shall have passed from this Theophany; and that if anyone advances a claim to any such position before the completion of the above-mentioned period, whosoever he be, and from whatsoever place he be, he is a vain pretender worthy of rejection; as when be says in the " Most Holy Book " (Kitab-i-Aqdas): "Whosoever claim to a [new] Dispensation before the completion of a full thousand years is a liar and prevaricator... And whosoever construes this verse or Interprets it otherwise than as it hath been obviously revealed

          * page 58.



    is deprived of the Spirit of God, and of His Mercy which encompasseth all the worlds."

    'Abbas Efendi's Claim.

         But 'Abbas Efendi, after he had attained to supremacy, clearly and explicitly adopted the position of originality,(1) and claimed such lofty stations and high degrees as belong exclusively to Divine Theophanies, and even proclaimed in public in America that he was the Messiah and the son of God, and in India that he was the promised Bahram(2). Thus he says in one of his writings :
          "The Dispensation in its entirety hath reverted to this visible place(3), *and it is not [permissible] for anyone to stir save after his permission."

         And again: "Whosoever calls on men in my Name, verily he is from me."

         [But] His Holiness our Great Master says: "Whosoever lays claim to any station, rapture, ecstasy or craving otherwise than in this [my] Name, verily he is of [the number of] the most lost, though he speak with all utterance, and cause rivers to burst forth from rocks, and control the winds, and cause the clouds to rain." And 'Abbas Efendi says in Persian: " Say, 'the Goal and Sum of all are the products of this Pen, and the Proof is that which this tongue utters.'"

         [But] His Holiness our Great Master says in Persian: "What this Oppressed One desireth of all is Justice and Equity. Let them not be satisfied with listening, but let them ponder on what hath been manifested by this servant.

          1. i.e. of being the bearer of a new Revelation, and not merely the interpreter and maintainer of that given by Baha’u’llah.
          2. The expected Saviour of the Zoroastrians or Parsees.
          3. Meaning himself. * page 59.
          4. Or, “with all the Bayan,” i.e. all the “utterance of the Bab.



         By the Sun of the Bayan arising from the horizon of the heaven of the Kingdom of [God] the All-merciful, had there been found anyone [else] to explain or to speak, we would not have made ourselves the object of men's revilings and calumnies."

          And again, in the "Chapter of the Pen" (Suratu'l-Qalam) : "Say, 'Into the heart of whomsoever it entereth to rival this Pen (1), or to associate himself therewith, or to approach it, or to know what is revealed by it, let it be surely known that the Devil hath whispered into his soul: thus hath the matter been revealed, if ye would know it.' '

         Abbas Efendi says in Persian: "This servant is the expositor of the perspicuous Book, and whatever of God's writings is not confirmed by this servant is not worthy of credence."

         His Holiness our Great Master says: "The Covenant was taken at the time of the Dawn from those who believe that they should not worship [aught] save God, nor work mischief in the earth."

         'Abbas Efendi ascribes all the covenants and vows mentioned in the Sacred Books to himself, as his words prove. Thus he says in Persian: "In short, verily from the beginning of Creation until now there hath not happened or appeared any plain covenant or clear promise like unto this. Yea, there have been promises, but they were not *beneath the shadow of the Tree of Prophecy and the Lote-tree of the Limit, but were only suggested by allegories. But in this great Cycle and luminous Epoch the Object of the Covenant is visible in the horizons and the Centre of the Promise is known amongst the people of the world."

          1. i.e. Baha’u’llah himself. * page 60.



         His Holiness our Great Master says in Persian: "Though one should adduce all the Scriptures in the world, yet speak otherwise than as God willeth, he is mentioned in God's Book as of the Fire, and is [so] inscribed by the Supreme Pen."

         'Abbas Efendi says in Persian: "The dispensation in its entirety reverts to the recognized and acknowledged place, and this Station is distinguished, witnessed and explicitly differentiated, like the Sun in all its phases, from all that is on the earth.”

          And he has many other utterances of this sort in his treatise, available to all in a text lithographed from a copy made by one of his well-known disciples. Let him, therefore, who desires [further] information peruse this treatise entitled "the Production of the Proof (1)," for therein is what amply sufficeth. The third difference is that His Holiness our Great Master Baha'u'llah in many passages of his writings, as also in the Book of his [last] testament, commanded this community to do away with discord, to extinguish the fire of sectarian hatred, and to consort with all religions with kindness and friendliness, as he says in Persian (2):

         "By the Sun of Truth arising from the horizon of the heaven of this prison [i.e. 'Akka], never did the Beauty of Eternity desire strife and discord, or aught whereby [men's] hearts are troubled ! Refer to the Tablets : He saith, 'Consort with [all] religions with spirituality and fragrance.' The object of this Theophany is the extinction *of the fire of

          1. Ityanu’d-dalil li-man yuridu’l-Iqbal ila siwa’i’s-Sabil, lithographed (in Egypt?) on Safar 1, 1318 (-May 31, 1900). See pp. 188-9 infra.
          2. compare pp. 64-5 supra, where the same passage is cited.
          * page 61.



    hatred kindled in the hearts of the creeds, and the abatement thereof by the Kawthar (1) of the utterance of Divine Counsel and Celestial Admonition. In this very year, A.H. 1306 [=1888-9], a Tablet was revealed in the writing of this Oppressed one wherein this Sublime Word shone forth from the horizon of the Supreme Pen: "O people, speak well of [God's] servants, and speak not of them evil, or that whereby their souls may be troubled.' The mention of evil hath also been forbidden in this Law, because the tongue is for the commemoration of the Truth, and it is pitiful that it should be defiled by backbiting or uttering words which cause sadness and grief to [God's] servants."

         He says also in Persian in " the Rook of my will": The object of this Oppressed One in bearing hardships and afflictions is the revealing of Verses and the showing forth of Proofs, so that the fire of malice and hatred may be quenched; then perhaps the horizons of men's hearts may be illuminated with the light of concord and may attain to true Peace."

         And again in the same Book: "O people of the world ! God's religion exists for love and Concord: do not make it a means to enmity and discord !"

    Enmity And Dissension Fostered by 'Abbas Efendi

         But 'Abbas Efendi hath nullified this most great gift and most high and glorious aim, since he, for his private ends and personal aims, hath instituted hatred and discord amongst the people of Baha, in such wise that he bath introduced division and separation between brother and sister, fathers and sons, husband and wile, friend and old comrade; and whosoever does not agree with him in his ideas and statements, and does not speak evil concerning his brother Muhammad 'Ali Efendi "the Most Great Branch "

          1. the name of a fountain or river in Paradise.



    (al-Ghusnu'l-Akbar) and the Holy Family is accounted a "violator" (Naqiz) of the Covenant and a "vacillator" (Mutazalzil), nay, an infidel, wherefore they avoid him and hold it unlawful to speak, or converse, or have any dealings with him*. Let it not be hidden from the intelligent that the causes of discord are numerous, but the author has not touched on them fully from a desire for brevity.

    Schism after Baha'u'llah's Death

         The sum of the matter is that this schism took place on account of what hath been mentioned, and for [other reasons] which have not been mentioned, so that this cleavage resulted, and this community became two communities. On the one hand are the followers of 'Abbas Efendi, who constitute the majority. Most of these believe him to be possessed of the Supreme Immaculacy and to be the Mirror of " He doeth what He will," as is witnessed by their published treatises in hand writings well-known [to all]. They ascribe to him the high degrees and lofty stations peculiar to the Divine Manifestations, and name themselves "the steadfast (ath-thabitun).

    Muhammad Ali and His Followers

         On the other hand are the minority, who find Abbas Efendi and his claim, his sayings, and his ideas at variance with the commands of His Holiness our great Master; who regard Muhammad 'Ali Efendi as submissive to God and obedient to the commands of His Holiness Baha'u'llah who conceive of him as of a finger who points to his Master, so that they agree and unite with him, and are called "Unitarians" (ahlu't-Tawhid).

         When it became certain that a schism had taken place, Muhammad 'Ali Efendi and those who were with him, in conformity with the commands of His Holiness our Great Master, where he says in the Kitab-i-Aqdas:

          * page 62



         'If ye differ in any matter, refer it to God, so long as the Sun continues to shine from the horizon of this heaven (1); and when it hath set, then refer to what hath been revealed by Him : verily that sufficeth the worlds"; and in another place in Persian:

         "O divers peoples, turn towards unity, and become illuminated with the light of Concord : meet in some place in godly fashion, and put away from amongst you whatever is the cause of difference*;

    Muhammad 'Ali's Followers Demand A Conference

         [-- In accordance with these precepts, I say] they repeatedly communicated with 'Abbas Efendi asking hint to appoint a sitting in godly fashion and to choose a few representatives from both sides to discuss the matter with the utmost loving-kindness as regards the disagreement and its causes; to make the efforts necessary to remove it; to weigh words and thoughts in the balance of God's Scripture; and to distinguish the Truth from all else by the criterion of His [Baha'u'llah's] words. Moreover they besought the acceptance of this proposal with the extreme of supplication and sincerity, and repeated their request many times, but obtained no answer from him [i.e. 'Abbas Efendi], nor would he in any wise consent to this, perceiving that reference to the verses explanatory [of this question] would be contrary to his private ideas and personal advantage, and knowing that the truth would be revealed by reference to them, and that all men would recognize the vanity of the ideas and expressions current in the assemblies of 'Abbas Efendi and his followers and contained in their writings. So hatred and aversion increased between the two parties, and matters reached a pitch which one dislikes to describe in detail, and they uttered with regard to Muhammad 'Ali Efendi and

          1. i.e. “so long as Baha’u’llah is alive.” *page 63



    the family of the House of Greatness (1) statements and allegations at which reasonable people were horrified, paying no heed to the injunctions of His Holiness our Great Master where he enjoins in His honourable writings respect for the "Branches" (Aghsan) (2) wives and family, even as he says in the Book of His Testament, "respect and heed for the 'Branches' (Aghsan, i.e sons) is incumbent upon all for the glorifying of the Dispensation and the uplifting of the word.

    'Abbas Efendi Favours Those Who Most Exaggerate His Position

         The fourth different was that the more the followers of 'Abbas Efendi increased in the exaggeration of his praise, and described him by names and attributes proper only to the Divine Majesty, the more he magnified his gifts to them and the more graciously he treated them. So they exaggerated the more, *and carried matters to the point of polytheism (3), exceeding all limits in respect to him. Thus they took certain verses of the Suratu'l-Amr and made them a separate Tablet, which, they asserted, was 'Abbas Efendi's, So that they might establish for him a glory proper only to Divine Theophanies. And 'Abbas Efendi himself made alterations in one of the Servant's letters to Muhammad Mustafa of Baghdad in Beyrout, that is to say added to it and diminished from it, saying that it was a Tablet which the lord had revealed to him. Moreover he claimed that the holy Tablet specially addressed to his brother Muhammad 'Ali Efendi was shared by himself. Again the Servant (4), during

          1. i.e. other members of Baha’u’llah’s family who rejected the claim of `Abbas Effendi.
          2. i.e as already explained, the sons of Baha’u’llah.
          * page 64.
          3. Shirk, i.e. associating partners with God.
          4. i.e. Mirza Aqa Jan of Kashan, the special attendant and amanuensis of Baha’u’llah, commonly called Janab-i-Khadimu’llah.



    the days when His Holiness our Great Master sojourned at Adrianople, had written a tract wherein he made Intention of the Mischief of the days of the Manifestation. This tract 'Abbas Efendi named "the Tablet of the Mischief," saying that it was a Holy Tablet revealed from the Supreme Pen, and ordered it to be read in the assemblies, his object therein being to cast doubts into men's hearts, so that they might imagine that the utmost importance belonged to his days. Again our Great Master, before he made known his Mission, warned us of the advent of "the grievous days, meaning thereby the days of His Manifestation. But after the Manifestation He declared in one of the Holy Tablets that they had come to an end. But 'Abbas Efendi said in answer to a question concerning "the grievous days" that they were the year of the Ascension (1), in order to establish the importance of his own days, as hath been mentioned. and notwithstanding all that we have mentioned, he asserted that his brother Muhammad 'Ali Efendi had tampered with the published Divine Verses, I mean the [edition of the] Kitabu'l'- Haykal lithographed in the days of His Holiness our Great Master, whereof many copies exist in the writing of Zayn [u'l-Muqarrabin] (2) (who is well known amongst this community and who collated this lithographed edition), and said that the verses which were not confirmed by him were not to be relied on, intending thereby to prevent his followers from referring to these Divine Verses, lest they should become aware of his ['Abbas Efendi's] opposition to the Holy Writings* in word, deed, declaration and writing.

    'Abbas Efendi Deprives His Brothers of Their Allowances

          In the fourth year after [the death of] His Holiness our

          1. ie. of the death of Baha’u’llah.
          2. See my translation of the Traveller’s Narrative, ii, pp. 412-418.
          * page 65



    Great Master (1), the partisans of 'Abbas Efendi held a meeting in his audience chamber at his suggestion, took counsel with one another, and agreed that what was given of the necessaries of life to the Holy Family and to his brothers was on no account permissible; wherefore Abbas Efendi cut it off completely, so that he compelled them to borrow for household expenses, because they were deprived of means. This was a wrongful act on his part, because whatever [revenue] reached him from the different countries was not his private property, but belonged to the entire Holy Family, as will not be hidden from the discerning. Yet he cut it off from them, and spent it on whom he would of the officials and men of influence, in order to effect his personal aims, not acting conformably to truth, justice and equity.

    Death of Ziya'u'llah, Oct. 30, 1898

         In the sixth year after [the death of] His Holiness our Great Master (2) a grievous sickness overcame Ziya'u'llah Efendi, by reason of the vehement emotion caused in him by the existing events and differences. After some days he went for change of air to Hayfa where the malady increased in gravity. And during the days of his illness neither 'Abbas Efendi nor any of his family or followers came to visit his sick brother or to enquire after him; until the signs of dissolution appeared, on the afternoon of the 14th of Jumada 11, A.H. 1316 (october 30, 1898), when 'Abbas Efendi came, stayed a few minutes, and then returned to his 1odging. Next morning he came, accompanied the corpse to the gate of the town ['Akka], and after a short while went to the Palace (of Bahja) tarried a while there, and returned to 'Akka, but was not present at the funeral, nor anyone of his family and followers.

          1. i.e. about 1896.
          2. i.e. about 1898.



         They did not even close their shops and offices on that *day, as is customary, but on the contrary manifested joy and gladness and quaffed the drinks commonly used on festivals. This behaviour [on their part] astonished all, whether present or absent, kinsmen or strangers.

    'Abbas Efendi's Attempt to Abduct the Widow of Ziya'u'llah

         Ziya'u'llah Efendi had a wife whose parents and brothers were followers of 'Abbas Efendi, who summoned them to his presence, desiring by their means to draw her to himself. But since after her husband's death she chose faithfulness [to his memory] and the service of Her Holiness his mother, with whom she dwelt in the Palace of Babja, 'Abbas Efendi sent her parents and her brother to the Holy Place. They sent a certain woman of the partisans of 'Abbas Efendi to her mother-in-law, demanding an interview with the girl, that is, the wife of Ziya'u'llah Efendi, in the Holy Place; which request being granted, she came in company with the above mentioned woman to the Holy Place and met her parents and her brother, who held her in conversation with enquiries as to her condition and declarations of affection, walking meanwhile towards the gate, on emerging from which her parents and brother seized her by force, and carried her off, holding her hands and feet to drag her to the place where a carriage was in readiness to carry her away. 'Abbas Efendi's wife was present in person to superintend the arrangements above mentioned, while some of her relations and followers were helping the parents in her abduction, she being bareheaded and bare-footed, crying out and asking for help, and saying " O Baha, help me ! They have taken me by force ! " This event happened at a time when Muhammad 'Ali Efendi and Badi'u'llah Efendi were absent, and no one was present

          * page 66.



    except the Servant of the Presence (1), and a few of the Unitarians (2). The author of this history and some others of the Companions were proceeding towards the Holy Place to visit it, *and we happened to be there when they brought her out crying for help. We and the Servant (1) hastened to the spot and delivered her out of their hands. But 'Abbas Efendi, when he perceived that he was foiled in his scheme and saw that it had not succeeded, ordered some of his followers to write a pamphlet in which the matter was entirely misrepresented, and sent it with the signature of the ill-used lady's father (I mean the widow of Ziya'u'llah Efendi) to Egypt to Hajji Mirza Hasan of Khurasan, who printed and published it in the lands by his command.

    Protest of Mirza Aqa Jan (Janab-i- Khadimu'llah)

         In the fifth year [after Baha'u'llah's death], on the 26th of Dhu'l-Hijja, A.H. 1314 (May 28th, 1897) (3), the servant of God invited all the Companions to the neighbourhood of the Holy Place in Bahji, where, after they had partaken food and drunk tea, he stood up about the time of the afternoon [prayer] and addressed the people, saying "This servant hath been silent all this time and hath not uttered a word, for fear of giving rise to dissension. Now, however, I perceive that my silence causeth increase of discord in God's Religion; therefore I say unto you that the deeds and words which have issued from 'Abbas Efendi and his company are all contrary to God's commands, and at variance with His Injunctions revealed in the Holy Scriptures. The Covenant and Promise mentioned aforetime in

          1. i.e Mirza Aqa Jan of Kashan, called Janab-i-Khadimu’llah.
          2. This was the name adopted by the followers of Muhammad `Ali. See p. 81 supra.
          3. This was the fifth anniversary of Baha’u’llah’s death.



    the Immaculate Writings refer exclusively to previous and subsequent Theophanies, but 'Abbas Efendi hath appropriated them to himself, and ye have so accepted them, wherein ye have greatly erred."

    Ill-Treatment of Janab-i Khadimu'llah

         One of 'Abbas Efendi's followers (1) informed him of the Servant's words, whereupon he at once appeared on the scene, seized him by the hand and expelled him from the house bare-headed and bare-footed, while his followers beat him on the head and face, he crying out meanwhile in a loud voice, addressing them, "Verily ye *are now in the neighbourhood of the Holy Place, while I am speaking to you with discriminating signs (verses), that thereby the true may be distinguished from the false and the polytheist from the Unitarian." Yet not one of them listened to him, but they continued to beat him and to drag him to the Holy Place, where 'Abbas Efendi struck him with his hand a painful blow. From the Holy Place they took him by command of 'Abbas Efendi and imprisoned him in a stable, after they had taken from him such writings and letters as he had on him. After that they denounced him as reprobate, apostate, croaker, hypocrite and devil, notwithstanding the recommendations of His Holiness our Great Master concerning him and His command to them in the Book of the [last] Testament, and in other Tablets also, to honour the Servant; even as He says in a Tablet in His own holy writing "And after the 'Branches' (Aghsan, i.e. the sons of Baha'u'llah) show honour to the Servant who stands before the Throne in a laudable station (2)."

          1. Sayyid Hadi was the informer.
          * page 68
          2. The events here narrated form the subject of a separate tract of 16 pages, lithographed, entitled Waqi’a-i-ha’ila-i-Khadim-i Abha dar



          In short, after this event the Servant attached himself to the Place of our Great Master, and used to spend his time with Muhammad 'Ali Efendi and the Holy Family in commemorating the Lord (glorious in His State) and in the service of the Catholic Word, as is proved by his writings in his own well-known hand. And after a time he went one morning to the house of 'Abbas Efendi at 'Akka to discuss and confer about the actual conditions and existing differences; but they shut the door in his face and prevented him from entering, and he sat before them on the ground for the space of two hours, begging 'Abbas Efendi and his partisans to produce the holy verses and Tablets in their possession, so that he might discuss with them and they with him according to their purport, in order that it might appear what actions and words were conformable or contrary to them, and which thereof were acceptable in God's sight and which displeasing. But none would give ear; and finally 'Abbas Efendi sent his son-in-law named Mirza Muhsin to the Government to say to the [Turkish] officials that the Servant had come to make mischief.

    Death of Janab-i Khadimu'llah

         Thereupon an officer came and took *the Servant to the Government House, where they detained him for a while, after which they drove him out from the Palace. So he continued worshipping and commemorating God and elucidating the Supreme Unity until he fell sick. His sickness lasted fifteen days, and on the 29th of Muharram, A.H. 1319 (May 17th, 1901) he responded to the call of his Master in the Palace of Bahji, and was buried with the utmost reverence at Abi 'Ataba, Muhammad

          Rawza-i-Mubaraka-i-`Ulya [“The Dreadful Calamity of the Servant of Baha in the Blessed and Supreme Garden”). The persecutors were twelve in number, of whom eight are named.
          * page 69



    'Ali Efendi and the Unitarians seeing to what was necessary for him in the way of washing, shrouding and burial.

         The Servant during his days [of life] had repeatedly expressed his wish to the Friends that all of the Holy Writings which belonged to him should return to God, and that after his death they should all be deposited in the Holy Place. So after his death Muhammad 'Ali Efendi, Badi'u'llah Efendi, and some of the Unitarians, including the author, went one day to a house in the neighbourhood of the Holy Place and examined the Sacred Mementos which the Servant bad left. These included twelve Holy portraits, two hundred and seventeen Holy Tablets produced by the Supreme Pen, and a number of the Holy head-dresses (1), garments and hairs, besides many Sacred Books and a mass of Correspondence, bound and unbound, and private possessions, and a number of tracts composed by the Servant concerning the Divine Unity and the Supreme Immaculateness. All these they wrote down [in a list], and placed in three boxes, which they sealed with two seals and deposited as a trust in the house of Sayyid 'Ali Efendi, the son-in-law of His Holiness our Great Master, because he was a Russian subject (2), so that they might be protected from interference at the hands of tyrants.

          Janab-i-Khadimu'llah's Books and Papers Appropriated by 'Abbas Efendi

         Recently, however, it appears that 'Abbas Efendi in the month of Safar, A.H 1326 (March, 1908) obtained the consent of the Blessed Leaf and the Holy Spouse, and of Sayyid 'Ali Efendi Afnan (3), and *sent his

          1. Tijan, literally “Crowns,” i.e. the tall felt caps which Baha’u’llah used to wear.
          2. And therefore not liable to be molested by the Persian or Turkish Government.
          3. So called because he was related to the Bab, whose kinsmen are called Afnan (“Branches”).



    son in-law Mirza Muhsin and Aqa Riza of Shiraz by night in his private carriage to Bahji to bring him the three boxes deposited in trust as above mentioned without the knowledge of anyone. And there is no doubt that the carrying out of this transaction secretly by night is a clear proof that it was contrary alike to the Holy law and its ordinances, and to the Common Law and its provisions, for it was effected by theft and larceny. For Muhammad 'Ali and those who were with him had left the boxes there under seal as trust, for the carrying out of the Servant's last testament and in Order to give effect to it. How then could it be right for 'Abbas Efendi to appropriate them in the fashion above mentioned, or that this treachery should be committed by him ?

    Increased Stringency of Control by Turkish Officials

         After 'Abbas Efendi bad attained to supremacy, he made a great display, by reason of the moral and material prestige which he now possessed. So likewise his followers did not observe prudence, wisdom or moderation in affairs, whence arose many troubles and difficulties, so that orders were issued by the Ottoman Government to confine him and his brothers in the fortress of 'Akka. After a while there appeared four inspectors to investigate and enquire into the circumstances of certain of the officials and exiles, and they examined his ['Abbas Efendi's] affairs also. After a while Khalil Pasha the Governor of Beyrout appointed an inspector to watch him and ascertain who associated with him of the people of the country and others; and when he chanced on such an one, he used to bring him to the Government House, where he was examined to ascertain the cause of his frequenting the society of 'Abbas Efendi. He, however, ascribed all that had happened to his brother Muhammad 'Ali Efendi, spreading this report abroad in the country,



    and thereby filling the hearts of his followers with hatred, enmity and aversion, so that they used to display the extreme of dislike and detestation in regard to Muhammad 'Ali Efendi and the Holy Family, and used to speak unseemly words concerning them. But when Muhammad 'Ali Efendi discovered that his brother ascribed these occurrences to him, he communicated with him repeatedly by means of some of the officials and inhabitants of the city and some of his followers, *and begged him to agree to appoint a time and men to enquire into the truth of these matters, investigate these events, and ascertain their reasons and causes. This happened during the presence of the inspectors, and he requested him to appoint two persons on his behalf that they might go together to the local government and to the Board of Inspectors and formally demand [the production of] a note of complaint, if such were in their possession, on the part of Muhammad 'Ali against his brother 'Abbas Efendi, or an assertion that they were cognizant of some direct complaint on his part. For all official papers and legal complaints are preserved in the originals as well as in copies by the Government in its records. But 'Abbas Efendi would not accept this or agree to it, because he sought by these falsehoods and slanders to give effect to his plans, and if he had appointed such persons and they had gone to the above-mentioned official quarters and made investigations, it would have become plain to all that these accusations were false, and these reports devoid of truth and reality. For it is not hidden that the False loves the darkness and hates the light, lest its evil circumstances and deeds should become apparent. In short this schism and its results were manifold, but space does not allow more [to be said] than what I have mentioned, so I have contented

          * page 71



    myself with this summary, having already set forth most of [the facts connected with] it in another treatise.

    The Conquest of America for the Baha'i religion by means of Dr Ibrahim George Khayru'llah literally transcribed from what the above-mentioned Khayru'llah wrote, putting himself in the position of a third person (1).

    Biographical sketch of Ibrahim George Khayru'llah Ibrahim

         George Khayru'llah was born on November 11, 1849 (26th of Dhu'l-Hijja, A.H. 1265) in the village of Muhammadun (2), one of the villages of Mount Lebanon in Syria.

    Educated at Beyrout

         His father died while he was still a child at the breast (3), and his mother undertook his education, placing him first in the primary schools, and then sending him to the College of al-Bustani in Beyrout, and thence to the American University College, where, in 1870 *(A.H. 1287), he obtained the degree of Bachelor of Science (4). He was one of the five [students] who were the first-fruits of this celebrated college.

    Goes to Egypt in 1872, and becomes acquainted with Hajji `Abdu’l-Karim of Tihran

         In A.D. 1872 (AH. 1289) he left Syria and took up his abode in Egypt for a period of about a 21 years. There he foregathered with the late Hajji 'Abdu'l-Karim Efendi of Tihran, one of the followers of His Holiness Baha'u'llah (glorious is His mention !), who gave him good tidings

          1. Since this translation was made, Dr. Khayru’llah has published the substance of the information given below in a book entitled O Christians! Why do ye believe not in Christ? pp. 165-192. This book was published in 1917 in the U.S.A., probably at Chicago, though no place is specified on the title-page. I cite this as the “English Autobiography.”

          2. “Bahamdon” in the English version mentioned in the last footnote.
          3. “When I was two years old.”
          4. “B.A.”
          * page 72



    of this Most Great Manifestation.

    Conversion to Baha'i faith in 1890

         At first he did not believe these tidings, and began to study the Divine Scriptures (1) with the object of demonstrating therefrom the falsity of this claim, and he remained an unbeliever for a number of years, until God opened his eyes and he saw the Truth as it is. Then he forwarded a letter of contrition and belief to His Holiness Baha'u'llah (glorious is His praise!), and there was revealed for him a Holy Tablet from the Heaven of Virtue gladdening him with the announcement that his cry had been heard and his request answered, and that he had been commemorated with a mention whereby [all men's] hearts would be attracted. This happened in A.D. 1890 (A.H. 1308), and the text of the above-mentioned Tablet is inserted for a blessing at the end of his book entitled Baha'u'llah (2) which he composed in the English language to prove the truth of this most great and wonderful Theophany.

    Khayru'llah Goes to St Petersburg

         On the 19th of June, 1892 (24th Of Dhu1-Qada A.H. 1309), about three weeks after the Ascension (3) of His Holiness Baha'u'llah, the above-mentioned Ibrahim Khayru'llah journeyed from Cairo to St Petersburg, the capital of the Russian Empire, to finish some business which he had there.

    Khayru'llah Arrives in New York, Dec. 1892

         His intention was to return to Egypt after three months, but, being unable to finish his business there, he went to Berlin, then to Le Havre in France, and thence to America on a German ship named "Swabia." He reached New York in December, 1892 A.H. 1310), three or four days before Christmas.

          1. i.e. the writings of the Bab and Baha’u’llah
          2. Vol. ii, pp. 544-5. Se also p. 166 of the English Autobiography.
          3. i.e. death



    Beginning of the American propaganda

         In July, 1893 (Muharram, A.H. 1311), he left New York and went to Michigan to earn his livelihood, and wherever he went he used to sow the seed of this wonderful Theophany, so far as was possible having regard to his weakness in the English language; until he reached Chicago in February, 1894 (Shawwal, A.H. 1312), which he adopted as his dwelling-place and the centre of his activities. Then he began to preach the Advent of the Kingdom, and after he had spent about two years in missionary work and had found receptive ears, he wrote to the late 'Abdu'l-Karim Efendi of Tihran informing him of how he had devoted himself to preaching the good tidings in America, and of the success which he had met with there. At the same time he also wrote by the hand of the above-mentioned 'Abdu'l-Karim a letter to His Holiness 'Abbas Efendi "the Most Mighty Branch " (al-Ghusnu'l-A'zam).

    Khayru'llah Marries an English Wife

          At this time also he desired his Greek wife to leave Egypt and come to America to help him there, but she refused to come. So he divorced her, and, in A.D. 1895 (A.H. 1312) 1895 married an English lady (1), and they went together to England and France, returning thence after two months to his home in Chicigo, where he applied himself day and night, without wearying, to teaching the people. In this year, after his return from Europe, an opening was vouchsafed to him in the city of Kenosha in the State of Wisconsin, which place is distant about fifty miles from Chicago. Thither he used to go and preach to the people one day in every week.

          *page 73
          1. Miss Marian Miller. See p. 167 of the English Autobiography.



    Khayru'llah Publishes A Book Entitled Babu'd-Din

         In A.D 1896 (A.H. 1314) the feet of seekers [after Truth] crowded on one another in Chicago and Kenosha, *and the believers were counted by hundreds. At this period he composed a book which he named Babu'd-Din ("the Gate of Religion") , and in A.D. 1897 (A.H. 1315) he went to Kansas State, to the city of Enterprise, where he spent eight weeks during the summer season in search of rest; but, finding there a number of people seeking spiritual knowledge, he preached the message to them, and there were converted of them at that time twenty one persons.

    Propaganda in New York and Ithaca (1897)

         Towards the end of that year (A.D. 1897) Mr [Arthur] Dodge and Mrs [Lida H.] Talbot, who had left Chicago and settled at New York, invited him to proceed thither and evangelize the above-mentioned city. At that time also one of the believing women (1), who had gone from Chicago to visit her family in New York State, invited him to come to her help in the city of Ithaca, where by his permission she was teaching certain people. Therefore, on his way to New York, he passed by Ithaca and spent some days there in missionary work, until some of them believed. Then he left them and went to New York, where be and his wife lodged in the very same house in which Mr Dodge was living. Before leaving Chicago he appointed there and at Kenosha male and female missionaries to impart to students the same teachings which they had received from him. Thus was the mission extended, while the number of enquirers increased daily.
          * p. 74
          1. Apparently Mrs. Getsinger. See p. 169 of the English Autobiography.



          Finding that the number of enquirers in New York exceeded two hundred, he divided them into three classes. He used to instruct the first class in the house where he lived with Mr Dodge, the second class in the house *of the celebrated Dr Gurnsey, one of the notables of New York, and the third class in the hall known as "Nineteenth Century Hall."

    Classes for instruction in the Baha’i doctrine organized

          At the end of four months one hundred and forty-one of the enquirers believed, and he formed them into a congregation and set over them as evangelist (muballigh) Mr Howard MacNutt. And during the period of his sojourn in New York he used to visit the city of Philladephia to help one of the women evangelists (1) whom he had sent there. And in that city eighteen (2) souls believed. Thus did God open [to the faith] New York and Philadelphia in a short time.

          In the beginning of June, 1898 (Muharram, A.H. 1316), he visited Chicago and Kenosha to investigate the condition of the believers there. Then he returned to New York, whence he went with his wife and one of the believing women, Mrs Anna Bell, to the city of Lubeck in the State of Maine. There he spent nine weeks, engaged from six to nine hours daily in dictating orally to Mrs Bell, while she wrote down what he dictated with the type-writer, until he had nearly completed the composition of his book entitled Beha'u'llah. At this juncture there reached him a telegram from California informing him that Mrs Phoebe Hearst wanted him and his wife to meet her at New York to go with her as her guests to 'Akka to visit the tomb of His Holiness Baha'u'llah (to whom be glory !), and to meet the

          *page 75
          1. Mrs. Sara G. Herron. Op cit., p. 170.
          2. “About twenty-five souls.” Op cit., p. 170.



    members of the Holy Family. He accepted this invitation returned to New York, and prepared for the journey.

    Disinterested Character of Khayru’llah’s Work

         Khayru'llah carried on his missionary and evangelizing efforts amongst the people in America for love of God without any remuneration at all, so that *he used even to refuse the presents which were offered to him. This rule he made binding on himself and on all the evangelists, male and female, whom he appointed to teach. He used to earn his livelihood by his lawful profession, which was the healing of the sick, and often times he expended his own private property [in such ways] as the hire of premises for assemblies of the believers and evangelizing work.

    Khayru'llah Sails For Europe and Syria

         Towards the end of June, 1898 (1) (Muharram, A.H. 1316) Ibrahim Khayru'llah sailed in the steamer "Fürst Bismark" in company with Mrs Phoebe Hearst. He stayed some days in Paris, where he completed the conversion of the above-mentioned lady by giving her and some of her attendants the Most Great Name. He also explicitly instructed such of the believers as dwelt in England and France and had received the Most Great Name to preach the Advent of the Father and His Kingdom upon earth. In this way was inaugurated this Most Great Evangel amongst the Christians of Europe.

    Khayru'llah and a Party of Americans Visit 'Akka

         After this he travelled alone from Paris making for 'Akka. He disembarked at Alexandria in Egypt to visit his two daughters, who were living there at that time with their grandmother, stayed with them three weeks, preached the Doctrine to them and converted them. Thence

          * page 76
          1. “In July, 1898.” Op. cit., p. 171.



    they followed him to 'Akka to perform a visitation. So likewise Mrs. Hearst and those who accompanied her arrived in successive parties, one after another, at 'Akka, the total number of American visitors (1) together with his own family amounting to sixteen persons. Ibrahim

         Khayru'llah's stay in 'Akka and Hayfa somewhat exceeded six months, in the course of which important events happened, some of which it is necessary to mention for the making plain of the truth.

    Reception of Khayru'llah by 'Abbas Efendi

         About twenty-four hours after he had disembarked, he set off from Hayfa in a carriage *with Husayn the Persian, of the village of Khamna, a dependency of Tabriz, who had been appointed by 'Abbas Efendi to meet the pilgrims, and the two went together to 'Akka, and alighted at the house where dwelt His Holiness 'Abbas Efendi. There, in the reception-room on the upper floor, 'Abbas Efendi entered and greeted Khayru'llah, saying, "Welcome to thee friend !" Then he clasped him to his breast and kissed him, saying, "Welcome to thee, O Baha's Peter, O second Columbus, Conqueror of America !" Then he sat down talking to him kindly and affectionately,and asking him about the pilgrims who were coming from America, and about the believers there. Then he asked him to stay with him in the house, and he agreed thereto and stayed there. And on the next day a military ofticer came and put a fez on Khayru'llah's head instead of a hat, saying to him, "Verily 'Abbas Efendi has ordered this fez for Baha's Peter, Columbus the Second, the Conqueror of America." After this the believers there began to send congratulations on this distinction, calling

          1. “of visitors who were originally Christians.” Op. cit., p. 172
          * page 77



    him at one time Columbus the Second, Conqueror of America, and at another Baha's Peter.

         When 'Abbas Efendi brought Khayru'llah into the room wherein was deposited the body of His Holiness our Master Baha'u'llah, he told him that he was the first pilgrim to whom the door of this chamber had been opened for entrance thereunto and to perform the ceremonies prescribed for the visitation. And thereafter he began to open it for the entrance of other pilgrims.

    Khayru'llah helps to lay the foundation stone of the Bab's mausoleum

         Another of the distinctions which he enjoyed was that one day 'Abbas Efendi came to Hayfa and alighted at the house in which Khayru'llah was lodging with his family, and invited him to accompany him to Mount Carmel to participate with him in laying the foundation stone of the mausoleum which was to be erected to receive the body of the "First Point" His Holiness the Bab, this honour being assigned to him instead of to 'Abbas Efendi's brother "the Most Great Branch" Muhammad 'Ali Efendi. *So they went together, and there on Mount Carmel 'Abbas Efendi took a pick-axe and gave Khayru'llah another pickaxe, which one of the attendants had brought for this purpose, and, after asking help from God, they both began to dig the foundations, while the servant who was present removed the excavated earth. Thus the work continued for a few minutes, when 'Abbas Efendi laid aside his pickaxe and ordered Khayru'llah to do likewise. Then he said to him, "This is an honour which none of the believers except thee has enjoyed." And he kept praising his action and his instruction of the Americans before the assembly of the believers; and often did he make mention thereof in his writings. He also entitled him "the Shepherd of God's

          * page 78



    flocks in America," and presented him with the works of His Holiness Baha (to whom be glory!). As for 'Abbas Efendi's followers, they treated Khayru'llah with all kindness and affection.

         It is worth mentioning here that Her Holiness Bahiyya Khanun "the Blessed Leaf," the sister of 'Abbas Efendi, gave Khayru'llah her book, which was written in a beautiful hand and contained a number of Holy Tablets revealed by the Supreme Pen; and told him that it was a present from her to Baha's Peter, the Conqueror of America, who had wrought for the extension of the Faith what no other of the missionaries had achieved. And he thanked her, and put it by with other precious writings.

         Notwithstanding that Khayru'llah had repeatedly begged His Holiness 'Abbas Efendi before he went to visit him to send him a volume of the Holy Verses which had been revealed by the Supreme Pen so that he might compare them with his teachings, in order to guard against the incidence of error, and His Holiness 'Abbas Efendi had promised him this, yet he sent him nothing of what he had demanded. So Khayru'llah determined when he went to 'Akka to attain this supreme aim, to wit the acquisition of knowledge at first hand; and, whenever he foregathered with 'Abbas Efendi he used* to explain to him the teachings which he gave to the Americans, even translating lengthy sections thereof, and asking His Holiness to correct what was erroneous. But His Holiness confirmed them and praised them publicly before all the believers, both Easterns and Americans. He repeatedly declared explicitly to the American pilgrims that all which Khayru'llah had taught was correct; but whenever he had explained to the

          * page 79



    Americans any matter, and afterwards understood that his explanation was not in accordance with that given by Khayru'llah, he used to avoid disagreement by saying that everything had two meanings, one spiritual and the other material, and that the explanations given to them by himself and by Khayru'llah were both correct.

    Discrepancies in Doctrine

         Now since His Holiness 'Abbas Efendi used to postpone the explanation of the questions which Khayru'llah put to him, excusing himself on the ground of the multiplicity of his affairs Khayru'llah took to propounding them to the missionaries (muballighin) who were there at that time, such as Ibnu'l-Abhar (1) and his followers, and there appeared between them the most complete difference of opinion on numerous important matters, such as the immortality of the human spirit, and the question of the "return" (rijat) or coming back [to the life of the world], etc. So 'Abbas Efendi appointed a special time for the hearing of the two parties and the pronouncing of judgement.

    Discussion on the Nature of God's Essence

         After long discussions His Holiness 'Abbas Efendi said to Khayru'llah, "Verily the argument which you have advanced is plausible, but your assertion that God's Essence is limited by His Essence is a sheer error." So Khayru'llah begged that he might hear the proof to establish this, saying, "Since everything which is known is limited, and since God knows all things, and since He is necessarily known to His Essence by His Essence, therefore it is possible to say, without incurring the charge of error, that God's Essence is limited by His Essence, since He is known to Himself."

          1. Probably identical with the “Ibn Abhar” mentioned at p. 426 of my Persian Revolution.



         But 'Abbas Efendi answered saying, "It is necessary that no difference [of opinion] should arise between thee and the learned men of Persia, and therefore it is necessary that *thou shouldst say that God is unlimited, and that He is exempt from [the attributes of] His creatures." To this Khayru'llah answered saying, "O Sir, is not the statement that God is exempt from [the attributes of] His creatures in itself also a kind of limitation ? " Then 'Abbas Efendi's countenance changed, and he regarded Khayru'llah with a frown: then he smiled, and rose up saying, " We will return to this discussion some other time, if God please." Thus did he close the first and last conference on these matters.

    Disinclination of Baha'is to Argue

         After this conference there came about an evident change in the treatment of Khayru'llah by the Missionaries (muballighin) and their followers, and by some of the American pilgrims, and amongst them his wife, who was with him on this visit. When he asked one of the missionaries about any religious question, the answer would be that His Holiness 'Abbas Efendi alone was able to explain these questions, and that Khayru'llah must ask him. But when an opportunity occurred and he asked 'Abbas Efendi about it, His Holiness would postpone his reply until some other occasion.

    Baha'i Scriptures withheld from Khayru'llah.

         Then Khayru'llah requested 'Abbas Efendi to obtain [for him] the books which bad been printed in India by command of His Holiness Baha'u'llah (to whom be glory) and in his days; but he did not grant this request, saying, "These books are not to be found in 'Akka." But Khayru'llah obtained them in Egypt whilst he was returning to America.

          * page 80



    Growing Estrangement Between Khayru'llah And 'Abbas Efendi

         Then there occurred numerous unpleasant events during the visit, which, if they did not shake the faith of Khayru'llah and his two daughters in the truth of this Most Great Theophany, did none the less trouble the cup of their joy, and caused them to wonder at the arbitrary conduct of 'Abbas Efendi. Only after their return to America did God open their eyes so that they saw the Truth as it is. Then indeed they began to call to mind these events, and to wonder how they failed to understand them at the time, and to realize the truth that *the apprehension of facts and the understanding of them only come by degrees and with time. And in order to make known the Truth Khayru'llah mentioned some of these occurrences, as will be seen, but drew a veil over many of them from motives of courtesy.

    Precautions taken by 'Abbas Efendi to Prevent Strangers From Meeting His Brother

         One feature of the policy of 'Abbas Efendi was to attach to every pilgrim who came to 'Akka men of his own faction, to consort with that stranger-pilgrim with the utmost kindness and tenderness, wait upon him, remain with him night and day, and accompany him wherever he went. Thus passed the days of his visit without the pilgrim being able to meet one of the Holy Family or their followers, so that he would return without being informed of the truth of the matter, or of the causes of the dissension which had arisen between 'Abbas Efendi and Muhammad 'Ali Efendi.

         But if any one [of the pilgrims] was so bold as to ask His Holiness 'Abbas Efendi to permit him to meet his brother Muhammad 'Ali Efendi or his followers, he would

          * page 81



    grant such permission to the *seeker, with a smiling and cheerful countenance, to go to meet his brother Muhammad 'Ali Efendi, expressing an eager desire to be reconciled with his brother; but at the same time he would hint to the enquirer that there was absolutely nothing to be gained by this action of his. Then he would enjoin his partisans and attendants to make it clear to that pilgrim that it would be a great mistake for him to foregather with Muhammad 'Ali Efendi, or any of his followers, or to Speak with them, and that it was one of the things which would distress the sensibilities of 'Abbas Efendi. So the pilgrim would refuse to meet anyone of the rival faction, even as happened to Khayru'llah himself, when he refused to meet his Holiness the Branch (Ghusn) Badi'u'llah Efendi when the latter came to call upon him at the inn where he was staying in the city of Hayfa. For he refused to meet the above-mentioned Badi'u'llah Efendi, in consequence of what had been suggested to him by His Holiness 'Abbas Efendi and his followers.

         In consequence of what has just been set forth, none of all the American pilgrims went to interview His Holiness Muhammad 'Ali Efendi or Her Holiness the Mother of the "Branches" (Aghsan).

    Attempt to Prejudice the American Visitors Against Muhammad Ali

         Besides what has been mentioned, 'Abbas Efendi used to take every opportunity in the presence of Khayru'llah to rise up and speak amongst his followers and attendants, and in the presence of the pilgrims and the Americans, explaining to them how he was wronged, and the vexations which he daily suffered at the hands of the Government and its agents, the origin of all of which he ascribed

          * page 82



    to the treacherous intrigues of his brother Muhammad 'Ali Efendi, inciting them to avenge him, inspiring in their minds angry suspicions and the very spirit of hatred and enmity, and relating to them stories to the prejudice of the Members of the Holy House, at which the natural instinct revolted. So likewise his followers also imitated his procedure, communicating to the pilgrims the infamies which they ascribe to the Members of the Holy House. Consequently some of the American pilgrims communicated these scandalous stories to the believers in America after their return from 'Akka.

         Is not such conduct diametrically opposed to the Bahai Spirit and Truth, to the Christian Spirit, and to the Spirit of the Prophets and Apostles?

    Deceit Sanctioned by 'Abbas Efendi

         The political sagacity of 'Abbas Efendi and the ways in which he meets the pilgrims with every display of affection, and the proffering of abundant distinctions and honours to them, as likewise his training of his followers and attendants to manifest towards him and also the pilgrims tender love, kindness and complete humility, assure him an absolute sovereignty over their intellects and win for him their blind confidence, so that they regard him *as great and perfect to such a degree that if he bids them perform actions which God hath declared unlawful, they do them unwittingly. As an instance of this, 'Abbas Efendi invited Colonel Bedri Bey, the commanding officer of the Turkish troops there, to partake of food at his table with the American pilgrims who were there at that time. Before they entered the dining-room, however, 'Abbas Efendi commanded them through their interpreter at the time, Bahiyya the daughter

          * page 83



    of Khayru'llah, to deny all knowledge of the French language if Bedri Bey should desire to converse with them in that tongue. So when all were gathered at the table, Bedri Bey enquired if any of the Americans was conversant with the French language, for if so he would like to converse with them in it, since he did not know English. In obedience to 'Abbas Efendi's command they all denied such knowledge, though four of these respected ladies spoke French very well, namely, Mrs Hearst, Mrs Kruper, Mrs Thornbourg and Mrs Aberson. Verily God and His servants cannot teach their followers to deny the truth, for assuredly a lie is hateful in God's sight, whatever be the object in view, and truly what God hath forbidden cannot become right.

    Prophecies of 'Abbas Efendi

         Amongst those events which can hardly be believed is that one day when we were sitting at table 'Abbas Efendi, addressing his remarks to some of the most respected of the American pilgrims (1), described to them certain important events in their past lives of which he was already cognizant by means of one of the American pilgrims who wrote them down, desiring that they should be translated into Arabic for the information of 'Abbas Efendi. Then he addressed his conversation to one of the notable and respected ladies and prophesied to her about the life of her son in the future and the renown he would attain, saying, "After ten thousand years his journal will be sent *as a present of great price from one king to another king." After he rose from the table, Khayru'llah approached him and showed how unfavourably he had been impressed by what had happened. But 'Abbas Efendi, smiling, laid his hand on Khayru'llah's shoulder,

          1. Mr. Getsinger. Op cit., p. 177
          * page 84



    and said to him, "Verily this was for a good reason which thou canst not understand at present."

    Another of 'Abbas Efendi's Prophecies

         Amongst his prophecies was also the following. We were with him at table when one of the American pilgrims (1) asked him to permit them to take his photograph, for it had never been taken save when he was a young man of twenty-seven in A.D. 1284 (A.D. 1867) He refused, however, to grant permission, saying that it would only be taken when his Father's crown (2) should be placed on his head and he should be led forth to martyrdom, when thousands of rifle bullets should piece his body. His words had a great effect, so that some of the auditors wept bitterly. (3) So likewise in his writings and speeches he laments and mourns on account of the vexations and calamities which have befallen and will befall him in God's Way. And this he did that men's hearts might incline towards him, and that he might stir in them sentiments of compassion and partisanship.

    Khayru'llah's Wife Leaves Him

         And amongst the things which awakened Khayru'llah to the double-faced policy of 'Abbas Efendi was that when be arrived with his wife and his two daughters at Port Said in Egypt on their return from the pilgrimage [to 'Akka] en route for America, his wife left him and travelled alone without saying one word to them or fulfilling the formalities of leave-taking. Those who beheld this were amazed thereat, having regard to the fact that 'Abbas Efendi, when he bade them farewell, emphatically enjoined on them that they should live together in love and concord.

          1. Mr. Getsinger. Op. cit., p. 178
          2. Taj, i.e. in this case the tall felt cap which Baha’u’llah used to wear.
          3. “He has een photographed many times since, and his prophecy has not been fulfilled.” Op. cit., p. 178.



    Alleged Duplicity of 'Abbas Efendi

         Another thing which Warned Khayru'llah and generated doubt in his heart was the letter which reached him two months after his return to America from 'Abbas Efendi, written in 'Abbas Efendi's own hand writing and signed with his [usual] Signature "`Ayn `Ayn" (1); which *letter is preserved and can be produced when necessary. This letter is a reply to a letter Sent by Khayru'llah from Paris to 'Abbas Efendi asking him to make known in what way he desired Mrs Hearst to send him the money which she had promised to send. For when Mrs Hearst met Khayru'llah in Paris as he was returning from the pilgrimage [to 'Akka], she asked him to correspond with 'Abbas Efendi about this. So there came to him this letter above-mentioned, wherein 'Abbas Efendi praised him in the most exaggerated terms, ascribing to him lofty qualities where with none should be credited save only the Divine Manifestations. Such, for instance, were his words: "Verily thou art a centre of the Circle of God's Love, the pivot of consecration and humility to God." Now as regards the men of God, the world and the treasures which it contains preoccupy them not, so that if one of them passes by a valley of pure gold, his spirit doth not incline to take anything therefrom ; nor is it possible, things being so, that money should impel him to write praise like that recorded above, which tore the veil from the eyes of Khayru'llah, so that he saw the Truth comprehended this double-faced policy. More particularly, he discovered after careful investigation that 'Abbas Efendi, before the time when he wrote this panegyric, had written another letter censuring Khayru'llah, which had been communicated to some of the American pilgrims who were there at the time,

          1. The initials of `Abbas `Abdu’l-Baha.
          * page 85



    and who, after their return, communicated it to the American believers as it bad been revealed to them by 'Abbas Efendi.

    Khayru’llah renounces ‘Abbas Efendi in favour of his brother Muhammad `Ali

         From this moment Khayru'llah began to read the Holy Verses, to compare them with 'Abbas Efendi's claims, acts and teachings, to weigh them in the balance of reason, and to measure them with the measure of the Holy Law revealed from the Supreme Pen. [Having done so] he found no escape from abandoning 'Abbas Efendi and thereafter turning towards His Holiness the Most Great Branch [al-Ghusnu'l-Akbar] Muhammad 'Ali Efendi, in obedience to the command contained in the Book of my Testament. So ere seven months had elapsed from the time of his pilgrimage *Ibrahim Khayru'llah joined himself to the ranks of His Holiness Muhammad 'Ali Efendi, and about three hundred of the believers in Chicago and Kenosha followed him, and likewise a small number from every city wherein believers were to be found. Most of the believers, however, continued to follow 'Abbas Efendi.

    Baha'i Missionaries Sent to America to Reclaim or Confute Khayru'llah

         Now as for the emissaries and ambassadors, 'Abdu'l-Karim of Tihran, Asadu'llah of Isfahan, Hajji Mirza Hasan of Khurasan, Mirza Abu'l-Fazl of Gulpapayagan and their followers, whom 'Abbas Efendi sent to America with the object of bringing back Khayru'llah to him, and what he suffered at their hands and from the American followers of 'Abbas Efendi in the way of divers vexations and lying rumours, all these matters will be mentioned, if it please God, in another book, which shall be a memorial from which shall be diffused the fragrance of patience, forbearance and steadfastness in God's religion,

          * page 86



    and the enduring of afflictions in His way. So likewise there will be recorded in it the three reasons which induced Khayru'llah to forsake 'Abbas Efendi and adhere to his brother Muhammad 'Ali Efendi. These reasons were:

    The Four stumbling Blocks of Khayru'llah. 1. 'Abbas Efendi's claim to Divinity.

         First, 'Abbas Efendi's claim to Divinity, in that he declared himself to be the Manifestation of Service, which is the greatest of the Divine Manifestations, and peculiar to the Father, the Lord of Hosts (Jehovah) alone. This is the supreme limit of Manifestation, which none claimed save only His Holiness Baha (to whom be glory, who explicitly declared in numerous Tablets that He was the Servant, and the Visage and Very Self of the Eternal Essence. Again he declares himself to be the Enunciator (mubayyin), that is, God, as the Supreme Pen has explicitly declared in different passages. So likewise he claims to be the Centre of the Covenant, which is God alone, Baha, who Himself covenanted with Himself before the creation of the heavens and the earths that man should worship none save God alone; as when He says, exalted is He: "He took the Covenant at the time of the Dawn (1) from those who *believed that they should worship none but God"; and [he advanced] other pretensions which it is unnecessary to mention.

    2. 'Abbas Efendi's Teachings Inconsistent With Those of Baha'u'llah

         Secondly, that 'Abbas Efendi's teachings were at variance with the teachings of His Holiness Baha'u'llah in all respects, and were contrary to reason.

    3. 'Abbas Efendi's duplicity

         Thirdly, that the conduct of 'Abbas Efendi and his daily actions were like those of a double-faced man, which is forbidden in the Scriptures.

          1. i.e. of the Manifestations or Theophany
          * page 87



    4. Dissension and discord produced by 'Abbas Efendi's Actions

         Fourthly, that whereas His Holiness Baha'u'llah in many passages of His works and in the Book of His Testament, commanded this community in the most categorical manner to put aside discord, to extinguish the fire of sectarian hatred, and to consort with [the adherents of] all religions and sects in courtesy, love, spirituality and fragrance, 'Abbas Efendi made naught of this most great gift and most high and glorious aim; in that he, for his private ends and personal ambitions, laid the foundations of hatred, rancour, discord and diversity amongst the People of Baha, in such wise that he produced separation and discord between brother and sister, husband and wife, and father and son. We seek refuge in God the Preserver, the Almighty, from whom help is invoked!

         Finished in the month of Safar, A.H. 1322 (April, 1904); written and compiled by Muhammad Jawad of Qazwin, the Persian at 'Akka.

          1. The English Autobiography goes down to 1914 and the establishment of the National Association of the Universal Religion (N.A.U.R.)