from whence than could it have come? There is a work1 believed by the Zoroastrians to have been written in the language of heaven, and, about the time of Khusru Parwez, to have been translated in the Dari tongue.2 It comprises fifteen books said to have descended upon fifteen Prophets; last of all came the sixteenth, Zoroaster himself. At the end of each book, the name is given of the Prophet that is next to follow. These books no doubt are an ancient forgery, but apparently the Muslim Traditionists took their idea of the anticipated coming of each Prophet from them. Again, the second verse in each of these books open with:— In the name of God, the Giver of gifts, the Beneficent; similar to the words at the opening of all the Surahs,3 — "In the name of God the Merciful and Gracious." We also find the first words in another Zoroastrian book4 to be very similar, namely, In the name of Ormazd the Creator. We have already noticed that the five times of Muslim prayer are the same as five of the seven common to the Zoroastrians and Sabaeans, no doubt taken from them.

Many other things might have been added common to the two systems; but it would have swelled our pages beyond reasonable dimensions; and we must be content with what has been given.

VII. Some may hold it difficult to understand how Muhammad could have obtained such stories and matters

1 The Dasātīr-i Āsmānī
2 It has been published both in the original and in the Dari translation.
3 Excepting only the Ninth.   4 Dīnkart.

as we find in the Qur'an and Tradition from Zoroastrian sources; and further, how it was possible for the "unlearned" Prophet to have become informed of them. But Tradition1 tells us as follows: "It was his practice to converse in their own tongue (so we read) with people of every nation who visited him; and hence the introduction of some Persian words into the Arabic language." Again, as the Prophet introduced Jewish tales, and also the stories and customs of Arabian heathen, into the Qur'an, what wonder that he should do so likewise with Persian tales? Many of these, moreover, were current among the Arabs, as Al Kindy tells us:— "Suppose we relate to thee such fables as those of Ād, Thamud and the She-camel, the Companions of the Elephant, and such like, it would only be the way of old women who spend their days and nights in such foolish talk."

In the Sirat al Rasūl,2 we learn that Muhammad had among the Companions a Persian called Salmān, who at the siege of Medina advised him to surround the City with a trench, and when fighting with the Thackīf helped the Muslims with a catapult. Now it is said that some of the Prophet's opponents spoke of this person as having assisted him in the composition of the Qur'an, an accusation noticed in Surah xvi. 105, as follows:— And, verily, we know that they say, Truly a certain man teacheth him; but the tongue of him unto whom they incline is a Foreign one, while this is the tongue of perspicuous Arabic. Now if these objectors simply spoke of this Persian helping in the style of the Prophet's composition, the answer would have been sufficient

1 Rouzat al Ahbāb.  2 Sirat al Rasūl, by Ibn Hisham and Ibn Ishac.