by about forty armed men. Addressing his followers Muhammad said: 'Let us take it by surprise, perhaps Heaven has given us this booty.' A body of three hundred and forty-seven men went forth on this looting expedition. The Ansar were under no liability to go forth to fight, for in the first pledge of 'Aqaba, made when Muhammad was first invited to Madina, no condition as regards fighting was laid down. But now attachment to his cause, devotion to his person, the love of adventure and the desire for plunder led many Ansar to volunteer their services. On hearing of the danger the caravan was in, a large body of men set out from Mecca for its protection and it was with this relieving force that the battle of Badr was fought. This uncalled for aggression on the part of Muhammad has been apologized for on the ground that the Meccans made a raid against Madina. This is not the case. They came out solely to protect their property. The night before the battle it rained a little and Muhammad dreamed that enemies were few in number. Both incidents are referred to in the Qur'an:—

When sleep, a sign of security from Him, fell upon you and He sent down upon you water from heaven that He might cleanse you, and cause the pollution of Satan to pass from you.
Remember, when God showed them to thee in thy dream as few; had He shown them numerous, ye would certainly have become faint-hearted, and would certainly have disputed about the matter; but from this God kept you. Sura Al-Anfal (viii) 11, 45.

The Quraish were utterly beaten and many prisoners were cruelly murdered by the Muslims. The


booty was very large and the division of it led to much dispute. A beautiful red vestment disappeared and some of the Munafiqun said that Muhammad had taken it, but this charge, according to Tirmidhi,1 was rebutted by a special revelation:—

It is not for the Prophet to cheat. 2 Sura Al-'Imran (iii) 155.

The Traditionist Rawi says3 that to clear the Prophet of the imputation cast upon him this verse came:—

Shall he who hath followed the good pleasure of God be as he who hath brought upon himself wrath from God. Sura Al-'Imran (iii) 156.

In order to put an end to the murmuring about the division of the spoil, the will of God was indicated in the following verses which were now revealed:—

They will question thee about the spoils; say, the spoils are God's and the Apostle's. Therefore, fear God and settle this among yourselves, and obey God and His Apostle, if ye are believers. Sura Al-Anfal (viii) 1.

Having thus laid down his absolute right to the booty, the Prophet somewhat modifies the claim and says:—

When ye have taken any booty, a fifth part belongeth to God and to the Apostle, and to the near of kin,

1 Tirmidhi records a Tradition that, when the people said, 'Perhaps the Prophet has taken it' then this verse was revealed. Jami'u't-Tirmidhi, vol. ii, p. 341.
وَ مَا كَانَ لِنَبّىٍ أَنْ يَغُلُّ , أَنْ يُغلَّ The Qaris (Qur'an readers) Nafi', Ibn Amir, Hamza, Yaqub and al-Kisa'i support another reading—أَنْ يُغلَّ that is, the verb is passive and means 'it is not proper for the Prophet to be found cheating.' Baidawi, vol. i, p. 182, 
Tarikh-i-Waqidi, p. 242, 15