spread most rapidly now. At last it seemed as if the Arab people would be united as they had never been before: at last the patriotic feelings of the Prophet seemed near their realization, and Arabia united and free—a political and a religious whole—would more than resist the enemies who but a few years before had been encroaching on her territories, and threatening her very existence.

Whilst, however, serious opposition was now at an end, yet a few places still held out, and within a fortnight Muhammad had to march against the Huwazin Bedouins, who with the people of Ta'if saw in the fall of Mecca a danger to their own independence. A battle was fought in the valley of Hunain. At first a panic seized some of the Muslim troops and they gave way and the whole army began to take to flight. The position was critical, and Muhammad bade his uncle 'Abba's cry out: 'O! Men of Madina! O! Men of the tree of fealty! 1 Ye of the Sura Al-Baqarah!' and so on. The flight of some was arrested, when Muhammad ascending a mound and taking some gravel in his hand cast it towards the enemy, saying, 'Ruin seize them!' The tide of battle turned and the enemy were at last utterly routed. As usual, a revelation came in connexion with this battle and the initial reverse is attributed to the vain-glory the Muslims showed in their numbers. Thus:—

Now hath God helped you on many battle-fields, and on the day of Hunain, when ye prided yourselves on your numbers; but it availed you nothing, and the earth with all its breadth became too strait for you;

1 Ante, p. 137.

then turned ye your backs in flight. Sura At-Taubah (ix) 25.

In the next verse the final victory is attributed to supernatural aid:—

Then did God send down His spirit of repose1 upon His Apostle and upon the faithful, and He sent down the hosts which ye saw not and He punished the infidels.

The Prophet next laid siege to the city of Ta'if, but was unsuccessful. After a few weeks the siege was raised; but when ten months had passed the people of Ta'if submitted to him.

1 The original word is Sakinat—سَكِيْنَةً . It is used in Al-Baqarah (ii) 249 where Samuel is made to say to the Israelites, ' The sign of His kingdom shall be that the ark shall come unto you: therein shall be tranquillity (Sakinat) from your Lord.' It seems to be thus connected with the Shechinah, or divine presence or glory, which appeared on the ark. So now in this time of panic the supposed Divine presence with the Prophet gives tranquillity, or a spirit of repose. It also occurs in connexion with a reference to the time of danger, when the Prophet was with Abu Bakr in the cave on the occasion of the flight from Mecca:—

And God sent His spirit of repose upon him—فَاَنْزَلَ الله سَكِيْنَتَةُ عَلَيةِ Sura At-Taubah (ix) 40.
It is also used with reference to other events:—

He it is who sends down a spirit of repose into the hearts of the faithful that they may add faith to their faith.
Well pleased now hath God been with the believers when they plighted fealty under the tree (ante, p. 138), and He knew what was in their hearts; therefore did He send down upon them a spirit of repose, and rewarded them with a speedy victory.
When the unbelievers had fostered rage in their hearts—the rage of ignorance—God sent down His spirit of repose on His Apostle and on the faithful. Sura Al-Fath (xlviii) 4, 18, 26.

The word is found only in the Madina Suras which shows that Muhammad borrowed the idea from the Jews. See Geiger, Judaism and Islam, p. 39.
Baidawi (vol. ii, p. 266) calls itالثبات الطماءنينة —'the permanence of tranquillity.'
Nadhir Ahmad translates it by
تسلى comfort, and byتحمل patience.