Sawirus Ibn Muqaffa`, History of the Church part 11

History of the Patriarchs of the Coptic Church of Alexandria. Part 11 - Cyril Ibn Laqlaq, part 1


In the Name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, One God. We begin with the aid of the Lord and the excellence of His assistance to transcribe the history of the Holy Church, and this is to introduce (to us) (the) year nine hundred and thirty-two of the Righteous Martyrs 1 [1216 AD], which corresponds to (the) year six hundred and twelve of the Arab Higira (al-Higrah), when the father, the saintly, the pure, the perfect, the spiritual, the ascetic (one), the declarer of hidden things, the immune from base things, Abba John 2, patriarch of the great city of Alexandria and Cairo (al-Kahirah) and Egypt (Misr) and its provinces, and Ethiopia and Nubia and the Pentapolis, and Africa went to his rest in the daytime of Thursday, the eleventh of (the month of) Tubah (in the) year nine hundred and thirty-two of the Righteous Martyrs 3, which corresponds to the fifteenth of the month of Ramadan (in the) year six hundred and twelve of the Lunar (Year); and it (was) the day of the Holy Epiphany, for the loss of whom the world suffered, and affairs were agitated after him. And it was (that), before his death, he had commanded the sons of his sister, Abu Sa‘id and Abu'l-Makarim that they should not leave him in the church, and (that) they should not bury him in it, so that he might be translated to the holy monasteries according to the custom of the patriarchs, but to perform his funeral service and to bear him to al-Habas, and to bury him at it in the tomb which belonged to the members of his house there. And they both did this, and they caused him to pass the night in the Church Al-Mu‘allakah that night. 

And they gave to him the |2 best of funerals, and the bishop of the Melkites was present, but not one of the bishops was present, and they went up with him on the next day, and it (was) Friday, to Al-Habas, and around him (were) crowds of people, not to be counted, and it was a famous day. And they dug for him (a place) in the middle of the tomb peculiar to his family, and it (was) near to the tomb of Abba Zacharias the patriarch 4 --- may God grant to us the acceptation of their prayers! ---, and they buried him there, and they made his tomb a raised platform (Mastabah), and the people were discussing at that time concerning him whom they would set up as patriarch. And (for) some people their preference (was) for the priest Paul al-Busi 5, and (for) some people their preference was for the priest David, son of John al-Fayumi 6, and some people preferred the elder Abba al-Karam, archdeacon (ἀρχιδιάκονος) of (the Church) Al-Mu‘allakah in Cairo (Misr); and the most exalted governor, the wazir, strongly supported his scribe, Sani ad-Daulah Abu'l-Fadail. And the opinion of the people was divided, and there was not among them he who attained to his purpose, except the companions of the priest David, son of John. The Sultan Al-Malik al-Kamil 7 --- may God exalt his victory! --- had a personal doctor for him, known as Al-Hakim Abu Sakir Ibn Abu Sulaiman, and he was with the Sultan at Fakus; and with the Sultan Al-Malik al-Adil 8 ---may God perpetuate his kingdom! --- (there was) a scribe, known as Nis al-Khilafah Abu'l-Fatuh. 

And Al-Malik al-‘Adil was at that time |3 at Jerusalem, coming from Damascus to Egypt. And both of these 9 were, at their time, the nearest of the Christians to their Sultans. And a company gathered to the priest David, son of John on the day of the burial of the patriarch, and it was Friday, and they came to him in the evening, and they agreed that they should go round (among) the people that night, and (that) they should take their signatures with regard to his fitness 10. And they went to the house of one of the company, known as Sams ar-Riyasat Ibn Safi al-Malik Ibn al-Mirsifawi and they desired this of him. But he did not agree with them on him 11, and he excused himself in that he said: «Who am I that I should set up the patriarch, (while there are) in the world such as Al-Hakim Abu Sakir and the elder Abu'l-Fatuh?» And there was in the company one who was enlightened and free from partiality, and he restrained them from going to another than him 12, and they departed that night, alter they had taxed him with refuting their opinions, and (it was) he who supported this company from the beginning of the affair to its end. For, whenever a man used to make them understand an affair and to hinder them from going to extremes in endeavour and seeking, and to put them right, they used to charge him with turning against them, and they took him for an enemy, and they purposed to take matters by force. And there reached the company of the Cairenes what happened from this company, and. they were troubled and they rose up and they sat down. And the exalted judge, the wazir, sent for a company of (those) who (were) his scribes, and he discussed with them concerning As-Sani, his scribe, the aforementioned, but not one |4 of them agreed on him, and this was on the eve of Sunday 13, the fourth (day after the decease) of the patriarch. 

And on the morning of the mentioned Sunday, the company of the priest David came to him (the wazir), and they took a letter from a man, an elder, a scribe known as Al-Mu‘tamad Ibn Hasis, to the distinguished elder Ibn al-Gindi, a scribe of the Sultan Al-Malik al-Kamil ---may God cause him to be victorious! --- because he had been with him at Fakus. The purport of the mentioned letter (was) that His Honour be informed of what is necessary concerning the venerable elder, the possessor, the head, the master, Nis al-Khilafah, and what the father, the priest David desires, and (that) the occasion has become possible; and (that) His Honour be informed of the position of the mentioned elder with regard to the Sultan --- may God exalt his victory! --- and (that) His Honour has him near to him; and (that) it is not sure what may happen to him who discusses another than him. And another letter from Al-Faris, brother of Al-Hakim Abu Sakir to him (his brother), saying in it, that the most exalted judge was partial to his scribe As-Sani Abu'l-Fadail, and, perhaps, the affair might succeed for him, in order to prompt him hereby, and that his son Abu 'Ula was sick, in order to make him anxious to come, and (that) the company would discuss with him concerning the affair of the priest David. And they made clear his case, and they assembled that night with him, namely, the priest (David), and they ate and they drank; and As-Saigh, a friend of the mentioned priest David went with the mentioned letters in the daytime of Monday, seeking for the intended signatures; and the Gairenes sent a company of them 14 to discuss concerning the elder Abu'l-Karam, known as Ibn Zeno (Zinun) the aforementioned. 

And Al-Hakim Abu Sakir was with the Sultan, when the news of the decease of the patriarch reached |5 him, and he (the Sultan) said to him: «O Hakim, what do you do concerning the patriarch whom you will set up?» He said: «O our Sire, we choose three men, good, pious learned, concerning whom agreement has been reached, and their names are written on three pieces of paper, each piece the name of one, and we write on another piece of paper the name of the Master Christ, and all are left on the altar, and we pray (for) three days with many supplications and successive entreaties. And at the end of the three days, we bring a child before (the age of) puberty, and we leave him to take up one of the pieces of paper in the presence of all the people, and they read it; and if we find on it one of the three selected names, we consecrate him patriarch publicly. And if the piece on which (is) the name of the Master Christ appears, we know that He does not accept one of these, and we annul them, and we return to choose three others, and we do not cease (to do) thus, until one of the names appears, and then we consecrate him. And the Sultan marvelled at this, and he said: «Act (according to) your custom)). And when the mentioned person arrived with the letters which (were) in his hands, he (As-Saigh) took the letter which concerned the notable Ibn al-Gindi to him (Ibn al-Gindi), and he read it, and he took it with him, and he entered to Al-Hakim Abu Sakir in his tent, and he acquainted him with the mentioned letter, and he (Al-Hakim) was extremely vexed, and he said: «Were patriarchs consecrated like this? And it is said that you (As-Saigh) knewest what is requisite concerning so and so, but that you desirest (that) we consecrate so and so, concerning: whom this is not to be heard of». |6 

Then he (Al-Hakim) took the mentioned letter; and it was (that) the company of the Cairenes came to him, and they transcribed a number of copies of the letter. Then he (Al-Hakim) was apprised of the contents of the letter of his brother, which contained (news of) the sickness of his son, and so he was perturbed, and he took permission from the Sultan --- may God exalt his victory! --- and he came to Cairo (al-Kahirah). And he reported shameful things about the priest David, and he spoke about them, and he remained persistent as regards the matter of the pieces of paper, and the majority of the people agreed with him about them. And as for the priest David and his company, they did not agree to this, but they wished to take (the patriarchal throne) by force and authority, and they paid no heed to him who accepted or rejected. And I, John Ibn Wahib Ibn John Ibn Yahya Ibn Paul 15 met Al-Hakim on this entry of his into Cairo (Al-Kahirah), and I decided with him that the name of the mentioned priest 16 should be among the three names, because he was my friend, and I know him as a learned, distinguished (man), and of good priesthood, and (with a knowledge) of the interpretation of tongues; but I abhorred in him his precipitance and his manifestation in seeking (the patriarchal throne) and his not-avoiding discoursing about this matter for himself, and I used to advise him about this, but he did not accept advice, and I used to say to him that this matter requires that a wiseman should show that he does not desire (it), and if there be a discussion of this in front of him, he should be displeased at the discussion, and he should rise up and sit down from the place in which he is 17, this (is) if he be not pious, and if he be pious, his inner and his outward (conduct) would be this, because in this matter (there must be) intrepidity in serious affairs, and he would be in charge of a numerous flock concerning whom a man would be judged. |7 

And he (David) would take the matter from me as a restriction on him, and he would not withdraw from his position, and he would not rely on God in the bestowal of this office on him, but on his (own) efforts and attempts. Then I asked Al-Hakim to remain that Friday up to Sunday, and that he should assemble the bishops and should expose the case according to what he had in his mind concerning, the pieces of paper, but he did not do (so), and his opinion was clear; but when he knew that his son was well, he returned, as before, to the tent which was pitched. And after that the Cairenes drew up a signed report that the priest David, the aforementioned, had been interdicted by Abba Peter, bishop of the Fayum, who had ordained him priest, on account of the confession and the revolts (which) had occurred at the Fayum, and the divisions of the people, and that he had not departed from the Fayum, except after he had been expelled by the bishop; and the father, the patriarch, had interdicted him also, when it was evident to him regarding the corruption of his (David's) belief and the disreputableness of his ways. And twenty-two priests from the priests of Cairo (Misr) and Cairo (al-Kahirah) and its suburbs wrote concerning him, and the mentioned signed report was in the handwriting of Mustafa al-Malik Abu Joseph Ibn al-Khallab, and gossip multiplied, and the tribulation and the misfortune became great, and the people began to find fault with the mentioned priest (David). 

And some people were saying this (one is) from the Fayum and the Fayum is within the limits of Upper Egypt, and his consecration is not lawful, and some people were saying this (one) |8 had sought, in the lifetime of the patriarch, the metropolitanate of Ethiopia, and the patriarch had not responded favourably to it, but he had refused this absolutely, and some people were saying the patriarch had found this (one) worthy, because he (David) was staying at the Monastery Al-‘Arabah 18, for he (the patriarch) had gone up to it and had come down with him from it. And what was the more impressive for them (was) that he (David) had not enquired about the patriarch in his sickness, and had not attended his funeral, and other repulsive things, the mention of which is not becoming in this account. And when it was the end of the month, there assembled five of the bishops, and they were Abba Menas, bishop of Abusir-Bana, and he was the senior 19 of the bishops at that time, and his brother Abba Mark, bishop of Lakanah, and Abba Michael, bishop of Taikha, known as Hadiah, and Abba Gabriel, bishop of Atfih and Abba Mark, (bishop) of Malig, and they prayed for the patriarch Abba John --- may God give rest to his soul! --- at the end of the month, and they celebrated the Divine Liturgy for him on Saturday, the fourth (of the month) of Amsir of the aforementioned year 20, and they returned to the Church of the two Saints Sergius and Bacchus, because they were residing at it. 

And, on their return, messengers of the amir Amin ad-Din, governor of Cairo (Misr), came to bring them, |9 and they came before him (the governor) and he said to them: «You have prayed for your patriarch --- let everyone of you depart to his diocese and not remain (here) for one hour». And they said: «O our Sire, we shall stay no more than to-morrow, so that we may pray at his tomb, and (then) depart». And it is mentioned that he who induced the governor to do (this), (was) his scribe (who) was near to the heart of Nis al-Khilafah, because he apprehended that they (the bishops) might agree on the consecration (of one) other than the priest David, and he (the scribe) forestalled this, and they (the bishops) returned to their place grieved. And the priest Abu Mansur, priest of the Church of Abba Sergius, and the elder As-Sani Abu'l-Magd, son of the priest Abu'l-Farag mentioned to me that they all assembled in front of the sanctuary, with the exception of the bishop of Malig and they interdicted the priest David, and they suspended him, and they imprecated him, and they sware that they would never lay hands on him by reason of what had befallen them from soreness of heart on account of him. Then they prayed at the tomb of the patriarch, and each of them turned to his see. And the Sultan, Al-Malik al-‘Adil ---may God perpetuate his reign! --- arrived, and the elder Nis al-Khilafah with him, and all entered Cairo (al-Kahirah); and the elder Al-Hakim Abu Sakir --- may God have mercy upon him! 21 --- mentioned to me that he (al-Hakim) assembled with the elder Nis al-Khilafah at the time of his arrival, and he discussed with him (Nis al-Khilafab) concerning the affair of the priest David, and he (al-Hakim) said: «He is not worthy». And two other times he (al-Hakim) visited him (Nis al-Khilafah) in his house at Cairo (al-Kahirah), and he (al-Hakim) mentioned to |10 him that he (David) was not worthy. 

And the quarrel continued in this way, and animosity and the discussion of the people one against another, and the emerging of their calumnies and their oppositions. And the blessed Fast began and the elder Nis al-Khilafah assembled with the elder Nis al-Imam Ibn ‘Izz al-Kufah Ibn Joseph, and he desired of him that he should write a letter of testimonial for the priest David, and he refused it to him, and he separated from him, being angry. And after that the priest David assembled with me, and he recalled to me what was between us in the way of friendship, and he asked me about writing a letter of testimonial, and I said to myself, this is a piece of paper, and I have no responsibility for it towards God; if the people are agreeable and are agreed, I am agreeable, but if they do not write for him, I am not acting blameworthily, but I have approved of a person of whom I was bound (to approve). And I wrote for him (David) four copies, one for the bishops, and one for the priests, and another for the archons (a!rxwn), and another for the monks. And after this, we wrote another for the Alexandrians, and the elder Nis al-Khilafah despatched the priest Mark Ibn Ragal to Lower Egypt and with him a letter of testimonial to the bishops and the monks. And he came, and with him twelve bishops from the bishops of Lower Egypt, after they had written their signatures on the letter of testimonial, of whom three (were) those we have previously mentioned, among them the bishop of Lakanah, and his senior brother, and the bishop of Talkha. And the bishop of Tambadi, Abba |11 Peter arrived, and they became thirteen bishops, and the last (of Tambadi) wrote his signature on the letter of testimonial, and there was brought the letter of testimonial of the monks, in which about forty monks wrote. And in the letter of testimonial of the priests a group of the priests of Cairo (al-Kahirah) and Lower Egypt wrote. 

And as for the priests who had written a signed report objecting to him (David), not one of them wrote for him at all. And in the signed report of the archons a large group wrote, but there remained a group who objected. And when Al-Hakim and a group of the Cairenes saw the arrival of the bishops and what had occurred, they feared lest the affair should be accomplished, and Al-Hakim was exceedingly enraged. And a great company of the Christians assembled and they stood before the Sultan Al-Malik al-Kamil, and they withstood the consecrating of this priest (David) over them. And they mentioned that they did not agree to him, and that he was opposed to their belief and their opinion. And he (the Sultan) said to them: «Quieten your hearts, there shall not be consecrated for you, except he whom you desire». And the elder Nis al-Khilafah continued to visit frequently Al-Hakim Abu Sakir, lest he (the Sultan) should ask about him, and he (Al-Hakim) did not say to him anything, but that there were letters between them. And al-Hakim did not consent to the priest (David), and the elder Nis al-Khilafah did not yield in his choice, and disorders occurred between the people. And alter this, the Sultan --- may God exalt his victory! --- delegated the most exalted judge, the wazir, to come to Cairo (Misr), and he (the Sultan) assembled the Christians, and he listened to their discourse. And he (the wazir) came to Cairo (Misr), and Al-Hakim Abu Sakir came with him, and he sat in the House of the Hostel (al-Wikalah) of ‘Adil (al-‘Adiliyah), and he brought a group of the Cairene notables, and he questioned them, and they said: «This (one) we do not desire at all», and they mentioned concerning him ignoble things, |12 the mention of which is not fitting. 

And he (the Sultan) said to them: «Whom do you desire?» And they said: «We have a good, aged man named As-Shaikh Abba al-Karam mentioned before, and As-Shaikh as-Sanfah Ibn as-Sukkari, and this (one) was a scribe of the Treasury of ‘Adil, and he is (one) of the notables of the inhabitants of Alexandria, and the noble member (is) with him (the Sultan), and they mentioned a group of the monks, among whom (was) the hermit of Abyar. And the opinion of them all was agreed on the pieces of paper. And they wrote a signed report of their approval of this, and the majority of the people wrote in it; and the Sultan Al-Malik al-Kamil took it, and he submitted it to his father. And the elder Nis al-Khilafah had said to Al-Malik al-‘Adil, when mention of the lot occurred: «O our Sire, this is the rule of the Franks, and it is not our rule ». And when he (the Sultan) was apprised of it, he said: «Then (there shall be) no lot and no headache; you shall choose one, and we will make him (patriarch) for them». And the Christians returned, and they stood before the Sultan Al-Malik al-Kamil two other times, (protesting) that they did not desire this David. And he (the Sultan) appeased their hearts, and he said to them: «There shall not be appointed over you, except he whom you desire)). And the condition continued to languish until the seventh week 22 came, and the bishops departed to their sees, after eight of them had written their signatures to withhold themselves, if they (the hierarchy) consecrated other than him; and the condition remained as before, and dissension and scandal remained. 

And when it was Good Friday, the Sultan Al-Malik al-‘Adil transferred As-Sanfah Abu Ghalib Ibn as-Sukkari, the aforementioned to be in charge of the diwan of the port of Alexandria. And he (the Sultan) commanded him to come out to him, and he employed with him an overseer known as the |13 judge Al-Akram Ibn Nahar. And the elder Alu'l-Fatuh gave a testimonial which (was) specially for the Alexandrians, to the mentioned judge, so that he might take in it the signatures of the inhabitants of Alexandria; and the mentioned (person) departed to the harbour 23. And this (was) the first of what strengthened the soul of Nis al-Khilafah, because this As-Sani‘ah was similar to him. And when he went, he alone overlorded the affair, and the people celebrated the feast 24, divided in opinions, with much hatred and ribaldry. And after some days, the choice of the elder Nis al-Khilafah fell upon an anchorite in the deserts of Atrib, known as Peter al-Mirsad, and the company agreed with him on him, and he (Nis al-Khilafah) did not abide by this opinion, but it was in the way of testing some people. And the case continued as it was before until Paschaltide was completed. And the elder Nis al-Khilafah indicated to the company who agreed with him --- and the majority of them (were) scribes ---that they should stand before the Sultan Al-Malik al-Kamil and should entreat of him to appoint (as patriarch) this David. And they assembled and they stood before him at the House of the Sultan, at his passing by on the service of his father (Al-Malik al-‘Adil). And he (Al-Malik al-Kamil) said to them: «Where is this one whom you have chosen? Bring him». And their gathering dispersed thereupon. And they returned after this, and they stood before him (Al-Malik al-Kamil) another time, at the House of the Sultan again. And he said: «Bring hither the signed reports», and he passed on to the house of his father. And the elder Nis al-Khilafah sent the mentioned signed reports to him (Al-Malik al-Kamil), to the interior of the house with one of the servants of the Sultan. And the signed report of Alexandria had come, and he sent it with them 25. |14 

Then Al-Malik al-Kamil went out from the presence of his father, and the company stood before him, and they enquired of him (concerning) the answer. And he said: «Your answer (is) with Abu'l-Fatuh». And the elder Al-Fatuh entered to the Sultan Al-Malik al-‘Adil, and he said; «O our Sire, our Sire Al-Malik al-Kamil said to the Christians thus and thus. How shall I, thy slave, answer them?» And he (Al-Malik al-‘Adil) said: «He who brings to me a thousand dinars, I shall appoint him (as patriarch)». And he (Abu'l-Fatuh) went out and he informed the company of this. And Al-Hakim Abu Sakir had already finished the letter of the Sultan Al-Malik al-Kamil to the governor of (the Province of) Al-Gharbiah, that he should assemble the bishops, and (that) the hermit of Abyar should descend, and (that) he should send him with them (the bishops) to the harbour of Alexandria, in order to consecrate him patriarch. And when he (Al-Malik al-Kamil) went out on that day, from the presence of his father, after the standing before him of the Christians, he went down to Cairo (Misr), and he went to the belvedere on the Island 26, (and) the Cairenes stood before him, and they said:«O our Sire, you did grant to us a patriarch, and we crave for the fulfilment of the grace». And he said: «What we have said to you. Go, do your work». Then he put his mark for them on the letter and he gave it to them. And the priest Abu'l-Mansur Ibn al-Kis Abu'l-Mu'ani, who had been ordained for the Church of the Saints Sergius and Bacchus at Kasr as-Sam‘ in Cairo (Misr), took it, and As-Sa‘d Hibbat Ibn Saddakah, the deacon |15 at the Church Al-Mu‘allakah the surety of brokerage in both parts of the orchards in Cairo (al-Kahirah) and Cairo (Misr). And they went, after they had taken with the two of them garments from the robes of the patriarch; and al-Hakim Abu Sakir gave to both of them something for the consecration-expenses of the hermit, and their journey was on the evening of Tuesday. 

And when it was morning, and (news of) what had happened reached the elder Abu'l-Fatuh, he was troubled, and all who were agreed on his opinion. And he crossed over to the Sultan Al-Malik al-‘Adil, and he informed him of the affair. And the Sultan wrote a letter to the governor of (the Province of) Al-Gharbiah, that the hermit should not come down from his place, and (that) he should not be changed with regard to his state. And a letter to the governor of Alexandria that he should not appoint (anyone) except him who has with him our letter, and he despatched an express messenger with both of them (the letters). And when the news reached Al-Hakim, he acquainted the Sire, Al-Malik al-Kumil, with it, and it was distressing to him. And he wrote a second letter that the hermit should come to Cairo (al-Kahirah), and he sent it with one of his servants. And as for those 27, they reached Al-Mahallah in the daytime of Thursday, and they assembled with the Amir, and he welcomed them, and he caused them to stay with his scribe. And straightway he wrote to bring the bishops, and in what remained of the night there arrived the letter of the Sultan Al-Malik al-‘Adil to cancel (the command). And on the morning of Friday there arrived the letter of Al-Malik al-Kamil to bring him (the hermit). And the amir commanded this (to be done), and he despatched with them him who would aid them in this. 

And |16 when they reached the hermit, and it was a Friday, they did not arrive until the evening of the day. And he (the hermit) let down 28 to them what they might eat; and he was a man known for liberality and benevolence. And they spent the night near him, coaxing him. And when it was morning, they tried to make him descend. And there was present there the bishop of Abyar and he said to him: «The command of the Sultan is not to be disobeyed». And he said to him: «O my father, write for me thy signature that you hast permitted me to descend, and that this hermitage (shall be) for me, when I return to it, (that) I may dwell in it without hindrance». And he (the bishop) wrote for him his signature for this. Then the priest Abu Mansur celebrated the Divine Liturgy on the altar which was there, and they raised up to him the Offering, and he communicated according to custom. And he let down a plaited palm-basket from his abode, and he sat in it, and he descended, weeping, and those who were present of the inhabitants of the town were sorrowing on account of his departure, acknowledging his blessing. And they took him, and they departed; and he was unshod, and the governor of Abyar removed his sandals from his feet, and he asked him (the hermit) to wear them, but he did not do (so). And there was the servant of the Sire, Al-Malik al-Kamil guarding him, preventing anyone to approach him. And they arrived at Kalyub on the morning of Sunday, and they entered into the church, and a great multitude assembled with them, so that, (as) the priest Abu Mansur related to me, he celebrated the Divine Liturgy that day, and that he bore thirteen eucharistic loaves, and (that) he gave the Communion with small particles, and the people |17 rejoiced exceedingly, and they entertained him in Kalyub with much hospitality. Then they went forth until they arrived beneath the Citadel

And the amir Sams ad-Din, the brother of the governor of Cairo (al-Kahirah) came to them, and he took away the hermit from them, and he said to them: «O Christians, the requirement of the Sultan has been carried out: go your way». And they left him and they went away; and after their going, he (the amir) caused him (the hermit) to mount upon a mule, and he commanded the messenger who (was) with him, that he should return him immediately to his place. And he took him in that hour, and he went back with him, and he returned him, and he went up with him to his hermitage. And the people were quietened, and the talking about the patriarch ceased for a time. And during this period (certain) affairs occurred, among which one of the amirs, known as Baha'd-Din Sariha, had a scribe known as As-Sani Abu'1-Magd Ibn Sani'd-Daulah. And this amir had gone to the Yemen, and he had had there a favourite female-slave, and this wretched man (As-Sani) used to forbid her going to extremes in the adornment (of herself), and doing: what was not becoming. And she detested him, and Satan instructed her to go to the governor of Cairo (al-Kahirah). And she related that he (As-Sani) had seduced her, and he (the governor) commanded his imprisonment, and he consulted the Sultan concerning him, and hardship befell him. And after this, God was gracious to him, and he was delivered; and this (amir), his master, was on journey. And when he (the amir) arrived at this time, he (As-Sani) went out to him, and he met him at Helwan, and he walked in front of him. And he (the amir) overtook him, and he struck him with the sword, and he cut off his turban, and |18 he split open his head. And he struck him another blow (which) he received on his hand and his hand was wounded. 

And he (As-Sani) was entrusted to one who brought him to his (the amir's) house, and he entered Cairo (al-Kahirah) with his companion. And he (the amir) kept him captive in his house, and he straitened him, and he remained with him for a time, until he made for him (the amir) an account, and he obtained from him what he desired. And after this, he forbade those who used to visit him frequently from seeing him for two or three days. Then, after this, they came to him with something to eat according to the custom. And the servants of the amir every day used to take from them this, so that they might take it up to him; but that day they did not take it from them, but they said to his son and his servant: «Your master died two days ago, come take him», and they both returned (in) sorrow and desolation. And his brother and his sons and a company of the Christians assembled and they stood before the Sire, Al-Malik al-Kamil, at his arrival from the service of his father, on the evening of Thursday. And he did not answer them a word, and they remained at the House of the Sultan until he came out. And they returned and they stood before him and he said: «You have the law», and they persisted, and he said: «Bury your dead one». And some of the company and those who were compassionate went out, even though it was night, and they obtained for him a coffin, and they brought the carriers, and they went to the place in which he was. And they found him, the wretched man, and he was swollen, and his face was black, and his tongue hanging out on his breast, and there was no doubt that he had been strangled. And they carried him after great effort, and they went out as they were to Al-Habas, and they buried him. 

And his |19 relatives went frequently after this to the Sultan, and he did not send them away from the court, and they deemed it (his death) for the sake of God, and they gave thanks to God Who is praiseworthy in every circumstance, and they became silent; but God does not deprive us of His assistance and He does not bring us into temptations. And during this time, there was a young man, a Christian, a Saidian, working in certain hot oil presses, and a man of the Muslims accused him (of sodomy) with his son, and he was a young boy. And he related that he (his son) had come to him, and (that) he was indisposed, and that he had related that the doer of this (was) this person. And he (the young man) was put under arrest for some days, and al-Islam was offered to him 29, but he refused. And they asked the jurisconsults concerning him, and they gave the verdict to stone him, and that a circle of the people should be made round him. And that they should make in it an opening and (that) if he emerged and was safe, he should not be resisted, and if he died, he would deserve it, and they did this. And he was not able to escape, but a slave belonging to the father of the young boy struck him with a stone and crushed his jaw, so that he fell down senseless, and the stoning of him continued until he died; and he was borne away and buried in al-Habas. And, after a little while, the young boy went up to the house-top for some affair of his, and he fell from the stair-way, and a crate of corn-cobs stuck in his ribs, and he fell down dead. And it is related that that Christian was innocent, and that the doer of the abomination (was) the slave who had killed him, and that he (the slave) met with a great calamity and he perished. And the elder As-Sani Abu'l-Magd Ibn al-Kassis Abu'l-Farag journeyed to Kus because he was its tax-collector, and he was the greatest of the adversaries of the priest David who strove on account of him. 

And the judge |20 Al-‘Az, the wazir, was arrested, and he was put in a stock, and he was confined at the House of the Sultan. And Abu Sa‘id son of the sister of the deceased patriarch was taken, and he was brought in to the Sultan Al-Malik al-‘Adil. And he (the Sultan) said to him: «I desire of thee the inheritance of the patriarch for he was without heirs». And he (Abu Sa‘id) said: «O my Sire, he had nothing, and he testified (to this) regarding himself, before his death». He (the Sultan) said: «This (is) idle talk. I wish for thirty thousand dinars», and he commanded to confine him (Abu Sa‘id) in the House of the Sultan; and the souls of the people became apprehensive. And the affair 30 was assured for the elder Nis al-Khilafah, and those who had not written for him, wrote a testimonial for the priest David, and there did not remain of the group who did not write for him except a very few people (who) could be counted. And after this, there arrived the priest Nusair ar-Rahib whom the patriarch Abba, John 31 had sent to the Land of Ethiopia with his letter recommending to him the Muslims who (were) there, and those who visited (it) often, according as the Sire, Al-Malik al-Kamil, had commanded him. And with him (Nusair ar-Rahib) (there was) an Ethiopian messenger, a bishop from their land, and a man from the inhabitants of Akhmim accompanied the bishop with the letter, known as Abu'l-Fadl Ibn Abu'l-Mansur. And in their hand a gift with the mark of the Sultan, and another gift with the mark of the patriarch --- may God have mercy upon him! 32. As for the gift of the Sultan, they delivered it, and as for the gift of the patriarch, nothing is known of it. And the mentioned (persons) descended at a house by the river, and they remained for a time, and they did not acquire much advantage, and they did not find acceptance, and they departed to their country, after they had witnessed the disagreement of the people, and the division |21 of their opinions, and the occurrence of agitation among them, which had reached a limit. And the Nile reached in this year up to ..........33

Then there entered the season of the autumn, and all the people fell sick, and it was a severe season, as the season which had been before it, and more severe, and there entered the year nine hundred and thirty-three of the Pure Martyrs 34 [1217 AD]. And Al-Hakim Abu Sakir had to stay at the Citadel, passing the night at it, on account of the sickness of those who (were) in the House of the Sultan 35. And he had a high rank and great esteem, so that he used to enter through the gate of the Citadel, riding up to the Bab al-Gauwani 36; and no one used to enter riding, except the Sultan himself. And sometimes he used to meet the brothers of the Sultan, and the notables of the amirs, and the judge of the judges, and the honourable jurisconsults walking, while he was riding, and he did not dismount; and they used to excuse him, because the command had been issued to him for this. And as for this period, the period of sickness, he used to ride into the court of the Inner Hall, and to go round the prohibited (places) from hail to hall. And he fell sick in the hall which had been assigned to him in the Citadel; and he remained for some days, and he passed away into the mercy of God. And he was borne on the bed on which he was to Al-Khandak, and the funeral was performed there; and he was buried beside his brother Abu Sa‘id in a church at the mentioned monastery. And the Sultan overwhelmed with favours the son of his brother and his grandson, and he commanded both of them to be present with him, and he set them both in his (Abu Sakir's) post, |22 because he (Abu Sakir) had instructed them both, and had intended them both for this (post) before his death. 

Afterwards, the condition (of affairs) remained as it was before until (the month of) Tubah 37; and the elder Nis al-Khilafah summoned me and he said: «We wish for a document for the Sultan concerning the patriarch, and we have decided (to make) a rough copy of the document which contains (a statement) that our Sire has favoured all people and has corrected all what was corrupted, and the slaves 38 remain unsettled (in) their affairs without a patriarch, and they beseech (him) to see into their condition». And he (Nis al-Khilafah) took it and he submitted it to the Sultan, and it was before the Lesser Bairam (‘Aid al-Fitr). And he (the Sultan) said: «After the feast we shall examine into their condition». And when it was Friday, the eighteenth of (the month of) Tubah 39, which corresponded to the third of (the month of) Sawwal, he (Nis al-Khilafah) presented himself to the Sultan, and he said: «O our Sire, the Christians seek the pity of the Sultan, according to what he promised them with regard to examining into their condition». And he said: «Yes, assemble them, so that we may consider their condition». And he (Nis al-Khilafah) said: «O our Sire, who am I? These are heads of houses, and they will not pay heed to me, but by the command of our Sire, the governor of Cairo (Misr) and the governor of Cairo (al-Kahirah) shall notify them to present themselves before our Sire on the day which he shall appoint». And he (Nis al-Khilafah) went out from his (the Sultan's) presence on the business which he had sought from him, and he found the governor of Cairo (Misr) at the Gate; and he returned to him (the Sultan) and he said: «O our Sire, lo the governor of Cairo (Misr) (is) outside. If our Sire (desires to) command him (to do) anything, he is there». He said: «Yes, call him». And he summoned him (the Wali) |23 and he (the Sultan) commanded him to assemble the Christians and to bring them in company with him on Monday, the twenty-first of (the month of) Tubah 40, that they might come to an agreement on the patriarch whom he (the Sultan) would set up for them. 

And he caused to be brought the governor of Cairo (al-Kahirah), and he commanded him in the same manner. And they notified the people on the eve of Saturday and on the eve of Sunday and on the eve of Monday 41, and they instructed the priest of every church to inform his congregation, and to take them and to be present on the morning of Monday. As for the governor of Cairo (Misr), he despatched his scribe and his usher to the notables of the inhabitants of Cairo (Misr) to inform them of this. And the Cairenes assembled at the house of Amin ad-Din, the governor of Cairo (Misr), and the Cairenes (assembled) at the gate of the House of the Sultan. And the governor of Cairo (Misr) went up with the Cairenes, and they assembled with the Cairenes, and they were about a hundred men or more, and all of them entered into the House of the Sultan, and they found the two governors on a dais in it. And they (the two governors) summoned a company of their notables and they said: «Whom do you wish that he should be for you a patriarch?» And they said: «The priest David for whom we wrote our signatures». And they 42 delegated one of the Cairenes, called Abu'l-‘Izz Ibn Wakil al-Ganah, and he was one of the deacons of (the Church) Al-Mu‘allakah. And he said: «O our Sire, we do not agree», and another (person) known as Abu'r-Rida, son of the priest of the church of Abba Shenouti at as-Sahal 43, supported him, and they both caused confusion, |24 and none beside them spoke. 

And the elder Nis al-Khilafah sent to Abu'l-‘Izz to bring him to the flourishing Treasury, and he humoured him, but he held fast, and Abu'r-Rida remained as before. And the two governors entered to the Sultan, and they made known to him the disagreement of the congregation. And he (the Sultan) said: «Bring to me a company of these and a company of those, so that I may hear their words». And a company of those who did not wish for the priest David said: «(There is) among our companions an elder, and he is our senior, a priest at the Harat ar-Rum (at) Cairo (al-Kahirah), and he is named Joseph. Order to bring him to Cairo (al-Kahirah)». And he was brought, and he was taken in unto the Sultan, and he was an archpriest (ἀρχιπαππᾶς) of the priests at Cairo (al-Kahirah); and (there was) the priest Barakat, archpriest of the priests at Cairo (Misr), and a company of the priests and other than they. And everyone of them reflected (on the matter) before the Sultan, and (words) increased and decreased, and he (the Sultan) reproved them, and, at the end of their arguments, it was decided that the Cairenes (al-Misriyun) should agree to the priest Barakat, and the Cairenes (al-Kahiriyun), to Joseph, and they acknowledged that both of them (were) their representatives. And the Sultan retained the two priests, and he commanded the rest of the company to go out, and they went out. And he (the Sultan) turned to the two priests, and he said to both of them: «How much is collected for the patriarch each year?» And they both said: «Four hundred dinars a year». And he said: «And what does he do with them?» And they both said: «He spends them on himself and he distributes alms with them». He said: «And what was he 44 before his patriarchate?» They both said: «A merchant». He said: «And who succeeded him in the way of inheritance?» They both said: «His sister». He said: «And how much does she receive of the inheritance?» They both said: «The half». 

And they both erred |25 in this, because they were weak in ecclesiastical lore, because the Christian religious law requires for the sister all the inheritance, if none other than she succeeds. And they both spoke according to the religious law of the Muslims. He said: «And the other half is for whom?» They both said: «For thee, O our Sire». He said: «I require of you both my share, because you both are the leaders of the congregation». They both said: «We did not have much to do with him (the patriarch), and we do not know anything of that which concerned him». And he said: «This does not concern me»; and he impressed (this) upon them both. And they both said: «O our Sire, the children of his sister (are) the first (to be questioned) about this, rather than us». And he said: «Did he have a number of children of his sister? 45 We do not know of (any) except one who is with us». They both said: «O our Sire, there remains another named Makarim, and he is living in Cairo (Misr)». And he (the Sultan) turned to the governor, and he said: «Let him (Makarim) come straightway», and he was brought at once, and he was left with his brother in the place in which he was confined at the House of the Sultan. Then he (the Sultan) turned to both of them and he said: «Whom do you wish that he should be for you a patriarch?» They said: «O our Sire, we have a custom that we cast lots, and we write three names, and he who is revealed to us we make him (patriarch)». And he (the Sultan) said: «And this (is) he who is in the reports». And the Sultan had sent to bring the reports. And they both said: «O our Sire, it is not permitted with us to consecrate him, because he was interdicted by our leader 46». He (the Sultan) said: «And who (are) the three whom you designate?» And they both said: «As-Sani‘ah, that is, Ghalib Ibn |26 as-Sukkari». 

And he (the Sultan) said: «That (is) our scribe; there is no discussion for you about him 47, and who besides him?» And they both said: «The elder Abu'l-Karam, a man aged (and) learned from Cairo (Misr)». He said: «And who (else)?» And they both said: «The hermit who (is) at Abyar». And he said: «Write their names in your handwriting», and we wrote. And he said: «And who (is) the third?» They both said: «The person who is mentioned in the reports». He said: «And now you nominate him, and you said he is not fitting!» They both said: «O our Sire, (as regards) these pieces of paper, we believe that there will not be revealed from them except he whom God chooses, and we pay not heed to him whom we write, and we do this to avoid evil, lest there remain anything in the heart of one of the company». And he (the Sultan) turned to the two governors and he said: «Bring to me five of the notables of the Cairenes and five of the notables of the Cairenes ». And the two governors went out, and they chose five from each category, (and) I 48 was among the best of the Cairenes (al-Misriyin), and the company passed into his (the Sultan's) presence, and they sat on both sides before him. And he raised his head to them, and he said: «Are these two (groups) your leaders?» They said: «These two (groups) (are) leaders of their churches». He said: «Are you not agreed on what they have decided?» They said: «(Not) until we know what it is». He said: «They have recorded names for whom the lot should be cast». They said: «And who are they (as regards their) names?» The Sultan said to the two priests: «You know them». They both said: «We have chosen the elder Abu'l-Karam». The company said: «O our Sire, (he is) a decrepit, old man, he (can) not undertake this affair». 

The Sultan said: «And where is he?» They said: «In Cairo (Misr)». The (other) company said: «O you two priests, who (is there) |27 besides Abu'l-Karam?» They both said: «The hermit of Ahyar». And they (the former company) said to them: «You both know him, that you testify for him?» They both said: «Al-Malik al-Kamil knows him, and it is he who chose him». And the Sultan said: «A1-Malik al-Kamil does not enter into this matter: leave him out». And vocification multiplied, and the Sultan commanded them to be silent. Then he said: «Bring the reports», and they were brought. And he said to the governor of Cairo (al-Kahirah): «Give them to them», and he began to give them to the Cairenes (al-Kahiriyin). And the Sultan said: «I do not give them to those who are in disagreement, that is, the Cairenes (al-Misriyin) ». And not one of those who had entered to him this time had disagreed about the priest David, but all of them had written for him. However, the Sultan was convinced that all the Cairenes were in disagreement about what was taking place when the majority of them assembled and stood before Al-Malik al-Kamil. And we took the reports. And he (the Sultan) said: «What say you about these?» We said: «We are agreed about this man, and these are our signatures». He said: «What is your signature alone, or even the signature of the bishops and the monks?» We said: «Yes, O our Sire». And he turned to the Cairenes (al-Kahiriyin) and he said: «And you, what do you say?» They said: «We are agreed on this man». And he said to the two priests: «And you, what do both of you say?» And the priest Barakat was silent and the priest Joseph said: «If these and these are agreed upon anything, we shall speak». And the Sultan said: «Go forth and come to an agreement with your companions who are outside, and propose your patriarch. And by the life of my head, and the tomb of the Sultan 49, if you do not come to an agreement, I shall never appoint for you a patriarch». And they arose (and) they went out, and a vocification was raised by reason of the fact that the priest David had achieved his purpose. 

And those who opposed him were |28 disappointed, but the majority of them returned to the agreement. And the people entered to the elder Nis al-Khilafah to congratulate him, and they departed from him to the house of the priest David, to wait upon him and to congratulate him, so that the house did not hold them. And people were going, and others coming, and no one doubted that he would be the patriarch, and that he would be consecrated on the Sunday which is between the two carnivals 50, and (it was) the twenty-seventh of (the month of) Tubah 51. And the elder Nis al-Khilafah sent to bring the bishops, and the priest (David) met me and he said: «Do you wish to write the Letter of Introduction » And I said: «O my Sire, this (is) the function of Fakhr ad-Daulah Abu. Sa‘id, the scribe of the Cell (κέλλιον) 52, and he was a relative of mine and a friend and a kinsman, and he had good liking for this affair. And he (David) said: «At present, (there is) no way to Fakhr ad-Daulah, and, perhaps, he would not do (it)». And I said: «I will do this on the condition that (I am) as the representative of him, and on the condition that the father (David) does not alter any thing of it». And he (David) said: «I accept». And I drew up a copy of the Letter of Introduction in Arabic, and I named him Abba Cyril, and I made a fair copy of it, and they translated it into Coptic, and I wrote the copy of the Coptic on it. 

And I had the robes cut and the tiara (made), |29 and a throne was brought (which) from former times had been assigned to the patriarchs, and it was polished. And I caused to be brought the pastoral staffs, and I caused to be purchased beasts of burden, and the priest (David) and his companions made ready to go to the port of Alexandria, after the hegoumenate 53. And in the meanwhile, the Sultan went out to (his) private property at ‘Ain Sams, going towards the port of Alexandria, and the people thought that the elder Abu'l-Fatuh had obtained his (the Sultan's) order for the consecration of the priest David. And there arrived the bishop of Lakanah who came after the archbishop, and he announced that his senior brother was sick. And there arrived with him, after him, three other bishops, and they were the bishop of Asmum and the bishop of Malig and the bishop of Satanuf; and the people were certain that his (David's) affair had been settled. And those who were in opposition to him (David) continued to say: «We shall do and make things», which they would not have been able (to do), if the order had gone forth. And when it was the evening of Saturday, the eve of the Sunday mentioned before, there assembled the bishops and the congregation, and they began conversations, and they said: «We (shall be) to-morrow in Cairo (Misr)», and he (Abu'l-Fatuh) said to them: «And what then?» They said: «How? Shall we not consecrate the patriarch?» He (Abu'l-Fatuh) said: «No, to-morrow there shall be no consecration for him, because we have not yet consulted the Sultan, and we have not received a letter to the governor of Alexandria», and they kept silent. And the Cairenes (al-Misriyin) began to go up to Cairo (al-Kahirah) to enquire into the truth of it; and they were informed of this, and they returned, and the bishops remained at Cairo (al-Kahirah). 

And when it was the daytime of Tuesday of the week of |30 the Carnival (ar-Rifa‘) 54, there assembled a company of the priests of the Cairenes (al-Misriyin) and select people and people who did not wish for the priest David, and they went out wishing (to meet) the Sultan to inform him that they did not wish for David. And on Wednesday, the elder Nis al-Khilafah sent after them a company of those who were with him (David) to stand before him (the Sultan), and to say that they wished for him (David). And these and those went out, and the Sultan had departed. And as for the company of the Cairenes, they persisted in seeking the Sultan, and as for the companions of the elder Abu'l-Fatuh, they met on their way the bishop known as Hadiah at Kalyub coming for the consecration of the patriarch. And they made known to him the affair, and he (the bishop) returned with them, and there was with him a company, and they became numerous, and they journeyed, and they overtook the Sultan at the ferry of Dagwah in the daytime of Thursday, and there was rain. And they stood before him (the Sultan), and he said: «What do you wish?», and he caused the bishop to be brought. And he (the bishop) said: «O our Sire, you have vouchsafed to us the appointment of a patriarch, and when I arrived, I did not find with them the signature of our Sire, and nothing is done for us without a signature, and I entreat the favour of our Sire that he may write for us his signature». He said: «Yes, come to the halting-place, and we shall satisfy your need», and he journeyed (on); and the other company met him, and he said: «What about these?». And they said: «O our Sire, you have commanded that we should come to an agreement, and (as for) us, we are not satisfied with this man (David)». And he (the Sultan) said: «He who brings ten thousand dinars, we shall make him patriarch». And they stood before him another time (and) another (time), and he did not send them away on account of this, and they returned. 

And the other (company) continued journeying with the |31 Sultan, looking unto him for what he had promised to them. And the elder Nis al-Khilafah was still at Cairo (al-Kahirah), and he did not go out from it. And when it was the Sunday of the Carnival 55, he and the bishops communicated at the Church of the Potters at Cairo (al-Kahirah), and after the Communion he (Nis al-Khilafah) took the bishops with him, and they went to the house of Al-Kadi al-Asraf Ibn al-Kadi al-Fadil, and he caused them to enter to him. And he (Al-Kadi) said to them: «What is the matter with you?» They said: «O our Sire, our conditions have deteriorated without a patriarch, and we were satisfied with this man (David)». And he said: «Be assured. I shall go out to the Sultan, and I shall inform him of what I have heard from you, and I shall settle for you the affair», and they called down blessings upon him, and they went out from his presence, and he (Al-Kadi) and the elder Nis al-Khilafah departed during the remainder of the day. And the Sultan journeyed (on), and the company with him, and other bishops joined them (and) they were standing before him time after time, and he did not dismiss them without promises, until they reached the port of Alexandria. And the elder Nis al-Khilafah arrived, and they assembled there, and they continued thus, until the Sultan was about to depart from the port at the end of the sixth week of Lent, and had resolved upon going to the port of Damietta. And the elder Nis al-Khilafah presented himself to him (the Sultan) and he said: «O our Sire, (for) these Christians the time has been prolonged, and our Sire is the proper (person) to fulfil their need». And the Sultan commanded that a letter should be written for them for his (David's) consecration for them, and it was written, and there did not remain except the signature. 

And a man of the scribes of the Sultan, known as |32 Ar-Radi Abu'r-Rida Ibn Durak heard (of this), and he wrote a paper to the Sultan that this man (David) was not fit, and that all who wrote for him, wrote, indeed, out of fear; and (as regards) the bishops, it was he (David) who had charged them (to do) what had happened without paying heed to them. And he entered with it (the paper) intending (to find) him who would submit it to the Sultan. And lo, the Sultan (was) at the door of the Hall alone, and he (the Sultan) said: «What dost you desire, O Abu'r-Radi?» And he delivered to him (the Sultan) the paper, and he perused it. Then he commanded the letter to he cancelled, and he said: «We are going to Cairo (Misr), and we shall examine his (David's) condition). And as for what was in the way of the discussion of the two sons of the sister of the patriarch 56, the Sultan had, before his setting out, handed both of them over to As-Samsam, superintendent of the Diwans, and he tortured both of them, and he menaced them, and he punished them, and he continued (this) with both of them, until they made themselves responsible for three thousand dinars; and he required a surety for both of them, and he set them free, and they carried it out 57. Then the Sultan departed from Alexandria, and he went back on his opinion about going to Damietta, and he came to Cairo (al-Kahirah), and he entered it in the daytime of the Friday of the seventh week of the Holy Lent 58. And the elder Nis al-Khilafah entered with him and the company, and in the daytime of Saturday which is the Saturday of Lazarus (al-‘Azar) 59, the elder Nis al-Khilafah caused the bishops to come before |33 the Sultan, and they were seven, the four who were residing in Cairo (al-Kahirah) in the house of the elder Nis al-Khilafah with the priest David, and the three who had journeyed behind the Sultan from place to place. 

And he (the Sultan) enquired of them concerning the priest David. And they said: «We are agreed to him, and we shall not depart from what we have written for him (with) our signatures». And he said to them: «Go forth and seek testimony to yourselves concerning this». And they went forth to the Diwan, and they wrote for them a testimony to their agreement concerning the priest David, and their approval of him as being lit to be a patriarch. And the eider Nis al-Khilafah went with it to the Sultan, and his mark was affixed on it immediately. And the elder Nis al-Khilafah took the writing, and he went with it to the governor of Cairo (Misr) in the evening, so that he might notify the people, that they should go in the morning to meet their patriarch, and to illuminate the church Al-Mu‘allakah and to adorn it. And he sent it (the writing) to the priests of (the Church) Al-Mu‘allakah, and he laid this before them. And the affair was noised abroad, and As-Sa‘d Hibat Allah Ibn Sadakah, mentioned formerly, went out, and it was he who roused the people to stand before the Sultan at that time, and assembled them; and he began to go from church to church until there assembled with him people. And they went up to Cairo (al-Kahirah) thereupon, and with them all the priests of the churches, with the exception of the priests of the church of Abba Mercurius, and they lighted candles, and they betook themselves to the Citadel at night. And they jabbered and they shouted and they cried out and they appealed for help until Al-Malik al-Kamil heard them. |34 

Then they returned to enter Cairo (al-Kahirah), and they found the Gate Zuwailah had already been shut, and they laid down at the Gate. And on that night, all the churches of Cairo (Misr) annulled the psalmody and the procession of Olives 60. And when it was morning, they betook themselves to the house of the judge Al-Asraf Ibn al-Fadil, before he rode out. Then they went to the House of the Sultan, and some of them crossed over (to it), and some of them remained outside, crying and shouting, and some of this company went in to the judge ‘Imad ad-Din, son of the brother of Al-‘Alam, the possessor of the Diwan: and they mentioned to him that the patriarch 61 had died, and that there (is owing) to him on the part of the bishops the yearly contribution 62, and that this is a year after his death, and (that) the Sultan was his heir; and he (the judge) sought it from them, and it was two thousand, two hundred dinars, and he sent to them, and he set guards over them. And they (the bishops) were determined on going down to Cairo (Misr) to consecrate the patriarch. And he (the judge) wrote a paper to the Sultan that such and such had happened. And the Sultan said:«If any resist them (the bishops), he shall be beheaded. This is nonsense! What thing made them silent all this time? They are not to be depended upon!» And they (the bishops) rode in security, and there rode with them the priest (David), and there assembled with them people, the number of whom was countless, and it was a remarkable day. And a crowd came, and they gave to them something and they sent them away. And news spread quickly to Cairo (Misr), that the affair was settled, and the markets became (so crowded) that one (could) not make way (through them). And as for the (church) Al-Mu‘allakah, |35 there was not a foot-span in it for anyone on account of the multitude of the people. 

And they went up with a bundle in which (were) his (David's) robes and with them his staff 63 to the Church Al-Mu‘allakah. And the governor of Cairo (al-Kahirah) had already gone to Al-Malik al-Kamil, and he had made known to him what had happened. And he (Al-Malik al-Kamil) said: «Whatsoever the Sultan (Al-Malik al-‘Adil) has commanded, you (must) obey». And when the Christians clamoured that night, he (Al-Malik al-Kamil) sent to summon him (the governor), and he charged him with a letter to his father 64. And the priest (David) and the company had gone out by the Wicket Gate, purposing (to go) to Cairo (Misr); and they reached al-Maimunah, and with them (was) the deputy of the governor of Cairo (al-Kahirah). And the son of the governor of Cairo (Misr) met them there. And lo, messengers had come running to take back the bishops. And they said: «The Sultan requires them»; and thereupon Sahim ad-Din, governor of Cairo (al-Kahirah) came running, and he took back the writing on which was the sign of the Sultan, and he took the bishops with him, and he returned. And. when he arrived at the Gate of the House of the Sultan, the people were about to stone the bishops, but Sahim ad-Din protected them, and he said: «By God, if anyone interfers with them, his hand shall be cut off». And hands were kept off them, but they (the people) slandered them with (their) tongues; and they insulted them, and they reviled them and they taunted them; and they (the bishops) crossed over to the House of the Sultan, and they were retained at it. And as for the priest (David) and some of the company, they entered into the Church of Harat ar-Rum al-Hamra, |36 and some of them remained outside in the street, and some of them, or rather the majority of them dispersed, and there remained those who remained in expectancy, their hope not being cut off. 

And as for those who were standing at the Gate of the House of the Sultan, when Al-Malik al-Kamil went in, on the service of his father, they stood up, and he observed them, and when he went out, they stood up, and they made supplications for him. And the state was protracted, and the ninth hour 65 arrived. And I was (present) at all what happened on this day, staying at the Church of Abba Sergius. And when it was said to me that he (David) had arrived at Al-Maimunah, I said (that) I would arise to meet him at the head of the lane; and I arose and I rode, and I said (that) here I may meet him (or) there I may meet him, until it was said to me that the company had descended at Al-Hamra. And I was amazed, and I hastened to learn the news, and I came and I found our companions sitting, and they informed me of the situation, and I sat with them. And when the ninth hour was passed, I said: «To-day is a great (feast) 66, and it is not requisite that we should miss on it the Divine Liturgy. And there was there a priest of the inhabitants of Damirah, named Apa Noub, and I took him with me and a group of our companions who were in agreement with me, and we came to the Church of Gabriel, and they had celebrated the Divine Liturgy in it before that. And we asked for a Eucharistic Loaf, and it was brought, and there was brought a vestment and vessels, and we celebrated the Divine Liturgy and we communicated. And I returned to the Church of Abba Sergius at which I was staying during Lent. 

And some |37 of our companions remained in expectancy, (where) they were. And as for those Cairenes, they remained at the Gate of the House of the Sultan until the evening, until the hishops departed, and the majority of them passed the night in Cairo (al-Kahirah). And as for the priest David, he stayed at the Church of the Harat ar-Rum al-Hamra until the evening of the day; then he returned to his house. And the churches of Cairo (Misr) annulled on the day the Divine Liturgy, and it was Palm Sunday. And when it was morning on the day of Monday which was the first day of Holy Week, and it was the Feast of Al-Adha, the people assembled, and they were awaiting the Sultan with gospels and censers and crosses, supplicating for him. And the hishops departed on that day, each of them to his See, and the people returned to their churches, and they remained in them, and they celebrated the Feast 67. And idle talk among them was fabricated. And as for what happened to the Church, in these days, the deputy of the Sultan came to the Castle of Babylon and he valued all of it. And the people began to pay for every dwelling something as rent of the ground, and he (the deputy) obtained (it) from many of them, and he fixed for them the ground-rent at double. And he deducted from the inalienable endowments of the churches which belonged to the Dhimah 68 five dinars for every dwelling. And there befell the people from this great hardship, and procuration (was given) to the priests at all times for this reason, and they discharged part of the amount, and the two churches Al-Mu‘allakah, and Abba Sergius were mulcted of about fifty dinars; and when the Sultan arrived, they ceased demanding (the money). 

And after that, the news arrived of the |38 rise (of the price) of corn in Syria and especially in the Land of Jerusalem and the Littoral 69; it was even mentioned that water was lacking in them, and that the Pool of Siloam was exhausted, so that it became a way, and nothing had been heard like this. And the prices in Cairo (Misr) went up to thirty-five dinars for a hundred ardab of wheat; then they went down to twenty-seven dinars. And a bridge of boats was made from Al-Gazirah (Rodah) to Al-Gizah, and the beginning of it was from before the new workshop, and the number of the boats of which it was composed (was) fifty-three boats; and it was finished on the day of Thursday, the ninth of (the month of) Abib (in the) year nine hundred and thirty-three 70. And it was open to the people without payment being demanded for it. And the Sultan employed under his seal men to repair what might be spoilt of it, and to open passages for the ships which ascended and which descended, because they had made in it places for this purpose by opening the boats, and (then) they returned (them) to their position. And the people began to go to Al-Gizah and to come (from it) mounted and on foot, and they rejoiced greatly at this, and they made supplications for the Sultan for this reason. And there was made on it (the bridge) a handrail of wood on either side to prevent that anyone should fall into the river at some time, and the people found by it great convenience. And the water (of the Nile) in this year reached to twenty-two fingers above seventeen cubits, then it decreased. 

And the price of corn went up until wheat reached fifty dinars the hundred ardabs, then it went down to |39 twenty-five dinars. And they (the officials) returned to repeat the demand on the priests, regarding the demand of the amount which they deducted from the inalienable endowments, and they (the priests) did not cease exerting themselves, until they had paid it off, after exertion and hardship, and the monks were constrained by the Church. And in this year, the Sultan Al-Malik al-‘Adil went out from Cairo (al-Kahirah) to the Lake known as the Lake of the Ethiopians, going in the direction of the Syrian Land, when there reached him news of the Franks and their multitude; and he stayed at it 71 for a period. 

Then he betook himself to Bilbais, (when) the year nine hundred and thirty-four 72 [1218 AD] opened. Then he turned towards Syria, and he descended at Baisan unassembling his troops and his soldiers, and he stayed at it for a long time. And there reached the Franks a king from beyond the sea, known as the King Hankar 73. And it was said that they had assembled four thousand knights (horsemen) and a hundred thousand foot-men, and they came upon the troops of Al-Islam at Baisan. And they (the troops) did not stand against them, but they were routed, and the Franks pursued them for four or five days until they drove them away from the Littoral; and they pillaged the corn and arms, and they killed and they took captive a great many people. Then they returned and they descended at Tiberias for some days; then they returned to Acre, and they remained at it making instruments |40 for a siege. 

Then they went out to attack Thabor, and it is a great fortress, and Al-Malik al-‘Adil had renewed it, (as) being near to Acre; and they attacked it for ten days and they killed its commander. Then they departed from it without a known cause, and they returned to Acre, and it was before the Feast of the Holy Nativity. And in these days the Sultan --- may God empower his victory! ---commanded a display of the prisoners, and they were displayed before him. And there was among them a man named Asad, and he was a tailor, and he had quarrelled with his wife, and she had brought him before the law, and a chance utterance dropped by him bore witness against him that he had adopted Al-Islam and had denied it, and he was put under arrest, and he remained under arrest for the space of a year up to this time. And the Sultan caused him to be brought, and he enticed him and he promised to him money and raiment, if he remained in Al-Islam, but he refused. And he said: «I am nothing else save a Christian, and in my Christianity shall I die». And he (the Sultan) said to him: «Woe to thee, you did utter the profession of Al-Islam before me, and wherever you desire, go. Do you, then, deceive thyself?» He (Asad) said: «This was never so». And the state of revendication did not cease between them until the day of the Glorious Epiphany (al-Ghitas), and he commanded him to be beheaded. And the governor of Cairo (al-Kahirah) caused him to be brought to the Gate Zuwailah, and he caused the witnesses to come, and he offered to him Al-Islam before them, but he refused. And he (Asad) said: «Finish me, I conjure you by God, but do not take me back to the prison». And one of his (the governor's) slaves (Mamaluk) advanced towards him and prodded him with the sword until four fingers of it penetrated into him. And he (Asad) said to him: «Finish!» |41 

And the slave (al-Mamluk) said to him: «Stretch out thy neck!» and he stretched it out, and he struck him with a blow by which his head flew from his body; and his trunk was hanged on the Gate Zuwailah, and the people glorified God for the endurance of this man and the beauty of his faith. And he remained hanging for three days, and after this, they took him down, and they went out with him outside the city, and they began to burn him, but they did not cast what was sufficient of fuel upon him to burn him, and his body remained intact. And there assembled a body of the blessed Christians, and they besought the governor for it (the body), and he gave it to them, and they took it and they buried it in the Church of the Melchites which (is) in the Harat ar-Rum al-Hamra, and they gave thanks to God Who confirms His Saints in faith in His Name to the last breath. And at this time, the Sultan --- may God preserve him! --- commanded tbat a wall should be made at Cairo (Misr) on the side of the river, and that it should be extended along the length of the Canal up to Cairo (al-Kahirah). And they began this, and they started it from the House of the King, and they dug the foundations, and they started on the building. And in those days a command of Al-Malik al-Kamil went out to Cairo (al-Kahirah) and Cairo (Misr), that they (the inhabitants) should go out every night and that they should split (stones), and they did this, and it happened (that) there fell of them those who were killed and those who were wounded and those who were injured by the stones. And all of the inhabitants of the two cities had in their hands tools. And the inhabitants of Cairo (Misr) stopped, but the inhabitants of Cairo (al-Kahirah) continued on this wise, and at every time they were increasing. 

And after that, Lent began, and the archons, the friends of the priest David, began to take him every Sunday to a church |42 and he celebrated the Divine Liturgy in it, and they (the people) were delighted with him, because he was a good priest, learned instructed (and) beloved of those who feared God. And as for those who were opposed to him, they were not opposed to him, except for various, partial reasons. Some of them (his opponents) envied him, and some of them were afraid of his consecration on account of things which they had committed, or (because) they had done something detestable to him, and they feared to be punished for it. And some of them were not acquainted (with the matter), and they thought by reason of the abundance of slander that the matter was right, and that he (David) was unworthy, and they opposed him on religious grounds. And when it was the third Sunday 74, some of the group preceded him to the Church of Abba Sergius in Cairo (Misr) with the agreement of the priest of the mentioned church. And he (David) came, and there came with him a company of the archons and many people. And the priest of the church made an obeisance, and he (David) celebrated the Divine Liturgy. And when they had reached the Pauline Epistle, lo, a man known as Ibn Sadakah, the aforementioned, entered and with him young male slaves of the governor, and he caused a tumult and he vociferated and he calumniated the priest of the church, and he wished to stop the Divine Liturgy, after the Offering had been borne; and a great crowd of the people assembled at the door of the church to see what would happen. And much discussion took place, the end of which (was) that the priest David should complete the Divine Liturgy; and the governor of Cairo (Misr) was seated on his account in the middle of the church on a bench, in order to protect the priest David from those who opposed him, because Ibn Sadakah and his companions wished to stone him (David) while |43 he was at the altar; and he completed the Divine Liturgy of Cyril, according to what was his custom, and nothing was changed in the way of his acknowledged priesthood. 

Then he departed, and there rode with him the governor of Cairo (Misr), mounted with him in his attendance, until he brought him to the neighbourhood of Cairo (al-Kahirah), and he went to his house in safety. And there assembled the Sa‘idian, sellers of linseed oil and fuller's earth, who believed that that which they were doing (was) religion, by reason of their being incited and their being dupes and their ignorance; and they went up under the Citadel on the second day, and they purposed to stand before the Sultan. And they wrote pieces of paper, and no answer came out to them; but they returned disappointed, and these are matters belonging to God in which there is mystery and design, and He is aware of what is good in everything; and the people remained as they were before. And when it was Tuesday, the fourth of (the month of) Bau'unah 75 of the mentioned year, the Franks arrived at the harbour of Damietta 76 with great equipment, and they descended on the land of Al-Hairah. And they pitched their tents, and they advanced to the Tower of the Chain, and they shot at it with mangonels, and they fought against it, and they crossed over with boats and war fire-ships to the fresh water, |44 and they were south of the Chain, and provisions were cut off from Damietta with regard to the sea, and nothing was transported to it except by land on camels. 

And the situation became serious for the people, and there were evacuated the two Damirahs and Al-Mahallah and Sanhur and Sakha and the majority of the northern towns, and the inhabitants of Cairo (Misr) transferred to Cairo (Al-Kahirah). And troops arrived from Syria to Damietta, and there went out from Cairo. (Misr) and Cairo (al-Kahirah) a great (number of) people for the holy war 77. And some of them (were) those for whom the Sultan paid, and some of them (were) those for whom the notables of the two cities 78 paid, and some of them (were) those who went out of themselves for the sake of religion. And news began to increase and to decrease, and people took into their houses grinding-stones, and they stored up wheat and flour and cakes (al-Ka‘k) and rice and other things than these in the way of instruments of siege. And Al-Malik al-Kamil himself went out to the borders 79, and he stayed at Sarimsah. And the Franks set up at Damietta, at the Tower of the Chain which was opposite to them, eight mangonels, and their stones used to reach up to middle of the city, and their arrows did not abate night and day, together with the mangonels continually, and the slain and the wounded were very numerous. 

And when it was in the daytime of Friday, the |45 twenty eighth of (the month of) Bau'unah 80, they (the Franks) sailed in about seventy or eighty ships, after they had plated them and covered them, and they proceeded with, them against the city, and they fought a great battle, and it was a hard day. Then they returned to their camp, and the condition was as before, as regards striking with the mangonels and shooting with the arrows up to Sunday, the seventh of (the month of) Abib 81. And they made on four ships four towers, and they proceeded with three of them to the Tower, and one to the harbour. And they fought and they strove in the fight, and they dominated the Tower, and they set up ladders to ascend to it. And they were on the point of taking it; and they were all leaning in the direction of the Tower, and they were heavy with armour, and the mast broke into two, and all of those who were on the ladders fell into the river with their chain-mail and their weapons, and all of them were drowned; and the Muslims rejoiced at this greatly, and the two cities 82 were decorated. And those of them (the Franks) who were safe, returned to their camp, and the condition was as before, as regards striking with the mangonels and shooting with the arrows. And after some days news arrived that one of the sons of the Sultan had entered into the city of Acre, and (that) he had taken from it a tower named «Dahuk» in which there were thirty souls. And also outworks were thrown up at Cairo (al-Kahirah), and there was made at Cairo (al-Kahirah) and Cairo (Misr) a great chain 83, in order to strengthen (them) by it. The weight of that chain (was) one hundred and thirty Cairene (al-Misri) kantars. |46 

And the state of shooting with arrows and striking with mangonels continued. And (some) of the Franks rode horses and made a raid into parts of Al-Dangawiah, and they took from it corn and chopped-straw, and they returned back, and they slew whomsoever they met on the way. And the Sultan sent to burn the towns neighbouring to the place to which they (the Franks) had reached; and the raids continued on land and by sea, and the fighting did not abate. And there was opposite to them in the Bar al-‘Arab a large body of Bedouins close upon three thousand horseman and with them two amirs from the notables of the Arabs. And there rode from the Franks two thousand knights (horsemen), and there was between them a distance of one day. And they rode forward swiftly until they reached them (the Bedouins), and when they attacked them, they (the Bedouins) were overthrown before them, and there were slain of them many people; and there were captured and taken by the hands of the Franks horses, (the number of which) was not known. And they overcame them to the extent that they passed (beyond) their tents, and they took them, and they took all what was in them, and they took the provisions which were with them and the camels, and they returned to their camp. And as for the Arabs who were overthrown, some of them were from the Fayum, and some of them were from Upper Egypt, they continued on their course, (and) they pillaged what remained in the Arab (lands), and they dispersed to their lands. And during this, the exalted king, Sultan of Syria, destroyed the fortress of Thabor which the Franks had assailed, and he transferred all that was in it to Jerusalem. 

And they (the |47 Franks) continued this state of affairs with marchings every two or three days, and the shooting with great, gigantic mangonels, one stone of which was weighed and it was three hundred and fifty Cairene (al-Misri) ratls, and huge arrows which were of (different) sorts and kinds. And they prepared boats which they called «The raft», and they were two boats, and they brought the two of them together, and they fastened the two of them with timber and nails until the two remained as one. And they made on it four masts, and they constructed on the masts a tower of wood, and they made round it a wall like the wall of cities with battlements, and they made a great covered staircase 84 with ropes and pulleys (which) lowered and raised (it). And they advanced to the Tower 85 in the daytime of Friday, the first of (the month of) an-Nasi of the year nine hundred and thirty-four 86 [1218 AD]. And there were three hundred warriors of the Muslims on it. And they (the Franks) lowered the covered staircase onto the Tower, and they descended to it, and they gained possession of the upper storey, and they slew those who were on it. And as for those who (were) on the middle storey they cried for mercy, and they took them captives, and the bridge 87 was cut, and no one of them escaped except he who threw himself into the river, and it was a great day. And they set up on the Tower the standard and crosses, and they blocked up its door which (was) on the side of Damietta, and they opened the door which (was) towards their land, and they set up their bridge from them towards it (the land). And they took from it in the way of arms and naphtha and provisions what could not be counted, and they rejoiced greatly; and indications multiplied of the kindness of our Master for this religion and His good-pleasure in its people. 

And with regard to what the |48 priest Panub --- and he was a virtuous, true christian man ---related to me, he said: «I celebrated the Divine Liturgy in this year at the Church of Smr..h 88 of the Province of Al-Gharbiah, on the day of the Feast of the Three Youths, and it is the tenth of the days of (the month of) Basuns. And when, it was the time of the Aspasmos, which is the (Prayer) of Consolation, there appeared above on the dome of the altar a person seated on a throne, and in front of him a person standing: before him, and in his hand a censer, and he was incensing him, and a flame of fire arose from the censer. Then there appeared at the back of all the dome riders on horses like the pictures of the Saints which are in the churches, and they were turning about the dome, and the tails of their horses were swishing, and all of them, namely the people, witnessed them. And when they reached the throne, they bowed in greeting, and they passed by, and they continued thus up to the time of the Communion, (and) they departed. And the like of this had appeared in the Church of Hanut, a long time ago, and it was noised abroad, and also in the Church of Sabas, and in the Church of the Mistress 89 on the outskirts of Mintat Amru, and in the Church of the Martyr Abba |49 John at Subra'l-Khimah, and the Muslim inhabitants of the town testified to all this. And this priest informed me also, that he had seen in his sleep, as if he were standing in a church praying, and (it were) as if a Cross appeared in the cast, a cubit in size in its appearance, and as if (it were) all burning fire, and in the middle of it a picture of the Master, and (it were) as if he were prostrating himself before Him, and trembling and exclaiming «Kyrie eleison»; and he raised his head and he saw (that) the Cross had spread in four directions until it filled the horizon and covered entirely the earth, and on that he woke up. And he related to us also, that he saw on another night, as it were, (that) an insurrection had broken out, and (that) the people were afraid; and it was as if he were in a church, and as if a man came to him and said to him:«Speak with the 'Hankar'»90. And he came before him, and he (the Hankar) said to him: «Go to our brethren, the Christians, appease their hearts and quieten them, and inform them that we have not come, except to avenge (them) of their enemies. We have not come to harm them and that they shall remain in their churches and according to their religious law», and on that he awoke from his sleep. And the rise of the Nile was delayed in this year up to the sixth of (the month of) Tut 91, and the Nilometer rose spontaneously, and the Canal was cut on it 92, and it was announced concerning the water (that it had reached) in a second four fingers above seventeen cubits. 

And the year nine hundred and thirty-five of the Pure Martyrs 93 entered, and, after this, the news of the death of Al-Malik al-‘Adil Abu Bakr  |50 Muhammad Ibn Aiyub arrived. And he was the grand Sultan and the great king, and his kingdom (was) from the Yemen up to Khilat, and he established every one of his sons in a kingdom. Al-Malik al-Kamil, and he was his heir-apparent, in Egypt, and it was he 94 who conquered the Yemen and had set up a son of his called Al-Malik al-Mas‘ud, and in Syria Al-Malik al-Mu‘azzam, and in the East and Khilal, Al-Malik al-Asraf, and at Edessa (ar-Ruha), Sihab ad-Din Ghazi, and in the Fortress of Ga‘bar, Al-Malik al-Hafiz, and in the Fortress of Bosra, and its districts, Al-Malik as-Salah, and in the Fortress of.... and Hunain and As-Sakif and Paneas, Al-Malik al'Aziz. And the people took the oath to Al-Malik al-Kamil, that (he should be) the Sultan who (was) after him, and (he was mentioned) in the sermon (Khulbah) from the pulpit, and the coinage was struck in his name, while he was opposing the Franks at Damietta.

And the Nile reached in this year up to seven fingers above seventeen cubits, and it was the year nine hundred and thirty-five of the Coptic (Year) 95 [1219 AD], and it decreased rapidly, and the majority of the Land of Egypt was dried up, and the price of corn went up. And there came upon the people in this year three things: the death of the Sultan and the descent of the enemy on the land, and the lowness |51 of the Nile; and the Church, was widowed of a patriarch.

 Then (it was), that the Muslims agreed in their opinion, that they should go against the Franks and should move towards them. And there crossed over of their cavalry some four thousand horsemen, and of the infantry the same. And they made ready from fifty to sixty boats, transport-ships and fire-ships, and they proceeded on the river. And as for the cavalry, their advance was from the south, and they reached to the entrenchment of the Franks, and they found it impregnable, and behind it a guard of warriors, and they (could) not pass over it. And as for their infantry, they proceeded along the river, on the east of the camp of the Franks. And the Franks abandoned to them the extremities of the camp, and they gave way before them, and they pretended to them weakness and fewness, until they were in the midst of their camp. Then they (the Franks) cut them off on the south, and they slew the majority of them, and there did not escape of them except he who threw himself into the river; and the majority of those who threw themselves into the river were drowned, because among them were those who did not know how to swim, the men of Syria. And of those who knew swimming, (he who) hastened without removing his clothes, and jumped with them into the river was drowned. And as for those who (were) in the ships, when they saw what had happened with the infantry, they remained in their place, and they (could) not return, and it was a great battle in the daytime of Tuesday, the eleventh of (the month of) Babah 96. And the Sultan turned back, (and) he commanded the troops which had crossed over to return to the land of Damietta, and he began mobilizing and collecting. |52 

And when it was in the daytime of Friday, the twenty-seventh of (the month of) Babah, the Franks marched towards the troops of the Muslims who had crossed over to the Bar al-‘Arab, and they were about a thousand horsemen, because they were the entire body-guard of Al-Malik al-Kamil, and there was added to them from the Arabs and the Maghaziz. And they (the Franks) overcame them all, and they drove them to the river, and they took their horses and their equipment, and they slew a company of their champions, and none of them escaped, except a small number who threw themselves into the river and were experienced in swimming. And terror waxed great, and the souls of the people were fearful, and the awe of the Franks was magnified, and the resolve to meet them collapsed, and the condition continued thus. And the winter entered, and the Franks passed the winter dominating the land. And when it was in the beginning of (the month of) Kihak there came a great tempest and stormy weather, and the lake was flooded by what was carried to it from the Mediterranean Sea, and the camps of the troops were submerged from Damietta up to al-‘Adilliah, and it is the village which was renewed in the land of Damietta opposite to Burah after the Franks had taken Burah. And on this occasion, numerous people and beasts of burden perished, and the loss in the way of possessions, equipments and arms was beyond counting. 

And the river overflowed, and the rains fell, and (it was) cold and the |53 wind was on the point of shaking the mountains, and there was great affliction, the like of which had not been witnessed. And the river bore the raft which the Franks had constructed on six big transport-ships, and had made in them ladders and towers and passages of which the description is not possible, and it (the wind) cast it on to the shore of the Muslims. And in it were sixteen men of whom fourteen fought until they were slain, and two threw themselves into the river and they returned to the other shore 97. And the king 98 took the two of them, and he hanged them both, (saying): «How (was it that) they were not slain and did not endure the fight as the rest?» And the Muslims crowded at this raft, and they saw that they had not strength for it, and that they could not understand its arrangement, and that they were not sure whether the Franks might multiply against them and take it from them, so they burned it, and it was a marvellous thing not to be described. And the Franks had ships at sea coming from Acre and other (places) than it, because, since they had descended at this camp, the ships did not cease (to come) to them. And all of it (the raft) was broken up and dragged to the banks, and something of it was taken to Gaza and Al-‘Aris and (to) other (places) than them. And they (the Franks) had dug a watercourse, it was known as the Canal Az-Za‘afaran, in order to pass their ships through it, because the Sultan had made rough 99 what (was) between the two towers, fearing their (the Franks') passing-through with their big ships. 

And when the rains came and the great river became high, it filled the canal which they had dug, and they had made their digging nearer to the river; and they began to load |54 their ships on asses, and they launched them in that river, and they had in it a quantity of ships, and the condition continued thus for a period. And the Sultan came back, (and) he sank ships before the place to which they had ascended, and he placed them in three rows, and he set up on them masts, and be nailed upon them other masts broadwise. And when it was the Saturday which is between the two Carnivals 100, the Franks prepared their ships, and they ascended with them with their implements and their tents and their equipment and their arms, and the wind was favourable for them, and tbis day was the eighth of (the month of) Amsir 101. And they sailed as one body, and all the Muslims were summoned to the bank, their infantry and their cavalry, in the belief that they (the Franks) would reach to those masts and stop. And when they reached those masts, God made them for them like grass, and they snapped off all of them, and they accomplished ascending to the place to which they wished (to go), and it was the narrows of the river, and the Muslims marvelled at this, and it was for them a severe day. And all the Franks and the Muslims remained on Saturday and Sunday and Monday on watch against one another. And when it was on the eve of Tuesday 102, the eleventh of (the month of) Amsir 103, there occurred a disaccord between the Sultan and one of the greatest of the amirs known as Ibn al-Mastub, in spite of their being in confusion and adversity, and this brought about the departure of them all by night and their leaving their tents and all their equipment and their implements. And in the morning, the Franks were astonished (and) believed that it was a stratagem, because they had been willing to suffer loss of the majority of them, so as to get |55 possession of a part of the eastern bank and nothing else. 

And it happened for them that they got possession of it, favoured in the way of good things and benefits, the value of which was not to be described nor defined nor counted. And they went up to the mentioned shore on Tuesday the aforementioned, and they took the tents with all what (was) in them, and the towers and the mangonels and the equipments and the chain-mail armour, the quantity of which was not to be counted. And they slew all whom they found who remained behind in the camp, because the people thought that their (the Franks') coming up to it would be slow, so they remained in it through greediness of what they could take away of their goods, and they were about three thousand souls. And they (the Franks) encompassed Damietta on all sides, and they set up against it mangonels, and they strove in fighting against it. And as for the Sultan, he planted his standard at Asmun, and all who saw it from among the eminent amirs rallied around it. And as for the Magharibah 104 and the eunuchs, they dispersed into the lands, and the majority of them passed over to Cairo (al-Kahirah), and the people remained confused and their souls were in great despair. And detractions multiplied against the Christians, and some of the common people became violent towards them. And in these conditions the Muslims resolved and decided to survey for increase of taxation properties in Cairo (Misr) and Cairo (al-Kahirah), to take their rent for two months, and for helping the Sultan thereby, and they surveyed for increase of taxation Cairo (Misr), and they did not get anything out from it, and it (the taxation) was annulled. Then they returned to collect taxes from the Muslims in proportion to their conditions, in two ways, until they finished by taking from five dirhams upwards, and this was not found profitable, and |56 nothing useful was reached. 

And two or three days after this defeat mentioned before, Al-Malik al-Mu‘azzam, the Sultan of Syria, reached his brother Al-Malik al-Kamil at Asmun. And they agreed in their opinion, and they arrested ‘Ali Ibn al-Mastub who was the senior of the amirs, of whom it was related that he was the cause of the defeat, and they put fetters on him, and they journeyed with him to the Fortress of Al-Karak fettered. Then it was related that he was exiled to the lands of the East. And there was much talk, and some people said that every Christian in Damietta had been killed, and some people said that none had been killed, except the captives, because they found them remaining and wishing to escape to their companions. And as for the inhabitants of Miniat Ibn Salsil, its inhabitants rose up against the Christians, and they destroyed a group of them. And as the time passed, it became more severe, and the intrigues multiplied as time passed. Then he (the Sultan) ordered the surveying for increase of taxation of the properties of the people in Cairo (Misr) and Cairo (al-Kahirah), and to collect from them the tax for two months. And the notables of Cairo (Misr) began to collect from its inhabitants something in proportion to their conditions, and they despatched it (as) an aid to the Sultan and the Muslims, and they collected by two collections about three thousand dinars. And when Al-Malik al-Mu‘azzam, the king of Syria, arrived and met his brother, they agreed in their opinion that they should pass over to the western bank (of the Nile), because the crossways of the Franks were at it. And they passed over with the troops and the soldiers. And they 105 commanded the building of a wall from Cairo (Misr) to Cairo (al-Kahirah) to join together the two cities. 

And |57 they commenced the building of it from Cairo (Misr) at the House of the King, and from Cairo (al-Kahirah) from the Pearl (Palace). And they made its foundations of stone and the remainder of it with earth, the work of the Magharibah. Then they exacted the tax (Gawali) of the Dhimah for the year six hundred and sixteen 106 [1220 AD], on Monday, the eighteenth of (the month of) Dhu'l-Higgah of the year six hundred and fifteen 107 [1219 AD]. Then their opinion changed concerning the building of the wall with earth, and they demolished what the Magharibah had made, and they started building with sun-dried bricks. Then the order came to take away the bricks of the properties 108 of all the people in Cairo (al-Kahirah) and Cairo (Misr), and he (the Sultan) began with taking away the bricks. And as for what was in the way of the order to the troops to pass over to the western bank, they arrived near to the camp of the Franks, on Sunday, the seventh of (the month of) Baramhat 109. And God sent a stormy wind and rains, and the river became agitated and rose up to them 110, and if they had not succeeded in retreating, they would have been drowned. And they returned, and they did not achieve (their) purpose, and they passed over to the eastern bank, and they descended at Faraskur and what was neighbouring to it. And in this year there was a winter, the like of which had not been witnessed in the Egyptian lands, so that there occurred in them, from the eighth of (the month of) Baramhat up to the fifteenth |58 of it 111, in the way of winds and rains and severe cold, the like of which had never been witnessed, and the conditions of this year were all of them amazing: (and) strange.

 And after this, an order of the Sultan came to send out half of the inhabitants of Cairo (Misr) and Cairo (al-Kahirah) to the fight, voluntarily or by compulsion. And the majority of the people went out, and the privileged for whom it was not becoming to go out used to buy themselves off with the price at which they were estimated, in the way of gold, everyone of them according to his condition. And as for the Christians who were in Cairo (al-Kahirah), they collected a tax from them, together with those who had means of livelihood, everyone who was earning a livelihood, with people of means; and they were not imposed upon, nor anyone of the inhabitants of Cairo (al-Kahirah). And, finally, they collected in tax from the scribes who resided in it, and they favoured some and they exempted some. And as for Cairo (Misr), its governor was guided by the jurisconsults, and he brought the priests of the churches which (belonged) to the Copts and to the Melkites 112, and he said to them: «Go out!»113, and he threatened them, and he said: «You, go you out with the Muslims, but you will not reach with them to the gate of the city before they will kill you». And no one was able to say to them (the Muslims) at this time anything. And the tendency of the saying was chiefly for the Melkites, because they used to spread evil reports about them, that they loved the Franks, and that they (acted) according to their 114 law in the arrangement of the hair and the omission of circumcision, and what is similar to that. And fear worked in them, and one of them hastened and he said: «We have a thousand dinars». And they said: «It is a blessing, arise, fetch the thousand dinars!» 

And they said to |59 those who were present of the Coptic priests: «These 115 (are) a handful (compared) to you. We shall make them a tenth, (so) give to us ten thousand dinars», and, finally, they settled for them three thousand dinars. And all of them went out under guard, and a rope was hung in the Church Al-Mu‘allakah, and a rope in the Church of the Melkites, and a rope in the Synagogue of the Jews, because the last had weighed out the first time, when something was sought from the Christians five hundred dinars, and they settled for them this time six hundred dinars. And there occurred scourging among the people and hanging and arrests and affronts. And it was the priests who were those who called out the names of the people, and they apportioned to them the portions, and it was the days of Holy Lent, and they were days of severe handship and great persecution. And as for the Melkites 116, they collected from their people what they were able, and there remained an amount owing by them, and they caused to be taken out the silver vessels which they possessed, and they pawned them at one of the Muslims, a jurisconsult, called the juristconsult Nasr, for two hundred dinars against two hundred and fifty dinars, and they delivered them. And as for the Copts, they fleeced the people entirely, and it is not conceivable that anyone remained without a mulct, except only a few, and the total which was collected for them (was) one thousand, one hundred dinars. And some of them used to prosecute others, and it was (that) everyone who wished to relieve himself, undertook a lawsuit and became an extortioner. 

And they assembled with the governor |60 and they used every means until they made it one thousand, two hundred dinars; and they returned to what was (still) remaining, and they imposed it on the churches, every church according to its capability, until they reached to the outer monasteries, such as the Monastery of Tammuh and the Monastery of the Beacon, and others beside them, and they took from them the portion. And they went up to Cairo (al-Kahirah), and they asked help from its inhabitants, and not one of them gave to them anything, and they returned disappointed, because they were those who had opposed in the affair of the priest David in the matter of the patriarchate. And they did not cease (this), until they had paid off the mentioned amount. And they did not sell vessels nor buildings nor did they pawn (anything), but they were hard days, and many of the churches were closed for many days on account of this portion. And he (the Sultan) had taken into service from Cairo (al-Kahirah) and Cairo (Misr) ten thousand men, and he caused them to journey, and the majority of them were the Magharibah, and they destroyed every church which they found on their way until they reached the camp. And the march was arranged that it should be on Palm Sunday, and they marched to the Franks, and there was slain the majority of those men who destroyed the churches, and he who escaped from the slaughter fled away, and a company of them reached Cairo (al-Kahirah) and Cairo (Misr), ships full of them. 

Then they made another march, and they did not attain to (their) goal, because the Franks had made against them an |61 entrenchment on both the banks and both the causeways at the river, and they had erected at the entrenchment towers and barrels like the wall of a city, and they placed behind it archers and warriors, and they became (such) that no one was able to approach them. Then the opinion of the Muslims was agreed upon to dam the river of the east at Zifta 117 that all the water should be borne to the river of the west; and they began on this, and they took for it ships and equipment and implements, and its damming was completed in the daytime of Friday, the fifteenth of (the month of) Basuns 118 (in the) year nine hundred and thirty-five 119 [1219 AD], after great toil and much expenditure, so that it became a way, and the ships no longer ascended nor descended in it. And it (the dam) was cut on the same night, and all the toil on it was lost; and it was related that he (the Sultan) had lost on it one thousand, seven hundred dinars, and the water flowed to its place, and he despaired of darning it a second time, and he left it in its state. And he (the Sultan) demolished Jerusalem in Baramudah 120 of the aforementioned year, after he had evacuated it of its inhabitants; and there did not remain in it except (the Church of) the Holy Resurrection and the Tower of David and the Prayer-house of the Rock and the Mosque known as Al-Aksa. 

And he demolished the remainder of its walls and its houses and its hosteleries, and there befell the people by reason of its demolition a |62 great fear and anxiety for Syria on account of it, and prices became high in it. And as for the lands of Egypt, the prices in them were low during all these days. Then (it was) that the Franks made ready great rafts and large towers, and they advanced towards Damietta by land and by sea for seven successive days in the middle decade of (the month of) Abib 121, and the Muslims advanced to them, and they remained fighting night and day. Then (it was) that the Franks postponed (to bring up) their engines against Damietta, and the Muslims returned to their camp, and the affair remained as it was before. And they (the Muslims) before that had stirred up trouble about the Church of Saint Mark which (was) on the outskirts of Alexandria, known as Al-Kamha, and the order was issued to demolish it 122. And the Christians offered two thousand dinars for it to be spared, but it was not accepted, and it was said that it was necessary to demolish it, since this (church) was a danger to the port, because it was provided with a tower over-(looking) it, and the enemy might attack the port from it, if they descended upon it. And the greater part of it (the church) was demolished by the command of the Sultan, so that there did not remain of it, except one kamat 123. And when it was the Friday which followed its demolition, the Muslims prayed the prayer of Friday, and they went out to it, and they demolished the remainder of it to the ground. And there was great grief for the denomination 124, and continuous dejection and manifest affliction, and this was in the beginning of (the month of) Abib. 

Then (it was) that the water (of the Nile) delayed (in rising) in this year, so that it came at the end of (the month of) Abib, and it was about six cubits, and the |63 price of wheat increased until it reached sixty dinars for the hundred ardabs. Then (it was) that the Nile remained stationary 125, and the price fluctuated. And when it was Thursday, the sixth of (the month of) An-Nasi 126, because it was a Leap-Year 127, the Franks advanced against the Muslims on land and by sea, and they were defeated before them. And the Franks had thought that the water which (was) in the entrenchment of the Muslims was fresh, but when they reached the aforementioned entrenchment from the sandy side, and it was a place distant from the sea, they tasted the water and they found it salty, and they turned back on their traces of their own accord without that anyone had defeated them. And when the Muslims saw them (that) they retreated, they pursued them, and they were emboldened against them, and there was a great defeat for them (the Franks). And there were taken of their cavalry about four hundred knights among whom there was a group of Counts and leaders, and there were slain of the men and of the knights to the number of two thousand souls. And there arrived letters concerning this, and birds 128 were flown, and Cairo (al-Kahirah) and Cairo (Misr) were decorated, and the Muslims rejoiced exceedingly on account of this. And there entered the year nine hundred and thirty-six of the Martyrs 129 [1220 AD] and the Nile was low, and the maximum which it reached (was) fifteen cubits, and it did not remain stationary at it 130, but it decreased and continued its decrease. 

And the Canal of Cairo (al-Kahirah) the protected was |64 opened on Thursday, the fourteenth of (the month of) Tut 131, and it (the Canal) dried up on the Thursday which followed it 132, and people walked in the middle of it. And the Bahr Abu'l-Managga was opened (on) the Sunday which was the Feast of the Holy Cross 133. And at that time, the water decreased a whole cubit, and it was of no use, and it did not carry water into the Birkit al-Habas, except streamlets. And as for the Ard at-Tabbalah, it was not watered at all; and there was not irrigated of the lands in this year, except a few, such as the Fayum and the district of Abusir, and of Dingawiah and of Al-Basmur and what was similar to them of the lands of (the Province of) Al-Gharbiah. And he (the Sultan) bore the majority of the captives who were taken at this defeat to Cairo (al-Kahirah) the protected, and he paraded the city with them, and he retained the leaders from among them with the troops so that they might fix terms for the truce. And they deliberated about it, until it was almost decided that they (the Franks) should take Jerusalem, after it had been (re)-built for them, and all that was in their hands of what Al-Malak an-Nasir had conquered, and the affair remained undecided between them. And the price of corn rose, until wheat was sold at two dinars and a half for the ardab, and it was not possible (to obtain) it, except with extreme difficulty. 

Then news arrived that succour had reached the Franks and that the truce had |65 been cancelled. And the order of the Sultan came that all who (wore) at Cairo (al-Kahirah) and Cairo (Misr) should go out to the invaders. And the bells were rung for it, and the majority of the people went out in haste, and he closed the two cities. And the price of wheat returned to a low level on account of the anxiety of the people for themselves, so that every ardab reached one dinar and a half and one dinar and a quarter, and it did not find a buyer. And there was great affliction and severe hardship, except that, at first, they did not harm the Dhimah, but after that, the governor of Cairo (al-Kahirah) seized the Christians, and he hanged them on the doors of their houses, and he caused them to turn the mills. And he said to them: «I wish from you money», and he took from them what they were able and what they were not able (to pay), so that the weavers alone of the Christians in Cairo (al-Kahirah) are recorded to have paid one thousand, three hundred dinars, and the matter became severe for the people. And as for the governor of Cairo (Misr), when he saw what the governor of Cairo (al-Kahirah) had done, he caused to be brought the priests of the Christians, and he said to them: «You have heard what the governor of Cairo (al-Kahirah) has done, and I advise you that you gather together with one another and that you collect among you a thousand dinars, and that you bring them, otherwise, I shall extract them, and I shall not take, except five thousand.». And they complained to him, and they expressed (their) grievance, and he reduced (the amount) to eight hundred dinars, And they went out, (and) they sat in the churches, and they began to extract (the amount). And there were hard days for all the world, and among all what happened in them (was) that the Sultan had, during the time mentioned, marched towards the Franks. And he descended at the side of their entrenchment on the western bank, and Al-Malak al-Faiz descended at the side of their entrenchment on the eastern bank, |66 and they besieged them on both banks. 

And the Sultan sent to the two cities 134 to seek for empty jars and all empty earthenware vessels, in order to fill them with sand and to fill up with them the entrenchment. And this was proclaimed in Cairo (Misr), and there was collected on the bank of the river, in the way of jars and pots, countless thousands, and most of them were brought to the camp. And they returned to discuss about the truce, and the Franks complied with it to some extent, so that the two kings withdraw from their (the Franks') entrenchment on both the banks. Then they (the Franks) returned and they widened the entrenchment and they strengthened the towers, and they renounced the truce. And al-Malik (al-Kamil) was angered, and he sent his brother, Al-Malik al-Faiz, to the East to seek help, and he caused him to dress in mourning, and he caused him to journey in a litter. And the troops of the Franks divided into two parts, a part marched to Damietta by turns night and day, and a part guarded the side of the entrenchment opposite to the troops of the Muslims. And the condition continued thus, giving and taking; and the news came afterwards that the port 135 had become weak, and (that) the majority of those in it had died. And the Sultan prepared seven hundred fighting footmen, and he gave to them a gratification, and he arranged with them that they should make a single attack by night, and should enter with impetuosity into the port. And they did this, and the majority of them was slain, and a few of them surrendered and they passed over (to the Franks). 

And it was only a night or two, after their passing over, that the Franks conquered the port of Damietta in the night (which) was unveiled by the morning of the daytime of Tuesday, the eight of (the month of) |67 Hatur 136, (in the) year nine hundred and thirty-six the aforementioned 137, which corresponds to the twenty-fifth of (the month of) Sa‘ban (in the) year six hundred and sixteen 138. And it was a great night and a remarkable day, and the Muslims did not perceive this 139, until they saw the standards of the Franks and the crosses on the towers and the watch-tower, and, thereupon, they knew that the port 140 was taken. And the kings of the Muslims departed straightway, and they left the merchants and the common people in the camp. And it was (that every) man of them had no interest except to save himself, and they left all their wealth and their merchandise; and, on this occasion also, there was lost in the way of wealth what was not to be counted. And the Sultan came and he descended opposite to Talkha at the head of the river of Asmum on the south. And as for Al-Malak al-Mu‘azzam, the Possessor of Syria, he turned to his lands, and he descended at Gaza. And the reports were contradictory about the conquest of the port 141; some people said (that) it was not conquered except with the collusion of its inhabitants, on account of what they suffered in it in the way of hardship, and some people said (that) it was not conquered except by the sword (and) by force. And it was said that they (the Franks) found in it, in the way of wealth, kantars and kantars of gold and silver. 

And as for the weapons and the chain-armour of the kings and the amirs and the soldiers, he (the Sultan) had made all what was costly in it, that is, Damietta, because it was |68 strongly fortified, and no one thought that it would be taken, And it was said that they (the Franks) found in it six thousand men, and it was said (also) eleven thousand; however, they took captive all whom they found in it, except the Christians. And as for the Muslims, they said that there did not remain in it, except six hundred souls, but this was not correct. And those who were trustworthy related that the gate of the port was closed against forty-six thousand men, apart from women and children. And the Franks fixed their residence in the port 142, and they established their base in it. And it was after the departure of Al-Malik al-Mu‘azzam that the Sultan sent to summon the Companion Safi ad-Din ‘Abd Allah [I]bn 'Ali who had been the wazir of his father, whom he had entrusted with the administration of his kingdom. And he carried this out with circumspection against a group of scribes, Muslims, Christians and Jews; and he inflicted on them punishments, and he demanded from them money, and the prisons were filled with them, and (there were) some of them who departed from their belief through the hardship and the punishment, and (there were) some of them of whom some members were maimed, and they were most unbearable days. And during that time they surveyed the buildings of the people and their properties in Cairo (al-Kahirah) and Cairo (Misr), and they exacted their revenues for two months and they were hard days for the people, and they did not come out from anything, except to enter into what was worse than it. And they suppressed the halls of the hostels altogether and all the inns in which there were sold goods such as linen and other than it. And it was ordered that nothing should be sold, except in the hall of the hostel of the Sultan which (was) in the House of the King, and that the brokerage should be for the Sultan. And they inspected the papers of the people and what (was) in their hands; and the time became hard for the people, and if they had been able to go out, no one would have remained in the land. |69 

And as for the Franks, news of them used to be brought, concerning (their) justice and clemency and fair-dealing which were not to be described. And the black dirhams which they had, reached (in value) one hundred dirhams for one dinar on account of the abundance of them which they found at the port 143, and because they did not deal with them. And when it was the daytime of Tuesday, the sixteenth of (the month of) Amsir 144, in the second week of the Holy Fast 145, there occurred great rains, and they continued to the eve of Wednesday, and Wednesday and the half of the eve of Thursday; and in the second half (of it) there came forth a great wind, and it did not cease until the noon of Thursday, and it demolished many places, and many died under the debris, and it was a wonderful occurrence, the like of which had not been witnessed. Then, after that, the order went out to collect the diyariah 146 which the patriarch used to exact from the dioceses and the churches, and there was delegated for every affair one for this. And he (the Sultan) wrote to the governor of Cairo (Misr) and Cairo (al-Kahirah) to collect what belonged to each of them. And the governor of Cairo (Misr) caused to be brought the priests of the churches, and he said to them: «Give to us what the patriarch used to take from you». And they said: «The custom of Cairo (al-Kahirah) and Cairo (Misr) was not that he (the patriarch) should take anything from them (the churches)». He (the governor) said: «Write for us a certificate that you never paid anything to the patriarch», and one of them hastened and said: «O my sire, we will bring the due of the patriarch, and he who is guarantor in his name for anything, let him discharge (it)». He (the governor) said: «And where (is) the due of the patriarch?» They said:«It is with [I]bn Sadakah», meaning him who has been mentioned before. 

And he (the governor) caused him to be brought, and he |70 said: «I desire the due of the patriarch», and he caused it to he brought straightway. And it was a former due, and in it (were) old things before the dearth, and things (which) the patriarch used not to exact, but their mention in the due (was) to preserve their amount, and they transferred them 147 as they were, and they sent a copy to the Sultan. And his order went out to the governors to exact what it (the copy) contained. And all of them began to aim at getting the better of and justifying himself above the other, and they exacted double the amount, and (as regards) all these days, nothing was seen in time more difficult than they. And there were delegated (people) to extract the money of the diyariat, and the surveying and a sixth of the cost of the fruit of the gardens in Upper Egypt; because they had made this obligatory in all the Land of Egypt (Misr), and they marked the date-palms also; every date-palm five dirhams, besides the customary tax. And there was an amir called Al-Makram [I]bn al-Lamali, and he was a Maghrabian man, and that which was abhorrent to him (were) the Christians. And he arrived in Cairo (Misr), and a group of those of whom he was, attached with ropes some of the Christians and the Jews , and he inflicted on them punishments and scorn, until he took their signatures for an amount of eleven thousand dinars, every one of them according to what was allotted to him, and he despatched it (the amount) with his letter to the Sultan. And he (the Sultan) regarded this as too much, and he disapproved of it, and he ordered that the signatures should be returned to those who signed. And this was a rarity, the like of which did not occur in these days, and the signatures were returned. And [I]bn al-Lamali turned to Upper Egypt (as-Sa‘id) for the taxes of the surveying and the diyariat and the sixth of the cost of the fruit and the plantations of date-palms; every upright date-palm, five dirhams, and this was in all the lands of Egypt. And the condition continued thus, and affliction increased on the people, so that a number |71 hanged themselves, and a number departed from their faith, but this did not avail them. 

Then, when it was towards the Holy (Feast of) Easter --- and this was the end of (the month of) Baramhat 148 --- there came upon the land in the way of locusts something the like of which had never been seen in the lands of Egypt, so that they filled the open space and veiled the heaven and devoured everything green. And the people feared from this, and they understood that it was a chastisement from God for the successive oppression, and they (the locusts) (were) on everything, so that they destroyed almost (everything). And on the eve of Monday which was (after) the morning of Easter Sunday which corresponds to the eleventh of (the month of) Baramudah 149, there came a black wind, so that the people thought that the resurrection 150 had begun, and they thought that no wall would remain standing on the earth; and there fell down of the date-palms many, and there appeared fires in the sky, and it was a great night, and no one could sleep on it. And when it was morning, this disturbance and confusion abated, and they found (that) some places had fallen down, and some of them were safe. And the demand and the confiscation remained as before, and the bishops (were) as agents, and (they were) beaten, and the Christians of the land also. 

And the year nine hundred and thirty-seven 151 [1221 AD] entered, and the Nile reached in this blessed year to two fingers above seventeen cubits, and it the year nine hundred and thirty-seven corresponds to the year six hundred and seventeen of the Islamic Higrah. And the prices remained as before, increasing and decreasing. Very excellent wheat for one hundred and fifty dinars the hundred ardabs, and barley and beans for a hundred dinars for a hundred ardabs; as for |72 chickpeas there were few at two dinars the ardab. And more was irrigated in the lands than what was irrigated in the past year, and seeds were exhausted through the need of the people and their fear 152. And he (the Sultan) commanded that the grains of the merchants should he taken and an advance 153 should be made (for sowing) the lands. And documents with the price should be written to the account of the military and their subalterns till a prosperous time (arrived). And they did this in Cairo (al-Kahirah) and Cairo (Misr), and all the lands of Egypt, so that it would happen (that) they would enter into a house, and (if) they found in it wheat, were it but a waibah, they would take (it), and they would leave (the house) without anything. And when they planted, God sent at the end of (the months of) Babah 154 and Hatur 155 locusts, the like of which with regard to abundance and greatness had never been seen in the lands of Egypt. And they were red, but those which came in the Tax Year were yellow; and they devoured most of what was planted, and they went up especially to the places which (were) around the two cities 156, and the Fayum. Then price(s) fluctuated in (the month of) Tubah 157, and wheat reached a hundred dirhams the ardab, and barley and beans sixty dirhams the ardab; and corn was scarce in the hands of the people, and famine spread, and the poor of the people multiplied, and the wretched and the beggars (were) at the doors. And as for the affair of the enemy (the Franks) in this long period it was in (the same) state. Sometimes, the fleet of the Muslims went out on the sea, and (if) they chanced on ships with provisions and reinforcements, they would take them; and sometimes they (the Franks) would go out to |73 some of the ports and the Egyptian or Syrian coasts, and they would pillage and take captives and return. 

And the tribulation became intense in the way of dearness and fear and oppression; and good oil 158 reached three dirhams the ratl, and the Church was without him who pastures her and directs her. Then prices increased also until (it was) that wheat reached three dinars the ardab, and it did not cease thus until the Feast of Easter. And it (the wheat) went down (in price), and the people became optimistic, and it did not cease to go down, until wheat reached one dinar the ardab, and barley and beans, half a dinar the ardab. And the news arrived of the coming out of a king from the East, called King of China (as-Sin) 159, and with him people from the Turks, the Kata and the Kipchaks, and that he had overcome Khwarzim Shah, King of Persia. And he conquered Khwarzim, and Bukhara, and Al-Maraghah and many cities from the Land of Persia, and had made captive their inhabitants. And he reached to the Kurds, and he overcame them, and he came to the Land of Arbela (Irbil); and the lands were afraid of him, because it was related that with him (were) many thousands of soldiers and people, a hundred thousand or more. And Al-Malik al-Asraf, son of Al-Malik al-‘Adil, the Possessor of Khilat and Martyropolis and Harran and Singar and what is with them up to the Land of Mosul, arrived. 

And the intention of the |74 mentioned enemy was (to capture) the Possessor of Arbela, and they found that he had arrived at ? Sahrur, and he did not meet with them, hut he returned immediately without fighting and without defeat. And Al-Malik al-Asraf returned to Harran, and his brother Al-Malik al-Mu‘azzam, Possessor of Syria, journeyed to him and they both met there. And he assembled the troops, and they both raised an army, and they set out for Egypt to aid their brother Al-Malik al-Kamil against his enemy who were the Franks, the possessors of Damietta. And there had reached the Franks succour also by way of the sea. And they gathered together, and they mobilized, and they went out from Damietta by land and on the river, moving slowly from camp to camp, until they reached opposite to the camp of the Muslims at the head of the river at Asmum on the north, and the river remained a separation between them. And the lands were troubled on account of their going forth, and the Sultan sent (an order) to march to all the Muslims to go out to them. And the governors gathered them, and they appointed at every market a group of men to incite them and to take them away; and they collected a multitude, and they sent to them (the Muslims) a great number and well armed. And, in the meanwhile, the Sultan had despatched the amir Husam ad-Din Yunis, governor of Alexandria, to Cairo (al-Kabirah) and Cairo (Misr) to evacuate from them all without exception, and he sent to every work an amir to do thus. And the common of the people and the majority of them (the inhabitants) went out, so that there did not remain, except for a decrepit old man or a child (who) had not reached puberty. 

And the two cities were closed in the daytime of Sunday, the eighteenth of (the month of) Gumada |75 al-Akhar, (in the) year six hundred and eighteen 160 [1221 AD] which corresponds to the fifteenth of (the month of) Misra 161. And they remained closed for the rest of Monday, so that nothing was found to be eaten, and the people did not trade on these two days; but the bells were rung in the two cities. (And) of all the groups of the Muslims he who spent this night in the city would be hanged. And the governors on horseback rushed upon the people in their houses, and they took them out from them, and he whom they found who did not journey, was pierced through and burned in it, so that there did not remain, except the women. And these were days, the like of which in the way of fear and hardship and anxiety for all the people, had not been witnessed; and they were the days of (the rise of) the Nile, but none paid attention to it nor went up to it. Then there arrived Al-Malik al-Mu‘azzam, Sultan of Syria, and Al-Malik al-Asraf, Sultan of the East, and some other kings with them, such as the Possessor of Emesa (Hims) and the Possessor of Hamah, and the troops and the armies; and they crossed over from Asmun, and. they cut off the Franks and they were between them and Damietta by land. And the fleet of the Muslims went out from the mouth of the river Al-Mahallat al-bahari, and it cut off (communications) between the ships of the Franks and the port (of Damietta). And they were (in such a position) that provisions could not come to them either by land or by river, and news could not come to them concerning Damietta, and news could not come to it concerning them, and they continued thus for some days. |76 

And the Muslims, as time passed, became stronger, and they (the Franks) became weaker, and their supplies were exhausted and they faced destruction. And they came to an agreement regarding their affair on the eve of the day of Friday 162, the fourth of (the month of) An-Nasi 163, that they should kindle fires and abandon some of the tents of which they had no need, and that they should depart and attack the troops of the Muslims which were between them and Damietta; for there was no strength in them to join the port (of Damietta) and to defend the wall, for if they defended it, they would gain no advantage. And their plan was denounced to the Sultan on the same night, and he rode and the troops rode, and it was the time of (the inundation of) the Nile, and they (the Franks) were inexperienced with regard to the country. And the Sultan commanded to open the canals which were on their (the Franks') way and to break the causeways and their channels on alt sides. And they (the Franks) retreated until they reached Al-Baramun, and they saw themselves in the midst of the inundation without a way for them. And they assembled in one place, and the fighting was fierce for the rest of the eve of Friday, and the day of Friday and the eve of Saturday 164 until it was the morning of Saturday, and messengers were coming frequently. And the Sultan discussed the matter with the company, and he informed them that these companies of the Franks were doomed to extermination, but that (their) extermination would not be until (there was) a like extermination of the Muslims. Then Damietta would never surrender, because there were in it ninety thousand warriors, besides those who had left (it). 

And they had made |77 around it seven moats, and the people would become weak at looking at it (Damietta), much less besieging it, because they would not (be able) to annihilate this garrison, except its double were annihilated (of the Muslims), and their opinion was agreed upon for a truce, and messengers were passing frequently between them. And a truce was arranged that they should deliver up Damietta, and (that) each side should give back what it had of the captives of the other from the beginning of the time (of the war) up tell now; and the truce was arranged for eight years. And the king 165 and the two kings 166 and the leaders stayed with the Sultan, until they 167 delivered up Damietta. And the Franks took with them hostages, for fear that Al-Malik as-Salih, son of the Sultan, and Kulb ad-Din, his brother, and Sams ad-Din, the son of his sister, and a group of the notables of the amirs should prove false to them. And they left them (the hostages) in a ship at the shore of the Salt Sea 168. And the Sultan showed kindness to the king (of the Franks) and to those who were with him, the like of which is not to be told. And he provided them with all what they needed, and he honoured them with great honour, and he commanded that there should be borne to their camp bread, and pomegranates and melons which were not to be counted. And he commanded the people that they should cross over to their 169 camp to trade with them, and their tents became, as it were, a market of the Muslims, and they sold and they bought. 

And the Sultan and the Muslims rejoiced exceedingly, because they were expecting that they would be overcome and (that) the lands would pass out from their hands. And they |78 would have given Jerusalem, and the Littoral and another fief in exchange for Damietta, and the Franks did not do (this), but they gave it thus, and it was a subject of joy and exultation for them 170. And there entered the year nine hundred and thirty-eight 171 and during this there arrived forty-five galleys of the troops of the Emperor 172 which were coming for relief to Damietta. And when they heard what had happened in the way of the truce and that the kings (were) hostages, they returned. And the Sultan began to equip the Franks for departure. And among them (were) those who went by sea, and he caused to be given to them provisions and supplies. And he made ready with them his brother, the Possessor of the Fortress of Ga‘abar 173, until he sent them off. And for some of them he extended the causeways to the western bank, so that they might pass over on their way to Damietta, because the eastern bank was not bound to them by oath 174. And the large raft which belonged to them and their ships around it (was) opposite to them on the river, and they continued for some days until they arrived. And the majority of them journeyed, and those who remained at Damietta went out to its vessels. And Damietta was surrendered in the first decade of (the month of) Tut 175

And the Sultan journeyed to it, he and the troops, and he remained at it until the rest of the Franks had journeyed, and he took leave of the Frankish king at the |79 sea; and he returned to Asmum, and he remained at it until he took leave of his brothers and the troops of Syria and the East. And he returned to Cairo (al-Kahirah), and he crossed over to it in the daytime of Friday, the eighth of (the month of) Ramadan, (in the) year six hundred and eighteen 176 [1221 AD] and his crossing over (was) a remarkable day and the two cities were decorated, the like of which was not told (before), and the people rejoiced and were in safety. And the Nile reached in this year up to.......177. And there was formed between the Sultan and the King of Acre 178 a great confirmed friendship, and gifts were borne from the one to the other, and suppositions became numerous. And some people said that he 179 was in collusion (with the Muslims), and that (it was) he who had done this deed with the Franks, and some people said (that) it was not of his (own) consent, but (it was) the Legate who had advised the going out 180, and (that) it was not possible that he should disagree with him, lest he (the Legate) should accuse him of collusion 181. And he 182 had said to him (the Legate):«We must not go out from this our city, namely, Damietta, until the Emperor 183 come to discuss with us; and it is certain that if we remain behind our entrenchments a thousand years, we shall not pay heed to anyone, even if they come as the number of the sands. 

And these troops of whom you hearest, they |80 are of no account to us, because (there is) not one of them but has his work to do, and he has an enemy. And their intention is besiege us for a month or two or three (months), but they will not obtain any advantage over us, and everyone will return to his place; and we shall grow stronger, and our wills will grow stronger, and our enemy will become less and will be weakened, and if we get possession of Egypt in twenty years, we shall have made haste». And be (the Legate) did not accept (this) from him, but he said: «You are a dissembler». He said: «I shall go out with thee, and it shall be according to the will of the Lord». And. they went out until they came to Sarimsah, and he (the king of Acre) said to him (the Legate): «We ought to stay here this year, and we should dig an entrenchment round us, and we should sow (the land) from here up to Damietta, and our ships will come to us, and birds will not be able to fly between us and Damietta. And if this crowd (of Muslims) depart, and reinforcements come to us, Cairo (Misr) will be two days within our reach without hindrance». And he (the Legate) said: «You are a dissembler, I shall not take Cairo (Misr) except in these days». 

And they went on until they reached opposite to the mouth of the river Al-Mahallah which was before Al-Baramun from which the ships of the Muslims went out. And he (the king of Acre) said to him (the Legate): «Nothing (is) more dangerous for us than this river. Give to me this great ship which is with thee, we will place it at the mouth of this river, and we will place with it ten galleys, (and) the wind will |81 he prevented from passing by here, and we shall be safe from its 184 harm». And he (the Legate) said: «By the troth of my religion, I shall not place these crosses which (are) at the top of this mast, except on the wall of Cairo (al-Kahirah)». He (the king of Acre) said to him (the Legate): «Journey on, and we shall see what will happen», and if he had not done this, the Franks would have destroyed him. Then the Sultan departed to Abyar at which he stayed during the summer. Then he came down to Damietta, and he commanded that a causeway should be made on the bank of the lake 185 from Burah to the Mediterranean Sea to prevent the water of the river from overllowing into the lake. And he imposed on the amirs and the soldiers, every possessor of a thousand dinars, (the obligation to provide) two fire-ships, and they did this. And the causeway was completed. Then he began with the construction of a fortress on the bank of the lake near to the Mile, and he made in it eleven towers. And he imposed (the cost of) the towers on the amirs according to their means. On some of them he imposed (the cost of) one tower only, and on some of them (the cost of) a tower for two amirs, and (on) others (the cost of) a tower for three or four (amirs). 

And the year nine hundred and thirty-nine of the Pure Martyrs 186 [1223 AD] entered, and the Nile rose in this year to seven fingers above eighteen cubits, and prices became cheap and the land was prosperous. And in this year Al-Malik al Asraf, Sultan of the East, came to the Land of Egypt for the purpose of pleasure and service to his brother, the Sultan Al-Malak al-Kamil. And he received him with hospitality and provisions at Rami, and he passed over to Cairo |82 (al-Kahirah) on Thursday, the tenth of (the month of) Tubah 187 of this year. 

And it (Cairo) was finely decorated, the like of which was not told, and this day was among its great, famous days. And Al-Malak al-Asraf went out into the Land of Egypt from Cairo (al-Kahirah) to Al-Kharakamah to Asmum, to Abyar, to the Island of Egypt (Misr). And his descent at the Island was in the days of (the inundation of) the blessed Nile, and illuminations were lit on every night with the product of wax and oil, and (such) care had not been witnessed. And as for the night of the measuring of the Nilometer (al-Mikyas), they added to the combustibles of the two banks 188 the fuei of rafts of wood, and they had found them in the river, and the fuel of boats and fire-ships with their furnishings in the middle of the river. And all the days of it were feasts. And prices became cheap to an extreme so that wheat was sold at thirty dinars the hundred ardabs, and barley and beans at twenty dinars the hundred ardabs, and bread (was) ten ratls for a dirham, and meat for half a dirham and an eighth the ratl, and fowls for five dirhams the ten, and nothing was expensive. And clover during the days of the increase of the Nile was twenty-five dirhams the ardab; and, when the Nile decreased, clover was sold for sixty-six (dirhams) the ardab, and clover, for fifty-four dirhams the ardab, and this (was) a thing of wonder, because the Nile was not high; |83 however, (these) affairs (are) in the hand of God the Exalted. 

And some of the archons discussed with As-Sahib the wazir concerning the consecration of the patriarch, and he ordered that the hermit who (was) at Abyar should be sought, and that he should be consecrated in his (David's) place for five hundred dinars, (and he should pay them) to the Treasury; and they began to seek the mentioned sum and spread it over the churches 189. And he (the wazir) was not able (to do) it, and he did not continue thus with it, and the affair stopped and discussions were broken off. And Al-Malak al-Asraf departed from the belvedere of Saif al-Islam which was at the Pool of the Elephant, in the daytime of Saturday, the eleventh of (the month of) Sa‘aban, (in the) year six hundred and twenty 190 [1223 AD], which corresponds to the eleventh of (the month of) Tut 191, and the Sultan Al-Malik al-Kamil went out to bid him farewell. And the confiscations were as before, and the armies were full of scribes and possessors of diwans, and the wazir knew of nothing, except to collect for the Sultan from all sides. 

And there entered the year nine hundred and forty 192 [1223 AD], and the Nile in this year reached up to twelve fingers above seventeen cubits, and prices decreased, and things were many and available, and the world was at peace from sedition, and nothing was expensive except gold and wax. And the exchange reached forty-three dirhams for a dinar, and wax (was) eight dirhams and a half the ratl, and the conditions remained as before. 

And at the end of (the month of) Kihak 193 in this year the |84 news arrived that the king Al-Mas‘ud, the Possessor of the Yemen, the son of the Sultan Al-Malik al-Kamil, had come to the Land of Egypt and that he had reached 'Aydhab 194. And the Sultan sent out his son, Al-Malik as-Salih, and the son of his brother Al-Malik al-Muzzafar, Taki ad-Din, and the son of his brother Sams al-Miluk, son of Al-Malik al-‘Azz son of Salah ad-Din, and those who were with them in the way of amirs and of soldiers to meet him, and they met him near to Kus. Then he reached Cairo (al-Kahirah) in (the month of) Amsir 195 of the mentioned year, bearing gifts great and many, and a quantity of money. And among all what arrived with him in the way of wonders, (were) three elephants, two of which no greater than they had ever been seen, (they were) like a great island; and it was related that the age of each of them (was) under twenty years, and (there was) another small (one), its age (being) eight years. And the elders and the writers of histories related that nothing bad been brought to the lands greater than they, and his (al-Mas‘ud's) crossing over (was) a remarkable day. And there had been despatched to the Higaz 196, before that, troops to attend on him together with the son of his uncle Al-Malik al-Gawad Muzzafar ad-Din, son of Maudud. And he (Al-Mas‘ud) took a contrary way to them, and they went to Yanbu‘ 197, and it is an impregnable fortress of the lands of the Higaz, and it was barred to Al-Malik al-Mas‘ud. A company had assembled at it, and they had revolted against him, and they conquered it by the sword, and they took captive everyone who (was) in it, and they left at it their vicegerent, and they returned. And Al-Malik al-Mas‘ud remained at Cairo (al-Kahirah), residing at the Castle, and conditions continued as they were; and as-Sahib Safi ad-Din had all things in his hands. And prices (remained) as they were throughout the year, and things increased in cheapness, |85 and the Nile reached in this year to four fingers above eighteen cubits. 

Then there entered the year nine hundred and forty-one 198 [1224 AD], and the Sultan Al-Malik al-Kamil was residing in his prosperous Citadel at Cairo (al-Kahirah), and Al-Malik al-Mas'ud was residing (there) also. And as-Sahib Ibn Sukr, the administrator of affairs, (was) occupied, and the Church (was) without a patriarch, and prices (were) as before. And when, in the course of the year, news reached the Sultan from some people concerning some of the amirs about a suspicious affair, he fettered some of them, and he banished some of them and he sequestered their property and cut off their means of living, and he demanded from some money. And during the blessed Lent the collectors approached As-Sahib, and they said to him: «Thou hast done every thing well, except the affair of the Christians for they are without a patriarch, and they have suffered harm, and their laws have been weakened». And he said to them: «Something 199 is necessary for the Sultan»; and they agreed with him on five hundred dinars. And he wrote to the Sultan and he sought his permission. And his (the Sultan's) answer came that they should choose (a patriarch); and the collectors together with a group of the common people and they chose a monk called Paul al-Busi. And he had come at that time from his monastery to be treated, because he was (sick) of hepatic fever, and As-Sahib assisted them in this. And some of the people chose the priest David [I]bn John known as Ibn Laklak, but they did not venture to manifest this, because the mentioned priest (David) (was) well-known (to be) a friend of the elder Nis al-Khilafah [I]bn al-Munkat; and the mentioned elder was an enemy of As-Sahib, not going to him in (his) house, contrary to everyone in the land. 

And everyone of |86 whom he heard that he had greeted him (Nis al-Khilafah) in the way, he would work to destroy him, especially he who was his (Nis al-Khilafah's) friend or his companion; and so everyone who wished for the priest David would conceal it and not manifest it out of fear of As-Sahib. And the case of Paul al-Busi became difficult, and he 200 hastened, and he brought the bishops, and they wrote for him a written testimony in which the majority of the people wrote approving of him out of consideration for As-Sahib. However, some people without importance stood before the Sultan, and they said: «O our Sire, we shall never agree to this Al-Busi, and we have him who is more fit than he». And he (the Sultan) said: «And who is he?» They said: «David Ibn Laklak, and we beg of our Sire that he bring the two of them before him and hear the discourse of both of them and their learning. And he whom he prefers, him we would accept, for our Sire is the representative of God on His earth», and he (the Sultan) settled to bring them both. And the elder Nis al-Khilafah had a discussion with the Sultan concerning this. And he (the Sultan) established the elements, and the terms were arranged between the friends of both (parties), so that they made the amount one thousand dinars. And as for the friends of David, they said that they would borrow it and would arrange for it, and they would not impose it on anyone. And as for the friends of Paul, they had agreed with As-Sahib that they should exact it from the Christians in both Upper and Lower Egypt and all the people without exception. And the Sultan intended to bring them both on an appointed day, because they were both in the district of Cairo (Misr), and that the Patriarch of the Melchites should come with both, and that they should all be present. And the Sultan caused to be brought the jurisconsults and the notables of the people; and there crossed over with David two of his friends, and as for Paul, they did not leave anyone to cross over with him. 

And David came out preferred, but the |87 matter came to a standstill on account of what Fakhr ad-Din Uthman had said to the Sultan concerning the offer of As-Sahib. And the people found two parties, and they returned to what they had of hatred and enmity, and the making of false written testimonies against the priest David, and the hearing of them to the Sultan, until they wore out his favour in the case. And the time was short and the days were passing and the Feast 201 came, and conditions remained as before. And, at the end of this year, there died As-Sahib the wazir, and he was buried at Cairo (al-Kahirah) in a place near to his house which he had constructed for himself. And he had a great bearing forth and a great funeral. All who came from the two cities witnessed it, and the Sultan sent his sons and his relatives, (and) they prayed over him. 

Then there entered the year nine hundred and forty-two 202 [1225 AD] in (the month of) Sa‘ban, (in the) year six hundred and twenty-two 203, and the Nile did not come up fully and did not reach the tax-level 204, and prices fluctuated. And on the eve of Wednesday 205, the sixth of (the month of) Tut 206, the Canal was cut 207 before the time secretly, and no one knew about it, and the price of corn soared, and people sought for it, and the Sultan forbade anyone to sell anything of it at all. Then it (the Nile) reached the tax-level on the mentioned day, and the people were quietened, and they hoped that the water would increase, but the condition continued (thus). And the water decreased, and corn was in this year in great quantity, and the highest price of first class wheat was fixed at twenty dirhams the ardab, and barley, at thirteen dirhams, and beans, at fourteen dirhams, and all (was) at the rate, and nothing was dear, |88 neither meat nor other than it. And the extreme limit to which it (the Nile) reached in this year (was) sixteen fingers above sixteen cubits, and it did not come to completion, and the Nilometer was not completed in this year, and it was not proclaimed. Then (it was) that the Sultan became very suspicious with regard to the amirs, and he fettered another group. Then he seized the sons of As-Sahib and the male slaves, and he punished them, and he demanded from them money. And this time was a time of hardship, because the Sultan demanded the remainder (of the tax) from the people, and he ordered to tax the successors 208, and to demand (from them) money. And he was residing at the protected Citadel, and his son, the Possessor of the Yemen, (was) with him at Cairo (al-Kahirah). And all the troops, after they had gone out, at the end of the Tax Year, to the outskirts of Cairo (al-Kahirah), lived under tents for some days, and all of them were wearing their equipments and their trappings, and they were reviewed, every amir according to his order, and it was a remarkable day, the like of it had not been seen. Then he (the Sultan) commanded that none of them should go out to the Rif, and (that) they should remain at Cairo (al-Kahirah), both the small and the great of them. And gold was during these days unobtainable, so that the exchange reached to forty-four dirhams and a half the dinar, and it continued thus. And the Sultan ordered that a mint should be opened at the Citadel, and another mint at Cairo (Misr), beside the mint which was at Cairo (al-Kahirah). And the mint which was at the Citadel was opened, and round dirhams were struck at it, and gold became extremely dear until it was exhausted, and the dirhams were sold at fifty dirhams for a dinar, and the minimum (was) at forty-seven dirhams for a dinar. 

Then the mentioned dirhams were issued, and it was ordered to sell them at thirty-seven dirhams for a dinar, and that the old should be at forty-two |89 dirhams for a dinar, and the people were at this time in great distress and confusion. And the Sultan was demanding the money, and he was collecting it by every means. And the sons of As-Sahib and the male-slaves (were) tortured and punished, and they were selling, and reimbursing. Then (it was) that the water (of the Nile) came up to what was mentioned before, and it was not completed, and it decreased to thirteen cubits. Then it (the water) returned, (and) it increased at the end of (the month of) Babah 209, until it reached some fingers above fifteen cubits. Then it decreased, until it returned to thirteen cubits. Then it returned to increase, until it reached what it had been at first, and it inundated all what the people had sown. And it returned to pass over the Canal, and boats crossed over on it, in the half of (the month of) Hatur 210, after it 211 had become dry and people had walked in it, and everyone marvelled at this affair. And in these days, one of the monks of the Monastery of Abba Macarius 212 embraced al-Islam, and he caluminated the monks to the Sultan, and he mentioned that among them (were) those who sought refuge in monasticism from the burden of the tax, and that they had debts and inheritances 213 to the Diwan. And the Sultan ordered that one of the amirs should go out with him to find out about them. 

And an amir known as Ibn Sirwin went out with him 214, and he reached the monasteries in the Wadi Habib 215, and he did not make an investigation, but he |90 seized the monks, and he beat them, and he hanged them, and he punished them, until he imposed on them six hundred dinars. And he extracted from them (the dinars) four hundred dinars, and he brought them with him; and he came to an agreement with them (the monks) that they should collect the other two hundred (dinars) before he returned to take them from them; and he bore the mentioned amount to the Sultan, and it was four hundred dinars. And he said to him: «I went to the monasteries, and I said to the monks: Swear that there is not with you a debt to the Sultan, and they compounded for their oath for six hundred dinars, and I have brought from them (the dinars) four hundred dinars, and the rest I shall bring. And I did not separate from them, until they had collected them». And a group of the chiefs of the monks came, and they stood before the Sultan --- may God magnify his victory! --- and they complained to him of their affair. And when he understood their affair, he commanded that what had been carried away from them should be returned to them. And. they received it, and they placed it on a dish, and they lighted candies, and they went round all Cairo (al-Kahirah) with it; and it was an affair which amazed everyone, and (it was) a miracle which was manifested on behalf of the fathers of the monasteries. Then he (the Sultan) commanded that they (the people) should not deal with the old dirhams at all, but he who had anything of them, should go with it to the money-changer, and he would receive gold at the rate of forty-five dirhams a dinar, and should return to exchange the gold for the new dirhams at the rate of thirty-seven dirhams for a dinar. And this was in name only, because the gold was not pure, being unobtainable, and everyone who had anything (of it) would not offer it. However, it was in name only, so that their transaction might be justified according to their religion, because they (the Muslims) say that to sell silver for silver is not sanctioned, but forbidden, and likewise gold for gold, and everything like it. And the people were dealing with them 216, but in secret; every ten old dirhams they calculated |91 at eight dirhams and a quarter for a new (dirham). 

And they used to reduce every dirham by three kharaib 217. And the dirhams which were collected at the money-changer were borne to the Citadel 218, and they were the very coins which had been struck; and these round dirhams were made without increase or decrease. And there was a gain for the Sultan from them of one hundred and seventy-five dinars for every thousand dinars, and the mint used to make every day one hundred thousand dirhams, the profit of which every day (was) almost five hundred dinars, and conditions continued thus. And the people murmured, and they sustained loss, and they asked help from God the Exalted, but He did not help them. And gold completely disappeared, so that the dinar began to be exchanged at fifty old dirhams, and its possessor would not accept to sell it, and there was not found one to offer it, and the people sustained by this a clear loss, because every dirham (which) the people had went down to a half and a quarter and the half of a quarter, certainly not more. And after this, they struck small coins and they sold them, every four small coins at a quarter of a dirham, and the people were optimistic with them, more than with the new dirhams; and the people remained in this condition perplexed. And messengers of Khawarizm Shah, king of Persia, came and it was not known for what reason they came. And in the Holy Lent of this year the friends of the priest David were stirred to seek the patriarchate for him, and they assembled with a Greek (Rumi) man, a merchant, (who) used to visit frequently the lands from Acre and other than it, and his name was Mufarrag, and he was near to the Sultan --- may God magnify his victory! --- and to the amir Fakhr ad-Din, equerry of the House 219, and they were agreed to pay to the Sultan ---may God perpetuate his kingdom! --- two thousand dinars for the |92 consecration of David, and he (the Sultan) required one thousand of them in advance, and the other thousand, when the affair of the consecration should be accomplished. 

And seven persons of his (David's) friends assembled, and they went to a man, a merchant, called Al-Hilli, and they borrowed from him a thousand dinars at one thousand two hundred dinars for two months, and they delivered them to Mufar-rag. And the matter was postponed, and the adversaries of David heard of this, and they came together. And they were irate, and they wrote to the Sultan that they were of a different opinion, and the affair between them became serious according to the usual custom. And they accepted (to pay) the two thousand dinars, and they apportioned it over the churches and the Christians, on the condition that David should not be mentioned. And they submitted the affair to the Sultan, and he did not accept (it), but he said to them: «Agree with your companions, and the affair continued thus, and the document of the thousand dinars (was) with Mufarrag. And the Sultan did not return it 220 and he did not accept it, because he was waiting, for their agreement. And during this, he (the Sultan) seized some of the controllers who were hostile to David; and in the end it was decided that there should be written four pieces of paper among all of which (should be the name) David, and that they should be placed on the altar, and (that) he whose name should come out, should be consecrated. However, the friends of David did not agree to the lot 221 because they said: «We have not (another) than our companion and who is like unto him, so that we may associate him with him, and (that) a lot be made between them». And the dispute and the scheming and the strife was very strong, and (there was) a hard time for the people, and especially for the scribes. 

And when he (the |93 Sultan) seized those controllers, everyone was fettered by himself, and the discussion (concerning) the patriarchate ceased. And for some of them (the controllers) he took their signatures for ten thousand dinars, and from some of them he took their signatures for live thousand dinars, and from a few three thousand dinars. And the time for the people was hard and severe, though there was cheapness (of prices) in spite of the hardness of the heart of the Sultan towards them. And in this period there arrived the messenger of the Amir of the Faithful Abu Nasr, az-Zahir bi 'Amr Allah, who had succeeded his father, An-Nasr, because he had died in this year, from Baghdad, and with him splendid robes of honour, black (and) gold embroidered, and there arrived among them those which were tailored with gold, as prescribed for the riding out of the great Sultan. And the Sultan and his sons wore the robes of honour together with the turbans. And he caused his notables and the great ones of the amirs to be clothed with robes of honour less rich; and to him among them who wore the turban, he gave a turban, and to him among them who wore a high head-dress (:!), he gave a high head-dress, and all this (was) from what came from Bagdad (Baghdad). And that day was a remarkable clay. And there arrived after that a messenger of the King of ar-Rum 222, the Possessor of Iconium and Philomelion, and a messenger of the Kurd, and many messengers from every place; and alarming news was spread after that, that the Khawarizm Shah had overcome the troops of the Kurd and had conquered Tiflis and ? Ancyra, and the news concerning this spread. 

And after this, the delay was drawn out for the friends of the priest David, and the owner of the thousand dinars demanded it together with its interest from them, because they had taken it from him for two months for |94 one thousand two hundred dinars. And when the two months were passed, they gave to him another interest 223. And they consulted the Sultan, and they took back the mentioned thousand dinars, and they returned it to its owner with its interest; and the crowds kept silent and idle talk ceased. Then the Nile came, and it flowed well, then it decreased from the sixteenth of (the month of) Abib 224 up to the twentieth of it, (to) the extent of ten fingers. Then the decrease was regained, and it increased to the normal increase. And in these days the news arrived that Al-Malik al-Mu‘azzam, Sultan of Syria, had departed from Damascus, making for Hamab, and that he 5 had stirred up Khawarizm Shah against the Land of Khilat which is a possession of Al-Malik al-Asraf, the Possessor of the East, and the Sultan, the Possessor of Egypt, (who was) before him 225. And he commanded the Egyptian troops to go out to the Land of Jerusalem and the Littoral and what bordered Damascus, and they pillaged and they burned and they took captives, and they had equipped for this. And the people after this (were) in straits and ruin on account of the dirhams and their differences, and the word of the Sultan not to use the old dirham. And it was abundant in the hands of the people, and also for their detestation of the new dirham, because they used to lose by it the fourth of their money, because they used to come to the money-changers or to the Mint, and for forty-five old dirhams they would be given thirty-seven new dirhams. And value for value and standard for standard, their loss would be the quarter or less than it. 

And the proclamation continued that he who dealt with it 226 should lose his wealth and his blood 227, and (that) that which was found with him should |95 be burned with him, and (it should be) a warning; and gold was very scarce. And the Sultan ordered that the exchange of the dinar with the new (dirhams) should be forty dirhams for a dinar. And if a man came to a money-changer to seek from him a dinar for dirhams, he (the moneychanger) would not take less than forty-three and a half new dirhams, otherwise, he would deny that he had any gold at all. And the people were in this manner in great hardship, though prices were cheap and things were to be found, and the reason of it (was that) poverty and distress overpowered the people. And the tax 228 was exacted in this year from the Dhimah 229, two dinars for every head 230 (who) exchanged forty-eight old dirhams for one dinar; (and) the tax amounted to one hundred dirhams in Cairo (al-Kahirah) and Cairo (Misr), and as for the towns outside, the tax amounted to one hundred and twenty dirhams. And people were delegated from the Sultanic Highness, called surveyors and inspectors, (who) went out to the southern and the northern districts, and they imposed on the people taxes, among which (was) that they demanded from them the dues of the cemeteries and the graves, and the value of the bricks and the stones with which they built their houses. And they laid claim to the property of the houses, and they demanded of them (the possessors) a proof (of possession), and they said: «All lands are the property of the Sultan, and you from whence have you possessed this? Prove (it) by the law (as-Sharia') otherwise, everything (is) the property of the Sultan. And begin (to pay) the rent from the time you have dwelt (there) and up to now». And they revised for them the surveyance for the rent and other than it, and they increased it for them; and those who evaluated multiplied, and the doors were opened to them, and a great amount was collected in this manner which impoverished all the people. 

And there was in |96 Cairo (Misr) a man called ‘Abd al-Kadr and he had guaranteed the tribute of the Dhimah 231 in Cairo (al-Kahirah) and Cairo (Misr). And they suffered great harm from him, and he used to oppress them exceedingly, and he would stop their work and he would take their female slaves and their male slaves (Mamalik) by forced, and he would shut them up in confinement, and he would say: «These (are) Muslims, and you have corrupted them and have prevailed over them. And either you pay extra for them or their work will be stopped». And the lords of the State used to aid him in this to inform them of their 232 origin. And in this year the canal of Adh-Dhikr which (is) from the bridge of Maqs was opened, and it penetrated to the canal of Cairo (al-Kahirah) known as Al-Hakimi, and there was made at its month a dam which was joined to the usual dam. And in this year the two rivers 233 met in the day-time of Friday, the seventh of (the month of) Misra 234 which corresponds to the fourth of (the month of) Sa‘ban of the year six hundred and twenty three 235 [1227 AD], and the price(s) were cheap and things were to be found, except that wages were very miserable. Then (it was) that the Sultan --- may God empower his victory! --- resolved to set out for Syria on account of a dispute which had occurred between him and his brother, the Possessor of Damascus. And he ordered the amirs and the soldiers to make preparations for their affairs, and the movement concerning this was strengthened, and the people prepared themselves as they could, and they went out to the Lake 236

And on Wednesday, the twenty-six of (the month of) Misra 237, |97 which corresponds to the twenty-third of (the month of) Sa‘ban (in the) year six hundred and twenty-three 238 there arrived a solitary from Upper Egypt and he announced that the Nile would come to its measure on........239; and the Nile was at that time at Cairo (Misr) at one finger above sixteen (cubits), and it became on the twenty-seventh of (the month of) Misra 240 increased by three fingers, and on the twenty-eighth by three fingers, and on the twenty-ninth by one finger, and it stayed at eight fingers above sixteen cubits. Then it stopped at the end of (the month of) Misra 241 and the beginning of (the month of) an-Nasi 242, and maybe it fluctuated. And on this day there arrived the news of the death of the Imam Az-Zahir Abu Nasr Muhammad, the new caliph, and he did not (reign) more than six months. And the immolation 243 for him was made at the Birkat al-Hubb 244 on the mentioned day, and it was Monday, the first of (the month of) An-Nasi, and the Sultan was departing, purposing (to march to) Syria. And the prices were cheap, and things were available, except that the people were weak in the extreme, and the State was harsh on them. 

Then the year nine hundred and forty-three of the Martyrs 245 [1227 AD] entered, and the water (of the Nile) did not fluctuate. Then it increased, and the dam of the two canals of Al-Manga were opened, the first on Tuesday, the fourth of (the month of) Tut 246, and the measure reached its normal on Wednesday, the fifth 247, and the Canal 248 was |98 opened according to the custom on Thursday the sixth 249. And as for the New Canal from Al-Maks, from the canal known as the canal of Adh-Dh k r, it had been opened before. Then the canal Al-Hakimi rejoined it, and there was made for it a dam at the Bab al-Kantarah at the side of the square (al-Maidan) which (is) there. And the increase of the Nile continued up to the fourteenth of (the month of) Babah 250, and it reached twelve fingers above eighteen cubits. And it was among the wonders of the world, because it was not related (that) a Nile had stopped at such a stopping, and had come to such a coming up; (and) then had decreased to such a decrease slowly from two fingers and from three, and all things became cheap. And Al-Malik al-Mu‘azzam, the Possessor of Syria became reconciled to Al-Malik al-Asraf, the Possessor of the East, (and with) his brother, the Sultan Al-Malik al-Kamil --- may God empower his victory! --- and the hatred which was between them vanished; and our Sire, Al-Malik al-Kamil, returned with his troops from Al-'Abbasah to Cairo (al-Kahirah) the protected. And condition(s) became settled in his noble kingdom, and he extended justice to the subjects, and he dispensed goodness to them; and they were days of abundance and of many good things. Then the news arrived concerning the caliph Al-Imam Al-Mustansir Abu Ga'far Al-Mansur, and prayers were said for him, and the coinage was struck in his name, and he was the son of Al-Imam Az-Zahir Abu Nasr Muhammad the deceased. And in these days, the Sire, Al-Malik al-Mas‘ud, the Possessor of the Yemen prepared to go to his land, and he despatched most of his goods by sea, and he also was resolved to go by sea. Then he changed his opinion about this, and he caused his camp to go out to the Birkat, and his resolution was |99 strengthened to travel by land. 

Then (it was) that the Sultan --- may God empower his victory! --- began to descend frequently at the belvedere of the Birkat known as the Belvedere of Saif al-Islam. And he would command the inhabitants at it to illuminate it on the nights on which he descended there; and he launched on the Birkat boats and fire-ships, and he used to sail in them (the boats) every night, and to go round under its houses, and to give presents to the people, bestowing on them dinars and dirhams and food and drinks and fruits beside these, and he would drew nigh to the people and he would converse with them. And the people used to show ingenuity in what they did in the way of illumination and other than it. And these days were days of pleasure and entertainment and enjoyment and. abundance and security. (And) the Sultan ---may God perpetuate his kingdom! ---used to go frequently from the Birkat to the Island 251, and from the Island to the Birkat, and the nights of the Birkat were marvellous and wonderful to an extreme. And al-Malik al-Mascud made efforts to journey to the Yemen, and he returned 252 with military equipment, and he took for him from all the artisans him who would travel with him to his land, and he prepared himself for (travel on) land and sea, and he journeyed to the Yemen over Mecca on land. Then (it was) that the crops were excellent and good things were abundant, and the prices became cheap, and affairs were quiet, and the world under the shadow of the Sultan was secure. And Al-Malik al-Mas'ud in this year sent a man from the inhabitants of India. His form (was) the form of human beings, but on all his face and his body (there was) hair, and wool like the wool of a bear so that his beard was not distinguished from the hair of his face; and with him (there was) an interpreter (who) spoke with him in Indian. And he (the hairy man) related that (he was) from the inhabitants of a house, all of them thus, the men and the women of them. 

And the Sultan gave to |100 him a lodging, and he was generous towards him, and he appointed for him and additional allowance to support him. And the blessed Lent came, and no talks took place concerning the affair of the patriarchate or other than it. And there occurred in it 253 an evil occurrence, and it happened that one of the scribes known as Al-Asad Ibn al-Kardus was serving as a scribe in the prosperous Treasury, and he had brought from the port of Alexandria merchandise according to the custom, and the evening came upon them before they had examined it, and they left it in the outer boxes. And when it was morning, they controlled by the list the merchandise, and the found (that) the Sousan linen was missing from it. And they said: «Who was in the Treasury yesterday, while the cloth was being placed in it?». And some of them mentioned this Al-Asad the scribe. And [I]bn Ramadan, the possessor of the Diwan, wrote to the Sultan an account of what had happened. And the Sultan commanded to seize all of them and to take precautions against then. And he seized all of them, and. a guard was set over their womenfolk. And the mentioned Al-Asad was the intended (person) among them, and his son was seized, and he was punished, and he bore witness against his father that he had taken it. Then the Sousan linen was produced after that by a person, an assessor in the Treasury. He mentioned that a woman had cast it down for evidence, and with it a piece of paper, and she left them and she fled; and that (when) they looked at it, (they recognized) that it was from the house of Al-Asad [I]bn al-Kardus, and that the piece of paper was from them. And on it (was): «Conceal what God hath concealed, and have mercy, (and) you shall find mercy», and something (like) this. 

And he bore it straightway to the Sultan together with what had been submitted in the way of the witnessing of his son against him (Al-Asad). And the Sultan commanded that his |101 (Al-As‘ad's) right hand he cut off; and every amir in the State interceded for him, but he (the Sultan) did not accept, and his (Al-As‘ad's) hand was cut off on Sunday, and he died on the following Sunday; and he was patient satisfied, and thankful to God the Exalted, and he did not confess anything at all. And hardship and persecution befell the denomination for a number of days, especially, the scribes. Then the corn ripened, and prices became cheap, so that wheat was sold in the land of the Sa‘id (Upper Egypt) for four dirhams and a half the ardab, and the barley for three dirhams the ardab and likewise the rambling vetch and the lupines, and as for the turnips and the linseed, they were sold for eight dirhams the ardab; and it was something the like of which had not been heard. And linseed-oil, for thirty dirhams an oil-measure, and the water-melons, for a dirham the kantar, and grapes, for seven dirhams the kantar, and all eatables of this kind. And there were good things, the like of which had not been related since a number of years, only the amount of the provisions was little, and the earnings were small. And the people were complaining of their stagnant conditions, so that a group of the grain-merchants left their shops and deserted the markets on account of the stagnation. And the exchange of gold declined until it reached forty-one dirhams and a half for a dinar. And the time of the blessed Nile came, and it (the flood-water) stopped at first, then it flowed swiftly, then it stopped for some days in the (month of) Misra 254, and it decreased one or two fingers, then it regained them and increased. 

Then there entered the year nine hundred and forty-four 255 [1228 AD], and the water had not reached its plenitude. Then its increase continued, and it reached its plenitude on Thursday, the fourth of (the month of) Tut 256, and it increased until it reached ten lingers above seventeen cubits on the eighteenth of (the month of) Tut 257, and it decreased from the nineteenth of it (Tut) 258 considerably, and the |102 fields came forth, and the prices fluctuated somewhat, then they decreased to their limit. And the Sultan ordered the amirs and the soldiers to go forth to the outskirts of Cairo (al-Kahirah), and to be dressed and ranged in ranks so that he might go out to review them on horses in the desert. And they did this, and all of them went out with those who collected with them in the way of Bedouins and companions and foot-soldiers. And it was a great assembly and a remarkable day, and they were in their uniforms, rank by rank, on the right and the left and in the centre, from the Gate of Cairo 259 to the Birkat al-Gubb. And the Sultan passed by them on horseback, inspecting rank by rank, and checking all of them, and he numbered them and he left them. And he passed from one to another rank on Tuesday, the fourteenth of (the month of) Sawal of the year six hundred and twenty-four 260. And he (the Sultan) commanded them to return from the desert', and (that) every amir and his company should pass the night in his home, not in the tents; and (that) when it was morning they should pass by him. And there did not remain to any amir in his camp, except one tent according to his order, no more. And they passed the night, and when it was morning, they passed by the tent which the Sultan had erected on a mound near to the Gate an-Nasr, and around it wooden gratings, and its roof was nailed; and he (the Sultan) was sitting behind the grating with his intimates and the learned men from the servants of his State. 

And the amirs began |103 to pass by him (the Sultan), every amir in the order arranged for them, according to the paper that such a one (should come) after such a one, and such a one, after such a one, and no one might transgress this. And the first of those who passed was the Sire, Al-Malik as-Salah, son of the Sultan, because he was the head of the right (wing). And the amirs continued to pass on Wednesday, the fifteenth of (the month of) Sawal the aforementioned, from the prayer of the morning to the cry of the muezzin of the evening, rank after rank, so that there was no interruption of the passing by for one moment, except at the end of one rank and the beginning of that one which (was) after it; the wings (of the army), and the dromedaries, and the troops and the chain-mail men, and those with the trappings, and the drummers, and the trumpeters, so that the earth quaked, and there were troops the like of which had not been related. Then the Sultan passed by in the evening, after the passing-by of them all. Then he ordered them that they should girth (their horses), and should ride in the daytime of Sunday, the nineteenth of (the month of) Sawal which followed the aforementioned Wednesday, on account of the presentation of the Sire, Al-Malik al-‘Adil, his youngest son; and they dressed, and they rode, but not as on the first two days, but they were more limited than that, and they went forth in the direction of the Mosque (Gama‘) [I]bn Tulun under the Citadel, and they pranced, and a banquet was made at the square which (is) there. And the Sultan descended from the Citadel on horseback, and he passed by the ranks, and he passed by the banquet, and the commanded it (to commence), and the people snatched away it (the food) according to the custom, and he went up to the protected Citadel.  

Then his |104 son was presented, and he caused to be circumcised with him a crowd of the sons of the people and of the beggars who had no means of support, in order to receive through them the forgiveness of God. And the affair took place, when he (the Sultan) descended at the Birkat al-Fil, and he drank at it, and (there were) gifts and presents and favours and fuel of the two banks and garments for the people; and he launched boats and fire-ships on it (the lake), as had taken place in the past year. And after that, the Sultan --- may God empower his victory! --- went out to the port of Alexandria to examine its conditions and to see after its affairs, because there was a rumour that the enemy 261 was active. And the news arrived in (the month of) Dhu'l-Higgah (in the) year six hundred and twenty-four 262 concerning the death of Al-Malik al-Mu‘azzam, Sultan of Damascus and Jerusalem, and of the enthronement of his son Al-Malik an-Nasr after him in his kingdom. And the affair was settled for him, and condolence was offered at Alexandria by the presence of the Sultan Al-Malik al-Kamil. And conditions remained as they had been before, and the prices were low and things were abundant and good (and) available, only the people were complaining of the insufficiency of the means of livelihood, and the lack of profit and the scarcity of the dirham and the dinar. 

And in these days, at the end of (the month of) Kihak 263, the Sultan, Al-Malik al-Kamil returned from the port of Alexandria, and he made his way by the monasteries, the Monastery of Abba ([A]bu) Macarius in the Wadi Habib,264 |105 and he descended at it, and the monks entertained him and all who were with him, and they multiplied for them good things of what was found with the monks. And the Sultan was gracious to them, and he signed (an order) for them for five hundred ardabs of corn, three hundred of wheat and barley, and one hundred of beans and a hundred of chick-peas. And he honoured them and he drew them nigh to him, and he protected them, and he wrote for them an announcement, that he who became a monk should not be forced (to pay) a tax, and (that) he should not be requested (to do) it; and that whatsoever monk died, his inheritance (should be) for the monastic community, and (that it should) not (be) for the heirs according to the flesh who belonged to him, and (that) there (should be) no vexation for it (the monastic community) from the diwans of the Sultan. And they spoke with him about the affair of the patriarch and they said to him: «O our Sire, we are without a patriarch, and our conditions have deteriorated, and there were at this monastery over eighty priests who (were) in it, and to-day (there are) only four, because there is not found he who has been ordained in place of them». And he said to them: «Choose him whom you will, and I shall advance him for you». They said: «O our Sire, we have no money, and the patriarch is asked (to pay) money». And he said to them: «Agree on him whom you wish, and no one shall demand of you anything». And their decision was not confirmed for anyone. And the Sultan departed from them, and he was grateful to them, and thus the rest of the troops. Then (there occurred) the arrival of the messenger of the Sultan who had gone with the messenger of the Emperor 265, who had arrived in the Tax-Year, and there arrived with him another messenger on the part of the mentioned Emperor, except that he was not like that messenger in his honours, but he was below him; and he brought with him gifts of horses and cloths and jewels, and carnivorous animals 266, and he stayed according to the custom. And |106 the Sultan ---may God empower his victory! ---started to journey to Syria, he and his troops, and he set out from Cairo (al-Kahirah) on Sunday, the twenty-ninth of (the month of) Abib 267 of the mentioned year. And he journeyed directly, and he descended at Tall al-‘Aglul; his dwelling 268, between Daron and Gaza, after he had appointed as his representative in Egypt his son, Al-Malik as-Salah, and had established him as Sultan in it, and had made him vicegerent in it. 

And there entered the year nine hundred and forty-five 269 [1229 AD]. Then the Sultan transferred from Tall Al-‘Aglul from dwelling to dwelling, until he reached Sichem (Nablus), and he stayed in it, and his armies went on directly to the castle of [I]bn Mu‘in ad-Din, and he passed by Jerusalem, and the Littoral from Daron up to the mentioned Castle. And, in the meantime, there arrived the Emperor 270 from the West in Cyprus, and from Cyprus (he went) to Acre, and his messengers came to the Sultan with precious gifts and a great suite. And they were two distinguished persons, one of the two of them was the Possessor of Sidon, and the other, the Count Thomas, viceroy of the King 270, and the Sultan received them with a great reception; and all the troops rode on the day of their arrival, and they were accorded |107 great honours, and messengers returned from the Sultan to them, and from them to the Sultan. And this Emperor was a wise man, gracious, of good intention, and praiseworthy in reputation 271, and the condition continued thus. And the Sultan ---may God empower his victory! ---bestowed on him gifts of precious stones and mules and dromedaries and camels and cloths, and besides this rarities of kings. And after that the Sultan departed from Sichem. and he returned to Magdalia, (and) he descended at it, and he transferred from the camp to villages in the neighbourhood of Ascalon, and there, there reached him his brother, Al-Malik al-Asraf, the Possessor of the East, on the day of the Feast of ‘Aid al-Adha of the year six hundred and twenty-five 272, and it was a remarkable day. And the messengers of the Emperor did not interrupt (coming), and the Sultan --- may God empower his victory! --- sent to bring from Egypt the elephant which Al-Malik al-Ma‘sud, the Possessor of the Yemen and the Higaz had brought in company with a number of elephants, and there had not remained of them except it, because all of them had died. And he sent the mentioned elephant to the Emperor and the Emperor departed from Acre, and he descended at Jaffa to rebuild it, after the building of Caesarea. And the Nile of Egypt reached in this year to twenty fingers above seventeen cubits. And prices were very slack in it (the year), and Syria (was) the contrary of this. And the troops were in straits, and (there was) dearth, so that they sold their horses and their equipment. |108 

And the Sultan departed (and) he descended at Tall al-‘Aglul, (and) he stayed in it, and Al-Malik al-Asraf with him. And Al-Malik an-Nasir, son of Al-Malik al-Mu‘azzam, Possessor of Damascus returned to deliver up his land from Ghor to Gaza, and there did not remain in the hand of the Sultan (anything) of Syria, except Gaza and Daron. And there reached the Sultan at this dwelling 273 Al-Malik al-Mugahid 274, the Possessor of Emesa (Hims), (and) he stayed with him for a time. And the messengers of the Emperor 275 were coming and going, and he was at Jaffa, and the messengers of the Sultan were coming and going to him also. And, in the meantime, Al-Malik al-Asraf departed, and there departed with him the Possessor of Emesa. And confidents from the troops of Damascus used to come frequently for the service of the Sultan, and he would welcome them and would give to them (gifts); and he would bestow on them robes of honour and he would give to them fiefs. And a number did not come, and the last of those who came was ‘Izz ad-Din Aidmar, and he was the noblest of their amirs, and he held the rank of equerry of the House and more than that. And the Sultan gave to him in the way of favours what is not to be described, and he was generous to him, and he brought him nigh to him, and he raised his rank, and he gave to him, among all of what he gave to him, the house of the Companion Sukr in Cairo (al-Kahirah) for a dwelling, and he treated him with great kindness. 

And at this time, corn fluctuated at Cairo (Misr), and wheat reached fifty dinars for one |109 hundred ardabs and barley like it, or a little less; then it decreased a little, and the wheat became eighteen dirhams the ardah and the barley, thirteen dirhams. And it was spread abroad that the Sultan ---may God empower his victory! ---had made peace with the Emperor, on the terms that he (the Sultan) would give to him (the Emperor) Jerusalem and some towns of his (the Sultan's) districts, and they were those which are on the way from Acre to him (the Emperor), and Bethlehem (was) among all these. Then the rumour was confirmed, and the Emperor received the city of Jerusalem and Bethlehem, and Lydda, and what came after that from Jerusalem up to Acre, and Jaffa. And it was in the course of this time that he (the Emperor) had (re-)built Caesarea, and Jaffa. And the affair was confirmed between him (the Emperor) and the Sultan --- may God perpetuate his kingdom! And the Emperor passed over to Jerusalem at the beginning of the Noble Fast 276 of this year, and it was a great day, and they (the Muslims) received the (Dome of) the Rock. Then the Emperor stayed in Jerusalem two days, not more, and he went out from it to Acre, and he remained at it until the completion of the Feast 277, and he appointed in the lands deputies whom he trusted, and he travelled by sea to his land. 

And the Sultan, Al-Mulik al-Asraf, |110 had taken some of the troops, and he turned to Damascus to descend on it; and the great Sultan, Al-Malik al-Kamil, joined him, and they all descended together on it. And the troops from Syria and the East assembled with them, and they straitened it, and they besieged it and they fought against it. And, in the meantime, news arrived of the death of Al-Malik al-Mas‘ud, the Possessor of the Yemen and the Higaz, at Mecca, because he had departed from the Yemen, making for the Land of Egypt. And he brought with him all what he found, and all his rarities, and all what he had acquired, and (what) his predecessor had acquired in the course of time, and he despatched it by land and by sea, and he died at Mecca. And his possessions and his treasures reached Cairo (al-Kahirah) the protected, and it was a great collection, not to be described. And praise (be) to the Living (One) Who dieth not! And there arrived his wives and his family and his male-slaves after that. And prices became cheap in Egypt, and they returned to their limits. And the besieging and the fighting continued at Damascus, and messengers were coming and going between the Sultan and the son of his brother, until it was decided that he should deliver up Damascus, and should be satisfied with Al-Karak 278 and Sichem and Ghor and Al-Balka, and the rest of the land of Jerusalem. And the Sultan received it on the eighth of (the month of) Sa‘ban (in the) year six hundred and twenty-six 279

And it was decided, that Al-Malik al-Asraf should give it (Damascus) on the condition, that there should be delivered to him Edessa (Ruha) |111 and Harran and Sarug and the fortress and what comes after it, and the amirs of the Sultan and his confidents went to deliver those. And when they delivered up these lands, (then) Al-Malik al-Asraf would deliver up Damascus. And the Sultan (Al-Malik al-Asraf) transferred from it (Damascus) to other than it. And the Nile stopped (rising) in this year considerably, at its beginning, so that the twenty-fifth of (the month of) Abib 280 came, and it was at live cubits. Then it flowed very much from the twenty-sixth of it 281. And the wheat and the corn were both of them expensive, and the wheat was sold at twenty dirhams the ardab in secret, because its sale was forbidden, except to those who were in need among the millers, at sixteen dirhams the ardab. Then the Nile rose considerably from the twenty-six of (the month of) Abib 282, so that it used to increase daily twenty fingers or about that. And the two rivers 283 met on the night 284 of Thursday, the ninth of (the month of) Misra 285. And the prices decreased and the people were assured, and it (the river) reached the measure in the daytime of Tuesday, the twenty-first of the mentioned Misra 286, and cheapness increased, and the people were assured in the way of food and what resembled it. 

And, in these days, the news arrived that the Sultan had levied troops and had despatched them from Damascus to Hamah to take it and to deliver it up to the son |112 of his brother, Al-Malik al-Muzaffar [I]bn al-Malik al-Mansur [I]bn Taki ad-Din, because it was the promise to him from his father that it (should be) for him after him. And the death of his father occurred, and he was with the Sultan Al-Malik al-Kamil in the Land of Egypt, at the time when the Franks (were) at Damietta. And he prevailed over him, as regards the right (of succession), and a blood brother to him, called Al-Malik an-Nasir, took precedence over him, and he remained at it (Damascus) for a period, and Al-Malik al-Mu‘azzam used to support him. And when Al-Malik al-Mu‘azzam died, and Damascus had been conquered, the Sultan ---may God empower his victory! --- wished that every one should obtain his rightful due. And he gave orders to the troops, and they marched with the mentioned Al-Malik al-Muzzafar, and they descended on Hamah, and they attacked it, and they beseiged it, but Al-Malik an-Nasir who was in it fortified the fortress and strengthened it. And it was an impregnable fortified fortress, and he stored up in it in the way of provisions what was sufficient for many years; and the town remained besieged, and (there was) fighting at it. And the Nile 287 at Cairo (Misr) stopped, and it decreased a few fingers, after it had reached the tax level 288, and tbe people distrusted it. 

Then the year nine hundred and forty-six 289 entered [1230 AD], and the Nile came up to sixteen cubits at the beginning of (the month of) Tut 10, and it reached its measure a second time in the daytime of Thursday. And the Canal was cut on the mentioned day, and it was a great day; and prices were lowered and |113 they decreased, and good things and provisions were plentiful. And Hamah surrendered peacefully, because its Possessor had departed from it, seeking the service of the Sultan, and that he might be conciliated with him, and precautions were taken against him. And those who remained behind him in the fortress saw that (there was) a separation between them and him, and (that) there was nothing for them (to do) except to enter into communication with his brother, Al-Malik al-Muzzafar, and to cause him to come up to the fortress. And they delivered up to him the kingdom, at the beginning of (the month of) Sawal of the mentioned year. And the Egyptian troops returned, and their leader (was) the amir Fakhr ad-Din, equerry of the House, and they descended on Ba‘albekk, and they besieged it, but they did not remain at it, except for a few days, until they took the city, and it was a protection to the fortress for a long time, because its possessor was an elderly governor. And Al-Malik al-Asraf caused the troops to descend on the mentioned fortress to besiege it, and to prevent him who would go up to it, or (that) provisions should be borne to it. And the troops in the service of the Sultan proceeded to Harran, because the Sultan had gone before, at the time of the descent of the troops on Hamah, and the Sultan had taken from Al-Malik al-Asraf Harran and Edessa and Sarug and Raqqah and Raz al-‘Ain. And he (the Sultan) stayed in the mentioned lands to guard them, and he directed their conditions. 

And Khwarizm Shah came, and he was the greatest king of Persia, and he descended on Khilat, and he besieged it and he cut off from it provisions, and he took precautions against it. And he had, as regards armies, an incalculable (number), and he passed the winter at it, and its possessors were holding it tenaciously, until |114 the winter had passed. And he (Khwarizm Shah) advanced to it, and he fought against it, and he took it with the sword, and he killed in it a great company of soldiers and of the inhabitants of the town. Then he ceased killing them, and when the Sultan learned of this, he returned to Cairo (al-Kahirah) the protected, in (the month of) Bau'unah 290 which corresponded to the month of Ragab of the mentioned year, and he entered into it on the eighteenth day of it 291. And his son, during the period of his absence, had been harsh on the common people, and he had oppressed the subjects, and he had begun to employ them on forced labour without wages in a garden and on a belvedere which he was building. And when the Sultan learned of this, he removed him, and he took those who were around him and those who were making this seem good to him. Some of them he fettered and some of them he beat, and he expropriated them, and some he exiled. And he caused to return to the diwans the employees, and he punished them for the acquittance of the money and the exaction of the rest of the affairs, and no one was in (such) affliction as they were. And he cast the elder Nis al-Khilafat [A]bu'l-Fatuh into a dungeon a second time, because he had commanded him that he should go out to Alexandria and examine it. And he excused himself and he sought exemption from this, and he (the Sultan) was enraged against him, and he commanded him to be cast into the dungeon. And the Nile 292 stopped up to the end of (the month of) Abib 293, and the price of corn fluctuated until it reached twenty dirhams the ardab of wheat, and of barley, ten dirhams and a half the ardab, and the people were alarmed at this. Then the Nile stopped until the tenth of (the month of) Misra 294 came, and it was at four cubits. And wheat was sought for, and twenty-six or twenty-seven dirhams the ardab was paid for it. Then it was cried, and it was priced |115 at twenty dirhams the ardab, and the barley at twelve dirhams the ardab, and likewise the beans. And the Sultan took a decision about this, a decision the like of which had not been seen. 

Then God the Exalted was gracious, and He gave the Nile a great, uninterrupted, drive from the eleventh of (the month of) Misra 295 up to the twentieth of it 296; and it increased in ten days seven cubits, and the two rivers 297 were joined on Wednesday, the twenty-first of (the month of) Misra 298. And it was the third (day) of the Feast of the Muslims, which was the Lesser Bairam, and the people rejoiced at this with a great rejoicing, and the prices decreased, and the people were happy, and they were optimistic for good things. And the Nile rose after this until the twenty-fifth of (the month of) Misra 299, and it used to increase every day half a cubit. Then its increase decreased till Sunday the second of the Intercalary Month (an-Nasi) 300, and it was the fourteenth of (the month of) Sawal (in the) year six hundred and twenty-seven 301, and it (the Nile) stopped, and it had reached some lingers above fourteen cubits. And the news arrived concerning the defeat of Khwarizm on Tuesday, the sixteenth of (the month of) Sawal of the mentioned year, which corresponded to the fourth of the Intercalary Month 302, and the good news about this was proclaimed for three days. And there was bestowed upon the messenger who arrived from Damascus with the news, splendid robes of honour, and he was given a mare with a leathern apron and gold |116 sequins and a thousand dinars in a purse, and he rode with that, and he went round Cairo (al-Kahirah) and Cairo (Misr). 

And there entered the year nine hundred and forty-seven of the Righteous Martyrs 303 [1231 AD] in the daytime of Thursday, the twelfth of (the month of) Sawal (in the) year six hundred and twenty-seventh of the Lunar (Year) 304. And the Nile had stopped, and the people were distressed at that, and wheat was priced at twenty dirhams the ardah, and it was not sold, except to the millers according to the quantity they were wont to use, or by an allowance from the governor. And (as regards) grain, its price fluctuated, and bread was eight ratls a dirham. And the Canal was cut, without (the river) being full, on Wednesday the seventh of (the month of) Tut 305 which corresponded to the twenty-fourth of (the month of) Sawal (in the) year six hundred and twenty-seven, and it (the Canal) remained up to two days before it reached the Bab al-Khark, and after three days it reached up to the Wicket Gate, and it stopped there. And the water reached up to twenty-three fingers above fourteen cubits; and no one drank in this year from the Canal, and. no water-carrier drew water from it, and no ferry-boat was required on it, because it could be waded; and it decreased from the seventeenth of (the month of) Tut 306 which was the Feast of the Cross. And there came in the mentioned (month of) Tut a heat, the like of which had not been seen. 

Then the Nile recovered some of the deficiency on the twenty-fourth of (the month of) Tut 307 up |117 to its end, some fingers which were of no avail for it, and the prices rose. And the Sultan ordered a price-control and that the wheat should not be sold, except at twenty dirhams the ardab, and he allotted to every granary a limited amount for the sake of the millers. And the people refrained from selling and procuring corn, and the affair became oppressive for the people, and bread became unobtainable in the markets; and if it were found, there would be in it, in the way of impurities, what is not to be described; afterwards, the taste and the smell were altered, because the people were not wont to sell the wheat, except the old and weeviled, and the millers were not wont to find other than it. And they used to make (it) secretly in this state and weeviled; and they were not able to buy anything, because the allottment (of the wheat was) for the millers, and they did not give anything of it to anyone. And the possessors of the wheat would not accept to sell anything at this price, except under constraint; and this state remained till the beginning of (the month of) Hatur 308, and wheat was lacking. And the Sultan ordered to set free the price, and on the day of its setting free it (the wheat) was sold for sixty dirhams the ardab. Then it (the price) went back to forty (dirhams), and it continued thus for a period. And as for linseed-oil, it reached to one hundred and two dirhams a jar, and then it went down to ninety (dirhams) and below this, and it continued thus, and it was the most profitable of the merchandise in this year; and likewise what regards grains and turnips. And in (the month of) Tubah 309 of the mentioned year, he (the Sultan) ordered to dig out the Canal of Cairo (al-Kahirah), and he imposed (this) on the possessors of houses and gardens which (were) at it, and the people accepted that and they suffered thereby much loss. 

And the House 310 used to impose a fine of thirty dirhams and below it according to the value of the house and |118 its width. And, likewise, he ordered in all the lands that their canals should be dug out and their causeways should be strengthened, and (that) there should be opened for them (the lands) new channels which would provide irrigation from the small branches of the Nile; and all this (was imposed) on those who had fiefs and the inhabitants of the lands. Then he (the Sultan) ordered towards the end of (the month of) Amsir 311 that the Canal of Cairo (Misr) should be dug out from the side of the House of the King up to the mouth of the Canal of Cairo (al-Kahirah), and he imposed this on the possessors of houses in Cairo (Misr) and Roda which (were) at the canal. And they imposed this as a duty on the people, and they made it with measuring-rods, the measuring-rod being seven cubits long, to the width of four or five rods, according: to the distance of the place from the canal or its nearness, with a depth of fifteen cubits exactly; and the measuring-rod represented ten dinars and more. And the price(s) fluctuated, and wheat reached to sixty dirhams the ardab, and barley, to thirty dirhams, and all the cereals in proportion. And the river 312 dried up, the like of which had not been related, and the boulders in it appeared from (the month of) Amsir 313, and they scraped the small boats; and it was said that these (the boulders) which (were) at the bottom of the river 314 at the time mentioned, (were) three and three-quarter cubits. And the condition continued thus, and the prices (were) high, and the people (were) in great affliction, because their conditions were straitened to an extreme. 

And the twenty-fifth of (the month of) Bau'unah 315 came in which the conditions of the Nile are forecast; and at the bottom (there was) one and three-quarter |119 cubits 316, and it was little, the like of which had not been related, and the water stopped all (the month of) Abib 317. Then it increased in (the month of) Misra 318, and it came to fifteen cubits; then it stopped (during) the Intercalary Month (an-Nasi) 319, and the people despaired of it. 

Then there entered the year nine hundred and forty-eight of the Righteous Martyrs 320 [1232 AD] and the two canals of Al-Manga were cut for fear of the decrease of the water 321, and likewise all the large canals 322. And God permitted its 323 increase, and it increased in (the month of) Tut 324, a thing (which) had not been known at all. And it (the Nile) came up to its measure on the ninth of it (Tut) 325, and its increase was completed at ten fingers above seventeen cubits. And all the lands were irrigated, because the Sultan had arranged the lands with an arrangement (which) no one had arranged. And the people of every occupation began to construct their causeways and to dig out their watercourses and to bring the water into them from distant places through the causeways which were made over them. And all the lands were irrigated, and there was not dried up of them except the high banks to which no attention is paid; and with that, (it was) that there was irrigated by this water what was not wont to he irrigated, except by eighteen cubits (or) nineteen cubits (of water), and all this was by the management of our Sire, the Sultan, and his good supervision. And (as for) the coinage, there was much falsification and deterioration in it, and it happened (that) in Upper Egypt there were those who struck it (the |120 coinage) outside the Mint, (and) this was frequent and widespread.

And it was exchanged, every sixteen coins for one black dirham, and there was not (a difference) between them and the exchange in gold with dirhams, except half a dirham per dinar or three-quarters (of a dirham), and the people were satisfied with them, and no one returned them. And the Sultan commanded that it should be proclaimed that they should not deal except with the coinage of the Sultan, and what appeared other than that would be clipped and rejected; and he appointed for this money-changers, and thereby there was much loss for the people. Then (it was) that its exchange became cheaper, and the dinar became forty-five silver dirhams. Then it advanced gradually until it reached on the day of writing it 326, and it was the twenty-six of (the month of) Abib 327, to eighty silver dirhams for a dinar. And (as for) the black dirhams, every ten dirhams (was) for eighteen silver dirhams--- the Egyptian dirhams being thirty silver (coins). And as for the silver dirhams they were worth, every dirham, six dirhams and a quarter in silver. And there did not remain in the hands of the people except silver (dirhams), because the Diwan of the Sultan would not accept them in any dealings, nor as a rent for property, nor as a surety, nor for selling and buying. And the work (of making) coinage in the Mint ceased, and as time passed, they became cheap.

Then (it was) that there occurred in this year a marvellous happening, and this (was) that (there was) a man, a priest, an instructed monk, known as Abu Sa‘id [I]bn al-‘Afif, whose brother's wife had purchased a Greek (Rumiah) female-slave from a Frankish man, (and) then she had sold her to a man of the itinerant merchants from the lands of the Franks. And when this (affair) reached our Sire, the Sultan, he disapproved of it |121 to an extreme, and he commanded that the priest and the wife of his brother and her sister should be sold. And they were cried in the market of the slaves; and it was an affliction, the like of which had not been heard of. And a blessed man bought them, in origin a Christian from Syria from the Maronites, and he had professed Al-Islam; and he bought them for sixty dinars, and the people departed from them, and they collected it (the money) for them, and they redeemed them. And this man (the Maronite) was good to them to an extreme. And as for the priest, he went out to the Monastery of ‘Arabah 328 and he remained in it; and (as for) the two women, one of the two of them was a nun, and both of them were saintly, and they were set free. And the Sultan journeyed with the troops to Al-Mansurah on the Feast of Easter of this year, and it was in Gumada al-Akhar (in the) year six hundred and twenty-nine of the Lunar (Year) 329, and he went to Damascus and from Damascus to the East, because an enemy had gone forth against the lands of Persia and the ‘Irak, known as Kay-Kubad in a great number, the number (of which) could not be counted; and he had defeated Khwarizm Shah and he had captured his lands and had ruined them, and he had reached to the limits of the lands of Baghdad. 

And the Caliph, the Imam al-Mustansir Abu Ga‘far al-Mansur, sent from Baghdad to the Sultan two messengers of high rank, one of the two of them was turbaned, and the other (was) with a triangular headdress, from his most confidential mamluks, and they had a suite and honour, the like of which for a messenger was |122 not known. And the Sultan provided for them, with analogous solicitude, and he appointed for them in the way of residence and treatment what was beyond description. And the two of them had brought with them the robes of honour of the illustrious caliphate for the Sultan --- may God empower his victory! --- and for his relatives and his intimates, and the promise of the rule of the lands and of the mamluks which (were) in the hands of our Sultan. And their arrival was the cause (and) the reason of the journey of the Sultan --- may God empower his victory! --- and the reports of this Caliph were the best of reports in the way of justice and benevolence and avoidance of oppression and blame, and his restoration of what had been ruined from past time(s). And he surpassed in merit all men, so that gold multiplied in the hands of the people, and there came of it (the gold) to Egypt a great quantity on account of the abundance of his generosity and benevolence to all his subjects and his intimates. Then (it was) that the Sultan, Al-Malik al-Kamil, journeyed to protected Syria in (the month of) Baramudah 330 of this year which corresponded to Gumada al-Akhar (in the) year six hundred and twenty-nine 331, according to what has been mentioned before. And he made for the East and he made for Kay-Kubad, and he was repulsed before him, and he did not resist at all, and he departed from the lands. And the Sultan --- may God empower his victory! --- descended on Amid and he besieged it. And the blessed Nile fulfilled its promise on the second of (the month of) An-Nasi 332 after it had stopped for many days, for the flood-water had reached it on the sixteenth of (the month of) Misra 333, and the completion was delayed after it up to this date. And money multiplied very much, and it cheapened until |123 the dinar reached to ninety silver dirhams, and the silver dirhams to seven dirhams, and the people suffered from this. 

Then the year nine hundred and forty-nine 334 [1233 AD] entered, and the Nile came up until it reached eighteen cubits, and its increase extended to the seventh of (the month of) Babah 335, and it increased in this month, (and) the like of its increase had not been witnessed. And this (was) that it increased on the second and the third and the fifth of it 336 two fingers, two fingers every day, and it was the cubit of the eighteenth on the sixth, and the seventh of it was the last of its increase, every day three fingers. And the prices became cheap, and the wheat was sold at twenty dirhams the ardab of silver (money), and the barley at ten dirhams the ardab, and all things became cheap, except that the silver (coins) became much cheaper, and they reached to one hundred and twenty dirhams for a dinar, and the silver dirhams for nine silver dirhams. And the affair(s) became oppressive for the people, because the Diwan of the Sultan did not extract from the people in all their dealings, except gold or black dirhams 337, and there did not remain in the hands of the people, except silver (coins), and they were in great affliction for this reason. And the news arrived that the Sultan ---may God empower his victory! ---conquered Amid and all its fortresses, and they were seventy-two fortresses, and there did not remain of them, except one fortress named the Fortress Kaifa. And there died in the beginning of this year Sams al-Miluk, son of the sister of the Sultan, and the Amir Fakhr ad-Din ‘Uthman, equerry of the House, and a group of senior amirs. And they (the people) experienced a dearth to an extent not to be described; bread at three |124 silver dirhams the ratl, and a basket of barley for two silver dirhams, and chaff for forty silver dirhams the camel-load, and it was not available; and the majority of the troops arrived on foot and naked to Cairo (al-Kahirah) the protected. 

Then there arrived the command of the Sultan, on the date of Sunday, the end of (the month of) Kihak 338 which corresponded to the twelfth of (the month of) Rabi‘ al-Awal (in the) year six hundred and thirty 339, to stop the striking of silver (coins) and the dealing with them; and it was cried concerning them on Monday which followed the mentioned day. And they were sold from that day by the ratl in the Coppersmiths Market for two and a half dirhams and two and a quarter dirhams the rail, and the money became a quarter (of its value), and a large amount was lost to the people. Then they were sold after that for one dirham and a quarter the rail and a large amount (of money) was lost to the people; but they were happy at their abolition, so as to see the end of what had gone before. Then the news arrived of the capture of the Fortress of Kaifa and of its surrendering to the Sultan. Then (it was) that he appointed as deputy in place of him in the lands of the East, and Amid and its districts, and Harran and what was neighbouring to it, and Serug and what was with it, his son, Al-Malik as-Salih Aiyub, who was his heir-apparent in Egypt. And he (the Sultan) arrived at Cairo (al-Kahirah) the protected, in (the month of) Gumada al-Akhar (in the) year six hundred and thirty, and there arrived after him in his service al-Malik al-Mas‘ud who had been the Possessor of Amid, and with him his intimates and his family and his wealth and his harem. 

And our Sultan accorded to him unprecedented favour, and he gave to him in the way of wealth |125 and vesture and vessels which had not been given to anyone. And he gave to him as fief lands yielding forty thousand dinars a year for his intimates, besides the produce, and he added to it the bread for two hundred horsemen, and he lodged him in a quarter of the House of the Wazirate (al-Wazarah), known as the Secret Gate; and all kings on the earth thanked him for this, and they acknowledged the goodness of his time and the correctness of his engagements. And a group of our companions were stirred up, and they assembled with the monks of the Monastery of Abba ([A]bu) Macarius, because it was Lent, and they agreed on the choice of the elder John [I]bn al-Mu'taman [I]bn Abu'1-Badr, deacon of the Church Al-Mu‘allakah, who was religious, ascetic and of noble works. And they wrote for him reports, and all of them wrote their signatures in them. And they presented them to our Sire, the Sultan ---may God empower his victory! --- and he ordered through the mouth of the amir As-Salah, that, if they agreed on him, he would be consecrated for them. Then they disputed about it among themselves, and they did not do anything, and the matter broke up; and the monks went out to their monastery 340, and the condition remained as it had been, except that these days were blessed days. The churches were repaired in the daytime by the permission of our Sire, the Sultan, and the legal decisions of the jurisconsults and the Christians (were) honoured (and) upheld; (and the Christians) were riding on horses and mules, and no one demanded of them the contrary. 

And the Sultan had esteem for the monks, and he was gracious and good towards them; |126 and (as regards) the inheritance from one another, no interfering hand might come between them. And, likewise (as regards) the Christians and the Jews , the pronouncements of their leaders were accepted regarding their lineage, and to him whom they mentioned that (he was) of the family, there should not be opposition. Then the blessed Nile came up, and something appeared the like of which had not been known, and this was that the two rivers 341 met below Rodah on the twenty-fourth of (the month of) Abib 342 and the water reached the dam of the Canal 343 on the twenty-ninth of it 344. And it reached its flood-measure on the six of (the month of) Misra 345, and the increase stopped, and it fulfilled its promise, and it reached the measure on Friday, the nineteenth of (the month of) Misra 346, which corresponded to the third of (the month of) Dhu'l-Ka‘dah (in the) year six hundred and thirty 347. And the Canal was cut on the day after that mentioned, and there had not been seen a Nile more marvellous than it; and among its marvels was (that) it increased on the twenty-sixth of Misra 348, at the seventeenth cubit ten fingers, and it became seventeen out of seventeen (cubits), and on its second (day) seven fingers, and seventeen cubits were completed; and there entered the year nine hundred and fifty of the Righteous Martyrs 349. [1234 AD]

Then it (the Nile) increased towards eighteen cubits on the |127 twelfth of (the month of) Tut 350 four fingers, and it became nine (fingers) above eighteen cubits, and it increased on the sixteenth of (the month of) Tut 351 four fingers, (and) it became over seventeen out of eighteen cubits, and it increased on the seventeenth of (the month of) Tut 352, and it is the day of the Feast of the Cross, seven fingers, and it was completed at eighteen cubits. And it increased on the eighteenth (of the month) 353 six fingers towards nineteen cubits, and its maximum increase was ten fingers above nineteen cubits. And it became stabilized on the land at the end of (the month of) Babah 354, so that it was thought that it would not decrease. Then it decreased by one (cubit), and the people sowed, and they were optimistic, after it had flooded many lands and had ruined extensive cultivations. And it was a magnificent Nile, and prices became cheap, and first-class wheat was sold at nine dirhams the ardab, and the barley at five (dirhams) and less, and below that, and all the cereals were in proportion; and nothing, at that time, was expensive, except meat and poultry, and this was through the cutting: off of the ways, because the Nile had flooded all the land. And in this year, the Sultan Al-Malik al-Kamil --- may his victory be empowered! --- prepared for departure to the East, and he expended on the troops a great amount of money, so that dirhams passed through Cairo (al-Kahirah) in the baskets of the carriers to the houses of the amirs. To each amir in proportion to his equipment, because, if there were with the amir one hundred horsemen, the hundred were given two thousand dinars, to every horseman twenty dinars, and the amir a thousand dinars, and to all of them in this proportion. And among them (were) those for whom he (the Sultan) marked out more than this, such as his personal circle and others than they, though not less, and there did not remain he who did not receive this provision, except those |128 who were unarmed at the Higaz 355, and the governors of the provinces, and those who had been delayed on account of travelling, and none other. 

And he (the Sultan) went out from Cairo (al-Kahirah) on the eleventh of (the month of) Basuns 356 of this year, and his brother, Al-Malik al-Asraf Musa, had preceded him by some days. Then he ordered that his youngest son, Al-Malik al-‘Adil, should be viceroy for him, and he made him governor. And he rode with swords and the standard after his (the Sultan's) journey on Monday, the twentieth of (the month of) Basuns 357 the aforementioned. And the group was discussing about the affair of the patriarch through the mouth of an amir called As-Salah al-Irbili, and he demanded from them five thousand dinars, and he promised them that he would deduct for them something of it. And he did not stir up their abilities by that, and the affair was not resolved; but they said that he (the Sultan) had recommended to his son Al-Malik al-‘Adil, that if they produced the amount (of money), you mayest consecrate for them him whom they choose. And some of the people continued (to hold) this opinion, but some said (that) it was not suitable, because (it would become) an innovation for the Church, and there would never be a change again; and their intentions were not sincere, and (there was) not agreement among them, except outwardly. And cheapness and safety continued, except that fruit in this year was very scarce on account of the flooding and the remainig of the water on the land for a long time. Then (it was) that the water increased in (the month of) Bau'unah 358 with a visible increase of two cubits, and there was at the bottom (of the river) a measure of six cubits. And there came the time for taking the standard of the bottom 359 at the blessed Nilometer, and it was the twenty-fifth of (the month of) Bau'unah 360, |129 and it (the measure) was at the beginning of nine cubits. 

Then it decreased in the measure of half a cubit, and it stopped, and the price of corn went up to four dirhams the ardab. And there occurred in the evening of the day of Saturday, the twenty-fourth of (the month of) Abib 361, which corresponded to the ninth of (the month of) Sawal (in the) year six hundred and thirty-one 362, much cloud, and the sky became yellow, and it rained for a good hour, and the cloud remained the whole night; and this was among the strange things the like of which had not occurred. And the blessed Nile fulfilled its promise on Wednesday, the twenty-third of (the month of) Misra 363, and the increase was completed in the mentioned daytime, in the presence of Al-Malik al-‘Adil, son of the Sultan Al-Malik al-Kamil --- may God empower his victory! --- and the prices became cheap and they returned to their limits, except that produce was little; and all the fruits decayed because the past Nile had flooded them and its weeds bad smothered them, and it (the inundation) had spoilt the fruits more than it had improved them, and it caused more losses than profits. And grapes were sold in this year for fifty dirhams the kantar, and sugar candy, at four dinars and a half the kantar, and different kinds of sweets in the same proportion. And there was no pressing out (of grapes) by the people in this year, except by a very few. And he who used to do anything (of this) was content with the half on account of the dearness of the products. And the news arrived that the Sultan --- may God empower his victory! --- had entered into the Grecian (ar-Rum) Lands 364, and the good tidings were proclaimed at the Citadel, concerning the victory and the conquest, and that he had taken from the Grecian Lands a fortress called the |130 Fortress of Mansur.  

Then he had passed by a hamlet called Ra‘aban and he had passed from it to Ad-Darabindat which the Arabs name the mountain-passes, and he had arrived at the third mountain-pass with the troops and the crowds. And the troops were a large number, the like of which had not assembled; and it was said that he (the Sultan) reviewed about twenty-seven thousand soldiers, apart from those who followed them in the way of youngmen, attendants and Bedouins. And thing(s) were very expensive for them (the troops), because the Grecian Lands did not provide anything for them, and the Lands of Syria were remote from them. And the Sultan saw that the affair had become difficult, and that the troops of the Rum (were) before him, and he returned from there, and he crossed over from a place known as Gisr al-Khasab 365, making for the East. And the Possessor of Kharpout (was) among those who were with him, and he had informed him that the way from his lands to the Grecian Lands was easy, but he who guided the Sultan on this way misled him; and the Sultan --- may God empower his victory!--- had purposed to cross over to the Rum from there. 

And the year nine hundred and fifty-one of the Righteous Martyrs 366 [1235 AD] entered, and the blessed Nile increased, and it reached up to eleven fingers above nineteen cubits, and the people were assured and good things multiplied and the prices became cheap. Then (it was) that the King of the Rum, and he was a Muslim, the Possessor of Iconium and Coloneia, was informed of the intention of the Sultan at Kharpout and |131 (that) he had come to it with immense riches. And the Sultan ---may his victory he empowered! ---dispatched the son of his sister Al-Malik al-Muzzafar [I]bn Taki ad-Din, Possessor of Hamah, as a relief to the Possessor of Kharpout, and with him a company of the most eminent of the amirs such as Al-Banyasi and Sawab al-Khadim, et caetera; and they came to the city before the arrival of the Rumians at it, and they made it their rear. And the Rumians came, and they fought a most severe and bitter fight against him (the Possessor of Hamah). Then the company multiplied against them, because they did not have with them more than about three thousand horsemen. And they were routed and they returned to the city 367. And as regards the Possessor of Hamah, and the amirs, and those of the amirs who were with him of the amirs, they sought refuge at the fortress. And as regards the soldiers and. the young male slaves and the company, some of them were made captive, and some of them escaped, and some of them were killed, and they passed over to the fortress, and with them the Possessor of Kharpout; and he had promised to them that at the fortress there was all what they needed, but they did not find at it anything. And it was said that it was a trick by him; and they endured and were patient in intense distress and great hardship for days, close on twenty days. And when they were convinced of perishing, they sent from their company an amir called Baha ad-Din [I]bn Malkisu who had been the governor of Cairo (al-Kahirah) to the King of the Rum to seek for them the safety of their lives, and that they would, deliver up the fortress. And he gave to them safety for their lives, especially; and they went out being in a most evil condition. And he did not bestow |132  a robe of honour on anyone except Al-Malik al-Muzzafar and Sawab al-Khadim, and he gave to each of them a mare to ride to the troops of the Sultan. 

And there was, on their way, the Monastery known as the Monastery of Barsuma 368 and the Syrian monks went out to them, (and) they received them with provisions and good things, and they bore them on mules of the Monastery until they brought them to the troops. And there was for the monks from this affair great commendation with all the Muslims. And the Nile decreased in time, and the people were optimistic that it would be a prosperous year, and that the plantations in it would be excellent, because in the past year cultivation in it had not been successful. And the price of wheat was from thirteen dirhams the ardab down to seven dirhams the ardab, according to the high grade and the inferior (grade), and barley, at five dirhams the ardab, and beans, at six (dirhams) and rambling vetch like it, and linseed, at ten dirhams the ardab, and turnips and clover in proportion, and all eatables and food-stuff (were) very cheap, and nothing was expensive at all. And the Sultan Al-Malik al-Kamil --- may his victory be empowered! --- returned to the Egyptian Lands, and he went up to the protected Citadel on Monday, the eighth of (the month of) Gumada al-Awal (in the) year six hundred and thirty-two 369 which corresponded to the fourth of (the month of) Amsir (in the) year nine hundred and fifty-one 370, and it was the first day of the Fast of the Inhabitants of Nineveh, and the people were tranquil. And the news was good, except that the people 371 met in this journey with great distress, and they suffered hardship on |133 the way; and the fingers of many people fell off by reason of the frost, and people absolutely died, and among them Al-Akram [I]bn Zanbur. 

And (it was) that the fingers of his hands and (the toes of) his two feet fell off on account of the frost, and he died at Harran on the eve of the Nativity 372, and many like him of those who were not known and those who were known. And there befell the monks a strange tribulation, and it was that a group of young men began to wear the woolen robes and to don the monastic dress, and they were employed in the cities, in order to escape from the poll-tax. And their affair came to the knowledge of the Sultan, and he ordered that from any monk (who) did not remain in the monastery, cut off in the desert, (and who) had a certificate of this, his poll-tax should be taken. And the officials and the employees did not need more than this word, and they stretched out their hands against the monks, and they began to seize the good and the bad, and to take the elders who had spent fifty years in the desert. And they took from their 373 poll-tax a great sum exceeding a thousand dinars, and, especially, in (the Province of) Al-Gharbiah, because there was in it a man, an overseer, from the inhabitants of Alexandria, called Ibn al-Karmasini, and he was detested among the Christians. And he made the monks his preoccupation, and the majority of them (were) in (the Province of) Al-Gharbiah, and it was the district of their poll-tax and their monasteries at that time. And he afflicted them with great affliction, and this was a chastisement from God, because they had not remained upright. And as regards the young monks, all of them returned to what they had been, and they removed the woolen robes since they did not dispense them from paying the poll-tax.

And when the Sultan came --- may his victory be empowered! --- a company of the monks of the monasteries assembled, and they came to the Gate of the Sultan with |134 a present according to the measure of the condition which befitted monks, and he wrote for them one hundred and fifty ardabs of corn, and the monks of the Melchite Monastery of Al-Kusair 374 heard of their news, and they brought another gift of like kind, and he (the Sultan) commanded for them a hundred ardab of corn. And the monks remained in attendance at the Gate of the Sultan for a time, and after that, an order went forth that there should be written for them that they should conform to their custom on condition that they should not conceal with them anyone of those upon whom the poll-tax was incumbent, and (that) they should not make anyone a monk, except after having registered him in the Diwan, and from those who were worthy of monasticism and (who) enter into it for the sake of God the Exalted, not on account of the poll-tax nor of a calamity which has befallen him. And they took the mentioned letter 375, and they went with it to (the Province of) Al-Gharbiah, but it did not avail them anything. And Ibn al-Karamsini continued as before, and the monks (were) in great affliction, and this trial was from God the Exalted (who) brought it upon them on account of the evilness of their conduct in monasticism. And when it was the tenth of (the month of) Bau'unah 376, there arrived the letter of the Sultan --- may his victory be empowered! --- to the Amir Gamal ad-Din [I]bn Yaghmur, his deputy in Cairo (al-Kahirah), from the port of Alexandria the protected, because the Sultan had gone out to the mentioned port at this time on account of the agreeableness of its air and the mildness of its climate. 

And his mentioned letter arrived, requiring the priest David [I]bn Laklak to go to him; and no one knew who was the cause of this --- because they had been informed that he had been summoned for the patriarchate --- if not, that a monk, a ghostly father, a young man from the inhabitants of Upper-Egypt |135 (as-Said) had gone with the elder ‘Imad ad-Din, an elder of the elders, to the port of Alexandria, and the mentioned elder was solicitous for the priest David, and he used to go to him frequently to the monastery at which he (David) was staying. And this monk, the ghostly father, was he who brought to him the letter referred to, and it was said that it was he who had made endeavours (for him), and that he had declared (that) the money (would be paid) by the patriarchate. And it was the intention of the priest David that he should be made hegoumenos in Cairo (Misr) before his departure to the port 377, because he had a great eagerness in this matter, and he used not to conceal nor hide it. And a group of intelligent people pointed out that this was not expedient and, perhaps, it might be prejudicial to what he (David) wished to achieve, because the Sultan had ordered only his journey, nothing more, and the matter was agreed upon thus. And there did not remain in the sees, in the way of bishops, except five, three in Upper Egypt: the bishop of Taha, and the bishop of Armant, and the bishop of Isna, and he was old and aged, and he had become as a dead man. And in Lower Egypt: two bishops: the bishop of Malig, and he was the senior 378 of the bishops at that time, and the bishop of Damanhur. And he (David) had brought the bishop of Malig that he might make him (David) a hegoumenos. And the bishop of Armant was at Cairo (Misr), because he had been at Jerusalem and had arrived. And there occurred a tumult by a group of the Cairenes (al-Misriyin), and there was much talking, but no one ventured to manifest anything. 

And there was at Cairo (Misr), |136 at the Church of Abba ([A]bu) Sergius, a man, a monk, known before his monasticism as As-Sani Abu'l-Magd, son of the priest Abu'l-Farag, from the house of [I]bn Ghalil. And he had become a monk at the Monastery of Antony, and he had returned from it, when the Sultan had summoned him and had employed him in the Diwan of Superintendence of the Land of Egypt, and he had remained for some years, being a monk. Then he resigned from it (the Diwan), and he resided at the mentioned church, because he had been a deacon at it before his monasticism. And he was a man of high esteem, (and his) words were hearkened to by the Muslims on account of what he had previously done for them in the way of good in the days of his superintendence, and because he was continent (and) ascetic, and he had indeed become like a patriarch. And the people used to take him as an arbitrator, and his command was carried out in the church (and) in the monasteries, and it was obeyed by the monks and other than them, and his decision concerning inalienable endowments circulated. And he had made endeavours for the (re)building of many of the churches and for the fructification of their inalienable endowments, and this matter was hard for him to support and he was greatly angered by it. And he began to suspect everyone whom he knew and all who approached him and thought that he was in secret for the consecration of David. And the matter was the contrary of this, to the extent that out of his rage he reached to (a point) that he began to insult and to revile and to speak what was not befitting an intelligent layman, especially an elder (and) a monk such as he. And it was he who had returned to the discussion concerning the question of Abu'l-Badr [I]bn al-Mu'taman who has been mentioned before. 

And he wrote a scroll receiving on it the signatures of the group for what 379 everyone was going to do in helping in the setting up of the patriarch, because |137 he knew that after matters had reached this point, the patriarch could not be set up, except with something 380, and a group agreed with him on this. And the majority of them wrote their signatures for what was in easy reach for them (to pay); and among them (were) those who had at the appropriate time doubled what they had written with their signature. And this matter was a reason for David and his companions to renew the discussion and to expose it and (also) the payment in advance and the expending of large amounts and prompt, specific payment. And among those who agreed on Ihn al-Mu'taman and (who) rejected David completely were the elder Nis al-Khilafah [A]bu'l-Fath and Al-Hakim ar-Rasid [A|bu'l-Wahs [I]bn al-Faris. And when there occurred what occurred with regard to David, the two of them were accused that they wore secretly with him (David), as others than the two of them, were accused, so that, (when) the elder [A]bu'l-Fatuh went up to him on the day of the Nativity of John the Baptist, the thirtieth of (the month of) Bau'tinah 381 to visit him, there befell him from him (David) in the way of insolence and reviling and defamation with obscenity what was not fitting that a man should think of them 382, much less that he should utter them. And this was in the presence of a company of priests and of others than them, and the prelude to his speech with him (was) that he said to him: «This is Musailimah the false one» 383; then he (David) proceeded from this to what was too much to mention. And this Musailimah was a man (whom) the Muslims thought that he was a man who laid claim to prophecy after their Prophet, and. his falsehood was manifested. Yet, the elder Abu'l-Fatuh held his tongue more than the monk. And after that, no sooner had they separated, than they were reconciled, and each of them made an obeisance to the other. 

And as for the priest David, he turned to Alexandria on Thursday, the third of (the month of) Bau'unah 384, |138 and with him the bishop of Malig; and as for the bishop of Armant, he excused himself on account of illness, and he did not depart, because he feared that nothing would be achieved for him (David). And the priest David arrived at Alexandria on Monday, the seventeenth of (the month of) Bau'unah 385, and he met the Sultan --- may his victory he empowered! ---on Tuesday at a place known as Abu Kir, and the patriarchate was assured to him. And he undertook (to pay) a thousand dinars, and to bear them to the Treasury speedily; and he had not them (the dinars), but he arranged for them through a loan and other than it, and he wrote his signature for another two thousand dinars after two months. And he was ordained hegoumenos on Saturday, the twenty-second of (the month of) Bau'unah 386 in the Church of [A]bu Shenouti known as the Church of the Lions outside the city; and he was made patriarch on Sunday at the Church of the Saviour. And the Sultan sent to him a beautiful robe of honour, and it was a violet robe with gold embroidery and with gold cord, and a head-dress. And he who was present related that it was a remarkable day, and that the majority of the young male slaves of the Sultan and his servants were present, and that it was a glory, the like of which had not been seen for a long time. And on Monday, the twenty-fourth of (the month of) Bau'unah 387, he (the patriarch) rode, and he went out to the house of Ibn as-Sukkari in which (was) the |139 head of Mark the Evangelist. 

And it was said that it was the head of Peter the beatified martyr 388, because the head of the Apostle, the Evangelist, was with his body, when the Venetians transported him to Venice 389. And it was brought out for him according to the custom. And, as regards this head, it was forty-eight years (that) it had not been taken out, the period of the occupation (of the Throne) of Abba John --- may God give rest to his soul! ---twenty-eight years, and the period of the vacancy after him, (passed) in falsity and division and contriving, twenty years 390. And it (the head) was placed in a room, and he (the patriarch) enveloped it in a new covering according to the custom; and the mentioned patriarch remained at Alexandria for a time. Then he departed from it to the Monastery of Abba ([A]bu) Macarius, and he ordained in it priests and deacons, and he made in it some arrangements; and he stayed in every monastery a day or two. Then he came to the Monastery of Nahya on Thursday, the twelfth of (the month of) Abib 391

Then he arrived at the Monastery of the Beacon on Friday, a second time, and he celebrated the Divine Liturgy in it and he came |140 on Saturday to the Church of Michael at the head of the Canal in Cairo (Misr), and I, the wretched one 392, met him at it, and I greeted him, and I received his blessing. And he remained at the mentioned church that day, and he passed the night at it, and the congregation of the mentioned church took great care of him, and they were all of them from the inhabitants of Al-Bahnasa. And when it was the morning of Sunday, he (the patriarch) rode from the aforementioned church; and there came to him from Cairo (al-Kahirah) and Cairo (Misr) and what (was) around them countless people, and there gathered from the alien nations, the Muslims and the Jews great multitudes, so that they were spread along all the way, and at the shops and the open spaces and the house-tops from (the Church of) Michael up to the (Church) Al-Mu‘allakah. And the crosses were carried before him on staffs and the Gospels in the fold of the Prospherein veils, and the deacons and the priests were assembled in groups of fifty and more than this. And he came, (and) they were reciting before him hymns and praises, and the archons were riding on mules and horses before him, and the representative of the governor of Cairo (Misr) and the majority of his companions with them before him. And there came drums and trumpets, and flutes were playing before him (the patriarch). And there were before him about one hundred lighted candles or more, and it was a remarkable day, the like of which had not been related in our generation. And when he |141 (the patriarch) came, they did not pass with him by the ruins at the two lanes, but they came with him towards the hostel of the King's House (Dar al-Malik), and they walked with him from the top of the Great Market to the Castle 393

And he went up to it on Sunday, the twenty-first of (the month of) Abib 394, the aforementioned, and he was consecrated at it. And he ascended the synthronus, and he read the Gospel appointed for patriarchs, and it is that in which (there is) «I am the Good Shepherd», and it is from John 395. And I, the sinner, read the interpretation of it 396, and it was (one) of the remarkable, famous days. Then, after that, there assembled a group of the Muslims, and they disapproved of what had been done, and they found unsightly the carrying of the crosses in full view, in the middle of the daytime, in the markets, and they discussed about this, and they multiplied (their words), and they compelled a distinguished jurisconsult known as ‘Awad al-Busi to write a paper to the Sultan, and they complained in it about what had happened, and our Sire, the Sultan, appended his signature to it, (and sent it) to the governor of Cairo (Misr), that he should bring the patriarch and cause him to put his signature to the contents of the paper, and order him not to transgress the law 397, and that he should return to his place; and the governor did this, and he caused him (the patriarch) to come. And there was with him (the governor) a man, a teacher, (who) had been in one of |142 the prayer-houses which was on the way by which the patriarch had passed by. And he had murmured and had shouted and had made an uproar, and the young boys had risen up (and had come) towards him (the teacher) with the writing-tablets which (were) in their hands, and on them (the writing-tablets) (were verses of) the Kuran, so that they might rouse (the people) and stir up a quarrel, but this produced no effect, because the crowd was immense, and the awe of the Sultan was great, especially (as) the representative of the governor and the young male slaves (were) before the patriarch. 

And when the patriarch came to the governor, the mentioned teacher spoke to him and said: «It was you (who) did cause the crosses to be carried and you did it and arranged it. And he (the patriarch) said: «I knew nothing of what was done, and I was borne through the multitude of the people, and I did not know what happened». Then he (the patriarch) returned to the (Church) Al-Mu‘allakah with honour and respect. And that night was the night of the feast of Saint Macarius (Markurius) 398, and they provided for him (the patriarch) in his (the patriarch's) church on the shore 399, according to what was requisite for the feast and the patriarch. And he (the patriarch) refused to go at the beginning of the night, because news had reached him that a group was standing at the door of the church and was treating with disdain the Christians who were passing by to it, and some of them pelted them with stones and some of them threw dirt on their robes. And when it was after the final supper, there came the priests of (the Church of) Abba Mercurius and with them the young male slaves of the governor, and they prayed him (to come) to the mentioned church, and the young male slaves said to him: «The |143 amir did not send us, except for thy service. Arise, and we (shall go) before thee, and he who opposes in anything, we shall punish him». 

And I 400 was with him at that time, and I advised him that he should not go, and he dismissed the young male slaves of the governor, after he had thanked him and had thanked them. And I remained before him, until he came to the Church of Abba ([A]bu) Sergius, and he went up to the Cell of the father, the monk, Abba Peter who was known before his monasticism as As-Sani [A]bul-Magd; and he (the patriarch) appeased his heart and he removed what was in his soul in the way of cheerlessness, and he displayed extreme favour in this. And he returned after that to (the Church) Al-Mu‘allakah, thanked and recompensed. Then (it was) that the elders of the Church of Abba ([A]bu) Mercurius came to him thereupon, and they took him, (he being) unwilling, to their church, and he passed the night at it, and he celebrated the feast on the next day, and it was a magnificent feast, according to what reached me, for I was not present, and nothing occurred, --- praise be to God! --- of what was anticipated, and nothing spoiled the least, and that day was Thursday. And it was the custom of the jurisconsults that they should be present with our Sire, the Sultan ---may his victory be empowered! ---on the eve of Friday, and they assembled with him according to the custom. And they made mention of the Christians and their riding mules 401 and the affair which had occurred from the conversation of the patriarch, but he (the Sultan) did not listen to anything of this. And when it was Saturday, the governor of Cairo (Misr) was present before him (the Sultan), and he (the Sultan) pretended not to know about it (the affair). 

And he (the |144 Sultan) said: «News reached me that the inhabitants of Cairo (Misr) acted against the patriarch and his churches», and he (the governor) sware by God that nothing of this had happened, and (that), if anything of this had happened, he (the doer) would have paid for it with his life. And this matter became known to everyone, and the souls of the faithful were reassured, and it strengthened the soul of the patriarch. Though among the Muslim lords there were not except those who aided and were good intermediaries, this (hostility), however, was from the common people and from some of the jurisconsults. Then he (the patriarch) came to the Church of the Harat ar-Rum at Cairo (al-Kahirah) in the daytime of Sunday, the twenty-eight of (the month of) Abib 402, and its archdeacon, the elder Fakhr as-Sa‘d Ibn Zanbur, provided for him, and it was also a remarkable day. And the people thought that he would take simony from all whom he ordained, on account of the amount (of money) which was fixed for him; but he did not carry out this matter concerning this as a rule or as a condition, and he used to collect from the people according to their ability without injustice or oppression. 

And he began with the consecration of the bishops of the vacant sees, and he consecrated on Sunday, the fifth of (the month of) Misra 403, in the Church of Abba Mercurius, four bishops, for the See(s) of Samannud and Isna and the Oases and Al-Banawain. And he continued with the consecrating of bishops and (the ordination of) priests and deacons and monks and the laity. And the rule was established that he would not consecrate anyone, except with simony, |145 and there were among the bishops those who would weigh out two hundred dinars, and the least (was) up to one hundred dinars, and the poor and the companions, fifty dinars; and those who (were) of this category (were only) two or three, otherwise, all (were) of the major category. And not one of the bishops was consecrated without simony except the metropolitan of Damietta, who had been made a monk, and was known before his monasticism as Al-'Amid Ibn ad-Duhairi. And he had come from Syria, and he had lived with the mentioned patriarch before his patriarchate at the Monastery of Saint Philotheus, known as the Monastery of the Nestorians, and (it was) that he (the patriarch) did not take from him anything. And as regards the priests, there were among them, those who would weigh out five dinars and downwards, and (as regards) the deacons, if one of them had been adverse or antagonistic to him, he would pay ten dinars, and the majority of them (paid) from three dinars downwards, and it was a disgraceful affair, nevertheless, it became common and widespread and known and usual. Then (it was) that he allowed some of the children of second and third (marriages) (to be ordained) 404, and he furnished an excuse for their affair, and this came together with simony. And the monk, Abba Peter, known as As-Sani before his monasticism, turned away (from the patriarch), (and) he was not present again with him in his church, and he did not accept a blessing. Even the elder Nis al-Khilafat Abu'l-Futuh, known as Ibn al-Mikaat, changed his heart towards him (the patriarch), and it was (that) he did not go to him and did not greet him after what had happened between them, in the way of what has been explained before. 

Then the year nine hundred and fifty-two 405 [1236 AD] entered, and the mentioned patriarch had consecrated since his patriarchate |146 and up to the beginning of the Lent of this year what exceeded forty bishops, and as for the deacons and the priests, they were not to be counted. And the excuse for taking simony (was) what the Sultan had fixed for him; and what (was due) to the Sultan was completed, and he (the patriarch) bore the whole three thousand dinars (to the Sultan), and conditions were as before. And news reached the Sultan --- may God empower his victory! --- of the coming out of some troops of (the Sultan of) the Rum, and the Muslims set out for the borders of his (the Sultan's) lands in the East. And he (the Sultan) departed to Syria with the troops and great armies. And as for those 406, they descended at Amid and they remained before it for the space of a week, and they did not obtain any advantage from it, and they departed from it, except that they burned its plantations and they burned its surrounding villages. Then they came to Suwaida, and they took it through treason from him who was in it, because he sold it to them. Then they proceeded to Edessa, and they took it by the sword, and they slew the majority of those who were in it, and they took prisoners and they made captives, and the majority of them were wretched (people), Syrian and Armenian Christians. And they besieged the fortress for some days, and they took it by treaty from one of the young male slaves of the Sultan called Kuih. It is said that he made peace with them concerning it, because there was at it great wealth and arms and vesture, approaching one hundred thousand dinars. 

And they took it |147 and they took him 407 with them. Then they betook themselves to Harran; they took it and they took its fortress by treaty. Then (it was) that the Sultan ---may God empower his victory! ---passed over the Euphrates; and they left in every fortress him who should guard it, and they turned to their lands, alter they had taken prisoners and killed and devastated, as God willed. And the Sultan sent troops to D....ir 408 and the land of Mardin, because their possessors were with the Rum. And they devastated the lands and they took captive the people, and they took in the way of booty what could not be counted, so that a beautiful woman was sold for fifty silver dirhams, and an excellent mule for thirty dirhams, and a sheep for one dirham; and their captives arrived at Cairo (al-Kahirah) and Cairo (Misr). Then the Sultan returned to Harran, and he descended at its fortress, and he besieged it for some; days, and it resisted, and he set up a Western mangonel, and he took it by the sword, and he took captive all who were in it. And their number was more than seven hundred men, and they were sent to Cairo (al-Kahirah) in fetters and shackles. And he (the Sultan) betook himself to Edessa, and he descended at its fortress, and it was more fortified and more impregnable, than the fortress of Harran, but it did not withstand the Western mangonel, for it demolished of it its curtain, the day it was set up against it, and it (the fortress) was also taken by the sword. And there were taken from it captives, and they arrived also in Cairo (al-Kahirah), and they were nearly a thousand men. And the Nile had reached in this year up to eighteen cubits and eleven fingers, and the prices were cheap and things were found, and nothing in the city was expensive, except sugar, for it cost three dirhams the ratl. 

And |148 there happened in this year that there occurred in the Land of Egypt a great plague, and particularly at Cairo (al-Kahirah) and Cairo (Misr) and their suburbs, so that there were taken out every day from the city what exceeded two hundred dead. And this continued from the half of (the month of) Babah 409 up to the end of (the month of) Amsti 410; and it was something the like of which had not been witnessed, and there were few who (were) not sick in this year, and there was not in the two cities a house from which no dead person went out. Then God. removed this from the people, but there remained traces of the sickness. And there was at the side of the Church Al-Mu‘allakah a prayer-house (Masgid), and at it a high minaret, and it was adjacent. to the storey 411 on which the father, the patriarch was dwelling, and it was the cell of Abba Mark [I]bn Zara‘ah 412 ---may God give rest to his soul! And there was at it (the prayer-house) a muezzin (Mu'adhdhin) named Salim, and there was not a doubt that he was unjust with regard to those who were managing the affairs of the patriarch.


1. 1 =1216 A.D.

2. 2 I.e., John VI, 1189-1216 A.D.

3. 4 = 1216 A.D.

4. 4 LXIV patriarch, 100A-1032 A.D.

5. 5 A famous Coptic theologian.

6. 6 This person eventually became the patriarch Cyril III Ibn Laklak.

7. 8 1218-1238 A.D.

8. 10 1200-1239 A.D.

9. 3 I.e. the doctor and the scribe.

10. 5 I.e. David's fitness to be patriarch.

11. 6 I.e. David.

12. 7 I.e. Sams ar-Riyasat.

13. 1  Lit. ' the night of Sunday ' i.e. Saturday night.

14. 5 I.e. the Cairenes.

15. 2 The writer of this part of the biography is consequently Yuhanna Ibn Wahib Ibn Yuhanna Ibn Yahya Ibn Bulus, though the compiler is 'Alam al-Malik Ibn al-Hag Sams ar-Riyasat, cf. page 139, note 9.

16. 3 I.e. David.

17. 4 I.e. to show his annoyance.

18. 2 I.e. the Monastery of St. Antony, cf. O.F.A. Meinardus, Monks and Monasteries of the Egyptian Deserts, Cairo, 1961, pp. 31-88.

19. 4  I.e. as regards the date of his consecration as bishop.

20. 9 I.e. 1216 A.D.

21. 7 This indicates that the said person was dead.

22. 4   I.e. Holy Week.

23. 1  I.e. Alexandria.

24. 2  I.e. Easter.

25. 7 I.e. the other signed reports.

26. 5 I.e. the Island of Rudah, opposite to Old Cairo.

27. 6 I.e. the priest and the deacon sent with the letter to the governor of the Province of Al-Gharbiah.

28. 1 The hermit was living in a cave, access to which was possible only by means of a rope and a basket.

29. 2 I.e. he was given the choice of Al-Islam or death.

30. 2 I.e. the affair with the priest David.

31. 3 I.e. John VI, 1189-1216 A.D.

32. 5 This is said of a person who is dead.

33. 2 There is a blank here in the line of the MS.

34. 3 =1216 A.D.  [Note to the online edition: surely 1217?]

35. 5 This would imply that Abu Sakir was a doctor, as may be understood from the term «al-Hakim».

36. 6 I.e. the inner gate.

37. 1  = December-January, Julian Style.

38. 3  I.e. the Christians.

39. 4 = January 13th (14th), Julian Style.

40. 1 = January 16th (17th), Julian Style.

41. 2  I.e. Friday night, Saturday night and Sunday night.

42. 3  I.e. the opponents of the priest David. 

43. 6 The reference may be to the Church of Saint Shenouti in Old Cairo, which before the Nile retreated was close to the bank of the river, cf. O.H.E. KHS-Burmester, A Guide to the Ancient Coptic Churches of Cairo. pp. 40, 49-52.

44. 2 I.e. the patriarch John VI, 1189-1216 A.D.

45. 3  I.e. his nephews.

46. 8 I.e. the bishop.

47. 1 I.e. there is no question about this person.

48. 5 I.e. the narrator of this part of the History.

49. 4 I.e. the tomb of Salah ad-Din at Damascus.

50. 1 The First Carnival is the Sunday before the Fast of Nineveh (Jonah) and the Second Carnival is the Sunday before Lent which begins on a Monday. The period therefore, between these two Sundays is thirteen days. Cf. O.H.E. KHS-Burmester, The Egyptian or Coptic Church, p. 13.

51. 2 = January 22nd (23rd), Julian Style.

52. 4 I.e. The Patriarchate.

53. 1 I.e. after David had been made a hegoumenos.

54. 1  I.e. the week before the Fast of Nineveh (Jonah).

55. 1 I.e. the Sunday preceding the Fast of Nineveh (Jonah).

56. 2 I.e. the patriarch John VI, 1189-1216 A.D.

57. 4 I.e. they paid the sum of money.

58. 6 I.e. the Friday before Palm Sunday. The fasts of Jonah and Heraclius have been added to Lent thus making the seventh week, cf. O.H.E. KHS-Burmester, The Egyptian or Coptic Church, p. 13.

59. 7 In both the Greek and the Coptic Church the Saturday before Palm Sunday is known as the Saturday of Lazarus, since at the Divine Liturgy the Gospel which is read gives the account of the raising: of Lazarus.

60. 2  I.e. the procession on Palm Sunday.

61. 3 I.e. the patriarch John VI, 1189-1216 A.D.

62. 4 This is the yearly contribution made to the patriarch by the bishops and the monasteries.

63. 2 I.e. the episcopal staff.

64. 4 I.e. Al-Malik al-ldil.

65. 1  I.e. 3 p.m.

66. 5   I.e. Palm Sunday.

67. 2 I.e. Easter.

68. 4 A term used for Christians or Jews living in a Muslim State and liable to a special tax.

69. 1  I.e. the stretch of coast along Palestine and Syria.

70. 6 =1217 A.D.

71. 2  I.e. the Lake of the Ethiopians.

72. 4  = 1217 A.D.  [Surely 1218?]

73. 7  Probably, Andrew II, King of Hungary. Cf. H.P.E.C, vol. III, Part II, pp.  210-212, 215.

74. 2 I.e. of Lent.

75. 5 = May 29th, Julian Style.

76. 6 Cf. E. Amelineau, op. cit., pp. 116-117. This is the expedition of Jean de Brienne, cf. R. Grousset, L'Epopee des Croisades, p. 296 sqq. An account of this expedition is also given in H.P.E.C, vol. III, Part II, p. 216 sqq. In the margin of 296v° there is the following remark. «Note. He who swore on his behalf was the elder ‘Alam al-Mulk ibn al-Hag Sams ar-Ri'asat, the compiler of this biography».

77. 7 I.e. the Gihad, a war in defence of Al-Islam.

78. 8 I.e. Cairo (Misr) and Cairo (al-Kahirah).

79. 9 The word can also mean 'harbour', and in this case, it would be the harbour of Damietta.

80. 1  = June 22nd, Julian Style.

81. 5   = July 1st, Julian Style.

82. 9   I.e. Cairo (al-Kahirah) and Cairo (Misr). 

83. 11  I.e. across the River Nile.

84. 1  I.e. a scala ambulatoria.

85. 2  I.e. the Tower of the Chain. 

86. 3  = 1218 A.D.

87. 5  Probably, a drawbridge.

88. 1 The diacritical points on the two letters preceding the «h» are missing.

89. 11 I.e. the All-Holy Virgin Mary.

90. 2   Cf. page 39. This name, it seems, was later applied to any leader of the Crusaders.  

91. 4  = the 3rd September, Julian Style.

92. 7  I.e. the 6th Tut.

93. 8  = 1218 A.D.

94. 3 I.e. Al-Malik al-Kamil.

95. 11 = 1218-1219 A.D.

96. 7  I.e. the 8th October, Julian Style.

97. 2  I.e. that held by the Franks.

98. 3  I.e. Jean de Brienne, titular king of Jerusalem.

99. 8  Probably, by strewing rocks.

100. 1 The First Carnival is the Sunday before the Fast of Nineveh (Jonah) and the Second Carnival is the Sunday before Lent which begins on a Monday. The period, therefore, between these two Sundays is thirteen days.

101. 2 = February 2nd, Julian Style.

102. 5 I.e. Monday evening.

103. 6 = February 5th, Julian Style.

104. 5 I.e. the Berbers.

105. 7 I.e. the two Sultans.

106. 4 = 1220 A.D.

107. 5 = 1219 A.D. 

108. 6 I.e. buildings. 

109. 8 = April 2nd, Julian Style. 

110. 10 I.e. the troops.

111. 1 = April 10th, Julian Style.

112. 4 I.e. the Greek Orthodox.

113. 5 I.e. to the digging.

114. 6 I.e. the Franks'.

115. 1  I.e. the Melkites.

116. 5  I.e. the Greek Orthodox.

117. 2 A place four or five miles north of Mansura, where the Nile divided. 

118. 3 =May 10th, Julian Style. 

119. 4 =1219 A.D. 

120. 8 = March 27th-April 25th, Julian Style.

121. 2 The month of Abib is from June 25th to July 24th, Julian Style.

122. 4 i.e. the church.

123. 5 A kamat is a measure of the height of a man. 

124. 6 I.e. the Copts.

125. 1  I.e. the waters of the Nile did not increase.

126. 3  = August 29th, Julian Style.

127. 4  In Leap Years the month of An-Nasi has six instead of five days.

128. 6  I.e. pigeons.

129. 8  = 1219 A.D.

130. 10  I.e. at fifteen cubits.

131. 1 = September 11th, Julian Style. 

132. 2 I.e. the preceding Thursday.

133. 4 I.e. September 14th, Julian Style.

134. 1 I.e. Cairo (al-Kahirah) and Cairo (Misr).

135. 6 I.e. of Damietta.

136. 1 = November 4th, Julian Style.

137. 2 = 1219 A.D.

138. 3 I.e. Era of the Higrah.

139. 4 I.e. the capture of Damietta.

140. 5 I.e. of Damietta.

141. 11 I.e. Damietta.

142. 1 I.e. of Damietta.

143. 1 I.e. of Damietta.

144. 2 = February 11th, Julian Style.

145. 3 I.e. Lent.

146. 4  I.e. the yearly contribution given to the patriarch from churches and monasteries.

147. 1 I.e. the old things.

148. 1  = March 7th-April 5th, Julian Style.

149. 3  = April 6th, Julian Style.

150. 4  I.e. the general resurrection on the Last Day.

151. 7  = 1220 A.D.

152. 1  I.e. of a famine.

153. 2  I.e. to the farmers.

154. 3  = October 8th-November 6th, Julian Style.

155. 4  = November 7th-December 6th, Julian Style.

156. 5  I.e. Cairo (al-Kahirah) and Cairo (Misr).

157. 7  = January 6th-February 4th, Julian Style. These dates must be advanced by one day in a Leap Year.

158. 1 I.e. olive oil.

159. 2 I.e. Ghengiz Khan.

160. 1  I.e. of the Higrah =1221 A.D.

161. 2  = August 8th, Julian Style.

162. 1 I.e. Thursday night.

163. 2 =August 27th, Julian Style.

164. 7 I.e. Friday evening.

165. 2  I.e. the Frankish king.

166. 3  I.e. the Muslim kings.

167. 4  I.e. the Franks.

168. 5  I.e. the Mediterranean Sea.

169. 6  I.e. the Franks'.

170. 3 I.e. the Muslims.

171. 4 = 1221 A.D.

172. 5 I.e. Frederick II.

173. 6 A fortress on the Euphrates.

174. 8 I.e. with regard to the truce.

175. 12 = August 29th-September 7th, Julian Style.

176. 2 I.e. of the Higrah = 1221 A.D.

177. 4 There is a lacuna here in the MS.

178. 7 I.e. Jean de Brienne.

179. 9 I.e. Jean de Brienne.

180. 11 I.e. from Damietta. 

181. 12 I.e. with the Muslims. 

182. 13 I.e. the king of Acre. 

183. 15 I.e. Frederick II.

184. 1 I.e. the river's.

185. 4 This, it would seem, must be the Lake Al-Manzalah, since the Burah mentioned here must be the Burah near the Lake Al-Manzalah, and not the Burah on the shore of the Mediterranean.

186. 8 = 1222 A.D.

187. 1 January 5th, Julian Style.

188. 8 I.e. of the Nile.

189. 4  I.e. every church had to contribute a determined amount.

190. 7 =1223 A.D.

191. 8 = September 8th, Julian Style.

192. 11 1223 A.D.

193. 12 Kihak ended in this year on December 26th, Julian Style.

194. 1  A port on the Red Sea.

195. 3  = January 26th-February 24th, Julian Style.

196. 5   District on the eastern shore of the Red Sea.

197. 7   In Arabia Felix.

198. 1 = 1225 A.D.

199. 7 I.e. an amount of money.

200. 1 I.e. As-Sahib.

201. 2 I.e. the Feast of Easter.

202. 4 = 1225 A.D. 

203. 5  I.e. of the Higrah.

204. 6   I.e. the level at which taxes could be imposed.

205. 7  I.e. Tuesday night.

206. 8  = September 3rd, Julian Style.

207. 9 I.e. the Khalig al-Masri, for the usual ceremony, cf. S. Lane-Poole, The Story of Cairo, pp. 145-146, and D. Russell, op. cit., pp. 81-82 and 108.

208. 2 I.e. heirs.

209. 2 = September 28th-October 27th, Julian Style.

210. 4 = October 28th-November 26th, Julian Style.

211. 5 I.e. the Canal.

212. 7 Cf. H.G. Evelyn White, The Monasteries of the Wadi 'n-Natrun, Part III, O.H.E. KHS-Burmester, A Guide to the Monasteries of the Wadi 'n-Natrun, pp. 28-40, O. Meinardus, Monks and Monasteries of the Egyptian Deserts, pp. 161-210.

213. 8 I.e. inheritances on which they should have paid the tax to the government.

214. 10 I.e. the monk.

215. 11 I.e. the Wadi 'n-Natrun.

216. 2 I.e. the old dirhams.

217. 1  A very small coin.

218. 2  I.e. to the mint at the Citadel.

219. 7  I.e. the Palace.

220. 3 I.e. did not allow it to be returned.

221. 7 I.e. the altar-lot.

222. 4  I.e. the Sultanate of Rum in Asia Minor.

223. 1  I.e. in addition to the interest agreed upon.

224. 2  = July 10th, Julian Style.

225. 5  I.e. Al-Malik al-Mu‘azzam.

226. 8  The old dirham.

227. 9 I.e. his life.

228. 1  I.e. the capitation tax.

229. 2  I.e. Jews and Christians subject to a special tax in a moslem state.

230. 3   I.e. the head of a family.

231. 1 I.e. Jews and Christians living in an Islamic state and subject to a special tax.

232. 4 I.e. the origin of the slaves.

233. 6 I.e. the two canals or watercourses in question.

234. 7 = July 31st, Julian Style.

235. 8 = 1227 A.D.

236. 11 Probably, the Birkat Al-Fil. 

237. 12 = August 19th, Julian Style.

238. 1 I.e. of the Higrah.

239. 2 There is a blank space here in the MS.

240. 3 = August 20th, Julian Style.

241. 4 = August 23rd, Julian Style.

242. 5  = August 24th, Julian Style.

243. 6  The sacrifice of animals at funerals, cf. S. Blackmann, The Fellahin of Upper Egypt, London, 1927, p. 110.

244. 8 The MS. reads thus. Is Hubb an error for Habas?

245. 9 1227 A.D. 

246. 11 = September 1st, Julian Style. 

247. 12 = September 2nd, Julian Style. 

248. 13 I.e. the Canal of Cairo (Khalig al-Masri).

249. 1  = September 3rd, Julian Style.

250. 5= October 8th.

251. 3 I.e. the island of Raudah.

252. 4 I.e. from his camp at the Birkat.

253. 2 I.e. Lent.

254. 1 = July 25th-August 30th, Julian Style.

255. 2 = 1228 A.D.

256. 3 = September 1st, Julian Style.

257. 4 = September 15th, Julian Style.

258. 5 = September 16th, Julian Style.

259. 4 I.e. the Bab Zuwailah. 

260. 7 = 1228 A.D.

261. 5 I.e. the Franks.

262. 6 = 1228 A.D.

263. 10 The last day of Kihak in this year was December 27th, Julian Style. 

264. 12 I.e. the Wadi 'n-Natrun.

265. 4 I.e. Frederick II, Holy Roman Emperor, 1194-1250 A.D.

266. 5 This word can also mean 'blades, knives '.

267. 1  = July 23rd. Cf. R. Grousset. L'Epopee des Croisades, p. 318. 

268. 3 I.e. his camp.

269. 7 1228 A.D.

270. 10 I.e. Frederick II.

271. 2   Certainly not in the West. He was twice excommunicated. 

272. 6 = 1228 A.D.

273. 6  I.e. the camp.

274. 7   I.e. Al-Mugahid Sirkuh II.

275. 9  I.e. Frederick II.

276. 9 I.e. Lent.

277. 11 I.e. the Feast of Easter.

278. 3 I.e. the Crac des Chevaliers

279. 8 =1229A.D.

280. 6  = June 19th, Julian Style.

281. 8 I.e. Abib.

282. 10 = June 20th, Julian Style. 

283. 11 I.e. the Nile and the Canal of Cairo. 

284. 12 I.e. Wednesday evening. 

285. 13 = August 2nd, Julian Style. 

286. 14 = August 14th, Julian Style.

287. 6  I.e. the rising of the Nile.

288. 9  =1230 A.D.

289. 10  Tut 1st = August 29th, Julian Style.

290. 2 = May 26th-June 24th, Julian Style.

291. 3 I.e. Ragab.

292. 4 I.e. the rising of the Nile.

293. 5 =June 25th-July 30th, Julian Style.

294. 6 = August 3rd, Julian Style.

295. 1 = August 4th, Julian Style. 

296. 2 = August 13th, Julian Style.

297. 3 I.e. the two branches of the Nile formed by the Island of Roda. 

298. 4 = August 14th, Julian Style. 

299. 6 = August 18th, Julian Style. 

300. 7 = August 25th, Julian Style. 

301. 8 I.e. A.H. = 1230A.D. 

302. 9 = August 27th, Julian Style.

303. 2 = 1231 A.D.

304. 3 = 1231 A.D.

305. 6 = September 4th, Julian Style.

306. 9 = September 14th, Julian Style.

307. 11 = September 21st, Julian Style.

308. 3  = October 28th-November 26th, Julian Style.

309. 4  = December 27th-January 25th, Julian Style.

310. 6  I.e. the Government.

311. 2 = January 26th-February 24th, Julian Style.

312. 4 I.e. the Nile.

313. 6 = February 8th-March 9th, Gregorian Style.

314. 7 I.e. the Nile.

315. 9 = June 19th, Julian Style.

316. 1 I.e. the water. 

317. 3 = June 25th-July 24th, Julian Style. 

318. 4 = July 25th-August 23rd, Julian Style. 

319. 5 = August 24th-29th, Julian Style. 

320. 6 = 1232 A.D. 

321. 8 I.e. of the Nile. 

322. 9 I.e. the Niles. 

323. 10 I.e. the Nile's.

324. 11 = August 30th-September 28th, Julian Style. 

325. 12 = September 7th, Julian Style.

326. 5  I.e. this account.

327. 6  = October 24th, Julian Style.

328. 4  I.e. the Monastery of Saint Antony.

329. 6 = 1232 A.D.

330. 2  March 27th-ApriI 25 Julian Style.

331. 3  I.e. A.H.= 1232 A.D.

332. 6 = August 25th, Julian Style.

333. 7  = August 9th, Julian Style.

334. 2 = 1233 A.D.

335. 3 = October 4th, Julian Style.

336. 4 = September 28th and 29th and October 2nd, Julian Style.

337. 6 The black dirham had the value of three nasri dirhams.

338. 2 Kihak = November 27th-December 26th, Julian Style.

339. 3 I.e. of the Higrah, and = 1233 A.D.

340. 9   I. e. the Monastery of Saint Mararius.

341. 3 The Island of Rodah causes the Nile to divide into two arms which meet again below it.

342. 5  = July 18th, Julian Style. All the following dates are according to the Julian Style.

343. 6  I.e. the Canal of Cairo. 

344. 7 = July 23rd.

345. 8 = July 30th. 

346. 9 = August 12th. 

347. 10 = 1232 A.D. 

348. 12 =August 19th. 

349. 13 = 1234 A.D.

350. 1 = September 9th, Julian Style.

351. 2  = September 13th, Julian Style.

352. 3  = September 14th, Julian Style. 

353. 5 September 15th, Julian Style.

354. 6 = September 28th-October 27th, Julian Style.

355. 1  Province of Arabia.

356. 2  = May 16th, Julian Style.

357. 3  = May 25th, Julian Style.

358. 6  = June 5th-July 4th. Julian Style.

359. 7  I.e. the height of the water at the bottom of the Nilometer.

360. 8  = June 29th, Julian Style.

361. 1 = July 28th, Julian Style.

362. 2 = 1234 A.D.

363. 3 = August 16th, Julian Style.

364. 5 I.e. the Seljuk Sultanate of Rum in Asia Minor.

365. 4 I.e. the Wooden Bridge.

366. 6 = 1235 A.D.

367. 4 I.e. Kharpout.

368. 1 This is probably the Monastery of Barsuma, the site of which has been discovered at Borsum Kalesi in Turkey, cf. J. Leroy, Moines et Monasteres du Proche-Orient, Paris, 1958, p. 210.

369. 3 I.e. of the Higrah.

370. 4 = Jan. 29th, 1235 A.D. Julian Style.

371. 6   I.e. the returning troops.

372. 3 I.e. the Nativity of our Lord.

373. 5 I.e. the monks '.

374. 2 I.e. the Greek Orthodox Monastery of Saint Arsenius at Tura. 

375. 3 I.e. the order of the Sullan. 

376. 6 = May 28th, Julian Style.

377. 2 I.e. Alexandria.

378. 7 I.e. with regard to the date of his consecration.

379. 5 I.e. what amount of money.

380. 1  I.e. a sum of money.

381. 2 = June 24th, Julian Style.

382. 3  I.e. such expressions.

383. 4   Cf. P.K. Hitti, History of the Arabs, p. 141.

384. 5  =May 28th. Julian Style.

385. 3 = June 11th, Julian Style.

386. 6 = June 16th, Julian Style.

387. 11 = June 18th, Julian Style.

388. 2 Cf. G. Graf, Verzeichnis Arabischer Kirchlicher Termini, Louvain, 1954, p. 21 --- ὁσιομάρτυρ. This Saint is Peter, the Crown of the Martyrs, Patriarch of Alexandria from 300-311 A.D.

389. 3 The two Venetian merchants who removed the body of Saint Mark from Alexandria to Venise were Buono di Malamoceo and Rustico di Torcello, in 828 A.D. Cf. O.F.A. Meinardus, Christian Egypt Ancient and Modern, first edition, p. 114.

390. 4 1189-1216 A.D.

391. 8 = July 6th, Julian Style.

392. 2 This is most probably the Yuhauna Ibn Wahib Ibn Yuhanna Ibn Bulus, a friend of David, who is mentioned on p. 6.

393. 4 I.e. the Kasr as-Sam‘ on two of the bastions of which is built the Church Al-Mu‘allakah.

394. 5 = July 15th, Julian Style.

395. 7 I.e. John x, 1-16.

396. 8 According to the rubric, cf. O.H.E. KHS-Bukmester, op. cit., p. 90, this Gospel is read first in Greek and then in Coptic.

397. 10 I.e. the Islamic religious law.

398. 5 Markurius (Mercurius) must be a scribal error, since this day, the 22nd Abib, = July 16th, Julian Style) is the feast of Saint Macarius. 

399. 6 This must have been the Church of Saint Mercurius, as is shown later.

400. 1  I.e. the writer.

401. 7  At various periods the Christians were forbidden to ride horses and mules.

402. 3 = July 22nd, Julian Style. 

403. 4 = July 29th, Julian Style.

404. 3  According to the Canon Law of the Coptic Church, children of a second or third marriage are excluded from ordination.

405. 5 = 1236 A.D.

406. 4 I.e. the troops of the Sultan of the Rum.

407. 1  I.e. The young male slave.

408. 4  Sic. lege? Dyarbekir.

409. 1 = September 28th-October 27th, Julian Style. 

410. 2 = January 26th-February 24th, Julian Style.

411. 5 Since the Church Al-Mu‘allakah is built on two bastions of the Roman Castle at Babylon (cf. O.H.E. KES-Burmester, A Guide to the Ancient Coptic Churches of Cairo, pp. 14-15, 23), the storey in question would have been at about the same level as that part of the minaret from which the muezzin calls for prayer.

412. 6 Mark III. Patriarch of Alexandria, 1166-1189 A.D.

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