he may, very probably, have accepted the idea from others. In any case the result is the same. The story puts us in mind of Cinderella's glass slipper. Doubtless it was originally "un soulier de vair," not "un soulier de verre," the latter substance not being so very suitable for making slippers!

It is not to be wondered at that Jonathan ben Uzziel should make such a mistake as we have pointed out. But it is indeed strange that one claiming Divine inspiration should have accepted the fable based upon such a blunder as literally true, should in many different places introduce portions of the tale into a book which he professed to have received from God Himself through Gabriel, and should have taught his followers to believe it, and to consider that the agreement between the Qur'an and the Jewish Scriptures (in which he erroneously supposed that the tale was to be found) in this and similar matters was a proof that he was Divinely commissioned as a prophet.

3. Story of the Queen of Sheba's visit to Solomon.

Regarding the origin of this tale as narrated in the Qur'an there cannot be the slightest doubt. It is taken with only very slight alterations from the Second Targum on Esther, which is printed in the Miqraoth Gedoloth. Muhammad no doubt believed it to form part of the Jewish Scriptures, and its absurdities were so much to his taste and that of


the Arabs that he introduced it into the Qur'an (Surah XXVII., An Naml, v. 17 and vv. 20-45), where it is related in the following manner:—

"And his hosts (composed) of jinns and men and birds were gathered together unto Solomon. And he reviewed the birds: then He said, ‘What (hath happened) to me that I do not see the hoopoe (hudhud)? Or is it among the absentees? Truly I shall punish it with severe punishment. Either I shall slaughter it assuredly, or it shall surely bring me clear proof 1.’ Accordingly it delayed not long. Then it said: ‘I am aware of what thou art not aware of, and I have come to thee from Sheba 1 with sure information. Verily I found a woman who reigneth over them and who is brought some of everything, and she hath a great throne. And I found her and her people worshipping the Sun instead of God, and Satan hath made their deeds attractive unto them, and hath turned them aside from the way, therefore they are not guided aright so that they should worship God, who bringeth forth what is concealed in the heavens and the earth, and knoweth what ye hide and what ye reveal. God! there is no god but He, the Lord of the Great Throne.’ He said, ‘We shall see whether thou hast spoken truly or art among the liars. Go thou with this my epistle, and cast it down to

1 That it had a good excuse for absence.
2 The Arabic form is Saba, since the Hebrew sh often becomes s in Arabic.