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PREFACE.

At a period like the present, so distinguished by the improved state of knowledge and spirit of religious inquiry, it is hoped, that a succinct account of Mohammedanism, in a popular form, may prove a useful acquisition, and not undeserving the perusal of the friends of Revealed Religion.

Christianity and Mohammedanism constitute, at this day, the two great rival religions of the universe 2, when viewed in connection

The inhabitants of the world may be supposed to amount, at the present time, to about 800,000,000, of whom we may suppose

The Christians to be 200,000,000
The Jews...

4,000,000

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with their relative influence and extent in the Western and Eastern hemispheres; but the comparison only holds good in that particular point, for when the systems are placed by the side of each other, and fairly examined in their history, doctrines, and evidences, all ideas of competition must be relinquished, and the futility and inconclusiveness of the arguments, by which Mohammedanism is attempted to be upheld, become strikingly apparent. The works which have appeared on Oriental topics", though admirably adapted

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The Pagans....

456,000,000 The Mohammedans...... 140,000,000 See Adams' Religious World displayed.

“ It is impossible to estimate, with any approach to accuracy, the number either of Musulmans or of Christians; but, considering for a moment, the subject of religion in a geographical sense, it may be generally remarked, that as Christianity has unlimited influence in Europe, so Islamism is the dominant religion in Asia; and that as the Christian faith has considerable weight in America, Mohammedanism has its proportionate sway in Africa.”—See Mills' History, p. 414. .

England may well be proud of her scholars in Asiatic literature. Sale maintained her character which Edward Po

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to their specific objects, are not more than equal to the reasonable expectations of the public, neither do they supersede or render further attempts at illustration superfluous. The same object may be viewed with advantage and effect, through a variety of medium; what is not found to engage attention, under one aspect or point of view, may by a change of scene, become attractive and awaken laudable curiosity: a compendium may prove a welcome companion where a formal treatise would be rejected, Since Prideaux's life of Mohammed, nothing has appeared among us in the shape of a manual. To obviate this inconvenience has given rise to the present attempt, which is an extension of his plan,

cocke had formed. The translation of the Koran into the English language, has received the approbation of every master of the Arabic. Mr. Sale's Preliminary Dissertation and Notes are admirable. All writers on this interesting topic gratefully acknowledge their obligations to them.”-Mills' History,

p. 287,

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entering into a wider field and more diversified details, than what comported with the design of his undertaking. Such a mode of survey has been adopted, as without fatiguing the attention, should comprise all essential information on the subject; such as the life of Mohammed, and the principal causes that contributed to his success, with suitable observations on the nature and character of that success ; a comprehensive account or analysis, of the Koran, with appropriate citations, 'including many of the most admired

passages, designed to render the style, doctrines, and literary merits of that singular performance more familiar to the generality of readers : the defects both in external and internal evidence under which the system labours, are also noted, and the Scripture vindicated from the charge of corruption : several Mohammedan mis-statements and errors stated : the history of Jesus given in the words of the

Koran, with notes, and contrasted with the accounts of the Evangelists ; that the grossness of the delusion and its agreement with spurious and apocryphal pieces may at one view be detected, and how little of real Christianity entered into its original composition; the Christian scheme of redemption through a Mediator next follows, and the incidental blessings conferred by Christianity are considered as affording presumptive proof of its Divine origin; a brief notice is taken of the prophecies supposed to relate to the period of its dissolution ; which topics, with the concluding observations, embrace intelligence sufficient for general purposes, and may be useful in aiding further researches.

In a compendium designed for the use of those who profess belief in revealed religion, it would be irrelevant to enlarge upon the necessity of a Revelation from heaven to

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