THE SCHOOLS OF THE PROPHET
IT may not occur to many visitors that Cairo is a university town. Such, however, it is, and as such it is known and regarded with respect all over the kingdoms and principalities of Islam. And here I am not alluding to the New University College which has been recently instituted, to give instruction in Western science and literature, under the patronage of the Khedive and the encouragement of the British adviser to the Ministry of Education. Millions of Moslem, who know nothing of the Khedive, and very little of the English, are interested in Cairo, not because it is a great and wealthy city, the capital of Egypt, but because it is the seat of the university of El-Azhar. For that establishment is the chief seminary of the whole Mohammedan world, the gatheringground for all who would make themselves proficient in the learning of Islam, the training school for the priests and doctors of the Faith.
In the mere number of its students and its professors it surpasses all academies and colleges, not merely of the East, but of the West also. There are over 10,000 boys and men, of all ages from twelve to sixty, at El-