An Account of the Manners and Customs of the Modern Egyptians Written in Egypt during the Years 1833-1835

By Edwsard William Lane | Go to book overview

with their face to the animal's tail; and should not enter a bath unless with a bell suspended to the neck. At the same time, the Emeers were forbidden to take any Christians into their service; and all of this sect who were in the service of the government were displaced.

After having suffered frequent and heavy exactions and other oppressions, a vast number of the Christians both in Upper and Lower Egypt, in the year of the Flight 755 ( 1354-5 A.D.), embraced the faith of El-Islám. The number of proselytes in the town of Kalyoob alone who changed their faith in one day was four hundred and fifty. Most of the churches of Upper Egypt were destroyed at the same time, and mosques were built in their places.


CHAPTER XXX.
THE JEWS OF EGYPT

The Jews, in every country in which they are dispersed (unlike any other collective class of people residing in a country which is not their own by inheritance from the original possessors, or by conquest achieved by themselves or their ancestors), form permanent members of the community among whom they dwell. A few words respecting the Jews in Egypt will, therefore, be not inappropriate in the present work.

There are in this country about five thousand Jews (in Arabic called "Yahood;" singular, "Yahoodee"), most of whom reside in the metropolis, in a miserable, close, and dirty quarter, intersected by lanes, many of which are so narrow as hardly to admit of two persons passing each other in them.

In features, and in the general expression of countenance, the Oriental Jews differ less from other Eastern nations than do those in European countries from the people among whom the live. Many of the Egyptian Jews have sore eyes and a bloated complexion -- the result, it is supposed, of their making an immoderate use of the oil of sesame in their food. In their dress, as well as in their persons, they are generally slovenly and dirty. The colours of their turbans are the same as those of the Christian

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