Page 1152

1152 UNIVERSAL HISTORY-THE MODERN WORLD.

the Christians of Syria had delighted to deposit the bones and relics of the saints. At

first the polite Caliph offered to purchase the

church for forty thousand dinars of gold; but

this being refused by the owners, Waled took

forcible possession of the building and would

pay therefor not a farthing.

Meanwhile the foreign affairs of the Caliphate were left to generals and secretaries. Moslema, one of Waled's fourteen brothers, made

a successful campaign into Asia Minor, where

he besieged and captured the city of Tyana.

He afterwards carried his victorious arms into

Pontus, Armenia, and Galatia, in all of which

provinces he reared the Crescent and gathered

the spoils of war.

On the side of the East the dominions

of the empire were enlarged by Moslema's

son, Khatiba. Having been appointed to

the governorship of Khorassan, he carried

the Crescent across the Oxus into Turkestan,

where he met and defeated a great army of

Turks and Tartars. The city of Bokhara was

captured and the khan of Chariam driven

into Samarcand. The city was then besieged by the courageous Khatiba, and after

a long investment was obliged to surrender.

A mosque was at once erected, and the conqueror himself ascending the pulpit explained

the doctrines of Islam.

Still further to the east, another general,

named Mohammed Ibn Casern, led an army

of the faithful into India. The kingdom of

Sinde was successfully invaded. A great battle was fought; the Moslems were victorious,

and the head of the Indian monarch was sent

as a trophy to Damascus. The expedition

then continued to the east, until the victorious standard of the Prophet was erected on

the banks of the Ganges.

In the far west the emir Musa was still

busy with his army and fleet. In the year

704 a Mohammedan squadron committed

ravages in Sardinia and Sicily. On land

the emir carried his banner westward to

where the spurs of the Atlas descend into

the Atlantic. The countries of Fez, Duquella, Morocco, and Sus were added by

successive conquests. The resistless sway of

Islam was extended to where the setting sun

casts his last look at the headlands of Cape

Non.

As a governor Musa established order.

His administration was so wise and simple that the Berber tribes soon became the

most loyal of his subjects. The whole coast

of Northern Africa, with the exception

of Tingitania-the same being the northern

projection of land next the strait of Gibraltar-acknowledged his authority and followed his banners. It remained for him,

before beginning the conquest of Europe,

to subdue the Tingitanians by capturing

the two cities of Ceuta and Tangiers. These

fortresses were now held by the Gothic

Spaniards, whose kingdom on the opposite

side of the strait was thus defended from

invasion.

Musa collected an army and advanced

against Ceuta, which was held by a strong

garrison, under command of Count Julian.

The Moslems laid siege to the fortress and

several unsuccessful assaults were made, in

which thousands of the assailants were slain.

It had already become evident that with the

imperfect besieging enginery of the Arabs,

they would be unable to take the citadel.

At this juncture, however, the Count

Julian committed treason. A correspondence was opened with Musa, and it was

agreed that Ceuta should be surrendered

to the Moslems. The treachery also embraced the delivery of the whole kingdom

of Andalusia, then ruled by the Gothic King

Roderic, to the followers of the Prophet!

It transpired that Count Julian had been

the victim of private wrongs at the hands

of his sovereign, and he now sought this

method of squaring the account. Great was

the surprise of the veteran Musa in having

thus opened to his imagination the easy

conquest of Spain.

Meanwhile the great soldier Taric Ibn Saad,

to whom had been assigned the capture of

Tangiers, had succeeded in his work. Those

of the garrison who belonged to the Berber

race were converted to Mohammedanism, and

the Christian inhabitants of the city were permitted to retire into Spain. Musa suspecting

the sincerity of Count Julian-for the latter

had represented that the people of Andalusia

were already ripe for a revolt to overthrow

the government of Roderic-now sent for

Taric, and ordered him to cross the strait in

company with Julian and ascertain the true

condition of affairs in Spain. By summoning

his friends, the Count seemed to verify the

representations which he had made to Musa.