The House of David

"dawnbreak in the west"

Friday, January 20, 2017

Seth Richardson throws a tantrum

Sorry Seth: Hillary Clinton is still not President, and will never be. Actually I'm not sorry. I felt pretty good all day.

Pretty rich to refer to the fake-news media as "scribes of the people". Maybe that's why y'all lost. Sad!

AFTERTHOUGHT: Still pondering whether our new President, whom I repeat is the President whom Richardson and I share, would be transcribed Lugal Kashadi or Sharrukashad while he's, you know, being President. The Sumerian concept of lugal - strongman - is a good one for Trump; but it doesn't map well to Semitic notions of kingship, which were more servile. Obama, now - he was one to be addressed as bêl, or malik. And then there was The Woman Who Would Be Sharrat.

But then, Richardson doesn't spend much time around Trump supporters. Not our kind of people, dear boy. Oh look, the new Washington Post editorial is up!

- oh wait, Trump's still President in it.

posted by Zimri on 21:01 | link | 0 comments

Upload #158: clearing the air

The 44 / 52 links, one of which I footnoted in "Fire From The Mountain" (on sura 52), were troubling me. I looked a little deeper and caught sura 44 in the act of alluding to sura 52, sarcastically. So that's an addition to "When The Smoke Clears".

Nicolai Sinai's article sent me to a sura 16 / sura 26 link, so, I added that to "Plots Against The Qurra'". I considered delinking "Joseph's Temptations", since it's now over in Throne such that future updates will be applied to that version. But since it is imposing itself into a modern (feminist, not Islamic) controversy I figure I should keep it around for reference (or even for feedback).

UPDATE 7:45 PM - "When The Smoke Clears" has enough content on sura 44's links that a separate project is now, finally, in order. "The New Plague".


posted by Zimri on 18:52 | link | 0 comments

Thursday, January 19, 2017

Throne of Glass 4e

Done! Yay. Here it is again. Beyond what has been mentioned:

Its mentions of sura 12 now take into account Michel Cuypers' work on the sura's chiasmatic structure. To appendix "sura 37's strophic structure": I have noted sura 51 as its inspiration. I look at other citations of Q. 25:74, on the making of imams: a tug-of-war between sura 28 (Sunni) and sura 32 (Umayyad) - which the Sunnis won.

As history goes I mentioned the 'ata' system of payment and pension. Here I was following Hugh Kennedy's lead. Seventh-century disputes over 'ata' as an Islamic Right were, indeed, a thing. Also added a sentence about the economic role of sugar cane. I am still quite Marxist in my historiography.

Here's what delayed me this week: I had to prove the smug tools over at Islamic Awareness WRONG about sura 27 and the Sheni Targum. Sorry, Qur'an-apologist hacks: sura 27 depends on this Zionist myth and adapts it. And you can't blame me, either. Emmanuelle Stefanidis noted it last year in that Qur'an Seminar book, mainly citing "Jacob Lassner 1993" which is probably this famous book, wholly unnoted by I.A.. But it's so much easier to tilt against Tisdall and Geiger...

All in all, I'm happy with this edition. What had been intuitions in former versions are arguments in this one.

posted by Zimri on 18:43 | link | 0 comments

Wednesday, January 18, 2017

On Throne of Glass...

I ordered the proof yesterday. I found several bibliographical records that no longer apply, being as that last 2014 chapter is almost all gone now. Also some of the usual Word-to-PDF annoyances were cropping up. And I wanted to tighten up that sura 27 chapter. So, back to In Process.

When you get it: 124 pages of maintext, 217 overall.

posted by Zimri on 19:43 | link | 0 comments

Tuesday, January 17, 2017


Nicolai Sinai has uploaded "The Unknown Known: Some Groundwork for Interpreting the Medinan Qur’an".

I must start with some corrigenda. Sinai reads Q. 5:51 as "the Believers not to take the Jews and Christians as friends", wherein the verse's literal reading for "friends" is awliya'. This looks to me like the wala', the Arabian client / patron relationship. Ulrike Muller proved some decades ago (contra Crone 1987) that the wala' was already formal before the Umayyads. An intimate "friend" as Sinai describes it would in Arabic be khalil, like Abraham in sura 4. Also, more nitpicky, the essay says in p. 62 that it had not yet discussed Q. 110, but I see that sura in p. 57.

My initial problem with this essay was that it didn't establish in advance its definition of "the Medinan Qur'an". I think it's starting with Noeldeke, seeing how Noeldeke's list correlates with other suras, and then bringing in those suras too or at least parts of them. Page 54 calls this set the "Medinan Constellation".

And then the essay finds what I've found: that the "Medinan Constellation" still includes a lot of Mecca, and vice versa.

Its conclusion at page 74 offers two choices to make sense of this mixed picture. One is an evolutionary scenario according to which the Medinan texts are preceded by, and develop out of, the non-Medinan ones. The other is a Qur’anic two-source hypothesis, based on the idea that the Meccan and the Medinan corpus originated separately and were only subsequently combined into the received version of the Qur’an.

Sinai doesn't like the second option. He knows that Medina is conscious of the Qur'an outside Medina and that the Medinan Constellation quotes non-Medinan passages all over the place. Sura 9 addresses Q. 19:47, alongside 14:41 and 26:86 (he doesn't put the latter three in order, but he doesn't have to). And Q. 2:97-8 knows 16:102 and/or 26:193-6.

But this runs into another problem: much non-Medina is also conscious of Medina. If we're starting with sura 19 then that one knew suras 3 and 4 (not to mention the Dome of the Rock!). Sinai would claim suras 6 and 7 for Medina too, which sura 19 also knew. Or we could talk about sura 26 knowing sura 7 as intimately as a khalil. Sinai deals with this like Neuwirth dealt with this, and like how the classical mufassirun dealt with this: assuming interpolations. I've already said my piece on that: once you start claiming interpolations, and you lack internal and external evidence for that, you can no longer talk of a text. You've written your own sura and you've lost the argument.

Can't we have a version of these two choices in which the "Medinans" grew up alongside the non-Medinans?

We can then talk about Qur'anic bottlenecks. All Communities-Of-The-Qur'an accepted sura 3, and then sura 6, early on. Later, all such Mu'mins / Muslims accepted sura 41. I think consensus was reached similarly on sura 25, although not on the exact text of every verse in it. Suras 19 and 21 look like the next Scriptural bottleneck(s). Still later, sura 9.

In between, more-controversial suras popped up - whose doctrines were avoided - like the Camel-ess Of God, in sura 7, recited to John Damascene even; but not in sura 27. Or whose doctrines were denied: the guilty mens' discussions at the Judgement, in sura 37, are denied in suras 23 and 28 (merely avoided in sura 52).

Back to Qur'anic communities, I would reconstruct these according to the boundaries which the Qur'an sets, itself. In which case, we get suras 25 and 41 from the same community; suras 33 and 48 from the same community. And we get suras 28 and 37 from different communities - each which sprang out of sura 25's community.

Once we've laid down the real sequence of suras, then we can talk to which degree a Medinan Constellation even exists. Personally, I'm not seeing it.

posted by Zimri on 16:41 | link | 0 comments

Monday, January 16, 2017

Upload #157: guidance

Throne of Glass is In Process, so expect that back tomorrow.

In the meantime I can divulge what I'd hinted Wednesday about Q. 28:66. This is evidence that sura 28 knew sura 37 - and deliberately rejected 37. This is what forced my hand into making that new edition. For now "Ararat Tax" offers sequence Q.28>23; with hints that sura 23, like sura 28, didn't accept sura 37 as canon.

"The Iconoclast" tunes sura 21's use of sura 32, that it merged this with a certain variant of 25:74. "Solomon's Revenge" proposes sura 38's 'izza theme being adapted from the same theme in sura 27.


posted by Zimri on 11:40 | link | 0 comments

MLK in two sentences

Martin Luther King to Alex Haley, 1965, in the former's favourite magazine Playboy: Even so, he is not pressing for revenge, or for conquest, or to gain spoils, or to enslave, or even to marry the sisters of those who have injured him. ... All of America’s wealth today could not adequately compensate its Negroes for his centuries of exploitation and humiliation. (h/t)

The man showed up to the bargaining-table and declared his right to all you have today, and to indefinite amount in future. And when asked when the looting and hectoring would end he said, when he feels like it. For his claim that "the Negro" is not pressing for revenge: maybe not, but all this talk of "justice" shows that MLK at least was out to get his own back. For his disavowal of seeking to enslave: I'll just say that there exists a word, in English, for someone with a legal right to all your possessions and to the fruits of your labour ongoing at his will. That word is "master".

Americans were fools to think they could treat with such a man.

posted by Zimri on 08:46 | link | 0 comments

Sunday, January 15, 2017

Throne of Glass down

It took eight months to do the "third" / 2016 edition of Throne of Glass, last May; it's been another eight months since then. And I've posted a lot of essays, and promoted many more to A Garden for the Poets. So - here we go again.

The fourth edition will redirect those "pdf" references to such projects as are now in A Garden, and will update its The Arabs links according to June. It'll also include "Joseph's Temptations" as a new appendix. I'm splitting the first chapter, which was getting bloated; and the 37/28 chapter, for reasons I'll divulge when I post it. And I'm tearing a decade more content out of that last chapter; basically I'm aiming to end with al-Walid's coronation, not with his death. Overall it's a more radical change than that 2016 edition was, but not as radical as the dizzying alterations through 2015.

So I'm looking at 123 pages of maintext - which is less than the 126 pages the 2016 edition had, but a bit more than that first-attempt of a second edition we had in 2015. Overall pagecount will increase, because the new appendix and the additions to other appendices more than make up for the lost three pages.

UPDATE 1/16/2016: reasons.

posted by Zimri on 19:43 | link | 0 comments

John Lewis was not, and is not, for civil-rights

The official mantra on John Lewis, liar, is that he might be an anti-white and anti-American scumbag now, but he was a Civil Rights Icon from the days of his youth. The media repeats "Civil Rights Icon" for him like they repeat "Dreamer" for a criminal invader into this country, or "Refugee" for an Islamic invader into Europe.

To be for civil rights, to my mind, you have to support civil rights for everybody, including for white people. Lewis's record on that is poor. To be an Icon for a cause you must actually risk something for that cause. Lewis did that for black civil rights, which makes him brave in supporting his own people. There's something to admire in that. But that something is not principle.

Telling us over and over again that Lewis was a civil rights hero doesn't make him a civil rights hero. It just tarnishes the brand of "civil rights" itself in this country. Among the black population here it's already been used as a hustle too often by too many, and I do not exempt You Know Who.

posted by Zimri on 18:01 | link | 0 comments

Saturday, January 14, 2017


Vox Day: Sooner or later, the Trump administration will have to look very seriously at denying antibiotics to everyone who cannot, or will not, abide by a strictly observed drug-taking regimen. The potential consequences are that serious.

If Trump does moot that, the media are going to ask him what about the vacciiiines. They're already starting, because of the audience Trump has held with Robert Kennedy Junior. True, the current controversy is overblown, almost to the level of Fake News. But Trump opened himself up to it. And he's going to have to figure out how to address this as the bugs grow more resilient.

posted by Zimri on 11:16 | link | 0 comments

Thursday, January 12, 2017

Cuck huntin' season

It's coming up to Michael Martin Luther Junior's birthday again, sure as Groundhog Day, and that means we can expect the usual crew of uninformed white Conservatives whining about how modern blacks aren't nice anymore, like MLK was nice. Whaah, whaah, muh dream. And hey, MLK doesn't disagree!

Mainly because he's dead. But still.

If MLK weren't dead, or if these uninformed white Conservative whiners ever bothered to read MLK's stuff (leaving alone to what degree it even was his stuff), the Cons would... probably keep trying to con us.

For the rest of us, try keeping up with his voice against resisting the repeated Communist subversions and invasions of South Vietnam. Or his strikes for socialism at home - Lyndon Johnson, to him, wasn't nearly going far enough. Or his support for a strike by Memphis garbage-workers. Or how incubators of jihad treat him as a latter-day Muhammad.

I've mentioned Where Do We Go From Here seven fucking years ago here. Apparently that didn't help so let's try another one: The Radical King edited by Cornel West. Here you'll read how King recommended picketing shops in cities which weren't hiring "enough" blacks even if the shops weren't located in black parts of town, or if blacks with clean records weren't thick on the ground. The picket would, you see, cause drama, making the (white) customers of the "racist" store worry they would be recognised elsewhere. All that affirmative-action done by Big Business that downscale whites and ideological Conservatives don't like? Yep - all that's on King. And on the white chickensh!ts who knuckled under to him.

Besides the gaping ignorance and complacency, invoking a person's memory when he's safely demised is just cowardly. And why bother in the first place? You know King would never have spoken out on your behalf. His true followers sure don't.

posted by Zimri on 18:56 | link | 0 comments

Wednesday, January 11, 2017

Upload #156: fallout

I'm still struggling over sura 38. The first edition of Throne of Glass had some long discussions about it. But two years back I expelled it from the divine councils, like it were the Satan himself.

This week I've found that the first exegetes identified the sura's two litigants, who burgled David's palace, as angels. They're probably right because the litigants talk like angels, saying lâ takhaf like angels say. That means the whole litigant story is a parable... for something, dunno what yet. It's not just a bowdlerisation of the Biblical Bathsheba / Uriah mess like... well... the way modern Muslims treat it. Anyway this forced some changes to "Book of Nathan" and "Solomon's Revenge". I changed "The Scriptures of the Women" whilst I was at it, because there might be a Marwani-era reference to Q. 33:37.

Here and there among my projects I found some footnotes to sura 50, not yet incorporated into "Q for Qurra'" so I've added a 38/50 parallel and even a 23/50 parallel. But I had to backtrack in that project over which version of sura 38, if any, sura 50 was willing to cite (sura 50 surely knew our sura 38). Sura 50 only bothers with 38:1-15, and not the parts which make sura 38, sura 38.

On that new sura 52 project, "Fire from the Mountain", I wonder if the sura could be aware of Q. 28:66's objection to a conversation amongst the damned. Thanks to HarperOne's "Study Qur'an" for noting that latter verse. Further, I suspect 52:44's falling "fragments from the sky" derives from sura 34. Meanwhile over on sura 34, "What Waits Beside These Roads" has a new 17>34 link, for those celestial fragments. For both I also must thank the "Study Qur'an" - sort of. (I disagree that sura 26 is involved in either.)

"Plots Against The Qurra'" on sura 16 has taken on some Christoph Luxenberg for v. 103. Here I credit Claude Gilliot.


posted by Zimri on 20:10 | link | 0 comments

Monday, January 09, 2017

Erasure of al-Andalus

Here's an academic term you may have heard: "erasure". This means, I think, the suppression of pertinent information to serve an ideology. I find the term is mainly used by the Leftists; I don't use it, much - which is more my fault than theirs. The 1980s leftwing electronica band "Erasure" took its name from that; the "gay" subculture has been particularly insistent that their own lifestyle(s)' effects on history have been suppressed by mainstream historians.

I bring this up because we've been hearing from Spanish academics that their own Islamic era has been downplayed by "conservatives". Thus, Alejandro García-Sanjuán. I don't know if he quite uses the word "erasure" but he does call out Right politicians' claims that Islam was alien to Spain. He thinks that being so judgey is bad.

If we're to discuss this we have to start with some basics. "Spain", like "India", does have geographic meaning, but it has rarely held a political meaning. Still doesn't; last I checked a map, the Iberian peninsula hosts two nations, a "Spain" and a "Portugal", roughly correspondent to Roman-era "Hispania" and "Lusitania" - hence, "Iberia" for the geographers.

The first Iberian unification-project was enacted by west-Semites with Berber help - Hamilcar Barca of Punic Carthage, as I recall. The Latins tried next and they were if anything even more exploitative. Then, the Vandals and, then-then, the Visigoths. These two German races at least had the advantage of keeping Spanish wealth in Spain. The Arabs and Berbers under Umayyad direction followed the same pattern as Hamilcar. Because of these constant invasions Spain no longer even has a language; all it has left is Latin with various stupid accents. Oh, and Basque, but that's not native to Iberia either.

This survey tells me that whenever Iberia has been united, it was generally foreigners who did it and almost never for the benefit of the natives. The historian Mary Beard has noted princeps Hadrian as an exception - but he was Spanish by birth. So I don't much blame modern Spaniards for their notion that the Islamic period was one of foreign oppression. Their problem is that they then need to answer how the Muslims' occupation was worse than any others' occupation, like those of the Carthaginians or the Romans or, hell, the French.

But I think here I could throw some help to the "conservatives". First, Catholic Christianity is superior to Islam - and, by the way, to the various Arian and Monothelete "Christianities" that came at them from Byzantium along the way. The Romans' inherent dyotheletism keeps the caudillos from being worse than they are. Second, although Latin was an imposition to Iberia, at least it was related to Lusitanian and Celtiberian - languages that got there long before anything Punic. Which means Latin wasn't as alien as imposition. On religious and on linguistic grounds, the Latin-Catholic claim to Spain beats out the Andalusis'.

To be anti-conservative is to despise your own history, by definition. This is why anti-conservatives go into such contortions to reinterpret history. And why they get political first.

posted by Zimri on 17:59 | link | 0 comments

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