‘O Abdullah, do not mention…”

“I was with ibn al-Mubarak and Mu’tamir ibn Sulayman in Tarasus and suddenly people were called to arms (for war). When the two armies (the muslim and the roman) took their positions, a roman fighter came forward and asked for a one-to-one fight. A muslim fighter went forward to fight the roman but was killed. Another one volunteered but was killed as well. The roman fighter manged to kill six muslim fighters and was walking betwen the lines arrogantly asking for a fight and no one dared approach him. Then, ibn al-Mubarak looked at me and said ‘If I am killed do so and so.’ He, then, approached the roman fighter with his horse and killed him after an hours skirmish and asked for a fight. He manged to kill six roman fighters; and when he asked for a fight , no one dared come forward, they were all afraid. Ibn al-Mubarak disappeared for a while in the rows and then came to his position near me and said to me ‘O Abdullah, do not mention what you have just seen to anyone as long as I am alive'”.


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