Note [original edition] :
The commentators relate that, by Nimrod
’s order, a large space was
enclosed at Cûtha, and filled with a vast quantity of wood, which being set on
fire burned so fiercely, that none dared to venture near it: then they bound
and putting him into an engine (which some suppose to have been of
the devil’s invention), shot him into the midst of the fire; from which he was
preserved by the angel Gabriel
who was sent to his assistance; the fire
burning only the cords with which he was bound3
They add that the fire
having miraculously lost its heat, in respect to Abraham,
odoriferous air, and that the pile changed to a pleasant meadow; though it
raged so furiously otherwise, that, according to some writers, about two
thousand of the idolaters were consumed by it4
This story seems to have had no other foundation than that passage of
is said to have brought Abraham
out of Ur, of the Chaldees5
misunderstood: which words the Jews,
the most trifling interpreters of
scripture, and some moderns who have followed them, have translated, out of
the fire of the Chaldees; taking the word Ur, not for the proper name of a
city, as it really is, but for an appellative, signifying fire6
is a fable of some antiquity, and credited, not only by the Jews,
several of the eastern Christians
; the twenty-fifth of the second Canûn, or
January, being set apart in the Syrian calendar, for the commemoration of
’s being cast into the fire7
also mention some other persecutions which Abraham
account of his religion, particularly a ten years’ imprisonment8
he was imprisoned by Nimrod
and others, by his father Terah10
Al Beidawi, Jallalo’ddin, &c. V. Morgan’s Mahometism Expl. v. I,
The MS Gospel of Barnabas, ch. 28.
Genes. xv. 7.
V. Targ. Jonath. & Hierosol. in Genes. c. II, &
15; & Hyde, de Rel. vet. Pers. p. 74, &c.
V. Hyde, ibid. p. 73.
R. Eliez. Pirke, c. 26, &c. V. Maim. More Nev. l. 3, c. 29.
Glossa Talmud. in Gemar. Bava bathra, 91, I.