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2 corrections, most recently by anonymous - Show corrections

PERSIA.

A new sect has lately set itself up in Persia, at the head of which is a merchant who had returned from a pilgrimage to Mecca, and pro-   claimed himself a successor of the Prophet.

The way they treat such matters at Shiraz ap- pears in the following account (June 23): — Four persons being heard repeating their pro- fession of faith according to the form pre- scribed by the impostor, were apprehended, tried, and found guilty of unpardonable blas- phemy. They were sentenced to lose their beards by fire being set to them. The sen- tence was put into execution with all the zeal and fanaticism becoming a true believer in Mahomet. Not deeming the loss of beards a sufficient punishment, they were further sen- tenced the next day, to have their faces blacked and exposed through the city. Each of them was led by a mirgazah (executioner), who had made a hole in his nose and passed through it a string, which he sometimes pulled with such violence that the unfortunate fellows cried out alternately for mercy from the exe- cutioner and for vengeance from Heaven. It is the custom in Persia on such occasions for the executioner to collect money from the spectators, and particularly from the shop- keepers in the bazaar. In the evening, when the pockets of the executioners were well filled with money, they led the unfortunate fellows to the city gate, and then turned them adrift. After which the mollahs at Shiraz sent men to Bushire, with power to seize the impostor, and take him to Shiraz, where, on being tried, he very wisely denied the charge of apostacy laid against him, and thus escaped from punish- ment.—Times, Nov. 17.

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