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Children Of The Slavewoman

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Chapter Summary

This chapter traces first the origins and early history of the tradition, and subsequently offer some remarks on its survival after the rise of Islam. It describes the names "Ishmaelites" and "Hagarenes" and then with the name "Saracens". There seems to have been an awareness of a genealogical connection between Hagar and her son Ishmael on the one hand and the Hagarenes and Ishmaelites on the other. In early Christianity, which drew on the biblical and cognate literature it inherited from Judaism, we may take the knowledge of the offspring of Ishmael/Hagar for granted. Christian opponents would retort that with such a promise God had also blessed the birds of the air and the fish of the sea; and that the multitude of twelve peoples was of no avail if God's goodwill was not there; besides, Abraham had had to implore God in order to obtain this promise for Ishmael.

Keywords:Christianity; God; Hagar; Hagarenes; Ishmaelites; Islam; Judaism; Saracens



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