Investigation of Religions: On Turkish and Persian Muhammadanism

Hieronymus Kromayer

Hieronymus Kromayer was born in 1610 in Zeitz in Saxony-Anhalt. Coming from a noble family of important Protestant theologians settled in Silesia, Kromayer was originally educated by private tutors and later attended a Lutheran school (Stiftsschule) in Zeitz. In 1628, he attended the University of Leipzig where he received his bachelor’s degree in 1629. Subsequently, he attended the University of Wittenberg and the University of Jena, and received his master’s degree from the Faculty of Philosophy in 1632 upon his return to Leipzig. He was driven out of Leipzig as a result of the Thirty Years’ War, but upon his return in 1633 became a lecturer in Logic, Physics, and Astronomy. In 1640, Kromayer received his Bachelor of Theology and in 1643, he was a professor of history. In 1645, he was awarded his Licentiate of Theology and became a professor of rhetoric in 1648. Two years after the Thirty Years’ War ended, Kromayer gave a speech in the presence of the ruler, Elector Johann Georg I, in Leipzig to celebrate the restoration of peace in Saxony and the Holy Roman Empire. A year after, in 1651, Kromayer received his doctorate in theology, and served as the rector of Leipzig University in 1653. He wrote the Consensus repetitus fidei vere Lutheranae (Recurrent Consensus of the True Lutheran Faith) in 1655 along with Daniel Heinrici, an important Lutheran figure at Leipzig University after the Thirty Years’ War. This book was designed as an Orthodox Lutheran theological platform in the Syncretistic Controversy. Kromayer received his full professorship in 1657. In 1661, he succeeded Johann Hiilsemann, an opponent of Georg Calixt during the Syncretic Controversy, by taking over the canon of Meissen and in 1666 began his first theological professorship as successor to Daniel Heinrici. Kromayer was appointed Dean of the Theological Faculty in Leipzig for five consecutive years until 1670. He wrote a series of books that have been frequently reprinted on exegetical, theological, and ethical subjects. These texts were often quite divisive in nature. In his later years, Kromayer produced Ecclesia inpolitia (Political History of the Church) and Theologia positivo-polémica, which attempts to deal in objective order with the controversies the Lutheran Church had with the Catholics, Calvinists,

Romanstrants, Socinians, Anabaptists, Weigelians, and Jews. In his work, Scrutinium religionum turn falsarum, Kromayer presents each religion and subsequently refutes their authenticity, including Paganism, Judaism, Islam, and various non-Lutheran Christian sects, such as Ana-baptism, Quakerism, Calvinism, Socinianism, and Catholicism, in order to prove that orthodox Lutheranism is the only true religion (turn unice verae & orthodoxae Lutheranismi). He died in Leipzig in 1670?

Variant Names: Hieronymi Kromayeri, Hieronymus Kronmayerus, Hieronymus Kromayerus, Hieronymus Kromaier, and Hieronymus Kromeyer

Summary and Analysis

In his disputatio, Kromayer tries to construct a position about what is ‘true’ in religion, based on its relationship to Christianity. In so doing, rather than providing an analysis of Islam as a single entity, he presents it in relation to its Abrahamic predecessors, with a focus on Qur’anic conceptions of Christ. Islam, therefore, represents a ‘true’ religion, according to Kromayer, because, unlike paganism, it consists of conceptions of divinity that are reflected in Christian doctrine. Thus, his text examines Islam according to scriptural dogmas. He begins by outlining the story of Muhammad having been born to a Gentile mother and Jewish father and argues that Muhammad began Islam by spreading the dogmas of a monk named Sergius with whom he had established a new religion. These dogmas, he says, were codified into what is now called the Qur’an. Kromayer suggests that Muhammad’s wealth, which came from his late wife, was used to create an Arab army that extended across Palestine, Persia, Egypt, and most of the African shoreline, as well as the Aegean islands. Therefore, Kromayer saw Islam as political and militaristic, more than religious. He argues that Islam changed from a religion comprised of nomadic Arabs to a major religion after the Turks embraced it, leading to the spread of Islam across the Persian Empire. He hopes that this “tyrannical empire” will be destroyed.

Kromayer argues that the principal dogma of Islam is the Qur’an, a doctrine full of many false stories, contradictions, and riddles without any order. He maintains that Muhammad claimed the law was handed down to Moses, the gospel to Christ, and the “al-furqdn” the “pleasing and welcome book,” to himself. As a result, the Qur’an retains certain ceremonial laws, such as washing and circumcision as well as public laws like alms-giving and mandated times for fasting that are prescribed in the laws of Moses. Kromayer explains some of the Qur’an’s regulations, such as restrictions and restraints on gambling, pork, and alcohol consumption. He argues that these laws spring from Muhammad being unaware that the individual might be freed in liberty through Christ and, because of this, the Jewish covenant between God and man had been superseded.

Kromayer says that, although Muhammad commends the gospel handed down by Christ, he does not accept it as a form of salvation. Muhammad believed that Abraham is the father of all believers and all the prophets of the Abrahamic tradition share the same law, which culminated in the reception of the Qur’an as the highest good. Christians and Jews should not judge Muslims and a Muslim cannot take a non-Muslim wife. To show how Islam differs from and is, therefore, lesser than Christianity, Kromayer discusses Islamic views on divorce, polygamy and purgatory, explaining how Islam is comprised of certain Judeo-Christian tenets. He adds that when Christianity began to decline

Hieronymus Kromayer, Scrutinii religionum disputatio III, de Muhammetismo turn Turcarum turn Persarum, 1668 (Courtesy of the Niedersächsische Staats- und Universitätsbibliothek Göttingen)

Figure 16.1 Hieronymus Kromayer, Scrutinii religionum disputatio III, de Muhammetismo turn Turcarum turn Persarum, 1668 (Courtesy of the Niedersächsische Staats- und Universitätsbibliothek Göttingen).






S. S. Thcol. Dodl. ас Prof. Publ, RESPONDENTS

M. CHRISTOPHORO ЗЗерап/ Rcdbi-zenfi Varifco.

habit a diej. Mar tit. Лппо iddg. horü & loco confvetic, Typis ]oh. wFttigauT in Arabia only a shadow of the knowledge of Christ remained. He concludes by noting key differences between Persian and Turkish Islam: the interpreter and interpretation of the Qur’an; certain sacred matters, ceremonies, and rites; and miracles. Over these, the Turks and Persians persecute each other.

Although Kromayer’s title refers to Turkish and Persian Muhammadanism, his disputation focuses on comparing Islam to various heresies. However, Kromayer’s title, Turkish and Persian Muhammadanism, implies that the two main Islamic sects and their theological dispute were restricted to the Ottoman-Safavid political tension. In contrast, Pfeiffer’s use of Alishiis and Sunnitis in his title indicates, to a certain extent, a familiarity with the Sunni and Shi‘a schools of thought. In other words, for Kromayer, Muslim denominations are ethnic and political as much as theological.

Disputation III on the Investigation of Religions: On Turkish and Persian Muhammadanism (Leipzig, 1668)2


In the preceding disputation, we examined Paganism, first in general, and then the form it took among the noble Roman race. Now let us consider to Muhammadanism. I have defined Paganism as a received religion, suitable for those who live outside the Church, unaware of God. [By this definition], I mean to distinguish true religion from heresy, that is to say, to distinguish Paganism from Muhammadanism. As Pagan awareness of God is very remote indeed, Paganism differs to a certain extent from Muhammadanism and Judaism. Muhammadanism acknowledges Christ, the son of Mary, and Judaism retains a part of the principal theology, namely the Old Testament. Muhammadanism should, therefore, be associated with both Christianity and Judaism. As Paganism denotes all religion outside the Church, who will go as far as to include Muhammadanism and Judaism in its ambit? Indeed, could anyone doubt that Judaism and Muhammadanism are close to Christianity when Muhammadanism accepts Jesus of Nazareth as a remarkable prophet? Judaism rejects this; although the Jews maintain the principal part of theology in good repair in the Masora and tenaciously cling to divine law; yet they still discuss the Messiah as one who is to come. However, I will connect Muhammadanism to Paganism based on evidence. I will undertake this labor, first describing the dogmas of that faith, and then examining its scripture to the Lydian stone. God grant that this succeed!

Part 1: Describing the Dogmas of Muhammadanism

Muhammadanism gets its name from Muhammad, an Arab who lived in the seventh century after the birth of Christ. Muhammadanism easily drew many races into its fellowship, integrating components from Sergius the Nestorian monk, heretics, Judaism, Christianity, and Paganism, just as a cake is made from many ingredients.

Some claim that Muhammadanism mixes Judaism with Paganism because Muhammad was born of a gentile [Pagan] father and a Jewish mother. However, the explanation I have given above seems to be correct, unless perhaps they are both correct.

I will now briefly expound upon Muhammad’s life. He was an Arab, born in the late sixth century after the birth of Christ to obscure and poor parents, endowed with a keen spirit, eloquence, and a noble appearance. When Muhammad traveled to Spain, Saint Isidore of Seville recognized that he would do great injury to both Church and State, and advised that he be imprisoned. Muhammad was sold to a rich merchant to oversee camel caravans. Because he was handsome, he was given nice clothes and put in charge of sales. The young man excelled in seeking profit for his master, and for this reason he was treated well and came to know many Christians and Jews through business. When Muhammad’s master died childless, he married his fifty-year-old widow, winning her affections either through his good looks and industry or through the magic arts. She made him the heir to all of her possessions. Muhammad’s wife often suffered from epilepsy. As an explanation [for her seizures], Muhammad told her to say that an angel of God appeared to her, and that her whole body was shaking because she could not endure the sight of it. Therefore, when his wife died, he was treated as God’s prophet.

Around the time when this impostor lived, a certain monk called Sergius was expelled from Byzantium, because of the Nestorian heresy (some say Arian), and he came to Arabia. After he became friends with Muhammad, Sergius suggested a plan to forge a new kind of religion, that was neither Christian nor Jewish nor Ethnic [Pagan], but was harmonious with all of them for these three religions were then stretching their threads far and wide throughout Europe, Asia and Africa. After a while, Muhammad spread this monk’s teachings in his Qur’an, just as he spread teachings from the works of Jews and other heretics.

Muhammad’s riches furnished the means to recruit a gang of robbers into a huge force. He also enlisted Arab soldiers defecting from the Emperor Heraclius because the Quaestors paid Roman and Greek soldiers more and treated the Arabs like a pack of dogs.

Fortune favored the enterprise of this robber and his successors wherever they went in the following century. Not only did they make Palestine, Persia, Egypt and most of the African shoreline their own, but they also attacked the Aegean Islands with their ships and laid siege to Constantinople, the Imperial seat; however, they were repulsed after their ships had been burned by Greek fire.

Nevertheless, Muhammadanism found followers easily among so many races because various [Christian] heretics, especially Arius and his parasites, had already spread the seeds of [heterodoxy]. As the saying goes: Arianism strew the path in the East for Muhammadanism. I will have more to say on this after evaluating the erroneous dogmas of the Muhammadan sects.

Muhammad’s followers are called Hagarian. It is doubtless that they trace their descent from Ishmael, an inhabitant of Arabia. Then there are the Saracens: they are not named after Sarah, the free wife of Abraham, nor does their name mean “inheritors of the world,” as Carion’s Chronicle says. Rather, their name comes from the Arabic al-sarik, which means “thieves” and “nomads.” The Saracens are the same sort of men as the Cossacks and Tartars are to the Turks, and as the Martolos are, and as the Bandoliers are in the Pyrenees, etc. For the old proverb teaches, and experience confirms, that these wandering and nomadic men rejoice in rapine (Jeremiah 3:2 and Ezekiel 38:13). Arabs haunted the Holy Land in the time of the Church Fathers, and provoked public animosity, as described by Nicolaus Radzvil, Jakob Breuning, Salomon Schweigger, and Johann Helffrich.

Indeed, the Arabs themselves (Hagarians and Saracens) take their name from the [Hebrew] root word arav, that is to say, “mix” (from which they trace; erev, that is to say, “dusk,” because light would then be mixed with darkness; and, orev, that is to say, “crow” from its dusky color) on the grounds that they are a random horde or mixture of various peoples (Jeremiah 25:20-24). When Kimchi writes “wandering and mixed Arabs,” they are to be understood as living in tents; Pliny therefore called them Scenitae, and they did not own the best pastures. Hence, they were named Nomads from nemos, that is, “pasture.” For when the grasses exhausted in one place, the Arabs did not keep their tents there, but rather they moved their possessions elsewhere in wagons in order to feed their flocks, as is attested in Isaiah 13:20.

About one thousand years after Christ’s birth, the Turks, having spread from the womb of the races in the north through the Caspian mountains into Persia, embraced Muhammad’s religion. After that, the people who professed the religion of this seducer were called Turks, especially after the Sultans of the Ottoman house took over the state and crushed the other leaders. Johannes Leunclavius in his History of the Turks discusses the various rulers of these races.

The name Turk, which they pronounce in their own whispering language as Turk or even Jurk, perhaps as it is written and pronounced differently in France, means “wandering herder.” They owe their lineage to the Scythians, who are called “people living in wagons” in Greek. In the Scriptures (Ezekiel 38-39 and Revelation 20:8), they are called Magog, and in abbreviated form Gog (from the word roof, as if they were roof men, dachmanner in German, for the same reason), because they derive their lineage from their first father, from Magog, the son of Japheth, grandson of Noah.

Perhaps on this point Psalms gives some evidence, when it introduces the lamenting church (Psalm 120:5) wandering among the Mesech camps and Kedar huts. For the Turks are clearly understood as northerners descended from Mesech (from Mesech, the son of Japheth, Gen. 10:2); the Arabs descended from Kedar (from Kedar, the son of Ishmael, Genesis 25:13). This passage applies to the situation of the Eastern Churches spread far and wide throughout Europe, Asia, and Africa.

The Turkish Empire, in which the doctrine of the impostor Muhammad flourishes, is represented by the image of a crescent. In this empire there are three horns, i.e., kingdoms: Greece, Asia, and Egypt (in Hebrew, kingdoms are called “horns” because of their power and strength). These were once part of the Roman Empire. These “horns” have eyes looking about them for their self-preservation and propagation, and a mouth spreading whisperings of portents and expounding blasphemies against the only begotten son of God, as prophesied by Daniel (Dan. 7:1-28).

The deceiver himself predicted the longevity of his empire. Near death, he was asked for the duration of his empire, and, unable to speak, extended ten fingers to signify ten centuries. As it will have been a thousand years this very century, I beg God, Threefold, Best and Greatest, either to place His supreme hand upon this tyrannical empire at His final coming, or to destroy its power so that it cannot harm the Church anymore.

I have seen a lot of the dangers to Christians from this poisoned religion. Christians are taken captive almost every day partially through hostile incursions from lower Pannonia, Croatia, Dalmatia and other neighboring places, partially because the boundaries of the Turkish Empire are still being extended. I will give examples of their dogmas, especially from the Qur’an itself, as translated by Salomon Schweig-ger, preacher of Noricum, once preacher of the legate to the Sublime Porte, the Imperial Baron from Sintzendorff, published in three books (Noriberg, 1623), a distinct impression translated from Arabic to Italian, and from Italian to German.

Their main dogma is al-Qur’an, or, leaving out the [Arabic] article ‘al,’ the Qur’an, which was written based on the books of the Bible, and stuffed with many added false stories, contradictions, riddles without order; a horrible chaos. In the Qur’an, accounts and histories stick together like the dreams of a sick man, so as to drive away any reader with the slightest bit of intelligence at the first impression. The Sacred Scriptures present a temporal succession through several thousand years: the origin of human beings, the rise of empires and nations; its passages are joined together with the most beautiful harmony. In fact, the word Qur’an comes from the Hebrew word Kara, which means either reading, narrating, or summarizing.

If one wants to see some specimen of the fables and contradictions, one should read the story of Joseph in the Qur’an. The Qur’an says that

Joseph wanted to tempt the wife of the King of Egypt into bed at one time, and another time Mezzara’s wife, in addition to many other things. It also says that Adam was circumcised by the angel Gabriel and that Moses’ breath was extracted through his nose by the angel of death. Muhammad describes Paradise as “als ein Schlaraffenland” a land of fairytales or the Land of Cockaigne, because rivers of milk and honey flow through it. [Moreover], the Qur’an says that the pig was born out of elephant’s dung on Noah’s Ark. It also says that the people who asked Moses to show God to them were destroyed by lightning, plus many other examples, which I will mention as I proceed.

The Qur’an says that the book that contains the word of God was handed down to Muhammad from God, no different than how the law of Moses and the Gospel was handed down from Christ. That book [Qur’an] is called al-furqan, which means pleasing and gratifying. Muhammad says the angel Gabriel brought many revelations to him. Muhammad, no less, handed over the Qur’an to be arranged by the wisest and most eloquent men, undoubtedly, Sergius and his collaborators, Bahira the Jacobite, and the two Jews, Phineas and Aurias.

There was confusion in the Qur’an because the impostor’s successors received many dogmas written on paper. As these scriptures came into their hands, they were compiled together, and organized into separate sections.

Muhammad decrees that the one and only creator, God, can be known from His divine work in heaven and earth, from the cycle of day and night, from the rain nourishing the earth, from the design of animals and so on. God’s works are evident through the study of nature.

Muhammad teaches that God is eternal, knows what the heart holds, and all things, and has the key to all secrets. He alone can make miracles although they also ascribe this to Christ. He is all-powerful, the creator of the world, and can be worshipped in any place.

Muhammad says that there is only one person in his godhead. Therefore, he denies that God has a son or allies. He says that there are not three Gods, but one God who does not have a son, and whom Christ is subject to no less than the angels are. He mocks the Christians for believing in three persons in the godhead. He calls those who believe that God has a son “outstandingly stupid.”

It seems that Muhammad believes the Holy Spirit is an angel; the Qur’an says that the same angel appeared to Mary, and informed her of the conception of her son. This is attributed to the angel Gabriel in the Gospel of Luke 1:26.

Muhammad calls Christ not the son of God, but of the Word (perhaps recalling the word ‘logos’ in John 1:1), and indeed a prophet to whom God sent the gospel for him to teach.

Muhammad says that Christ is the son of Mary and uses this to prove he was not the son of God, since his mother ate and drank no differently than other human beings. As further evidence, he points out that Jesus called God his Lord and many before him were prophets. Muhammad calls Mary the purest of them all and a virgin greeted by angels, the daughter of Joachim raised by Zachariah.

However, Muhammad says that God gave His breath (perhaps because it is called the Word) and more of His power to Christ, the son of Mary, than any other man.

Muhammad says that Christ, like Adam, made miracles the elders called childish; forming birds from the ground and giving them life with his breath, giving back sight to the blind, hearing to the deaf, and curing leprosy. Christ confirmed the Old Testament, but relaxed certain precepts.

Muhammad says that it was not Christ, the son of the Virgin Mary, sent by God, but another very similar man who was crucified. Christ was taken away by God, and will testify to this in the next life. Hence the cross of Christ became a stumbling block to Muslims, when the Turks proclaimed in the siege of Buda that a thief had been crucified and hailed as the God of the Christians. While others add that as Christ sits at the right hand of God, so Muhammad sits at the left hand. The reason for this might be that the left place is the more honored among the Turks.

Muhammad says that God created the world. The Qur’an also admits its destruction, but confuses the order of creation, saying that: first, the wings; second, man; third, God’s throne; and then, Paradise were created.

Muhammad asserts that the first man was formed from a fistful of variously colored dust. That is why there is such a variety of faces and so many colors on this earth. He says that there were sixty colors in the earth, without which variety one man could not be distinguished from another.

Muhammad says that Eve was created from Adam’s left side, not his right. Otherwise, if she had been from the right, she would actually have had as much strength as Adam. He says that Eve drew her origin from Adam alone, and Christ from the Virgin Mary alone.

He says that everything was created within seven days, and indeed that seven heavens were formed.

The angels Gabriel, Michael, and Raphael are the three secretary angels of God. There are sixteen legions of cherubs standing before God and ministering to Him. Also, Muhammad teaches that there are legions of seventy thousand angels praising God and five thousand where you will.

Muhammad says that the world was subjected by God to the rule of the first man, and all the angels showed reverence to Adam, except Beelzebub, for the sake of which he was cast down by God.

Muhammad teaches that God rules everything according to His good will. God defines certain limits on all things and times. He hardens the hearts of men so that they can be cast down into Hell. The deaf and mute are hated by God. The devils cannot do anything more than what God allows to them.

The Qur’an decrees that some men are predestined for the fire and that God wills the impious to proceed in their erroneous ways. He keeps two books of the impious and the pious. Some compare this doctrine to the doctrine of predestination and the Stoic doctrine on fate.

Concerning the fall of the first-formed, Muhammad says that the forbidden tree produced seven thorns, filled with five seeds, one of which Adam plucked. He nonsensically says that Adam ate two seeds, gave two to Eve, and stole the fifth for himself, which was divided into six hundred parts. This is why there is a variety of seeds. Muhammad says that Adam hid himself in the leaves of Paradise, and Eve hid herself in her hair. They were ejected from Paradise. They became the first parents by the Devil’s encouragement. After the Fall, they sought forgiveness for their sins. All men will die.

In another place in the Qur’an, talking about Adam and Eve’s quest for forgiveness, Muhammad describes their penitence through remorse and abstention from further sin. Muhammad seems to approve of the errors of the followers of Novationus, because he believes that one will perish if one falls back into sin after forgiveness. Like Novationus, [Muhammad says] God can only forgive light sins and not mortal ones. It should be noted that Muhammad considers certain sins venial, according to their nature.

The Impostor says that the law was handed to Moses, the gospel to Christ, and al-furqdn, the pleasing and welcome book, to himself. He retains certain ceremonial and public laws from the law of Moses. From these laws, he especially commends charity and fasting. If anyone raises his face to the East in prayer, or if he sets it to the West, he is not a faithful man. Muhammad argues that one is praying to God if one distributes money among friends, relatives, widows, orphans, and the poor begging from door to door; and likewise, if one redeems captives, keeps faith in agreements, and endures every kind of injustice. He seems to describe faith as obedience to divine orders. He decrees that these things conform to the will of the Creator of heaven and earth.

Furthermore, Muhammad says that everyone born on Earth must give alms. Possessions must not be given conspicuously; more should be given in secret than in the open. He suggests that the dispossessed, orphans, and widows receive alms and that they should be considered brothers and sisters.

Muhammad designates certain times and certain days for fasting. But he makes exceptions for the ill and for pilgrims. He decrees that the rich can give to charity instead of fasting. He specifies the times of fasting from early morning to the evening. The phases of the moon indicate pilgrimages and fasting.

From the ceremonial laws, he retains washing and circumcision to such a degree that he says Adam himself was circumcised. From the civil laws, he retains the separation of food, polygamy, divorce, and many other things. He is too little informed about the liberty into which Christ freed us, and the abolition of the old covenant.

Muhammad says that the face, feet, and arms must be washed before prayer, because God delights in cleanliness. One must wash after knowing one’s wife, but if a supply of water is not on hand, one must wash with simple dust. One must not eat from carrion, suffocated animals or ones attacked by wolves, or from any forbidden parts of animals; however, pilgrims are excepted from this law. He especially hates pork. Anyone who can sustain two, three, four, or however many wives may do so. Congress with [household] slaves is allowed. Women, if they are no longer pleasing, can be changed. He forbids the enjoyment of wine, the game of dice and gambling, and usury, as if they were invented by Satan.

Muhammad commends the Gospel handed down to Christ, because it is a light, a confirmation of the Testament and the true way of fulfilling the Law. But he has nothing [in his book] about the free forgiveness of sins through Christ’s sacrifice. In his law, he decrees that the axis of salvation is turned by the Gospel and the Qur’an. The Qur’an confirms the Old Testament and the Gospel.

Muhammad teaches that man is saved through good works. One should strive to win merit from God. He often says that the sins of a generous person who does not expect a reward will be forgiven. If a man feeds ten paupers, or clothes them, or redeems captives, he can obtain forgiveness from his sins. He says that hypocrites, who call on God as a witness of their hearts in public, but do evil to men, have a place prepared in Hell. He also says God rewards good intentions. He says that outside of God nothing [done] by man endures. He says only God requires perfection. He says men’s deeds are balanced in the scales. He says Saracens are saved through faith (i.e., in one God) and through works, especially fasting, alms, prayers, and pilgrimages, as I have said above. If someone is a Christian, faith is enough, or if he is a Jew, to embrace the Saracen faith and do good works before he dies. Abraham is considered the father of all believers. Muhammad teaches in the Qur’an that Abraham, Ishmael (from whom the Saracens were descended), Jacob, the twelve tribes, Christ and other prophets are a common means to salvation as they believed the same thing.

Muhammad says that one can pray anywhere on foot or on horseback, and that God must be invoked in the morning and evening. Without washing, one cannot enter the temple of Mecca. He says that those offering prayers should turn their faces southwards to the temple of Mecca. But Muslims consider these ceremonies secondary, according to their moral system. (See above). In war, some soldiers are committed to prayer (perhaps from the example of Moses in Exodus 17:11), and some to fight against the enemy. Before prayer they must wash their faces, feet, and arms. Muhammad mocks the Jews because they worship Uzair and Christians because they worship Jesus. He says the former worship the priests, the latter the son of Mary, but God alone must be worshipped.

On the sacraments instituted by Christ, baptism and communion, nothing appears in these patchworks [i.e., Muhammadanism is a cento, pieced together from other works, the Old Testament and New Testament]. Nor were any of these sacraments observed in practice, according to the writers of Turkish history. But if a man wants to be a Muslim, he must be circumcised.

In the matters of faith, elders must not be followed. Muhammad favors Puccianism, since he thinks that anyone who lives uprightly, whether Christian or Jew, can be saved. God does not want to force anyone into faith. Hence, it is certain that the Turks tolerate religions of all kinds. Muhammad made no miracles since God alone makes miracles. But though he concedes that miracles were done by Christ (as a separate instrument) and by the prophets, he thinks that they were treated as illusions by unbelievers. [He says that] Jerusalem is the center of the terrestrial world, and is called a blessed home, because God spoke there with the patriarchs and the prophets. On the last day there will be strife among the two sects, Jews and Christians. God can be found wherever he is worshipped. Nothing in the Qur’an must be changed.

Muhammad says that the prophets had one and the same law, but that it was multifaceted. Muhammad boasts that his doctrine will lead to the highest good, the joys of Paradise. Abraham and Ishmael accepted God’s order to build a temple. The proper observation of fasting, pilgrimages, and religious holiday is commended. The Sabbath must be observed, but the day is controversial since the Turks differ from the Jews and Christians as they fix divine worship on Fridays every week. They turn away from arguments about how the last day will happen because this can lead to error; but if they are forced into an argument, they should speak with kind words. They say that the law has been corrupted by the Jews when it differs from the Qur’an.

Muhammad says that wars must be carried out against unbelievers, yet soldiers are not to be summoned to Mecca. The Turks’ victories are considered proof that they have pleased God. Those following other doctrines cannot be victorious, as victory only comes from God. Cowardly soldiers are not saved. It is a sin to flee in war. One must be persuaded to go to war [not conscripted]. In war, soldiers must alternate between prayer and fighting against the enemy. Unbelievers who are neither Jews nor Christians must be killed. Muhammad considers being a pilgrim to Mecca inferior to being a brave soldier. He says that the highest rank of glory in the afterlife is destined for soldiers. Since the year is divided into twelve months, four months should be spent as a soldier fighting against unbelievers. There is no nobler way to lose one’s life than in a war for the glory of God. There must be no oaths, because God pays attention to perjury, and one who swears falsely is odious to Him. But one must not refuse to give testimony. Usury is prohibited even to merchants. He says that the punishment for adultery is life imprisonment. Involuntary homicide must be redeemed by the ransom of a prisoner of war or a fast of two months, and voluntary homicide is punished by fire. The punishment for theft is either restitution or the amputation of a hand. Christians and Jews should not be judges over Muslims. In times of pilgrimage, hunting is forbidden. One must abstain from the enjoyment of wine, dice, and gambling, as if they were invented by the devil.

One must not take a wife from another religion. One must abstain from congress [intercourse] during menstruation because God delights in purity. Polygamy and congress with slaves are permitted. Divorce is allowed. A divorced woman cannot enter a marriage with another man without the consent of her previous husband. The time of widowhood is set at four months. A woman who has divorced three times cannot enter into marriage with another man, except with a man who previously divorced her. Daughters cannot be given in marriage unless they consent and are fit for a husband. Changing a wife, if she no longer pleases, is permitted. Incest is prohibited in marriage, because a man cannot marry his mother, sister, niece, daughter-in-law, his nurse, nor her mother, nor her sister. A whore cannot be taken as a wife.

When someone is dying there should be a minimum of two or three persons present. All men will die. There is an intermediate place between Paradise and Hell, where those who lived in the hope and expectation of Paradise go. The day of judgement must always be contemplated. The last judgement will endure for a thousand years. God himself together with His angels will come down from the clouds for the day of judgement. It seems that Muhammad does not recognize Christ will come as a judge. Everyone must congregate at Jerusalem (perhaps he alludes to the valley of Josaphat), where the scales will be set, on which all men are to be weighed. On the last day, the faces of the pious will appear white, and the impious black. The judgement must be given according to the Qur’an. He describes Paradise as a place abounding in pleasures of the flesh: rivers of milk and honey flow through the same; a thousand days are equal to a thousand years; all the inhabitants will have the stature of Adam and the face of Christ; they will be without pain, suffering, and cares; anything from fish liver (perhaps the Leviathan from Jewish tales) to the sweetest fruits must be prepared for them; they will not cook food; sweat will smell like the fragrance of balsam; and meat of every kind, except pork, may be eaten. Hell will be full of pitch, sulfur, humans, and devils.

Since Muhammadanism is a mix of Judaism, Christianity (or rather heretical Christianity) and Gentilism [Paganism], when these three religions prevail in three parts of the world at the end of time, Muhammadanism will be appealing to everyone.

Many Christian heretics have opened the way for Muhammadanism by promoting false dogma that later found its way into the Qur’an.

The Severian heresy forbade drinking wine before Muhammad, as did the Manichean heresy, which called wine “the bile of the serpent.” But I should point out that the Turkish emperors dispense wine so freely it is as if they are drunk [every day].

The authors of the Qur’an learned from the Arians to pursue the enemies of their religion with the sword. Not to mention Aristobulus, priest of the Jews, and Emperor Heraclius, who also tried to drag men to his religion with violence. Why? Because of the statement falsely attributed to Abraham that he wanted to propagate his faith by the sword after Lot had been arrested, persecuted, and tortured by four kings.

In common with Messalians (on whom Epiphanius writes a lot), Pepu-zians and Manicheans, Muslims treat sacraments instituted from heaven as nothing. But they allow circumcision along with the Jews as the sacrament of initiation. Muslims do this not on the eighth day, but on about the ninth.

It seems that taking many wives relies on the example of the [Israelite] Patriarchs, because although God tolerated it, he did not order it. They must look back to the first institute, and Christ’s explanation (Matthew 193-10). The Nazarenes, who insisted not only on circumcision, but the observation of the whole law, followed Christ [on marriage].

Origenians also taught what the secondhand cloth dealer teaches about washing. But the Impostor asserts that Paradise is full of pleasures of the flesh following the heresy of the Chiliasm, which was founded by Cerinthus and Papias of Hierapolis.

Along with Cerdo and Marcion, Muhammad claims that Christ did not die, but after evading the Jews was carried to heaven. Saturninus, Basilides, and Manicheans allege that Simon of Cyrene was crucified in his [Christ’s] place.

Along with the Audians, also called Anthropomorphitae, Muhammad attributes the form of a human body to God, analyzing the scripture in an over-literal manner.

Also, along with the Noetians and Sabellians, who are called Patripas-siani in the sacred scriptures, Muhammad denies the Trinity. In denying the divinity of Christ, he has many predecessors: Nicolaites, Simon Magus, Menander, Ebion, Cerinthus, Marcion, Alogiani, Theodotiani, Artemon, Paulus Samosatenus, the Arians, and the Photians.

God judges men who do not value the truth revealed to them; they will not be saved. The Arabs stand out as people of this type. Paul the Apostle preached to the Arabs (Galatians 1:17). The light of the Gospel shone on them, but after Arian’s controversy began to divide the Eastern

Church, Christianity began to decline in Arabia, so that the Arabs retained only a shadow of the knowledge of Christ.

Muslims practice these doctrines: they fix divine worship on Friday (in which they differ from Jews and Christians); they have the Mufti as their Supreme Chief of sacred affairs; they do not tolerate bells and striking clocks, as if they were instruments of sedition; they do not allow women a place in public temples to avoid vagrant lust; they do not have images in their sacred shrines, but they decorate their temples with the eggs of ostriches. Muslims use rosaries and their preachers armed with swords ascend a loftier position to preach. They celebrate their religious holidays according to the phases of the moon. The beginning of their lunar year varies, unlike [our solar] calendar. Every year, they pay out alms [zakat] to the paupers they meet. They do not approach sacred shrines unless they wash. They publicly humiliate the violators of sacred places by draping them in animal intestines and guts.

The Persians follow the above doctrines, as they follow Muhammad and the Qur’an. They are circumcised and called Muslims. But after they split from the Turks and began to establish their own kingdom, they started to diverge in the business of religion.

According to Adam Olearius of the Faculty of Philosophy in this university, the differences [between the Turks and the Persians] consist of the following: first, the interpreter and interpretation of the Qur’an; second, various sacred matters; third, ceremonies and rituals; and fourth, various miracles.

Persians accept ‘All as the interpreter of the Qur’an, son-in-law of Muhammad, to whom they attribute many miracles, and nearly extol above Muhammad himself. For they say that the law put in the Qur’an was to be handed to ‘All, but through error it came to Muhammad.

They seem to accept ‘All as the interpreter of the Qur’an because of Safi al-Din ArdabTli, who derived his origin from ‘All through his son Hossain and shook off the Turkish yoke about 300 years ago (in the year 1363 after Christ’s birth). Although ‘All changed nothing in the Qur’an, he disagreed on some points, as did his predecessor caliphs, Abu Bakr, the father-in-law of Muhammad, ‘Umar and ‘Uthman. The Persians detest these predecessors, who are greatly esteemed by the Turks, because they believe those caliphs unlawfully and immorally stole the key of government from the hands of the nearest heir [to Muhammad].

Concerning the sacred men (interpreters of the Qur’an from the early Muslim communities), the Persians venerate ‘All and Ja’far al-Sadiq; the Turks revere Abü Hamfa; the Tartars highly esteem Imam Shafi‘1. I am ashamed to recall the stories and fables, which they use to illuminate the obscurity of the Qur’an [commentaries on the Qur’an], or which they wish to add to the scripture that had been handed down to them quite concisely.

Persians and Turks differ on ceremonies, prayers, ablutions, religious holidays, the use of images, calling for prayers, creeds, and other things. Salomon Schweigger in his Ein newe Reiss Beschreibung auss Teutschland nach Constantinopel und Jerusalem says that, unlike the Turks, the Persians weave images into their clothes. The Persian envoy to the Sublime Porte is dressed in clothes decorated in this way. But the Turks do not tolerate images, not even on their gold coins. Through their opposition to icon worship, the Turks are said to have influenced the Greek emperors, who tolerated images in their temples, to become iconoclasts.

The miracles, which the Persians ascribe to their saints (although Muhammad performed no miracles), are obviously fiction rather than fact; indeed, they are so incongruous and ridiculous that anyone who believes in them should himself be considered a miracle.

Turks and Persians persecute each other with a more than Vatinian hatred. The Turks use white cloths for their heads just as the Christians use blue, and Jews yellow. They mockingly call the Persians “redhead” [kizilba$] in their language because of their red headgear. The Persians tend to wear green leggings to cover their feet. These are also worn among the Turks, who claim that Muhammad wore them.


  • 1 Kromayer’s biography was compiled from the following sources: Hieronymus Kromayer, Loci Anti-Syncretistici, sive Sententiae diversarum Religio-num Conciliatriculae visae (Leipzig, 1668); Johann Heinrich Zedler (ed.), “Kromayer, Hieronymus,” in Grosses vollständiges Universal-Lexicon aller 'Wissenschafften und Künste, vol. 15 (Leipzig, 1737), 1959-62; Günther Wartenberg, “Kromayer, Hieronymus,” in Neue Deutsche Biographie, vol. 13 (Berlin: Bürklein-Ditmar, 1982), 74; Otto Kirn, Die Leipziger Theologische Fakultät in fünf Jahrhunderten: 1409-1909 (Leipzig: Hirzel, 1909), 124-6; Claudia Tietz, Johann Winckler (1642-1705): Anfänge eines lutherischen Pietisten (Göttingen: Vandenhoeck & Ruprecht, 2008), 59-62; and Hans Medick, “The Thirty Years’ War as Experience and Memory: Contemporary Perceptions of a Macro-Historical Event,” in Enduring Loss in Early Modern Germany: Cross Disciplinary Perspectives, ed. Lynne Tatlock (Leiden: Brill, 2010), 25-50.
  • 2 [MK] For this text, I did not include all the Qur’anic numerations in order to improve readability. Kromayer uses Salomon Schweigger’s German translation of the Qur’an in his references in his original Latin text; see Salomon Schweigger, Alcoranus Mahometicus, Das ist: der Türcken Alcoran, Religion und Aberglauben, Bayerische Staatsbibliothek München, 422 A (Nuremberg, 1616). Also, I eliminated the second part of this disputation as Kromayer focused on the Trinity as part of an intra-Christian discussion rather than a critique of Sunni and Shi'ite division.
< Prev   CONTENTS   Source   Next >