ABSTRACT

THE place where the Druses meet for exercising the worship of their religion is called a Khaheeh, which rneans a place where secret meetings are held . It is very simple, and sometimes rude in its structure, and contains a few mats for the worshippers to sit on, some of their sacred books, and sometimes eatables and bedding for the aceommodation of strange Druses who stop there over a night. They meet only onee a week, on Thursday evenings, which, aceording to the Eastern mode of computing time, is reckoned as Friday evening. The injunetions of Hamzeh on this point are these : " Unitarians ! our Lord has disappeared and left his eovenant with me. He disappeared on Friday evening, and on such a night will he appear again to subdue the world . It is therefore your duty to meet on every Friday evening, and read the books of wisdom which our Lord has left with you. Study thern, and be eareful of thern. You should, moreover, instruet your sisters in the faith, but let them be seeluded from you by a partition, and let them not lift up their voices." It is evident, therefore, that their worship eonsists principally on the perusal and explanation of their sacred books. We understand that they are always chanted, not read; and this is generally done by the best singer in the audience. Towards the elose of the meeting they sing sorne epic poems written by their poets, whose subject is a glowing description of the invasion and subjugation of the world by the Eastern army under the comrnand of the five ministers, whose appearance is now almost daily anticipated by thern. Prayer, as such, they have not ; though they have sorne forms which they use in private at option. The following is one of thern: "Praise to Thee, 0 Thou whose grace is invisible! Praise to Thee, o Thou who has the best names! Praise to Thee, 0 Thou

whose greatness is inimitable! I pray Thee, 0 GOD, the most generous of hearers, through the five (ministers) and the three (ministers) who subrnitted thernselves to Thee, to grant me purity of heart, prayer in my tongue, pardon in my end, a sufficiency of righteous provision, and a translation to a pure and holy tabernacle---not to the tabernacle of a wretehed infidel. I pray not for areversal of Thy deerees, but that graee may aeeompany them. 0 Thou whose eommands none can put away, and whose decrees none can frustrate, Thou art the high, and Thou the great ! "