The Covenant of the Prophet Muhammad with the Assyrian Christians

The Covenant of the Prophet Muhammad with the Assyrian Christians 

[By the Prophet Muhammad]

[Translation Cited by Malech in 1910: 228-230]

God has told me in a vision what to do, and I confirm His Command by giving my solemn promise to keep this agreement.

To the followers of the Islam I say: Carry out my command, protect and help the Nazarene nation in this country of ours in their own land.

Leave their places of worship in peace; help and assist their chief and their priests when in need of help, be it in the mountains, in the desert, on the sea, or at home.

Leave all their possessions alone, be it houses or other property, do not destroy anything of their belongings, the followers of Islam shall not harm or molest any of this nation, because the Nazarenes are my subjects, pay tribute to me, and will help the Moslems.

No tribute, but what is agreed upon, shall be collected from them, their church buildings shall be left as they are, they shall not be altered, their priests shall be permitted to teach and worship in their own way–the Christians have full liberty of worship in their churches and homes.

None of their churches shall be torn down, or altered into a mosque, except by the consent and free will of the Nazarenes. If anyone disobeys this command, the anger of Allah and His Prophet shall be upon him.
The tribute paid the Nazarenes shall be used to promote the teachings of Islam and shall be deposited at the treasury of bayt al-mal. A common man shall pay one dinar, but the merchants and people who own mines of gold and silver and are rich shall pay twelve dinars. Strangers and people who have no houses or other settled property shall not have taxes levied upon them. If a man inherits property he shall pay a settled sum to the bayt al-mal treasury.

The Christians are not obliged to make war on the enemies of Islam, but if an enemy attacks the Christians, the Mohammedans shall not deny their help, but give them horses and weapons, if they need them, and protect them from evils from outside and keep the peace with them. The Christians are not obliged to turn Moslems, until God’s will makes them believers.

The Mohammedans shall not force Christian women to accept Islam, but if they themselves wish to embrace it, the Mohammedans shall be kind to them.

If a Christian woman is married to a Mohammedan and does not want to embrace Islam, she has liberty to worship at her own church according to her own religious belief, and her husband must not treat her unkindly on account of her religion.

If anyone disobeys this command, he disobeys God and his prophet and will be guilty of a great offense.

If the Nazarenes wish to build a church, their Mohammedan neighbors shall help them. This shall be done, because the Christians have obeyed us and have come to us and pleaded for peace and mercy.

If there be among the Christians a great and learned man the Mohammedans shall honor him and not be envious of his greatness.

If anyone is unjust and unkind to the Christians he will be guilty of disobeying the Prophet of God.

The Christians should not shelter an enemy of Islam or give him horse, weapon or any other help.

If a Mohammedan is in need the Christian shall for three days and nights be his host and shelter him from his enemies.

The Christians shall, furthermore, protect the Mohammedan women and children and not deliver them up to the enemy or expose them to view.

If the Nazarenes fail to fulfill these conditions, they have forfeited their right to protection, and the agreement is null and void.
This document shall be entrusted to the Christian chief and head of their church for safe keeping.

Signatures:

Abubakr Zadik, Omar Ben Chetab, Moavijah Ibn Abi Sofian, Abu Darda, Abuzar, Abubra, Abdula, Ibn Masud, Abdula Ibn Abas, Hamza Ibn Almulabb, Fazl Ibn Abas, Zaibar Ibn Aqam, Tilha Ibn Abdullah, Saad Ben Maaz, Saad Ibn Ebadah, Sabeh Ibn Kebis, Jazid Ibn Sabib, Abdullah Ben Jazid, Suhail Ibn Mifah, Othman Ibn Mazum, David Ibn Gijah, Abu Alalijah, Abdullah Ibn Omar Alqazi, Abu Harifah, Ibn Azir, Ibn Rabiah, Ebar Ibn Jaamir, Hashim Ibn Azijah, Hasan Ibn Zabid, Kab Ibn Kab, Ibn Malech, Jafar Ibn Abu Talib.

[Abu Bakr Siddiq, ‘Umar ben Khattab, ‘Uthman ibn ‘Affan, ‘Ali ibn Abi Talib, peace be upon him, Mu‘awiyyah ibn Abi Sufyan, Abu Darda, Abu Dharr, Abu Barah, ‘Abd Allah ibn Mas‘ud, ‘Abd Allah ibn ‘Abbas, Hamzah ibn al-Muttalib, Fadl ibn ‘Abbas, Zubayr ‘Awwam, Talhah ibn ‘Abd Allah, Sa‘d ibn Mu‘adh, Sa‘d ibn ‘Ubadah, Thabit ibn Qays, Yazid ibn Thabit, ‘Abd Allah ibn Yazid, Sahl ibn Sufya [or Sifa], ‘Uthman ibn Mat‘un, Dawud ibn Jibah, Abu al-‘Aliyyah, ‘Abd Allah ibn ‘Amr ibn al-Qadi, Abu Hudayfah, Ibn ‘Asir, Bin Rabi‘ah, ‘Ammar ibn Yasir, Hashim ibn ‘Asiyyah, Hassan ibn Thabit, Ka‘b ibn Ka‘b, Ka‘b ibn Malik, Ja‘far ibn Abi Talib]

The peace of God be upon them all!

This agreement is written down by Moavijah Ben Sofian, according to the dictates of Mohammed, the messenger of God, in the 4th year of the Hegira in the city of Medina.