BIRTH OF SALAH ED-DIN, HIS GOOD QUALITIES, HIS CHARACTER, AND NATURAL DISPOSITION.
I LEARN from the lips of certain persons worthy of credence, who had made inquiries concerning the date of the birth of Salah ed-Din, in order to construct the horoscope of this prince according to the rules of astrology, that he was born in the course of the year 532 (A.D. 1137-1138), in the citadel of Tekrit, where his father, Ayub, son of Shadhi, discharged his, duties as Governor. Ayub was an honourable, generous, and good man. He was born at Dovin. Circumstances afterwards obliged him to leave Tekrit, and he betook himself to Mosul, taking his son with him. Here he remained until his son had grown up. Ayub and his brother, Asad ed-Din Shirkuh, were held in high esteem by the Ataheg Zenghi (Prince of Mosul). Proceeding afterwards into Syria, Ayub obtained the government of B'albek, and dwelt for some time in that place. His son, who had accompanied him, entered upon his first service under his direction Brought up in his father's bosom, and nourished on the lofty principles which his father set before him, he soon showed signs of the good fortune which was always to accompany him, and gave evidence of a spirit born to command. EI-Melek el-'Adel Nur ed-Din Mahmud, son of Zenghi, bestowed upon him advancement, and, as a mark of his confidence and high esteem, attached him to his service, and admitted him to the number of his friends. The higher Salah ed-Din rose in degree, the more apparent became qualities which entitled him to a still more exalted rank. This state of things continued until his uncle, Asad ed-Din Shirkuh, started upon the Egyptian expedition. Later, in a more suitable place, we will give a detailed account of this expedition, with all particulars.
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