Page:Travels to Discover the Source of the Nile - In the Years 1768, 1769, 1770, 1771, 1772, and 1773 volume 2.djvu/84

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From 1434 to 1468.

Sends Ambassadors from Jerusalem to the Council of Florence-First Entry of the Roman Catholics into Abyssinia, and Dispute about Religion—King persecutes the Remnants of Sabaism and Idolatry—Mahometan Provinces rebel, and are subdued—The King dies.

THESE very short reigns were followed by one of an extraordinary length. Zara Jacob, fourth son of David II. succeeded his nephew, and reigned 34 years, and, at his inauguration, took the name of Constantine. He is looked upon in Abyssinia to have been another Solomon; and a model of what the best of sovereigns should be. From what we know of him, he seems to have been a prince who had the best opportunity, and with that the greatest inclination to be instructed in the politics, manners, and religion of other countries.

A convent had been long before this established at Jerusalem for the Abyssinians, which he in part endowed, as appears by his letters still extant[1], written to monks of that

  1. Vid. Ludolf, lib. 3. No. 29. I have this letter at length prefixed to the large volume of Canons and Councils, a copy of which was sent by Zara Jacob to the monks in Jerusalem.