October 17, 2022

A British document concerning the miraculous circumstance pertaining to the execution of the Báb in Tabriz, Persia, 1850

An official letter dated July 22,1850, from Sir Justin Sheil, Queen Victoria's Envoy Extraordinary and Minister Plenipotentiary in Tihran, to the Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs, Lord Palmerston. It reads:

“The founder of the sect has been executed at Tabreez. He was killed by a volley of musketry, and his death was on the point of giving his religion a lustre which would have largely increased his proselytes. When the smoke and dust cleared away after the volley, Bab was not to be seen, and the populace proclaimed that he had ascended to the skies. The balls had broken the ropes by which he was bound but he was dragged [1] from the recess where after some search he was discovered and shot. His death, according to the belief of his disciples, will make no difference as Bab must always exist.” 

(Document F.O. 60/152/88 in the archives of the Foreign Office at the Public Records Office in London, England, quoted by Hand of the Cause John Ferraby in ‘All Things Made New’)

[1] Not literally, of course

October 1, 2022

The King of Persia sent special envoy to investigate the claims of the Báb

Muhammad Shah
…men’s interest increased, and in all parts of Persia some [of God’s] servants inclined toward Him [the Báb], until the matter acquired such importance that the late king Muhammad Sháh delegated a certain person named Siyyid Yahyá of Daráb, who was one of the best known of doctors and Siyyids as well as an object of veneration and confidence, giving him a horse and money for the journey so that he might proceed to Shíráz and personally investigate this matter.

When the above-mentioned Siyyid arrived at Shíráz he interviewed the Báb three times. In the first and second conferences questioning and answering took place; in the third conference he requested a commentary on the Súrih called Kawthar [Qur’án 108], and when the Báb, without thought or reflection, wrote an elaborate commentary on the Kawthar in his presence, the above-mentioned Siyyid was charmed and enraptured with Him, and straightway, without consideration for the future or anxiety about the results of this affection, hastened to Burújird to his father Siyyid Ja’far, known as Kashfí, and acquainted him with the matter. And, although he was wise and prudent and was wont to have regard to the requirements of the time, he wrote without fear or care a detailed account of his observations to Mírzá Lutf-‘Alí the chamberlain in order that the latter might submit it to the notice of the late king, while he himself journeyed to all parts of Persia, and in every town and station summoned the people from the pulpit-tops in such wise that other learned doctors decided that he must be mad, accounting it a sure case of bewitchment.  

- ‘Abdu’l-Baha  (‘A Traveler’s Narrative’)