By applying several methods of traditional source criticism to Baytār's Hilya it becomes possible to make this source "speak" and provide some information about its author. It becomes clear that unequal access to wealth and power at Damascus cannot be seen as the major driving force behind the formation of a group of intellectuals who represented the first stage of the formation of the Damascene salafiyya. Thus the so-called middle'ulamā' thesis has to be refuted. In addition it is shown that the dichotomy of "conservative" and "reformist" turuq did not exist in the mind of leading salafīs themselves. Hence, it also cannot be assumed that "reformist" salafīs were "naturally" attracted to "reformist" turuq.
This article traces the manner in which Mālikī and Hanafī jurists in the first six centuries AH arrived at their respective legal assessments of induced miscarriage. Each madhhab developed its own interpretation of embryogenesis, based on Q. 5:95 and Q. 65:4, and, therefore, its own distinctive position on induced miscarriage: The Mālikīs hold for legal relevance from the moment of conception, while the Hanafīs hold for legal relevance at a later stage of embryological development. This difference was also caused by different opinions on ways to legally establish that a miscarriage was induced. Finally, the question of ensoulment, which became widespread in Islamic legal reasoning on induced miscarriage only after the 2nd/8th century, was linked to the Hanafī position that induced miscarriage is not punishable until the 120th day following conception.