The Origins of the Druze People and Religion
Philip K. Hitti
Foreword by Nadim Shehadi
About the Book
The Druze, who can be traced back to eleventh-century Levant, have long intrigued scholars of the Middle East. Their obscure origins and blending of beliefs from Ismaili Shi‘ism, animism, Greek philosophy, Jewish and Christian mysticism, Iranian Gnosticism and even Buddhism, have set them apart from their neighbours.
Philip K. Hitti reveals the remarkable Druze pantheon of semi-deities and investigates their dogmas and rituals, noting the stratification between the few Uqqal (elect wise ones) and the numerous Jahil (ignorant ones).
The book includes rarely-seen extracts from the sacred writings of the Druze and offers a unique insight into this fascinating religious minority.
About the Author
Philip K. Hitti (1886–1978) was born in Lebanon and taught at Princeton University from 1926 to 1954. He was renowned for his contributions to Arab studies in the West. He is the author of numerous books, including The Origins of the Druze People and Religion, History of the Arabs, Lebanon in History and Islam and the West.
‘Hitti is one of the most important scholars of the past century.' H-net.org