Abdul Alhazred - Mad Arab who wrote Necronomicon Al-Azif - Book of Dead

For most, Necronomicon and Alhazred are nearly synonymous. Alhazred was a maddened scholar and wor­shipper of older gods than Allah who went on to write this mystical tome full of insights into the elder world. Alhazred visited the emptiest Arabian deserts and explored the subterranean secrets of Memphis. Abdul Alhazred was a poet who was born in Yemen and lived in Damascus during the 8th century. He was a world traveler, exploring much of the Middle East and Europe. He was remarkably intelligent and adept at learning and translating languages.

Necronomicon was earlier know as Al-Azif

The original title for Alhazred's book was "Al Azif," a reference to the noise made by insects at night, though some scholars (both real people in our world and fictional characters within the mythology itself) say it's also the sound of the demons howling. Sadly for prospective insane scholars across the globe, you can't get your hands on a copy of the original Arabic text, as all copies have disappeared. Alhazred's source of information for his history appears to have been the cosmos itself. He would meditate while inhaling fumes from incense that included exotic ingredients -- like opium -- and wait for knowledge to fill him. It's probably this unorthodox research methodology that inspired others to give him the nickname the "mad Arab."

Foundation of Necronomicon

In the research, it is discovered about the existence of numerous Egyptian fragments, dating from several hundred years before the common era which reference texts and believed were the foundation for Alhazred's completed Necronomicon. Alas, the texts which they reference are no longer available. The writings of Ctesias, a Greek historian who accompanied his brother on an anti-Persian campaign leading down to Egypt tell of strange Egyptian rites which stymied the Persian empire's attempted  Southern expansion. The records indicate that Ctesias met with the victorious Pharaoh in Amyrtaeus's home village of Sais, in Egypt's fertile Delta, at a time which coincided with the Egyptian victory and inun­dation ceremonies.The inundation ceremonies were carried out annually at the time of the Nile's floods. They entreated various gods of the Nile and of the earth to grant fertility in the coming farming season.

It is observed that the priest of Knum at the time of the inundation chant to the gods of the deep 'Dagon Dagon send us your water that the land may be reborn.' When  questioned to Egyptian companions, they spoke of a god known of old to the Phoenicians, who must be appeased lest his crocodile-bodied children arise from the sea and consume the farmers. In the Egyptian volume of his Annales Maxima, the consul Publius Mucius Scaevola references a hidden library of Alexandria.

Hidden library of Alexandria

The cunning of this fleshy Ptolomeic  gener­ation should not be underestimated. The world knows of the great library of Alexandria, built in honor of The Greek, but local [agents] inform me of the presence of a second, secret library which moves between Temples within the city. Only certain priests and a few Greek scholars may visit and indeed appear to control this secret library. Some investigators brought reports of meeting with a Greek scholar in a bawdy house of an Alexandrian slum. Thought drunk, the Greek appeared no longer to be in control of his mental faculties. Members of the meeting pertain to the rituals of a cult more ancient than that of the Egyptians or Babylonians. The members of this cult speak of Tsitoqa and Caitulu, who are prophesied to return 'in the time of the stars'.

This resembles certain Eutruscan sects which were eliminated under the Dictatorship of Regius. Further research suggests that the documents may have been stored in the Timonium shortly after its construction. An advisor of Antony's, when writing to advise the general of the state of the Alexandrian region notes that the recently constructed theater seemed to house more traffic than just actors and bawds and that "disreputable scholars may be seen leaving before the first hour [sunrise] and their chants and chilling cachina­tions disturb what sleep there is to be had in the district."

Mainstream historians agree that the Timonium was destroyed in 185CE by Alexandrian Bishop Andros (bishop from 182-186, splinter sect of what would become the Coptic church). How­ever, they believe that his purpose in inciting his congregants to purge the theatrical center was the "immorality" of its stage and the "lustful" proclivities of those in its environs. However, in his sermon against the Timonium's immorality, Andros referenced the possibility that "ancient darkness, greater than Satan and older than Adam may spread like a plague from this be­ nighted 'sanctuary' of evil." His words were later used in his trial for heresy in 186, which led to his removal from his post. Andros would have been sent to join the desert brothers,but pleaded not to go into the vast emptinesswhere only demons resided. He returned to Greece instead.

Of course, the documents were not destroyed in the Timonium fire.From our knowledge of Alhazred's travels it seems most likely that after Christianized Alexandria became unsafe for keepers of the old way, they fled to Memphis, the ancient capital of the Old Kingdom. Much of the city had been abandoned when Alexandria and points North were built in the last few centuries BCE. And yet, the ancient structures stood then as they stand today.It is likely that the cult repur­posed the abandoned temple of a minor deity.

Major temples were still being used at the time, but those of many minor entities (or deities with only a minor tie to Memphis) had already been deserted. If not a temple, the preservers of these manuscripts may have used structures in the similarly-abandoned necropolis outside Memphis-­ perhaps these tombs were the hideous subter­ranean locations referenced by Lovecraft.

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