When there are many sub­jects for ani­mo­sity in a state, reli­gion must pro­vide many means of reconci­lia­tion. The Arabs, a ban­dit peo­ple, often inflic­ted harm and injus­ti­ces on each other. Mohammed made this law : “If someone for­gi­ves his bro­ther’s blood,1 he may pur­sue the male­fac­tor for dama­ges and inte­rest ; but he who does harm to the vil­lain after recei­ving satis­fac­tion from him will suf­fer pain­ful tor­ments on Judgment Day.”2

Among the Germans, ani­mo­si­ties and enmi­ties were inhe­ri­ted from one’s family mem­bers, but they were not eter­nal. Homicide was expia­ted by offe­ring a cer­tain quan­tity of live­stock, and the whole family recei­ved satis­fac­tion : a very use­ful thing, says Tacitus, because enmi­ties are more dan­ge­rous among free peo­ple.3 I expect that minis­ters of reli­gion, who had such influence among them, played a role in these reconci­lia­tions.

Among the Malaccans, where reconci­lia­tion is not ins­ti­tu­ted, he who has killed someone, sure of being assas­si­na­ted by the family or friends of the decea­sed, unlea­shes his fury and wounds and kills eve­ryone he encoun­ters.4

By renouncing the law of retaliation.

In the Coran, book I, ch. on “The cow.”

De moribus Germanorum.

Recueil des voyages qui ont servi à l’établissement de la Compagnie des Indes, vol. VII, p. 303. See also Mémoires du comte de Forbin, and what he says about the massacres.