Meanwhile the tasks of administration had been increasing steadily. Mahomet was now strong enough to insist that none but Believers were to be admitted to the Kaaba and its ceremonies, and although all the idolatrous practices in Mecca were not removed until after Abu Bekr’s pilgrimage, yet the power of polytheism was completely subdued, and before long was to be extirpated from the holy places.
The next matter to be taken in hand owes its origin to the extent of Mahomet’s domains in the year 630. It was imperative that some sort of financial system should be adopted, so that the Prophet and the Believers might possess adequate means for keeping up the efficiency of the army, giving presents to embassies from foreign lands, rewarding worthy subjects, and all the numerous demands upon a chieftain’s wealth. Deputies were therefore sent out to the various tribes now under his sway to gather from every subject tribe the price of their protection and championship by Mahomet.
In most cases the tax-gatherers were received as the inevitable result of submission, but there were occasional resistances organised by the bolder tribes, chief of whom was the Temim, who drove out Mahomet’s envoy with contempt and ill-usage. Reprisals were immediately set on foot, the tribe was attacked and routed, many of its members being taken prisoner. These were subsequently liberated upon the tribe’s guarantee of good faith. The Beni Mustalik also drove out the tax-gatherer, but afterwards repented and sent a deputation to Mahomet to explain the circumstance. They were pardoned and gave guarantees that they would dwell henceforth at peace with the Prophet. The summer saw a few minor expeditions to chastise resisters, chief of which was All’s campaign against the Beni Tay. He was wholly successful, and brought back to Medina prisoners and booty.
The “second year of embassies” proved more gratifying than the first. Mahomet’s power had increased sufficiently to awe the tribes of the interior into submission and to gain at least a hearing from lands beyond his immediate vicinity. Slowly and surely he was building up the fabric of his dominion. With a watchfulness and sense of organisation irresistible in its efficiency he made his presence known. The sword had gained him his dominion, the sword should preserve it with the help of his unfailing vigilance and diplomatic skill. As his power progressed it drew to itself not only the fighting material but the dreams and poetic aspirations