One day Ḥasan of Baṣra was passing by a group of people who were speaking ill of Ḥajjáj b. Yúsuf. He said to them:


“I heard,” adds the author, “from a certain pious man in the city of Khwárazm, that the Children of Israel made complaint before one of their prophets, saying, ‘Say unto God, “What have we done that Thou hast set over us one who knoweth Thee not, and hast afflicted us at the hands of a people who do not confess Thy Lordship, seeing that we confess Thee and magnify Thee?”’ But God revealed to the prophet the following message to them: ‘Verily when those who know Me rebel against me, I set over them one who knoweth Me not.’”