In spite of a cumbrous and affected style, he is a vivid narrator; and his character sketches are admirable as summaries of current estimates.
In the Magamas of Hamadhani a narrator describes how in various places he met a wandering scholar who in these assemblies puts all his rivals to shame by his eloquence.
Thence Jacob went down south to Bethel, where he received a divine revelation (P), similar to that recorded by the earlier narrator (J), and was called Israel (xxxv.
He, however, "regarded Mark not only as the first narrator, but even as the creator of the gospel history, thus making the latter a fiction and Christianity the invention of a single original evangelist" (Pfleiderer).
Often, too, one event or one important detail is told in several ways on the basis of several contemporary statements transmitted to the final narrator through distinct lines of tradition.
From the historical standpoint its value must be appraised by the estimate which is formed of the writer's general trustworthiness as a narrator, and by the extent to which the incidents receive confirmation from other quarters.
Truly, a worthy development of the seed-thoughts of the original narrator, and (must we not add ?) entirely opposed to any doctrine of Original Sin.
The narrator considered that Israel had to be a prophet to the "nations" at large, that Israel had, like Jonah, neglected its duty and for its punishment was "swallowed up" in foreign lands.
The importance of such documents for the scientific historian lies not so much in the events they record as in the unconscious witness they bear to the state of society in which the narrator or poet lived.