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The Muslims now commenced a 25-day siege against the Banu Qurazya's fortress. A former ally of the Banu Qurayza, an Arab chief named Sa'd ibn Muadh, now a Muslim, was chosen as judge.

Sa'd, one of the few casualties of battle, would soon die of his wounds.

According to most sources, individuals from among these clans plotted to take his life at least twice, and once they came within a bite of poisoning him.

If the earlier tribal relations had been in force, he would have certainly spared the Banu Qurayza.

His fellow chiefs urged him to pardon these former allies, but he refused.

udaism was already well established in Medina two centuries before Muhammad's birth.

Although influential, the Jews did not rule the oasis.

There were rabbis among the Jews of Medina, who appear in Muslim sources soon after Muhammad proclaimed himself a prophet.

At that time the quizzical Meccans, knowing little about monotheism, are said to have consulted the Medinan rabbis, in an attempt to put Muhammad to the test.

The rabbis posed three theological questions for the Meccans to ask Muhammad, asserting that they would know, by his answers, whether or not he spoke the truth.

According to later reports, Muhammad replied to the rabbis' satisfaction, but the Meccans remained unconvinced.

Rather, they were clients of two large Arab tribes there, the Khazraj and the Aws Allah, who protected them in return for feudal loyalty.

Medina's Jews were expert jewelers, and weapons and armor makers.

There were many Jewish clans-some records indicate more than twenty, of which three were prominent-the Banu Nadir, the Banu Qaynuqa, and the Banu Qurayza.

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