(University of Pennsylvania Press) In this book, Powers argues that a series of radical moves were made in the first two centuries of Islamic history to ensure Muhammad’s position as the Last Prophet. Although Muhammad had no natural sons of his own who reached maturity, he is said to have adopted a man named Zayd and established mutual rights of inheritance between them. Powers argues that if prophesy is hereditary and Muhammad had a son, then Muhammad might not be the Last Prophet – just as if Muhammad is the last prophet, he cannot have a son. Examining narrative accounts of Muhammad and Zayd, Powers contends that theological imperatives forced changes in the historical record and led to the abolition or reform of key legal institutions; he offers physical evidence that the text of the Koran itself was altered. Powers is professor of Near Eastern studies at Cornell University. He is the author of Law, Society and Culture in the Maghrib, 1300-1500.