Note 160
From Chapter 47 of the Decline & Fall

I am aware how tender is the question of circumcision. Yet I will affirm,
1. That the Aethiopians have a physical reason for the circumcision of males, and even of females (Recherches Philosophiques sur les Americains, tom. ii.).
2. That it was practised in Aethiopia long before the introduction of Judaism or Christianity, (Herodot. l. ii. c. 104. Marsham, Canon. Chron. p. 72, 73.). "Infantes circumcidunt ob consuetudinemn, non ob Judaismum. " says Gregory the Abyssinian priest (apud Fabric. Lux Christiana, p. 720.). Yet in the heat of dispute, the Portuguese were sometimes branded with the name of uncircumcised(La Croze, p. 90. Ludolph. Hist. and Comment. l. iii. c. l.).

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