Mirza Firuz Shah
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Alamgir II 1754–1759
Sujan Rai Bhandari fo Batala
Publisher and Place:
J & Sons, Delhi
Royal Mughal Ref:
Evolution of earlier melas to Kumbh Melas
There are several references to river-side mela (festivals) in ancient Indian texts including at the places where present day Kumbh Melas are held, both the earliest exact age of those melas and when they came to be called the Kumbh Mela is uncertain. Earliest mention of any type of mela held at the current location of Kumb Mela is by Xuanzang in 644 CE. The earliest extant mention of the name "Kumbha Mela" are Khulasat-ut-Tawarikh (1695 CE) and Chahar Gulshan (1759 CE) which describe the fairs held at Haridwar, Prayagraj and Nashik, among those the magh fair at Prayagraj might be oldest without being called Kumbh Mela at those time and the fair at Haridwar appears to be the original Kumbh Mela which is held according to the astrological sign "Kumbha" (Aquarius), and the renaming of fairs held at other places to Kumbh Mela is more recent.
The Khulasat-ut-Tawarikh lists the following melas: an annual mela and a Kumbh Mela every 12 years at Haridwar; a mela held at Trimbak when Jupiter enters Leo (that is, once in 12 years); and an annual mela held at Prayagraj in Magh. The Magh Mela of Prayagraj is probably the oldest among these, dating from the early centuries CE, and has been mentioned in several Puranas.
Khulasat-ut-Tawarikh is an Indian Persian language chronicle by Sujan Rai in the Mughal Empire of present-day India. It deals with the history of Hindustan (northern Indian subcontinent), and also contains details about the contemporary Mughal Empire. The author completed the work in 1695 CE, during the reign of Aurangzeb. An insertion about Aurangzeb's death was later added to the original copy by a transcriber.
Alternative transliterations of the book's title include Khulasat-Al-Tavarikh and Khulasatu-t-Tawarikh.
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