THE FORGOTTEN MUGHALS
Mirza Firuz Shah
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Shah Alam Bahadur Shah I 1707–1712
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Royal Mughal Ref:
History has been singularly unkind to the later Mughals. While every schoolboy is familiar with the names of the first six emperors of this illustrious house, few would be able to name more than one or two of the padishahs that followed the ‘Ornament of the Throne, the World Conqueror’, Aurangzeb Alamgir . For the average Indian, Jahandar, Rafiud-Darjat, or Alamgir Sani, are mere names, and unfamiliar ones at that. Even the school history books do not talk of them. Only Muhammad Shah, Shah Alam II, and Bahadur Shah II receive a passing mention; the first because Nadir Shah’s incursion occurred during his reign, the second on account of the battle of Buxar and the treaty of Allahabad, and the last on account of the ‘Great Mutiny’, his verses, and simply by virtue of being the last of his house. The others are known only to numismatists. But the period deserves deeper study. The great lessons of history are derived (if at all) from its darker periods. The ‘golden age’ of Akbar and Shah Jahan are of scant relevance to the fragmented politics and confusion of the present age. On the other hand it may be easier for us to empathise with the wazirs of the ‘Great Anarchy’ who had to contend with vicious court intrigues, recalcitrant and increasingly independent provincial governors, and a ruling class which had become utterly amoral, corrupt, and unscrupulous.
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This is not the same may be one of his great grand children ???