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Studies in Mughal India

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Mirza Firuz Shah

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Book Review

Subject:

Education

Subclass:

Timured/Mughal

Reign:

Aurangzeb 1658–1707

Subject Year (Time):

1919

Author:

Sarkar, Jadunath;

Volume:

Edition:

Publisher & Place:

Studies in Mughal India M. C. Sarkar & Sons, Calcutta / W. Heffer & Sons, Cambridge, 1919, 313 pages

Publisher Date:

Languages:

English

ISBN 10|13:

1153169061 | 9781153169066

Royal Mughal Ref:

ARC-1000001-25017

Description

We are afraid that most Europeans still lie under the spell of the popularnovelists. With them, all Oriental kings were heartless brainless despots, full of pride and ignorance, surrounded by pimps and sycophants, squeezing the last farthing out of a down-trodden peasantry, and spending their hoards on sensual pleasure or childish show — who passed their lives in toying with women in the harem, in listening to the fulsome praise of faithless courtiers, or in stupefying themselves with intoxicants, men whose animal existence was never ennobled by intellectual exercise or spiritual musing, aesthetic culture or the discipline of work. Such is the Sultan (or Rajah) of nearly every English novel, with his jewelled turban, curled up moustaches, bloodshot eyes, nose high up in the air, and a small arsenal thrust into his waist-band. This idea has been impressed on the general public of Europe by popular writers, who sacrifice truth to literary effect, and whose ignorance of Eastern history is only equalled by their pride in everything Western.

Mughal History: The Mughal Empire palaces at Delhi and Agra every year draw thousands of visitors from far and near. Their beauty and Splendour have moved the wonder of the world and the rapture of admiring artists and eloquent writers. The globe-trotter in India gives them the foremost place in his tour programme. Photographs and lantern-slides have made them familiar to far-off lands and home-staying people. The last Mughal emperor, Bahadur Shah II, also known as Zafar, died in a British prison in Burma in 1862.

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