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Archibald Herman Müller's Controversial Painting of Kamran Mirza's Bikaner Invasion

March 17, 1914
Art and Calligraphy
Babur II 1881-1920



Archibald Herman Müller's painting of Kamran Mirza's supposed invasion of Bikaner in 1526 is a prime example of the distortion of historical facts that occurred during the early 20th century Indian nationalist movement. The painting depicts Kamran Mirza, a Mughal prince, leading a victorious army into Bikaner, a city in Rajasthan. However, there are several inconsistencies and motivations behind this fabricated piece of history. Firstly, there is no historical evidence to support the claim that Kamran Mirza ever invaded Bikaner. Kamran Mirza was a prince of the Mughal Empire, and his alleged invasion of Bikaner is not mentioned in any contemporary Mughal records or in any other historical sources. The painting is therefore a product of imagination and nationalist propaganda, rather than historical fact. Secondly, the painting's portrayal of Kamran Mirza as a heroic figure leading a victorious army is inconsistent with historical records. Kamran Mirza was known for his treachery and betrayal of his own family members. He was imprisoned and executed by his own brother, the Mughal Emperor Humayun, for plotting against him. The painting's glorification of Kamran Mirza is therefore historically inaccurate. The motivations behind the creation of this fabricated piece of history are rooted in the Indian nationalist movement of the early 20th century. Indian nationalists sought to create a sense of pride and unity among Indians by constructing a heroic and glorious past. The painting of Kamran Mirza's alleged invasion of Bikaner served this purpose by portraying a Muslim prince as a heroic figure in Indian history. In conclusion, Archibald Herman Müller's painting of Kamran Mirza's invasion of Bikaner is a prime example of the distortion of historical facts that occurred during the early 20th century Indian nationalist movement. The painting's inconsistencies and motivations are a reminder of the dangers of using history for political purposes and the importance of critical inquiry in the study of history.

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Ismail Mazari

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Very good information.


The Mughal Images immediately took a much greater interest in realistic portraiture than was typical of Persian miniatures. Animals and plants were the main subject of many miniatures for albums and were more realistically depicted. To upload your images click here.

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