Book review--History of Aurangzib ( written by myself )

Discussion in 'Military History' started by ashdoc, Apr 9, 2011.

  1. ashdoc

    ashdoc Senior Member Senior Member

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    This book , written by legendary bengali historian Jadunath Sarkar , was written during british rule , and is arguably the largest and the finest detail account of the life and times of India's most controversial emperor--Aurangzeb . Originally running into four volumes , it has now been abridged , and put together in one volume by Orient Blackswain.

    The book dwells in short on his early life--how he had a inborn trait of suspicion . Once , he and his brothers and father are supposed to enter a underground room . He refuses , saying that somebody could murder them there.....

    The stellar part of the book is of course the way in which he won the throne , murdering all his brothers in the process , and imprisoning his father , the emperor Shahjahan after a series of epic battles . The book also makes it clear that he had no choice in the process ; his own brother declares about his own ambition for the throne-- ' Ya takht ya tabut !! ' ( either the throne or the grave !! ) , meaning that he himself would kill Aurangzeb and his brothers if he won....or himself get killed. Such is the brutal tradition of Mughal emperors . Aurangzeb's own father Shahjahan has killed his brother before ascending the throne......

    This tradition is forever in Aurangzeb's mind , for during his rule , he is forever plagued by suspicion that one of his sons would imprison him in a similar manner and humiliate him as he daily humiliated his father Shahjahan--so Aurangzeb keeps a close watch on his sons , and imprisons them many a times .

    Coming back to the battles for the throne , Jadunath Sarkar describes the battles ( like the battle of Dharmat between Aurangzeb's oldest brother Dara Shukoh and him )in detail , showing great mastery of the art of creating the picture of the battlefield in our mind. The tragedy of the hapless prince Dara Shukoh is well brought out , as he is hunted down from pillar to post as he escapes from the battle , and is eventually captured and sentenced to death by learned kazis . His crime--he was too tolerant to hindus......

    Having ascended the throne in this manner , Aurangzeb kills even all his bothers' sons , so that they do not form a future threat to his kingship . Most of them are drugged daily to convert them into idiots until they die a slow death .

    Having destroyed all threats to his kingship , Aurangzeb lays his lecherous hand on the wives of the defeated--but here destiny thwarts him , for the one he is most angling for , Dara's most beautiful wife slashes her face with a knife to destroy her charms , and make herself unworthy of his bed , thereby showing a shining example of love and loyalty to her husband......

    After winning the throne in this fashion , Aurangzeb does not spare his friends , those who helped him win the throne either--for who knows , one day these brave people might become too powerful , threatening the throne.....

    --Mir Jumla , the commandant of his artillery , is sent to fight in the malarious jungles of Assam , where as expected , malaria overcomes him .

    --Maharajah Jaswant Singh of marwar is sent on a campaign in Afghanistan ,where afghans in Aurangzeb's pay kill him.

    --Maharajah Mirza Raje Jai singh , who helps him control the marathas is kiiled by poisoning. His success against the marathas has made him too powerful....

    The killing of the last two is especially important , as they are hindu nobles who might form the main impediment to a project that Aurangzeb Alamgir ( thats the title he has given himself )has long been considering , a project that indeed is his dream......the total islamisation of the subcontinent.......

    And it is for the realisation of this project that he unleashes the jizya tax on hindus--something that his great grandfather Akbar had banished long ago .
    The hindus protest of course , carrying out huge anti-jizya rallies right upto the mughal court , but Aurangzeb orders his troops to attack and kill the protestors--he is unrelenting......

    Having done this , Aurangzeb makes peace with Iran , which has held Kandahar in afghanistan , long cherished by the mughals and orders his army ( 170, 000 strong ) to invade south India to complete another project of his--bringing the whole subcontinent under the mughal banner , right form Kashmir to Kanyakumari......

    By force and bribes ( actually more by bribes ) he manages to conquer the muslim kingdoms of the deccan as his armies move south , levying tax as far as tiruchirapalli in tamil nadu . Above all , his troops capture alive maratha king Sambhaji , who is blinded by buring hot pincers put in his eyes , his skin is torn from his body while still alive , he is cut limb to limb and then fed to the dogs . Such mind-blowing cruelty !!

    Aurangzeb has reached the pinnacle of his ambition , and seemingly achieved his dreams--or has he ?? For he soon discovers that his armies have yet to overawe the hardy inhabitants of the sahyadri ranges , those followers of Shivaji , whose impregnable fortresses elude capture by the mughals and whose armies disappear and appear at will , utterly confounding the slow mughals . Aurangzebs unwieldy army is unfit to fight against well motivated guerillas in mountainous jungle country , and his soldiers are reduced to hapless onlookers as the marathas wreak havoc in mughal territory .

    The almighty mughals have met their match , but one man prevents them from retreating--Aurangzeb himself....
    For an astonishing two decades and a half , the army is forced to fight an unwinnable fight in the hills of maharashtra as the treasury is depleted , the other provinces of the empire are neglected , and an entire new generation of children reach their youth in camp--they have never seen the big city.....

    All his officers and men now want Aurangzeb to die so that the war would end , but his life is unusually prolonged . Aurangzeb laughs derisively at his sons who he knows are waiting for him to die , so that they can fight for the throne in time-honoured mughal fashion , but the old man simply refuses to croak off.......

    But Aurangzeb is really sad at the end of his life , as he realises the enormous mistake that he has done , and asks his sons to not fight after his death for the throne , though he knows nobody will heed his call......

    As far as the marathas who brought him to this pitiable condition-- they are given their fair share in this book , and the entire life and campaigns of both Shivaji and Sambhaji along with other warriors like Santaji Ghorpade is articulated . Of particular interest will be Shivaji's dramatic confrontation with the emperor at agra and his more dramatic escape .

    All the ordinances that Aurangzeb brought out to enforce islam on an unwilling people are described in detail . Personally he led a simple life , stitching caps for a living .Fittingly , when died , he preferred burial in a simple tomb in Khuldabad in Maharashtra--'' the deccan became the grave of his ambitions as well as his body '' !!

    Verdict about the book---masterpiece.......
     
    Last edited: Apr 9, 2011
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  3. Oracle

    Oracle New Member

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    Review is good mate! Any link from where it can be downloaded?
     
  4. maomao

    maomao Veteran Hunter of Maleecha Senior Member

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    Nice Review....yeah any PDF version?
     
  5. ashdoc

    ashdoc Senior Member Senior Member

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    Are you asking for book download ??
     
    Last edited: Apr 9, 2011
  6. SHASH2K2

    SHASH2K2 New Member

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    Ashdoc he is not doubting your ability. We all know that you are capable of this. He wants to read the book after reading your interesting review. :D
     
  7. ashdoc

    ashdoc Senior Member Senior Member

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    sorry to all !! i misunderstood.....

    i actually bought the book .

    i dont know whether the book is available on the internet .
     
  8. plugwater

    plugwater Elite Member Elite Member

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    Good review mate :)

    Any picture of Dara's wife ? :D
     
    Last edited: Apr 9, 2011
  9. maomao

    maomao Veteran Hunter of Maleecha Senior Member

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    Boss the Great Dara (aka Darius) was male a prince, not a princess and he was murdered in the most brutal fashion by Aurangazeb as he was paraded and tortured on the streets of Delhi.....he was well versed with Hindu theology and this prompted wretched Aurangzeb to do the unthinkable....i.e public execution and humiliation of the true/actual crown prince in Public by invoking Islam.
     
  10. plugwater

    plugwater Elite Member Elite Member

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    Thanks for the information mate. Btw i corrected my mistake before your post but quoted it before that.
     
  11. pankaj nema

    pankaj nema Senior Member Senior Member

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    Thanks a lot Ashdoc for this thread and GOD Bless you.

    Aurangzeb is the one of the most evil man ever to have been born on this planet

    In fact he is the Father of Pakistan because he is the most favoured and revered Islamic emperor because of his killing spree against Hindus

    Stephen Cohen in his book " Idea of Pakistan " has clearly brought out this fact about the fondness pakistanis have for Aurangzeb

    In fact some liberal Pakistani commentators have written that had Dara Shikoh had become the emperor ,the history of this sub continent would have been different
     
  12. ashdoc

    ashdoc Senior Member Senior Member

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    thanks everybody....................
     
  13. maomao

    maomao Veteran Hunter of Maleecha Senior Member

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    No issues mate................ :)
     
  14. ashdoc

    ashdoc Senior Member Senior Member

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    thanks.........................
     
  15. pankaj nema

    pankaj nema Senior Member Senior Member

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    Like Hitler , Aurangzeb too had a huge ego .this led to his downfall

    The 27 YEAR war fought after Shivaji's death from 1680 to 1707 ie till aurangzeb's death is perhaps the most important war fought by Indians

    Aurangzeb just totally hated Shivaji and the Marathas

    So after Shivaji's death Aurangzeb set out to destroy Marathas completely

    But the hardy Marathas only caused Aurangzeb's downfall

    The Marathas prevented the Islamisation of South and West India

    In this war 2 LAKH maratha soldiers were killed and 5 lakh Mughal soldiers too were killed.

    But this war completely weakened the Mughal empire

    Then the Sikh, Jats , Rajputs all gained their independence
     
  16. ashdoc

    ashdoc Senior Member Senior Member

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    many pakistanis come to pray for the emperors soul at his grave at khuldabad in maharashtra--its almost like a pilgrimage site for them . i have myself visited his grave--no, not for praying :becky:

    here's a photo from the net--notice the simplicity of the grave in contrast to the grave of shahjahan , the taj mahal itself

    [​IMG]
     
  17. SHASH2K2

    SHASH2K2 New Member

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    Its ok mate. No need to be sorry. $hit happens :D
     
  18. ashdoc

    ashdoc Senior Member Senior Member

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    here is the volume 2 of jadunath sarkar's original book on aurangzeb . mind you , i have read the abridged version in which the whole story has been compressed into one volume , but was able to find only one volume of the original ( large ) version of the book . volumes 1 , 3 and 4 --i was unable to find .

    http://www.apnaorg.com/books/english/history-aurangzeb-2/book.php?fldr=book
     
  19. ashdoc

    ashdoc Senior Member Senior Member

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  20. ashdoc

    ashdoc Senior Member Senior Member

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  21. The Messiah

    The Messiah Bow Before Me! Elite Member

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    how did pakistan pop into this thread ? even the most deluded couldn't possibly perceive of pakistan at that time.

    please keep the scum out of this debate.
     

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