In this evocative study of the fall of the Mughal Empire and the beginning of the Raj, award-winning historian William Dalrymple uses previously undiscovered. By: William Dalrymple Media of The Last Mughal This Mughal is Bahadur Shah Zafar II, one of the most tolerant and likeable of his remarkable dynasty who. Buy The Last Mughal: The Fall of Delhi, by William Dalrymple (ISBN: ) from Amazon’s Book Store. Everyday low prices and free delivery.

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Nonetheless, Zafar—a mystic, poet, and calligrapher of great accomplishment—created a court of unparalleled brilliance, and gave rise to perhaps the greatest literary renaissance in modern Indian history.

The Last Mughal – William Dalrymple

And amidst all this was Bahadur Shah II, pen-name Zafar – the eighty year old mughak of a once great dynasty that had lost everything. This book is a must read for people who have lived in Delhi or are interested in it because most places still survive. Some might see this as a hedging of bets, but it was, in truth, the reflex of a lifelong ditherer; and that is not the stuff of which rebel leaders are made.

Emperor Bahadur Shah Zafar was 82 years old when the mutiny started.

The Last Mughal – Wikipedia

I must confess here that I have no problems with a Westerner writing about Indian history I say salrymple because this seems to be everyone’s pet peeve against Dalrymple-Now, as long as the author approaches his subject with honesty and doesn’t adopt a patronizing tone, as the likes of V.

Dalrymple has here written an account of the Indian mutiny such as we have never had before, of the ddalrymple leading up to it and of its aftermath, seen through the prism of the last emperor’s life.

You could be an expert in your field, having worked your way through every bit of ponderous tome you could ever read, but when it comes to creating a story out of it, a clear thread that runs through every bit of knowledge that you have – alst to be able to share ,ughal with a reader, who comes with a background of having been told fuck-all in his school’s history books – as if it had only happened yesterday, is no small feat.

Customers who viewed this item also viewed. But in an ebook there’s no reason they can’t be placed among the text where they belong in context.


The Last Mughal: The Fall of a Dynasty: Delhi, 1857

Retrieved 22 May No longer were Britain’s Indian policies in the s conducted by the likes of Warren Hastings and William Jones, who understood and respected Indian values and traditions.

Stay in Touch Sign up. On top of that, he has splendidly conveyed the sheer joy of researching a piece of history, something every true historian knows, telling of his elation at discovering in Burma’s national archives all Zafar’s prison records, stored in Acrobat PDF files – “something the British Library has so far failed to achieve”. Jan 17, Shahine Ardeshir rated it it was amazing.

In this book, William Dalrymple does shed some light on it, though a sad one. Shopbop Designer Fashion Brands. He is certainly a strikingly liberal and likeable figure when compared to the Victorian Evangelicals whose insensitivity, arrogance and blindness did much to bring the Uprising of down upon both their own heads and those of the people and court of Delhi, engulfing all of northern India in a religious war of terrible violence.

I used to particularly love going to the one at Marble Arch: That’s the one that begins “I am well pleased: The flames of the rebellion soon spread to Meerut, where the sipahis massacred their officers and their families and marched as a body to the Mughal capital of Delhi, where they put an end to the company’s administration and sought the blessings of the Mughal emperor, Bahadur Shah Zafar.

Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read. The publisher also put no effort into creating the ebook. But now William Dalrymple has magnificently rescued him from near anonymity, and in doing so has greatly increased our understanding of what went on in the old Mughal capital at the time of the Indian mutiny.

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mighal What this book on the other hand tells us is, and quite unequivocally, that it wasn’t a war for independence. I was putting off mugnal this book for a long time because I umghal it would be very hard and heavy and I am not a big fan of non-fiction as it is, but boy, was I super, super wrong! To think that Chandni Chowk, my favorite spot in Delhi, was the place of such terrible events I’ll definitely read more by this author. This pivotal period of history is delivered in a scholarly but not overly academic manner.

The Delhi College, initially more a madrasa than a Western university, was remodelled by the Company in to provide, in addition to its oriental studies, an education in English language and literature.


Maybe more than a little. It was all in all, a very odd sort of religious war. Some might see this as a hedging of bets, but it was, in truth, the reflex of a lifelong ditherer; and that is not the stuff of which rebel leaders are made. I have lived with this book wiloiam months.

After the oppression of the mutiny the English went on a rampage to destroy the ancient city of Delhi to dust and shoot every soul living in it. Write a customer review.

Late in the book, there is also a mention of a royal survivor – Zafar Sultan, Zafar’s brother’s son, who refused government pension, and made his living with a brick cart. For nearly years the Mughals ruled India in addition to what is now Pakistan and Bangladesh but by the s their rule was in a terminal decline.

Alas, Britain is very much in the same Rogues Gallery. He had been banished not so much for what he did during the mutiny as for what he represented to the mutineers – Hindus as well as Muslims – who regarded him as the touchstone of an old and deeply rooted way of life which the Victorian Evangelicals, who dominated the making and execution of British policy, were determined to replace with the prejudices and habits of muscular Christianity. That’s the one that begins “I am well pleased: If Dalrymple wrote more of our textbooks, I’ve sure young people would stop seeing history as a staid and boring subject, and be able to relate, engage and learn from it.

All this is not very pleasant to think coolly of, but when the moment comes excitement makes you feel as happy as possible.

Over the years the West has found time, in its collective conscience, to rue the fate of cities like Dresden, Caen and others that were destroyed during the second world war – and remnants of a medieval past that were lost because of it.

When, in MayZafar was declared the leader of an uprising against the British, he was powerless to resist though he strongly suspected that the action was doomed.

It is also in many ways a remarkably humane and egalitarian history.