Humayun in Persia

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Item Code: IDF970
Author: Sukumar Ray
Language: English
Edition: 2002
ISBN: 8172361181
Pages: 113 {4 illustration in B/W}
Cover: Hardcover
Other Details 9.5" X 6.2"
Weight 380 gm
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Book Description


This is a very detailed and scholarly study of a minute but not uninteresting corner of mediaeval Indian history, namely Humayun's doings in Persia and Afghanistan as a discrowned fugitive from India. After the throne of Delhi had been recovered and the Indian empire had attained to undreamt of splendour under his son Akbar, the Mughal Court historians deemed it politic to slur over this temporary eclipse of their royal house, because Humayun in exile had not been treated as a full equal by his royal host in Persia. To this was added the eternal antagonism between the Shi'as and the Sunnis. Did Humayun in Persia find it expedient to make a confession of the Shi'a faith, and if so did he go to the full length of it? That is a question which the Delhi Court historians naturally try to ignore or leave clouded in vague rhetoric-while the Iranian writers on the other hand, very politely remain silent on the subject.

This question has been critically investigated in Professor Sukumar Ray's book. He has taken infinite pains in settling the dates and place-names of the Mughal Emperor's movements outside India, and he has for the first time brought all the known Persian and Indian writers on the subject together in one comprehensive review and judgment.

It is a sound and painstaking production, though the nature of the subject has denied to our author any brilliant episode or splendid personality, such as abound in the history of the reign of Akbar. A piece of honest scholarly work like this deserves to be printed and thus make available to students as a standard authority on one particular bit of Indian history.

Professor S. Ray has undertaken a full study of Bairam Khan, young Akbar's Lord Protector and of his son Abdu'r-Rahim Khan-i-Khanan, the brightest star of Hindustani poetry and Sufi philosophy at the Mughal Court. The present book is the necessary first step to the accomplishment of that most interesting work. I have gone through the book with the young author and heartily recommend it to those who love to read our country's past history.

Jadunath Sarkar


  Prefatory Note v
  Foreword vii
  Preface ix
  List of Illustration xv
  Abbreviations xv
CHAPTER 1 Humayun Leaves for Persia  
  1. Humayun abandons all his hopes in India and leaves for Qandahar 1
  2. Humayun journey from Mashtang to Sistan 3
CHAPTER 2 Humayun at Sistan and Heart  
  1. Humayun at Sistan 7
  2. The Shah receives the report of Humayun's arrival and issues instructions for his proper reception 8
  3. Humayun proceeds to Herat and receives the reply of the Shah on the way 9
  4. Humayun is given a grand reception at Herat 10
  5. The grand banquet arranged by Muhammad Khan in Honour of Humayun 11
  6. Humayun stays at Herat and witnesses the New Year festival 12
  Appendix to Chapter 2 13
CHAPTER 3 From Herat to the Safavid Court:  
  1. Humayun's letter to shah Tahmasp asking permission to visit Mashhad 15
  2. Reply of the Shah of Iran to the above letter of Humayun 16
  3. Humayun at Jam 18
  4. Humayun at Mashhad 19
  5. From Mashhad to Qi'la Dars 19
  6. Bairam Beg at the court of shah Tahmasp 21
  7. From the fort of Dars tot he Shah's court 22
CHAPTER 4 At the Safavid Court  
  1. The meeting of the two monarchs 25
  2. Jauhar our main guide: three periods of Humayun's stay with the Shah 27
  3. Causes of dissension between Humayun and Shah Tahmasp 27
  4. The first period: attempts of the Shah to convert Humayun 28
  5. No intercourse for two months: the second period 32
  6. The Shah changes his attitude: did Humayun accept the Shi'ah creed? 35
  7. Farewell parties: last days with the Shah: the third period 38
  8. Parting of the two monarchs 39
  9. Bairam beg in Iran 40
CHAPTER 5 Homeward Bound  
  1. Humayun leaves the Safavid court and visits Ardabil and the Caspian Sea 41
  2. Humayun's second visit to Qazwin 43
  3. From Qazwin to Mashhad 44
  4. From Mashhad to Sistan 45
  5. Humayun leaves the dominion of Shah Tahmasp 48
  Appendix to Chapter 5 49
CHAPTER 6 Qandahar- the bone of Contention Between Persian and India:  
  1. The first siege of Qandahar 51
  2. Causes of the siege of Qandahar by Humayun against the Persians 53
  3. The second siege of Qandahar 56
CHAPTER 7 Conclusion:  
  1. The recovery of Qandahar closes the period of exile: several questions regarding Humayun's life in Iran 58
  2. The Shah's treatment of Humayun 58
  3. Humayun's political relationship with the Shah of Iran 58
  4. Was Humayun guilty of treachery in the capture of Qandahar? 60
  5. Did Humayun recover his ancestral territory with Persian help? 61
  6. The ultimate results of Humayun's exile in Iran 62
  A. Humayun's letter to Shah Tahmasp asking permission to enter Iran and see the Shah  
  B. The Reply of Shah Tahmasp to Humayun's letter asking permission to enter his territory and see him. 67
  C. The letter of Shah Tahmasp to Muhammad Khan, Governor of Heart, Giving instruction for the Reception of Humayun 68
  D. Humayun's letter to Shah Tahmasp of Iran asking permission to visit Mashhad 75
  E. Reply of Shah Tahmasp to the Letter of Humayun asking permission to visit Mashhad 77
  F. A letter of Shah Tahmasp of Iran to Humayun after He left the Shah's territory 79
  G. The Personal letter of Shah to Humayun in his own Handwriting 86
  A. Indian Chronicles 88
  B. Chronicles written from the Safavid Point of View 96
  C. Miscellaneous works bearing informations on the subject 101
  D. European Sources 102
  E. Modern Works 102
  Index 105

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