صور الصفحة
النشر الإلكتروني

and general character, correspond so entirely, allowing for the difference of the edifices, one a Palace the other a Mosque, that there can be no mistake in ascribing both edifices to the same era, besides which the several buildings that elsewhere mark the site of Feerozabad, and which will be mentioned hereafter, all bear evident signs of having been erected about the same period as the Kalán Musjeed. Although Feerozabad is not again expressly mentioned by the historian we have quoted during the life of its founder, it is reasonable to suppose, it continued a place of importance during his life and perhaps his place of ordinary residence. On the death of Feeroz in A. H. 790, (A. D. 1388,) Geias-ood-deen Togluk, his grandson (by the favorite and eldest, but deceased, son Jutteh Khan) is particularly stated to have ascended the throne in the Palace of Feerozabad, a fact which would go far to establish the correctness of the inference, that his own and of course favorite town was the usual residence of Feeroz. Gheias-ood-deen was succeeded by a cousin named Aboo-Bukr. This prince was, after a short reign of one year and six months, made prisoner, and superseded by his uncle Nusseer-ood-deen, who first took possession of the Palace of Juhannamah, Aboo Bukr being “in the opposite quarter of the city called Feerozabad” (which supposing him to have been in the Palace of that town would be a correct expression with regard to the relative position of the royal residences of Juhannamá and the Kotla, as Feerozabad appears to have stretched in a N. W. direction towards the former. On the 18th of April 1389, (2d Jumahool-awul 789 A. H.) a battle took place in the very streets of Feerozabad, in which 50,000 men were engaged under Nusseer-cod-deen, a fact that speaks convincingly as to the great extent of ground it must have covered. It may also lead to the inference, that the town was very imperfectly protected by outer walls; if they had been of any great strength or size, some trace of them would surely be visible, but there is not one stone upon the other, west of the Palace, that could be pronounced the debris of a wall likely to have been the town-wall of Feerozabad. Nusseer-ood-deen was defeated with the assistance of Bahadur Kadeer, a Mewatee chief, who seems to have held the scales in which several sovereigns were weighed, and found wanting if he did not side with them. He came to the aid of Aboo Bukr, with a strong re-inforcement. On the following day, the king in possession,

marched out of Feerozabad, and drove Nusseer-ood-deen with great slaughter, quite out of Dehli. Another engagement soon after took place in Dehli, but which part it is difficult to ascertain from the context. After this engagement, Aboo Bukr, hearing of treason in his household, fled to his Mewatee friend, leaving Nusseer-ood-deen, to take quiet possession of “Dehli and its Palace.” IIe shortly after pursued the ex-King into Meerut, there took him prisoner, and confined him in Meerut. It is added that he died there some years after, but we may safely infer, that he obtained a conditional degree of liberty, as tradition ascribes to him, the excavation which divides Meerut, at the present day, into the black and white town. That he died a man of some consideration is evident from his tomb still standing in a state of considerable preservation west of, and close to, the jail at Meerut. Nusseer-cod-deen himself seems, subsequently, to have resided chiefly in the town and fort of Mahomedabad, built by his father's predecessor (his grand uncle) Mahomed Togluk, and died there.

The son of Nusseer-ood-deen reigned only 45 days, and the nobles who had, by this time, become all-powerful, raised the younger son of Nusseer-ood-deen to the throne. His name was Mahmood Togluk, and in the accounts of his disastrous reign, we find more frequent mention of Feerozabad than at any previous period, and we inay infer that it was again in his time, a place of almost as great importance as Dehli itself. The head of a faction, formed at the

very commencement of the reign of Mahmood, named Saadut Khan, having defeated the king's party headed by Mookurreeb Khan (Vakeel-oos-Sultanut, and Ameer-col-omra) outside of Dehli, would have besieged him in that place, but the rains having set in, he was unable to keep the field, struck his tents, and marched into Feerozabad. IIe called in a grand son of Feeroz Togluk, named Noosrut Khan, with the view of setting him up against Mahmood, but some household troops, who had hitherto sided with Saadut Khan, seized this Prince, placed him on an elephant, and having advanced against Saadut Khan, expelled him from the city of Feerozabad.

“ The misfortunes of the state,” says Ferishta, *“ daily increased. The owners of Feerozabad, and some of the provinces, espoused the cause of Noosrut Shah. Those of Dehli, and other places, supported the title of Mahmood Togluk. The government fell into anarchy; civil

* Brigg's Translation.

war raged every where ; and a scene was exhibited unheard of before, of two kings in arms against each other, residing in the same capital. Tartar Khan, the son of Guffur Khan of Guzerat, and Fuz-oolla Bulkhee, entitled Kootloogh Khan, joined the prince Noosrut at Feerozabad. Mookurrib Khan and other chiefs espoused the cause of Mahmood Togluk, (in Dehli it is presumed,) while Bahadur Naheer, and Mulloo Yekbal Khan, with a strong body of troops occupied the fort of Secree, and remained neuter, but were prepared to join either party according to circumstances. Affairs remained in this state for three years with astonishing equality ; for if one monarch's party had, at any time, the superiority, the balance was soon restored by the neutral chiefs.” Here again we have inferential proof, that although not so large as Dehli, and perhaps not so strongly fortified, Feerozabad, or at least its palace, must have been a place of strength and importance to be able to hold out so long against Mahmood Togluk and his party.

Shortly after the above extract we find the following in Ferishta : “In Dehli, Mulloo Yekbal Khan, having disagreed with Mookurrib Khan, abandoned the cause of Mahmood Togluk, (in Dehli) and sent a message to Noosrut Shah (in Feerozabad) offering to join his party. This proposal was readily accepted ; the parties met and went to the palace of Secree” (so that Bahadur Naheer, the Mewatee, must either have been previously expelled, or have joined this party, which is more probable) “where they swore mutual friendship on the Koran at the tomb of Khwaja Kootab-ood-deen Bukhteear Kakee." (The mention of this fact is most important as it is almost the only allusion, in Ferishta at least, on which to ground a certain inference as to the exact position of Secree.) “A quarrel now took place between Mahmood Togluk and Mookurrib Khan ; and about three days after, another rupture occurred between Mulloo Yekbal Khan, and Noosrut Shah, when the former, regardless of his oath, formed a conspiracy to seize the latter. Noosrut Shah informed of the plot, thought it advisable to quit the palace of Secree, and Mulloo Yekbal Khan, intercepting his followers in his retreat, took all his elephants, treasure and baggage; while the unfortunate Prince, being in no condition to keep the field, fled to his vizier, Tartar Khan, at Paneeput. Mulloo Yekbal Khan, having obtained possession of Feerozabad, increased his power, and strove to expel the king Mahmood, and his partisan Mookurrib

came the

Khan, from the "old city." At length, by the mediation of some nobles, peace was concluded between the parties; but Mulloo Yekbal Khan, perfidious as he was, and regardless of the sacred oaths of the treaty, attacked Mookurrib Khan in his own house, and slew him. He also seized Mahmood Togluk and deprived him of all but the name of king.”

The next mention we have of Feerozabad, is on the occasion of the invasion of Taimoor, which occurred very shortly after the events detailed above. On the 13th January 1398, (5th of Jummadi-ool-awal A. II. 801,*) this scourge of the human race, after putting to death so large a number of prisoners on the plain beyond (east of) Louse, as must have deluged the land with blood, forced the river without opposition, and encamped“ on the plain of Feerozabad.” This plain was, in all probability, either the land now occupied by Jaisinghpoora, and further south, towards the tomb of Munsoor Alee Khan (Sufdur Jung) or the spot now occupied by modern Dehli. While Dehli be

prey of the ferocious army which he commanded, Feerozabad seems to have escaped the fury of those madmen, for we learn that on Taimoor finally quitting Dehli after revelling for 15 days in blood, and rapine, he marched three miles to Feerozabad (an important fact for hereafter fixing, with tolerable exactitude the position of “Dehli or old Dehli,” and which supports our previous inference, that the Dehli of those times was just beyond Indraput) and having encamped there, offered up his prayers in the large mosque, which is said by the historian to have been on the banks of the Jumna ; but for this assertion, we might suppose, it was the Kalán Musjeed which was alluded to.

Ten years after Taimoor's invasion we find Mahmood Togluk, still nominal king, defending himself in Feerozabad successfully against his ultimate successor Saiud Khizr Khan, in consequence of the enemy suffering from a scarcity of forage and grain.

Three years after Khizr Khan returned to the assault, on which occasion Mahmood shut himself up in the old citadel of Secree, while Yektecar Khan, who commanded in Feerozabad, seeing the desperate condition of the king's affairs, joined Khizr Khan, and admitted him into the fort (Feerozabad), notwithstanding which Mahmood made a

* There appears an error of 17 days in the abbreviated translation of the Zuffurnama, by P. dela Croix, but we cannot speak with certainly without a more close investiga

Should this prove to be the case as we suspect it will, or the 13th January 1398, as above, we should rend 27th December 13.17.--11. C.-II. L.


successful defence of Secree. He died the following year near Kaithul, (Feb. 1412.) An Afghan chief, of the name of Dowlut Khan Lodee, reigned after him nominally for one year and three months, when Khizr Khan, finally succeeded in obtaining possession of the throne, * and in establishing a new dynasty. From this time (1416) or 62 years after it was founded, it is most likely that Feerozabad began to decline. The building of Mobarikabad in 1435, showed that it was no longer thought a suitable residence for kings of another race, and while the construction, in 1533, by Humaioon of a new fort, and the foundation by Shere Shah, almost immediately after, of a new and distinct town, part of which must have been built on a portion of the site of Feerozabad, showed that as a town of any consequence it had almost entirely disappeared, the materials being, as usual, in all probability, carried away to construct more recent edifices. This is the more likely, as Sekunder Lodee had, for some years before his death, made Agra his principal place of residence.

From the foregoing outline of its history, and from the tolerably accurate indications we have of its locality, taking also the style of the remains of the palace, and other buildings into consideration, and bearing in mind that we have the date of the Kalán Musjeedt to bear out what we have advanced, we consider that there can be no hesitation in laying it down as a fact, that the ruins of the Kotla, as they now stand, are the remains of the palace built by Feeroz Togluk, and that the city of Feerozabad, also built by him, extended a consi. derable distance to the south-west, but mostly to the north-west of the palace, where there are still numerous debris of old buildings, besides several tombs and mosques, more or less perfect, all bearing the most distinct marks of that period; the Kalán Musjeed being one of them. We shall endeavour, in our next paper, to trace even more exactly the limits of Feerozabad, and to give a short account of the several buildings alluded to, accompanied, if possible, by plans and sketches of the most remarkable of those edifices, with a general plan of the whole supposed site and neighbourhood.

* Khizr Khan though sovereign de fucto, never openly assumed the title of King, but was contented 10 rule as the representative of Shahrookh, the son and successor of Taimoor, on whose name the Khootba was read.-H. C.-H. L.

+ li seems likely that this Musjeed was erected by Khan Jehan, Wuzeer with the object of securing the good will of the people of the capital on his contemplated usurpation of the throne of his master, then verging rapidly to a state of mental imbecility.-11. C. -- H. L.

« السابقةمتابعة »