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Thursday, September 19, 2013


Delhi, circa 1850.

Bahadur Shah Zafar II, the last Mughal Emperor, 1775-1862.

Procession of Mughal court through Delhi streets.

Elephant on the right carries the Mahi Maraatib, or Fish Standard with the Daroga, or Overseer of the Mahi Maraatib sitting on the left.

Nawab of Jhajjar rides around his country garden on his pet tiger.

Durbar of Nawab of Jhijjar in summer dress.

Dancing girls and musicians.

Story tellers and troubadours.

Soldiers of fortune.

Mendicants and sufis.

Jama Masjid, c. 1840.

The Mughal Empire ended when the British army with the help of Sikhs and Pathans routed Delhi after a seige of what is known as the Indian Mutiny on 14 September 1857.  The aftermath was massacre in and around Delhi committed by the bloody colonialists.

Bahadur Shah was put to trial and later deported to Rangoon, Burma where he died in 1862.

Bahadur Shah in his dying days.

The excesses of the Mughals eventually brought the empire to its knees - romantic ideal of Taj Mahal at the expense of bankruptcy to the empire, Shah Jahan was exiled by his son in a palace across the river facing Taj Mahal, fratrricide in which Aurangzeb murdered two brothers and several of Shah Jahan's grandsons, neglect of proper governance ...

Source: William Dalrymple, 2007. The Last Mughal, the Fall of a Dynasty: Delhi, 1857. Alfred A. Knopf, New York 534pp

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