« PreviousContinue »
died,” The body was carried to Najebad, and interred in a tomb that had been erected by his order, in the vicinity of that town. Najeb-ud-Dowlah held in his own right, and in fief of the Empire, a tract of country extending from Panifret eastwards to Najebad ; in the Duab, it was confined on the north, by Sarunpour, and on the south, by the suburbs of Dehli ; and in Rohilcund, it reached from the mountains of Siringnaghur, to the distrićt of Moradabad.F The revenue of this territory in its improved state, was calculated at 1oo lacks of rupees ; but it was reduced to seventy, it is said, by the depredations of the Sicques, within a term of three years; nor would this amount have been preserved, had he not displayed in his operation with those Marauders, a distinguished skill in the alternate exercise of arms, and political address. The death of Najeb Khan was lamented by the people whom he governed, and his memory at this day is respected and beloved throughout the upper parts of India. He supported the charaćter of a gallant soldier ; he encouraged agriculture, and protećted commerce ; and he was confidered as the only remaining chief of the Empire, capable of opposing any barrier to the inroads of
the Mahratta and Sicque nations.
* His death happened in O&tober, 1770. + A principal town in Rohilcund, standing on the banks of the Rangunge.—See Rennell's map.
S H U J A H -U D-D O W L A H.
A. VARIETY of materials, supplied by the liberality and investigation of my friends, has enabled me to write an abbreviated history of the family and life of Shujah-udDowlah ; a prince who supported a conspicuous charaćter on the theatre of Hindostan, and who, from his transactions with the English nation in India, has founded an important epocha in their annals. Having selected with caution, and unreservedly commented on the documents that have come before me, I firmly trust, that no marks of passion, no design to overcharge, or suppress facts, will appear in the relation. I am desirous also of exhibiting a general outline of the actions of a prince, who stood much above R 2 mediocrity mediocrity in the estimation of his subjećts ; that by a knowledge of his charaćter, and of their sentiments, some satisfactory opinions may be formed, of the disposition and moral qualities of the natives of Hindostan.
Shujah-ud-Dow LAH, the son of Sufdar Jung, by a daughter of Saadut Khan, was born at Dehli, in the year 1729 of the Christian aera. Though a long line of illustrious ancestors be not the strongest tenure of the dominions held by Indian princes, who are taught to confider fortune, and the power of arms, as the primary aids in acquiring and maintaining empire; yet a distinguished descent imparts a lustre and weight to the other qualities of a fortunate leader, and he himself beholds it with ostentatious pleasure. Historical truth calls on me to do justice to the claims of the family of Shujah-ud-Dowlah, who, in Mr. Dow's History of Hindostan, is denominated “The infamous son, of a more infamous Persian pedlar.”” The ancestors of Shujah-ud-Dowlah, have for a long space of time been established in Nishabur, a town of Khorosan, where they held landed possessions, and were classed amongst the principal inhabitants of the province.
DURING my journey through Persia, I had an opportunity of conversing with some of the inhabitants of Nishabur, who bore indisputable testimony to the ancient rank of the family of Shujahud-Dowlah. That this fact may be more fully exemplified, though it leads to prolixity, it is necessary to mention, that Mirzah Nasseer, the father of the maternal grand-fire” of Shujah-ud-Dowlah, came into Hindostan in the beginning of the reign of Bahaudar Shah, F by whom he was appointed to an office of trust at Patna, where his tomb yet remains. Mirza Nafleer had two sons, the second of whom, Mahomet Aumeen, on being apprised of the death of his father, left Persia, and about the year 1708 visited the court of Furruckfir. He was appointed by this prince, governor of the fort of Agrah; and soon rising to greater honours he ultimately became the Viceroy of Oude, by the title of Saredut Khan Burhaan-ul-Mulck. By the reduction of this province, which had long been in a state of rebellion, he acquired a confpicuous military reputation, and was promoted to the office of Darogha Khas,t with the titular command of 7ooo horse. About this time, Mahomet Muckeim, afterwards entitled Sufdar Jung, the nephew of Saadut Khan, came into India, and had the daughter of his uncle given to him in marriage; of which Shujah-ud-Dowlah, was, I believe, the only male issue. Sufdar
* Mr. Dow uniformly endeavours to throw an odium on the family and charaćter of the late Vizier. When informed of the opprobrious terms used by that witer, in discussing the subjećt of nis Domestic History, Shujah-ud-Dowlan attributed the language to the resentment of Mr. Dow, for having been refused the salt-petre farm of the Allahabad districts.
* Saadut Khan, entitled Burhaan-ul-Mulck.
+ This Emperor commenced his reign in 1707, and died in 1712.
t Darogha Khas, an officer of nearly the same description with the Master of the King's Household in England.
Jung, Jung, who was active, and possessed useful abilities, became the deputy of Saadut Khan in the government of Oude. IN the middle periods of Mahomet Shah's" reign, the Mahrattas, at the instigation, it is supposed, of the Nizam Ul Mulck, i. who was then at variance with the court, entered the Emperor's dominions, and committed severe devastations; but in attempting to penetrate into Oude, they were attacked, and after a sharp conflict, completely routed by the troops of Saadut Khan, who commanded in person. This officer afterwards joined the imperial army, which had been colle&ted for the purpose of expelling the enemy; but on a pretence of some disgust, he left the camp and retired into Oude, without having seen the Emperor. It has been supposed that Saadut Khan, in conjunction with Nizam Ul Mulck, invited Nadir Shah into India, with the assurance of a powerful interiour assistance, and an easy conquest of the Empire. This supposed fact, has been subscribed to by Mr. Dow in his History of Hindostan, with positive decision in favour of its authenticity; and it is partially noticed in the History of Nadir Shah, by Mr. Fraser, who has treated his subjećt with candour, and generally with perspicuity. This writer asserts, that Saadut Khan was engaged in a treacherous negotiation, which the disaffected nobles of