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Tarikh-i-Rashidi


Tarikh-i-Rashidi an important and valuable history of the Mughals and Turks of Central Asia. The author, Mirza Haidar Dughlat was a cousin of babur. He was born in 905 AH/ 1499-1500 AD at Tashkhand, where his father was at that time governor. At the time of his father's death, he was only 9 years old. Babur took care of him. A distinguished general, he was present at the battle of Kanauj. Being invited by certain chiefs of Kashmir Mirza Haidar conquered the Kashmir valley in 1540 and established peace there. In 1551 the natives of Bhirbal (Kashmir) killed him when he went there to restore peace and order.

The Tarikh-i-Rashidi was written in two parts (daftars), the first daftar was written in 951 and 952 AH (1544 and 1545 AD) and the second in 948 AH (1541 AD). In fact the second daftar is the first in point of the time of composition and contains the author's life-sketch. When completed, the Tarikh-i-Rashidi was dedicated to Abdur Rashid Khan, son of Abdul Fath Sultan Sayyed of Kashgarh.

The Tarikh-i-Rashidi begins with an account of Tughlaq Timer, Mughal Khaqan, who was the first to embrace Islam. He devoted much space to discuss central Asian politics and deals with the history of Babur and humayun. He praises Babur for his great personality and strength of character and expresses his gratitude to him. He gives more details about Humayun's activities in India. Always loyal to Humayun, Mirza Haidar commanded a wing of the imperial army at the battle of Kanauj. So his account of the battle is that of an eyewitness and, in fact, no other writer gives such a detailed account of the battle as the author of the Tarikh-i-Rashidi does. The Tarikh-i-Rashidi was translated into English and published by Cosimo, Inc. in 2008, under the title A History of the Moguls of Central Asia (editor N. Elias, translated by Sir E. Denison Ross). [Abdul Karim]

Bibliography Elias and Ross, A History of the Moguls of Central Asia, London, 1893; Ishwari Prasad, Life and Times of Humayan, Calcutta, 1955.