plete; nor should he have suffered any consideration to move him from his purpose of attacking Aurengzebe, now that he was so clearly incapable of offering effectual resistance. He had an easy opportunity to crush this formidable rival; but the circumstance I am about to relate distracted his attention, and saved Aurengzebe from the impending danger.

Dara perceived at this critical moment that his left wing was in disorder; and an aide-de-camp bringing him intelligence of the deaths of Ruotum-Khan and Sittersal, and of the imminent peril into which Ram-Singh-Routlé was placed in consequence of having valiantly burst through the enemy, by whom he was, however, entirely surrounded, Dara abandoned the idea of pushing towards Aurengzebe, and determined to fly to the succour of the left wing. After a great deal of hard fighting, Dara's presence turned the tide of fortune, and the enemy was driven back at all points; but the rout was not so complete as to leave him without occupation. Meanwhile Ram-Singh-Routlé was opposed to Morâd Bakche, and performing prodigies of valour. The Rajah wounded the prince, and approached so near as to cut some of the bands by which the amari was fixed upon the elephant, hoping in that way to bring his antagonist to the earth; but the intrepidity and adroitness of Morâd-Bakche did not permit him to accomplish his object. Though wounded, and beset on all sides by the rajaputs, the Prince disdained to yield: he dealt his blows with terrible effect, throw ing at the same time his shield over his son, a lad of seven years of age, seated at his side; and discharged an arrow with so unerring an aim that the Rajah fell dead on the spot.

It was not long before Dara was made acquainted with the serious loss he had sustained; and hearing also that Morâd Bakche was hemmed in by the rajaputs, rendered furious by the death of their master, he determined, notwithstanding every obstacle, to advance to the attack of that prince; the only measure by which he could hope to repair the error committed in suffering Aurengzebe to escape: but even this step was rendered abortive by an act of treachery, which involved Dara in immediate and irretrievable ruin.

Calil-ullah-Khan, who commanded the right wing, consisting of thirty thousand Moguls, a force which alone was sufficient to destroy Aurengzebe's army, kept aloof from the engagement, while Dara, at the head of the left wing, fought with courage and success. The

traitor pretended that his division was designed for a corps of reserve, and that he could not, consistently with his orders, move one step, or discharge a single arrow, until the last extremity; but the blackest perfidy was the cause of his inaction.

A few years prior to this period, Calil-ullah had suffered some indignity at the hands of Dara, and he considered the hour had arrived when he might gratify the resentment which had never ceased to rankle in his bosom. His abstinence from all share in the battle did not, however, produce the mischief intended, Dara having proved victorious without the co-operation of the right wing. The traitor, therefore, had recourse to another expedient. He quitted his division, followed by a few persons, and riding with speed towards Dara, precisely at the moment when that prince was hastening to assist in the downfall of Morâd-Bakche, he exclaimed, while yet at some distance, Mohbarekbad, Hazeret, Salamet, Elhamd-ul-ellah! May you be happy! May your majesty enjoy health, and reign in safety! The victory is your own! But let me ask, why are you still mounted on this lofty elephant? Have you not been sufficiently exposed to danger? If one of the numberless arrows, or balls, which have pierced your canopy had touched your person, who can imagine the dreadful situation to which we should be reduced? In Heaven's name descend quickly, and mount your horse; nothing now remains but to pursue the fugitives with vigour. I entreat your majesty, permit them not to escape!

Had Dara considered the consequences of quitting the back of his elephant, on which he had displayed so much valour, and served as a rallying point to the army, he would have become master of the empire; but the credulous prince, duped by the artful obsequiousness of Calil-ullah, listened to his advice as though it had been sincere. He descended from the elephant, and mounted his horse; but a quarter of an hour had not elapsed when, suspecting the imposture, he inquired impatiently for Calil-ullah. The villain, however, was not within his reach: he inveighed vehemently against that officer, and threatened him with death; but Dara's rage was now impotent, and his menace incapable of being executed. The troops having missed their prince, a rumour quickly spread that he was killed and the army betrayed a universal panic seized them; every man thought only of his own safety, and how to escape from the resentment of Aurengzebe


In a few minutes the army seemed disbanded, and (strange and sudden reverse!) the conqueror became the vanquished. Aurengzebe remained during a quarter of an hour steadily on his elephant, and was rewarded. with the crown of Hindostan: Dara left his own elephant a few minutes too soon, and was hurled from the pinnacle of glory, to be numbered amongst the most miserable of princes:-so short-sighted is man, and so mighty are the consequences which sometimes flow from the most trivial incidents."

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The Patan having assembled, during the night, a considerable number of armed men, seized this gold, together with the women's jewels, and fell upon Dara and Sipper Shekô, killed the persons who attempted to defend them, and tied the prince on the back of an elephant. The public executioner was ordered to sit behind, for the purpose of cutting off his head, upon the first appearance of resistance, either on his own part, or on that of any of his adherents; and in this degrading posture Dara was carried to the army before Tatta, and delivered into the hands of Mir-Baba. This officer then commanded Jihon-Khan to proceed with his prisoner, first to Lahore, and afterwards to Delhi.

When the unhappy prince was brought to the gates of Delhi, it became a question with Aurengzebe whether, in conducting him to the fortress of Gualior, he should be made to pass through the capital. It was the opinion of some courtiers that this was by all means to be avoided, because not only would such an exhibition be derogatory to the royal family, but it might become the signal for revolt, and the rescue of Dara might be successfully attempted. Others maintained, on the contrary, that he ought to be seen by the whole city that it was necessary to strike the people with terror and astonishment, and to impress their minds with an idea of the absolute and irresistible power of Aurengzebe. It was also advisable, they added, to undeceive the omrahs and the people, who still entertained doubts of Dara's сарtivity, and to extinguish at once the hopes of his secret partisans. Aurengzebe viewed the matter in the same light; the wretched prisoner was therefore secured on an elephant; his son, Sipper-Shekô, placed at his side, and behind them, instead of the executioner, was seated Bhadur-Khan. This was not one of the majestic elephants of Pegu or Ceylon, which Dara had been in the habit of mounting, pom

pously caparisoned, the harness gilt, and trappings decorated with figured work, and carrying a beautifully painted chair, inlaid with gold, and a magnificent canopy to shelter the prince from the sun; Dara was now seen seated on a miserable and worn-out animal, covered with filth; he no longer wore the necklace of large pearls which distinguished the princes of Hindostan, nor the rich turban and cabaïes, or embroidered vest; he and his son were now habited in dirty cloth of the coarsest texture, and his sorry turban was wrapped round with a scarf of Cashmere wool, resembling that worn by the meanest of the people.

Such was the appearance of Dara when led through the bazaars and every quarter of the city. I could not divest myself of the idea that some dreadful execution was about to take place, and felt surprised that government should have the hardihood to commit all these indignities upon a prince confessedly popular among the lower orders, especially as I saw scarcely any armed force. The people had for some time inveighed bitterly against the unnatural conduct of Aurengzebe: the imprisonment of his father, of his son, Sultan Mahmud, and of his brother, Morâd Bakche, filled every bosom with horror and disgust. The crowd assembled upon this disgraceful occasion was immense; and everywhere I observed the people weeping, and lamenting the fate of Dara in the most touching language. I took my station in one of the most conspicuous parts of the city, in the midst of the largest bazaar; was mounted on a good horse, and accompanied by two servants, and two intimate friends. From every quarter I heard piercing and distressing shrieks; men, women, and children, wailing as if some mighty calamity had happened to themselves. Jihon-Khan rode near the wretched Dara; and the abusive and indignant cries vociferated as the traitor moved along were absolutely deafening. I observed some Fakirs and several poor people throw stones at the infamous Patan; but not a single movement was made with a view of delivering the beloved and compassionated prince. When this disgraceful procession had passed through every part of Delhi, the poor prisoner was shut up in one of his own gardens, called Heider-Abad.

Aurengzebe was immediately made acquainted with the impression which this spectacle produced upon the public mind, the indignation manifested by the populace against Jihon-Khan, the threats held out to stone the perfidious man, and with the fears entertained of a gene

ral insurrection. A second council was consequently convened, and the question discussed, whether it were more expedient to conduct Dara to Gualior, agreeably to the original intention, or to put him to death without farther delay. By some it was maintained that there was no reason for proceeding to extremities, and that the prince might safely be taken to Gualior, provided he were attended with a strong escort: Danechmend-Khan, although he and Dara had long been on bad terms, enforced this opinion with all his powers of argument: but it was ultimately decided that Dara should die, and that Sipper-Shekô should be confined in Gualior. At this meeting Rochinara-Begum betrayed all her enmity against her hapless brother, combating the arguments of Danechmend, and exciting Aurengzebe to this foul and unnatural murder. Her efforts were but too successfully seconded by Calil-ullah Khan and Shaistâ Khan, both of them old enemies of Dara; and by Takarrub-Khan, a wretched parasite recently raised to the rank of omrah, and formerly a physician. He was originally distinguished by the appellation of Hakin-Davoud, and had been compelled to fly from Persia. This man rendered himself conspicuous in the council by his violent harangue. "Dara ought not to live," he exclaimed, "the safety of the state depends upon his immediate execution; and I feel the less reluctant to recommend his being put to death, because he had abjured his religion, and avowed himself a kafir. If it be sinful to shed the blood of such a person, may the sin be visited upon my own head!" an imprecation which was not allowed to pass unregarded; for divine justice overtook this man in his career of wickedness: he was soon disgraced, declared infamous, and sentenced to a miserable death.


The charge of this atrocious murder was intrusted to a slave of the name of Nazir, who had been educated by Shan Jehan, but experienced some ill-treatment from Dara. The prince, apprehensive that poison would be administered to him, was employed with Sipper Shekô in boiling lentils, when Nazir and four other ruffians entered his apartment. "My dear son," he cried out, these men are come to murder us!" He then seized a small kitchen knife, the only weapon in his possession. One of the murderers having secured Sipper-Shekô, the rest fell upon Dara, threw him down, and while three of the assassins held him, Nazir decapitated his wretched victim. The head was instantly carried to Aurengzebe, who commanded that it should be placed on a dish, and that water should be brought. The blood was



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