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in revising and completing the internal arrangements of his kingdom. In 1674 he was formally enthroned with great state at Raighur, and a treaty Sivaji enwas negotiated between him and the Eng- throned,
1674 lish. Two years later he undertook his celebrated expedition into the Carnatic, and made himself master of the whole of his father's jâghîr, and of Gingî, Vellora, and many places in the neighbourhood. But his remarkable career was not destined to continue much longer. In one of his daring and almost incredible dashes across country to cut off a Mogul convoy he injured his knee, and the injury brought on fever.
On April 5th, 1680, Sivaji dies he died, amidst the undisguised sorrow of a 1680. people to whom he had become almost a god.
To estimate accurately a character so mixed, and placed in circumstances so extraordinary, is now almost impossible. His courage, his skill, His characand his power of enlisting the passionate ter. devotion of his followers we have already seen. His crimes, which were not many, were almost entirely committed against the persecuting and invading Muhammadan, whom he perhaps, like his countrymen, may have considered his lawful prey. Of cruelty he was never guilty—a rare thing in Eastern princes. With his subjects he was familiar and trustful, but never flinched from maintaining the strictest discipline and the unfaltering recognition of his authority. His habits in private life were simple and temperate ; but his religion, always highly coloured with superstition, was liable at times to become mere fanaticism. As a statesman, though he constructed no elaborate scheme
of policy, he at least showed that he was thoroughly acquainted with the character of the people he had to govern, and contrived, what many European statesmen have of late failed to do, to construct a stable and workable government out of elements the most chaotic and the most unpromising. We cannot there. fore in justice deny to Sivajî the title of great ; while as long as India remains, he will always continue to be one of the most popular and the most interesting of her
many Sambaji, a cruel and intemperate man, succeeded his father, and, according to the usual fate of an Sambaji,
Indian prince, had to overcome the ambi. 1680-1689. tion of a brother before his position was
His territory was next invaded by a large Mogul force, and, proving himself an unworthy son of Sivajî, he suffered great loss. Aurungzib soon after
pushed all his armies into the Dakhan with Aurungzib in the Dakhan, the view of making a final conquest of 1683-1707.
Southern India. He commenced with an attack upon Bijapûr and Golconda, and finally accomplished their reduction in 1686 and 1687 respectively. He then turned the whole of his prodigious and most pompous array against the Mahrattas, who in the interim had remained most unaccountably in a state of nearly total inactivity. Sambaji before long was taken prisoner, and put to death with the most barbarous inhumanity, and the final downfall of the Mahratta State seemed near at hand. But the murder of their Raja roused the people to schemes of desperate vengeance. Sambajî had left a son of six years, Sivaji, or. Sâhu (thief), as Aurungzib nicknamed him.
Rân, a half-brother of the late Râja, was immediately proclaimed regent, and making a rapid dash across country, flung himself into the almost impregnable fortress of Gingi. The emperor despatched three generals in succession against this stronghold, but it did not fall into his hands till 1698, when Râja Râm effected his escape. Meantime the people throughout their native mountains had mustered their irregular bands, and poured them down not only upon the newly-conquered countries of Golconda and Bijapûr, but also upon the old territories of Kândêsh, Mâlwâ, and Berâr. The young Sâhu and his mother were taken prisoners at a very early stage of the proceedings, and, though strictly excluded from all intercourse with their countrymen, were treated with kindness, the emperor's daughter taking especial interest in the captives. Sâhu was not liberated till after Aurungzîb's death.
The contrast between the splendour of the Mogul camp and army
and the rude bivouacs of the Mahratta hordes at this period was very striking. The emperor's army chiefly consisted of a vast host of splendidly armed cavalry chosen from every province of the empire. There were also large bodies of well-disciplined infantry, and of artillery served by European gunners. But the luxury and almost incredible
magnificence of the encampment, intended to strike awe into the nations of the Dakhan, perhaps attract our attention most. All the splendours and lavish profusion of the palaces of Âgra and Delhi were reproduced here. The canvas walls which encompassed the imperial tents alone formed a circumference of 1,200
yards, within which were halls and courts, mosques and baths, and galleries superbly draped and adorned with all the wealth of the looms of Persia, China and Europe. Nothing that the most extravagant oriental fancy could demand was there wanting. The expense must have been enormous, and must have sorely taxed the ample but still finite revenues of Hindûstân. Little of pomp, or even of comfort, was there in the Mahratta camp.
There a few thousand irregular horsemen, brought together in some wild region, with little provision and no superfluities of any kind, slept on the bare ground with their horses' bridles in their hands and their swords by their sides; or, if shelter were required, their horse-cloths stretched on the points of their long spears gave enough. They had not come forth to parade in fine robes, or to impress their countrymen with the delicacy of their appetites. They had come forth to spoil the hated Mussulmân, and to do deeds of daring which sent a cold shudder through the veins of even the infatuated Emperor himself.
The kind of warfare that ensued may be readily imagined ; and in it Aurungzib wore out the last years of his life. No overwhelming failure, indeed, fell on the Mogul arms; and amidst the general sloth and corruption and vice Zulfikâr Khân even greatly distinguished himself. But the heavily-mounted cavalry of Hindûstân could effect little among the hills of Mahârâshtra. The emperor was old. He trusted no one ; he was beloved by no one. Everywhere was uncertainty, distrust, and confusion; while the princes
stood ready to tear each other to pieces for the throne. Still Aurungzib persisted in his fatal endeavours to reduce the Mahrattas. Fort after fort was stormed ; town after town was taken ; but the marauding bands only multiplied and swarmed in every direction, Convoys were cut off; baggage trains plundered ; outposts captured, and all stragglers cut to pieces. Then gradually growing bolder they faced the Moguls in open field, and again and again defeated them till at last the imperial armies dreaded to meet their enemy, and fled before those whom they had formerly held in supreme contempt. On one occasion (in 1706) the Emperor himself narrowly escaped being taken prisoner. This last trial was too much alike for the body and mind of the proud and aged Aurungzib. Returning to Ahmednagar, which twenty-one years before he had left with such pomp and arrogant display, he waited for his end to come, broken-spirited, friendless, and trembling at the future. At last on February 21, 1707, the end came, and the most renowned emperor of Hindústân, the most haughty and magnificent of the sons of Bâber, passed away and left the throne behind him a ruined splendour.
On the death of Aurungzîb the usual struggle for empire immediately ensued. But it was neither so prolonged nor so bloody as had been feared. Shah Alam, Moazzim, the eldest son, whose cause was 1707-1712. espoused by the more powerful party, was of a kindly and quiet disposition. He made his brothers most liberal offers ; but ambition and evil counsellors induced them to try the fortune of battle. Both were