James Talboys Wheeler.

Early records of British India; a history of the English settlements in India, as told in the government records, the works of old travellers, and other contemporary documents, from the earliest perio online

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Online LibraryJames Talboys WheelerEarly records of British India; a history of the English settlements in India, as told in the government records, the works of old travellers, and other contemporary documents, from the earliest perio → online text (page 16 of 33)
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of ambergreese, the astoa and chelumgie Manilla work, and
the map of the world. These, with the Honorable the
Governor's letter, were presented, every one holding some-
thing in his hand as usual. John Surman received a vest
and eulgee set with precious stones ; and Serhaud a vest and
cunger set with precious stones likewise, amid the great
pomp and state of the Kings of Hindoostan. We were very
well received; and on our arrival at our house, we were enter-
tained by Sallabut Khan (Khan Douran's deputy) with dinner
sufiicient both for us and our people. In the evening he visited
us again and stayed about two hours. The great favour Khan
Dauran is in with the King gives us hopes of success in this
undertaking. He assures us of his protection, and says the
King has pi-oraised us very great favours. We have received
orders first to visit Khan Dauran as our patron; after which
we shall be ordered to visit the Grand Vizier and other
grandees. We would have avoided this, if we could, fearing
to disoblige the Vizier; but finding it not feasable, rather
than disoblige one who has been so serviceable, and by whose
means we expect to obtain our desires, we comply with it."
Embassy advised Ei'om tliG iiext Gxtract it will be seen that the

by ^oudi Khan,

envoys were acting under the advice of a certain
Zoudi Khan. This was the very grandee who
wrote to Governor Pitt at Madras' : —

'' Delhi, 17 tk July : — We have lately sent to Your Honor the
good news of our safe arrival here, the visit of the King, and

' See ante, page 116.



ENGLISH IN BENGAL. I73

the civil treatment we met with, all which will, without doubt,
be very welcome news. We have since visited several grandees
as the Vizier (Abdulla Khan) and Khan Dauran ; where we
were received with all the respect that could be expected, and
g-ives me some hopes that all will end well ; but what ^ives me
the most encouragement (for I am well acquainted with these
nobles : as long- as they are expecting to get anything they are al-
ways complaisant), is that the method we are at present taking
is consistent and with the advice and counsel of Zoudi Khan.
We visited that gentleman the 11th current, and met with
the same treatment he has always given to Et)glishmen, with
the highest acknowledgments of the favours he has received
from them, that as yet he had never been able to retaliate
any of them, but hoped he had now an opportunity of doing
something. He pressingly advised us to do nothing without
the advice, counsel, and order of Khan Dauran (and the
main instrument of our affairs) Sallabut Khan ; that the turn
of affairs at the Durbar obliged us to it. This, which he
told us by word of mouth, he wrote me when I sent Your
Honor's letter to him. We are convinced he advises like a
friend, and were intent on the method, but at the same time
very cautious how we any ways disoblige the Vizier ; we
being very sure that Zoudi Khan was very intimate there,
sent and advised him when we intended to visit, that he
would use his interest for our better reception, intending to
manage the Durbar by his means. He assured us that we
might be satisfied as to the important Durbar. The good
prospect we have of our affairs makes Khoja Serhaud very
good-humoured, and at present tractable, in hopes he shall
obtain his promised reward and considered that everything
is come to its crisis. I take particular care that he remains
so, and as much as possible persuade every one with me to
do the like ; which I fear gains me but little good will. But
as passion must now be curbed, except we expect to be
laughed at, we must be very circumspect in our actions and
counsels. '^



171 EARLY RECORDS OF BRITISH INDIA.

breach between TliG HGxt Gxtract sliows Something of the pro-

the Kni]ieror and ,

the two sayyids. grcss of the breach between the King, or Emperor,
and the two Say y id brothers : —

" Delhi, 4th August, — Three daj^s after our arrival here
the King- left the city, under pretence of visiting a sacred
place, about six coss from theuce. But the true reason
(we are of opinion) was to clear himself of a kind of
confinement, which he thought he suffered whilst in the
Fort. Afterwards on the petition of his grandees to
return to the city, the time of the rains being improper
for travelling", he showed himself resolved to proceed either
to Lahore or Ajmeer. Neither could all the arguments
used avert his intended journey. This startled us, and con-
sidering with how great trouble and risk we had brought the
present thus far, and how to carry it on at this time of the
year, we were something at a stand. At last we concluded
to give the gross of our present in, notwithstanding the King
was abroad. But in delivering* some of the fine clocks, they
were ordered to be returned and kept in good order till he
came back to the city, he having now determined only to
visit a sacred place about forty coss from Delhi ; after which
he would return. This stopped our presenting the remainder
of our goods, but we concluded that it was necessary to at-
tend his Majesty in this tour. We now continue in the
camp, leaving Mr. Stephenson and Mr. Phillips to take care
of what goods remain in the city ; and in case that the King
should proceed further, that they may concert measures to
bring the goods after us. We are in this interval preparing
petitions to be delivered to his Majesty, hoping we shall do
something for our Honourable Masters that has not been yet
obtained. The patronage and management of this negotia-
tion is in the hands of the greatest favourite at Court,
Khan Dauran, and under him Sayyid Sallabut Khan. Withall,
we being no ways unmindful of an old friend Zoudi Khan,
without whose advice, we enter upon nothing. But he being



ENGLISH IN BENGAL. 175

at present iu so low a station is not able to obtain the King's
ear. However we are satisfied that in whatever lies in his
power, he does and will assist us, but particularly in the
Vizier's Durbar.

" Husain Ali Khan is lately gone into the Dekhan iiusain sent to

. . 1 /» 11 ii i i. „ be Viceroy of

country, having the entire command or all that part or the Dekhau.
his kiugdom. Your Honors have undoubtedly heard
how great he has made himself even to vie with
the command of his imperial Majesty, as lately appeared iu
the disputes between himself and Amir Jumla' whilst at
Court, when he obliged his antagonist, contrary to the Kiui^^s
desires, to remove from Court to Patna, whereb}'', through the
interest of Husain, and his ovvn mismanagement, he is quite
ruined. "Wherefore we humbly recommend a very good cor-
respondence with Husain, Otherwise, whatever we shall be
able to do here will be of very little service before him.''-'

New intri2:ues came to lis^lit. Daud Khan, tlie oaud Khan

~ ^ ordered to cut

same man who besieged Madras in Governor Pitt's °^ ""'*'"•
time, had been ajopointed Nawab of Guzerat. He
received secret orders from the Emperor to cut off
Husain. It will be seen from the following extracts
that the English envoys at Delhi had some inkling of
what was going on : —

" Delhi, 31sl Auguat, — We have advices here that Husain Expected
Ali Khan and Daud Khan^ are come to a rupture in Bur-
hanpur, so that it is likely a battle will ensue, the latter
having engaged many of the Dekhan country to his party.
It is whispered at this Court that this is a design laid
to involve Husain Ali Khan in trouble, and retrench his
grandeur, which of late has not been very pleasing.

» This Amir Jumla was one of the Emperor's favourites. He is distinct
from the Amir Jumla who was Viceroy of Bengal under Aurungzeb.

2 The name of Daud is spelt in various ways in the old records, — Dawood,
Daoud, Daood, &c. For the sake of uniformity it lias been spelt throughout
the present volume iu the moderu mode. It seems to bo etjuivakut to the
David of the Jews,



170



EARLY EECOKDS OF BRITISH INDIA,



Return of the
Emperor to
Uelhi.



Sickness of
Farrukh Siyar.



Teath of D6ud
Khau.



" The King-, proceediug" no further thau Paniput/ returned
to the city on the 15th; but, being- a little disordered in his
health; has not made any public appearance. So that we
have not had an opportunity to deliver the remaining part of
our present, or commence our negotiation, which shall be done
by the 1st proximo/'

" Delhi, 6th October. — We designed to have presented our
petition on the first good opportunity; but His Majesty's in-
disposition continuing, and Mr. Hamilton having undertaken
to cure him, it has been thought advisable by our friends, as
well as by ourselves, to defer delivering it till such time as it
shall please God that His Majesty in some measure returns
to his former state of health. Which advice, we intend to
follow, considering that, whilst he is in so much pain, it can
be but a very indifferent opportunity to beg favours of him.
The first distemper the Doctor took him in hand for, was
swellings in his groin, which, thanks be to God, he is in a fair
way of curing ; but within these few days last past he has
been taken with a violent pain, which is likely to come to a
fistula; it hinders His Majesty from coming out, so naturally
puts a stoj) to all manner of business, wherefore we must have
patience perforce.

" Your Honors will have heard of the death of Daild
Khan in the Dekhan, slain in a battle with Husain Ali.
(This was a desperate conflict, in which a matchlock ball
struck Daud Khan at the moment when victory had declared
on his side.) This has given a great deal of uneasiness to this
Court, it being quite otherwise laid by the King and his favour-
ites ; and that which was designed for Husain All's ruin,
has proved a great addition to his former glories. The King
at first seemed to resent it to his brother Abdulla, who not
taking it so patiently as he expected, he has altered his
resolution to sending Husain Ali Khan a seerpaw and other
marks of favour. We have advised iu our letters to the

1 The shrine of a Muhammadan saint of great repute, and famous ia
history as the scene of two of the grtatest battles ever fought in India ; viz.,
that which overturned the Afghan dynasty and established the Moghul
emperors iu 1525 ; and that which nearly crushed the Mahrattas iu 1761.



ENGLISH IN BENGAL. 177

Governor nnd Council of Madras to have particular rei^ard to
the tVieudship of that great Amir ; otherwise whatever we
shall be able to do here for that coast will be of little service,
unless backed with his favour/'

After this a marriage was arranged between the Marriage of

Farrukh Sivar

King and the daughter of the Raja of Marwar, ,^,'^j'^^^^^gj'^f/
or Jodhpiir. It was somewhat delayed by the ill- ^^^'
ness of the King. Dr. Hamilton, the sm'geon to
the envoys, succeeded in effecting a cure. The fol-
lowing extract tells part of the story : —

" Delhi, 7th December, — We write Your Honors the wel- English surgeon
come news of the King's recovery. As a clear demonstration
to the world, he washed himself the 23rd ultimo^ and accord-
ingly received the congratulations of the whole Court. As a
reward for Mr. Hamilton's care and success, the King was
pleased on the 30th to give him in public, viz,, a vest, a
culgee set with precious stones, two diamond rings, an ele-
phant, horse, and 5,000 rupees ; besides ordering at the same
time all his small instruments to be made in gold, with gold
buttons for his coat and waistcoat, and brushes set with
jewels. The same day Khoja Serhaud received an elephant
and vest as a reward for his attendance on this occasion.

" We have esteemed this as a particular happiness, and Business of the

,.,.,, . i. ii c cv ■ -I. eml'assy delayed

hope it will prove ominous to the successor our anairs, it by the marriage.
being the only thing that detained us hitherto from deliver-
ing our general petition. So, pursuant to the orders we
received from Khan Dauran, the King's recovery was suc-
ceeded by the giving in the remainder of our present (reserv-
ing a small part only till the ceremony of his marriage should
be over) ; and then delivered our petition to Khan Dauran,
by his means to be introduced to his Majesty. Sallabat
Khan, who has all along managed our affairs under Khan
Dauran, being at tliat instant, and some time before, much
indisposed, we were obliged to carry it ourselves ; not without
taking care to have his recommendation annexed. Since tlie
delivery, Khoja Serhaud has bten frequently with Khan

M



178 EARLY RECORDS OF BRITISH INDIA.

Dauran, to remind him of introducing- it to His Majesty; but
has always been informed^ no business can go forward till the
solemnization of the King-^s wedding is over, when he has
promised a speedy dis2:)ateh. All offices have been shut up
for some days, and all business in the kingdom must naturally
subside to this approaching- cereraonyj so that we cannot re-
pine at the delay.

" The Rajputs are likely to receive great honor by this
wedding; the King having consented to all their desires in
respect to the ceremonials ; and this evening goes on his
throne attended by his whole nobility on foot, to receive his
spouse. All the Fort and street through which he passes
will be made resplendent with innumerable lights ; and in
fine all will appear as glorious as the riches of Hiudoostan
and two months indefatigable labour can provide."

Slow progress. TliG followiiig Gxtracts sliow tliG cUsturbed state

of public affairs : —

'' Delkiy 8t/i January 1716. — As to the course of our nego-
tiations, we can give but a very slender account of their
progress ; for, although our affairs are fallen into the patron-
age of one of the most able men in this Court to dispatch
them, if he pleases, yet his dilatory methods of proceeding
are such as must make us pursue our designs with patience
for the present. Our petition is returned, after having passed
the examination of the books ; the next that follows will be
the King's signing; after which we shall take care to give
Your Honors a particular account of it.

" We have lately been surprized with the King's designs
of departing from this place, but, God be thanked, he is delayed
for some days at least. We shall make the best use we can
of the delay, if possible, to effect our business before his
departure, but which we cannot rely on.

" Two nights ago Amir Jumla arrived in this place from
Behar, attended by about eight or ten horsemen, much to the
surprise of this city ; for it is but at best supposed that he
has made an elopement from his own camp for fear of his
eoldiers who mutinied for pa^^ The particulars of all w^hieh



ENOLISn IN BENGAL. 179

we are not yet acquainted with, nor what reception he is
like to meet with from his Majesty. "

" Def/ii, 10th March. — Your Honors will doubtless have Mutiny of the

. . . Slotjliul army at

heard by flying reports the troubles that have possessed tins Delhi.
place for the past month, occasioued by the coming of Amir
Jumla and all his forces, as it is said without the King's
order. All the Tartars mutinously joined to demand their
pay, which they gave out they would force either from the
Vizier or Khan Dauran. This was certainly the grounds of
gathering forces on all sides, the Vizier himself having not
less than 20,000 horse, all which continually filled the streets
and attended him when he went to the King. Khan Dauran
and the rest of the Amirs, or grandees, with their forces and
all the King's household troops, kept guard round the I'ort for
about twenty days. The Vizier was obstinately bent not to pay
the Tartars anything, without very particular examination and
accounts to be made up for the plundering the town of Patna ;
which conditions the Tartars did not think to comply with
till such time as they found the Vizier was not to be bullied ;
when they seemed to be willing to come to a composition,
which was effected by breaking their party, and the King's
ordeis for Amir Jumla's procedure for Lahore. The King
ordered Chin Kulich Khan^ to go and see Amir Jumla out
of the city j divesting him of all his posts at Court, as also
of his titles, Jaghir, etc., with his glorious additional titles,
which are ordered for the future never to be used. It
is the general observation of this city that this has only been
a scheme laid, if possible, to entrap the Vizier, and take away
his life ; but he has been so continually on his guard that
nothing could be effected. So once more all is calmed, much
to his (the Vizier's) honour, and the entire disgrace of all
Tartars in general; they being almost all turned out of ser-
vice a few great ones excepted. Amir Jumla is now twenty
coss off this place on his way to Lahore, at present without any
command post. But it is reported he will enjoy the former



1 This was the man who afterwards became famous as Subuhtlar, or
Viceroy, of the Dekhan, uiulcr the name of " Nizam-ul-Mulkh,"



180



EARLY RECORDS OF BRITISH INDIA.



Arrest and
niassaere of
the Sikhs at
Delhi.



Str.aiige
l)rocra^tinatiou
and Ibrgetlul-
ness of Khan
Dauraii.



by the King's favour. These troubles occasioned the shut-
ting up all the cutcherries for this month, so that no busi-
ness could possibly go on ; in which ours met the same fate
with the rest, being just in the same state as a month ago.
Khan Dauran very frequently promises that he will make an
end with all possible expedient ; but he is such a strange
dilatory man, and withal inaccessible, that we have occasion
to summon the utmost of our patience. There is no help for
it, for, with all this dilatoriness, he is the only reigning man
in the King's Durbar, so that we hope he will at last con-
sider, and for his own honour, see us handsomely despatched
with all full grant to all our petitions.

"The great rebel Guru (Bandu, the Sikh) who has been for
these twenty years so troublesome in the province of Lahore,
is at length taken with all his family and attendance by the
Subahdar, or Viceroy, of that province. Some days ago they
entered the city laden with fetters, his whole attendants which
were left alive being about 780, all severally mounted on
camels, which were sent out of the city for that purpose, besides
about 2,000 heads stuck upon poles, being those who died by
the sword in battle. He was carried into the presence of the
King, and from thence to a close prison. He at present has
his life prolonged with most of his officers, in hopes to get an
account of his treasure in several parts of his kingdom, and
of those that assisted him, when afterwards he will be exe-
cuted for the rest. There are one hundred each day beheaded.
It is not a little remarkable with what patience they under-
go their fate, and to the last it has not been found that one
has apostatised from the new formed religion.' '

" Delhi, 21st March. — We have frequently complained to
Your Honors of the strange dilatoriness of our patron Khan
Dauran. He is never known to sit out in public, and return
answers to any manner of business ; so that what can be said
to him in the way from his apartment to his palankeen, is



1 This religion was a sort of compound of Hinduism and Muhamniudiin-
iara, in which the leading doctrines of both were reconciled by a strange kind
of couiproiuisc.



ENGLISH IN BENGAL, 1§1

all that can be got; which is so very little for a man of
a great business, that many days pass before an opportu-
nity can be had even for the least answer; and that his own
servant, Sa^'yid Sallabut Khan, who has the management of
our affairs under him, and is as intimate as any one with
him, can do as little that way as other people. Wherefore the
main part of all our business has been managed by notes.
This has been a great occasion of the dilatoriness of our affairs ;
all which w^e W'cre obliged to bear witli abundance of pa-
tience ; still having very fair promises that our business should
be done to our satisfaction. Nay, Khan Dauran himself very
often, both by word of mouth, and in several notes, promised
to do it. A few days ago when Serhaud went to pay his
respects as usual to Khan Dauran, and put him in mind of
our petition, he was very surprisingly asked what petition ?
* Have not I done all your business ? ' To which Khoja
Serhaud answered ; but the time and place not allowing of a
further explanation, he got into his palankeen and went
away. This strange forgetfulness made us, in very pathetic
terms, enquire of Sallabut Khan what we might expect after
so many promises of having our business effected to our satis-
faction. When we had so long and patiently waited, and been
at so great an expence, to be thus answered was very surpriz-
ing, and what we did not nor could not expect in the least.
We were answered that daily experience might convince us
of the strange carriages and forgetfulness of that great man.
Still bidding us not to despond, but that everything would
go very well after so many fair promises as we before had
received. This gave us but small satisfaction and the rather
made us the more inquisitive, which gave us this further
light, viz., that Khan Dauran had been advised by his own
officers that it was not his business to persuade the Kino>
to sign our petition, but that it was better to get the Vizier
to advise the King what things were proper to be granted us.
We were in hope that in case we would have got those peti-
tions granted us by the means of Khan Dauran, that after-
wards the Vizier would not gainsay it, as at least by a little
bribery it might have passed. There have been several



182



EARLY RECORDS OF BRITISH INDIA.



More delays.



Fighting at the
Moghul Court,



Alarm of the
Woghul,



endeavours made to get an opportunity to speak with Khan
Daurau, so as to convince him; but none has been procurable.
We fear the petition in this interim may be gone in, and will
come out signed by the Vizier as before mentioned.

" Yesterday the King, contrary to the advice of the Vizier,
and purely on his own will, went out a hunting and all the
grandees to their tents. The place at present mentioned is
about eighteen coss off j but God knows what may be the de-
signs of it, or where he will march to. This obliges us to follow
him to-morrow or next day, leaving Mr. Edward Stephenson
and Phillips behind to take care of the Honourable Company^s
effects here. Should the petition come out signed as above
mentioned, we shall be obliged to make a new address to the
Vizier; which will not only protract this negotiation, but
must lay us open to a denial, and at the best very expensive.
We shall advise Your Honors as soon as we have any hopes
of success, which God send, or what we shall be obliged to
recede from."

'^ Delhi, 20th April. — Whilst the King was encamped four-
teen coss from Delhi in order to hunt, there happened a quarrel
between the people of Khan Dauran and Mabmud Amil
Khan, as they came from the Durbar; which, after their
masters got into their tents, ended in a downright fight,
wherein they fired with small arms, bombs and great guns for
about two hours, notwithstanding the King's repeated com-
mand to forbear, yet was it at last made up after about a
hundred men were killed and wounded. The King was highly
displeased with the liberty they took, and resented it to both
of them. But at present all is made up, and His Majesty
again reconciled to them.''

The story of the further delays that ensued may be
passed over in silence. Suddenly the news reached
Delhi, that the English at Siu-at had removed to
Bombay, in order to escape from the oppression of
the Nawab of Surat. The Court at Delhi was
alarmed lest the English should again make war on



ENGLISH IN BENGAL. 183

tlic Mogliul ships. Every demand was granted. A
firman was made out and signed. The following
extract describes the farewell audience : —

"Delhi, 7th June 1717. — The 23rd ultimo, John Surman Farewell audi-
received from his Majesty a horse and cung-er, as was pre-
appointed; and the 30th ultimo we were sent for by Khan
Dauran to receive our dispatches, which we had accordingly ;
a serpaw and culg-ee being- given to John Surman, and
serpaws to Serhaud and Edward Stephenson, as likewise to
the rest of our companions. We were ordered to pass, one
by one, to our obeisance ; then to move from the Dewan.
We did S3. But when it came to Mr. Hamilton's turn, he
was told the King had granted him a vest as a mark of his
favour, but not for his dispatch. So he was ordered up to
his standing again. Whilst he was performing this, the King
got up. We were highly surprised at this unexpected mo-



Online LibraryJames Talboys WheelerEarly records of British India; a history of the English settlements in India, as told in the government records, the works of old travellers, and other contemporary documents, from the earliest perio → online text (page 16 of 33)