PREFACE TO THE TWENTY-FIRST .EDITION I AM grateful to my critics in many countries for the reception which they have given to this book. It has been translated into five languages, including a literal rendering in Burmese, and a poetical version in Urdu. The English issue alone has reached its eighty-second thousandth copy, and from 1886 onwards for many years the Calcutta University prescribed the work as a text- book for its Entrance Examination. The present edition incorporates suggestions kindly forwarded to me by Directors of Public Instruction, and other educa- tional authorities in India. To Mr. Griffith, formerly Director of Public Instruction in the North-Western Provinces, and to Professor A. A. Macdonell, Deputy Professor of Sanskrit at Oxford, I am specially indebted for a revision of the earlier chapters. The whole proof- sheets have been kindly revised for me by Mr. Morse Stephens, B.A., Lecturer on Indian History to the University of Cambridge. On my own part, no pains have been spared to render this edition an improvement on its predecessors. Although compressed into a small size, it essays to em- body the latest results of Indian historical research, and of that more critical examination of the Indian Records which forms so important a feature of recent Indian
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