Page:A Brief History of the Indian Peoples.djvu/158

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154 THE MUGHAL DYNASTY. The British won India, not from the Mughals, but from the Hindus.- — Before we appeared as conquerors, the Mughal Empire had broken up. Our final and most perilous wars were neither with the Delhi king, nor with his revolted Muhammadan viceroys, but with the two Hindu confederacies, the Marathas and the Sikhs. Muhammadan princes fought against us in Bengal, in the Karnatik, and in Mysore ; but the longest opposition to the British conquest of India came from the Hindus. Our last Maratha. war dates as late as 1818, and the Sikh Confederation was overcome only in 1849. The following summary must suffice to show the principal events in the ruin of the Mughal Empire after the death of Aurangzeb, the last of the great Mughal emperors, in 1707. The Decline and Fall of the Mughal Empire, 1707-1862. 1707. Succession contest between Muazzim and Alam, two sons of Aurang- zeb ; victory of the former, and his accession with the title of Bahadur Shah; but under the complete control of his military prime minister, Zul-fikar Khan. Revolt of Prince Kambaksh ; his defeat and death. 1710. Expedition by the Mughal emperor against the Sikhs. 1712. Death of the emperor Bahadur Shah, and accession of his eldest son, Jahandar Shah, who only ruled as the creature of his prime minister, Zul-fikar Khan. Revolt of his nephew, Farukhsiyyar ; and murder of the emperor, Jahandar Shah, and his mazir. 1713. Accession of Farukhsiyyar as emperor under the control of the two Sayyid ' king-makers,' Husain Ali and Abdulla. 1716. Invasion of the imperial territories by the Sikhs ; their defeat, and cruel persecution. 1719. Deposition and murder of the emperor Farukhsiyyar by the two Sayyids. They nominate in succession three boy emperors, the first ' two of whom die within a few months ; the third, Muhammad Shah, commences his reign in September 1719. 1720. Overthrow of the two Sayyids, the ' king-makers.' 1720-1748. The Governor of the Deccan or Southern India, or Nizam-ul- Mulk, establishes his independence at Haidarabad. 1732-1743. The Governor of Oudh, who was also wazir or prime minister of the empire, becomes practically independent of Delhi. I735- 1 75 1 - General decline of the empire ; revolts within it : invasion of Nadir Shah from Persia (1739). First invasion of India by Ahmad Shah Durani (1747). The Marathas finally secure the cession of Milwa (1743) ; and of Southern Orissa and tribute from Bengal (1751). 1748-1750. Accession of the emperor Ahmad Shah, son of Muhammad Shah; disturbances by the Rohillas in Oudh, and defeat of the imperial troops.