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Hussun accordingly marched from Agra ; but he attempt to get the chout and sirdésmuki of the dishad hardly set out when a ferocious Calmuck, hired trict round Hyderabad commuted for a fixed sum, for the purpose, assassinated him in his palankeen. he affected to doubt whether he was to pay it to His death caused great commotion in the camp. Sâho or to his rival Samba, who still held the His adherents, many of whom were Syuds, took southern part of the Maratta country. The rajah arnis to avenge it ; they were opposed by the party and his pêshwa were highly offended, and the latter of the conspirators and the supporters of the king, invaded Asof's territories (1727), and laid siege to and were finally overcome. When the news reached Burhampoor. But when Asof and Samba came to Delhi, Abdallah placed another prince on the throne, its relief he suddenly drew off his forces, and rushed and, assembling an army, advanced to engage that on and ravaged Güzerât, where the chout had not of Mohammed Shâh. He was, however, defeated been paid, and then, returning to the Deckan, cut and made a prisoner ; but his life was spared, as off Asof's supplies in the usual manner, and forced he was of the lineage of the Prophet.
him to renounce his alliance with Samba, and to Mohammed, being now his own master, bestowed make some further concessions. Shortly after, the office of vizîr on Asof Jâh, who, however, being Samba was surprised and defeated, and forced to engaged with the affairs of the Deckan, did not acknowledge Sâho's supremacy. Asof Jâh and Bâ. come to court immediately. On his arrival (1722), jee Râo at length deemed it would be more for their he found the emperor wholly devoted to pleasure, mutual interest to be at peace than at enmity, and a mere puppet in the hands of his mistress and his they entered into a secret compact of mutual support
. favourites. Little harmony was therefore to be Bâjee Râo now directed his efforts against Mâlwa expected ; the vizîr was disgusted with such con. and Gûzerát, where he was chiefly opposed by the duct, while the emperor sought no higher gratifica- Rajpût rajahs, to whom the court of Delhi had tion than to see his favourites ridicule the old-granted the government of these provinces, and fashioned dress and formal manners of the vizîr. his success was such, that at length (1736) he felt Toward the end of the following year Asof Jâh himself strong enough to demand as a jaghîr resigned his office and set out for the Deckan. The Malwa and all the country south of the river emperor parted with him on terms of great cor- Chumbul, with the holy cities Muttra, Allahabad, diality, but he sent secret orders to Mobârez Khân, and Benares. The emperor, however, was not the governor of Hyderabad, to endeavour to destroy brought low enough yet to concede so much, and him and then to take his government. He obeyed, Asof Jâh, who was growing alarmed at the rapid collected an army, and gave A sof battle ; but he progress made by the Marattas, resolved to march met only with defeat and death, and his head, as to the aid of his liege lord. Meanwhile Bâjee Râo that of a rebel, was sent to court by the victor. had arrived within forty miles of Agra, while a Asof then fixed his seat in Hyderabad, and, though portion of his light troops, under Malh âr Râo Holhe sent from time to time presents to the emperor, kar, were ravaging the country beyond the Jumna. he in other respects acted as an independent Sâdut Khân, however, the governor of Oude, prince. His chief care now was to secure himself marched against them and drove them back. As against the Marattas.
fame magnified this check into a great victory, The Maratta state at this period had assumed a Bâjee Rão, to efface its effects, passing the Mogul degree of form and consistency such as it had not army sent under the vizir to oppose him, made as yet possessed. This was owing to the Bramin forced marches and suddenly appeared before the Bâlajee Wiswanât, the pêshwa or prime minister gates of Delhi. As his object was only to intimiof rajah Sâho. As a mean toward the future date, he did little mischief, and on hearing that the extension of the Maratta power, Bålajee was care- vizîr, joined by Sâdut Khân, was advancing against ful to keep up the claim of chout and sirdésmuki, him, he drew off his forces and retired to the and in the case of the former he claimed, though Deckan (1737). Asof Jâh soon after arrived at he did not enforce it, a fourth, not merely of the Delhi, where he was made commander-in-chief, actual revenue, but of that fixed by Todar Mal with the fullest powers, and the government of and Malik Amber. It was also part of his plan to Mâlwa and Gûzerât was conferred on his son parcel out these imposts to different Maratta chiefs, Ghazi-ud-dîn. taking care that none should have so much in any Bajee Rão having recrossed the Nerbudda at the one district as might make him too powerful and head of 80,000 horse, Asof Jâh advanced to engage independent.
him. But, cautious from age, and relying on his The office of pêshwa became hereditary in the artillery, instead of trying to bring on a pitched family of Bâlajee. The other great office in the battle at once, he resolved to await an attack in a state, and which balanced that of the pêshwa, was strong position near Bôpâl. The consequence was that of the Pîrtî Nidhî, or Delegate of the Rajah. that the country round was laid waste, his supplies Balajee was succeeded by his son Bajee Râo, the and detachments were cut off, and at the end of ablest man after Sevajee that the Marattas have about a month he was obliged to commence a repossessed. One of his first acts was to urge the treat, harassed by the persevering foe, and finally rajah to offensive operations against the Moguls in to enter into a treaty with the pêshwa, ceding the Hindûstân. “ Let us strike,” cried he, “the wither- country south of the Chumbul, and promising to ed trunk, and the branches will fall of them- use all his influence with the emperor to induce selves.” The rajah gave a willing consent, and him to confirm the cession, and to pay in addition Bâjee Râo forth with ravaged Mâlwa and forced fifty lacs of rupees to the Marattas. the governor of Güzerât to consent to the payment But ere these matters could be arranged another of chout (1725).
storm burst over the ill-fated Indian empire from By this time Asof Jâh thought himself suffi- the point whence such calamities have invariably ciently secure in the Deckan to endeavour to set come-the north-west frontier, along the vale of limits to the Maratta power. Having failed in an the Câbul.
A. D. 1722–40.
rors of India, who, as we may have observed, had
always possessed the region through which the CHAPTER XV.
river Câbul flows. Aware of the distracted state
of the Indian government, he took advantage of Persia - Conquest of it by Mahmûd the Afghân— Nadir its tardy recognition of his title, and, making it
Shâh-His Invasion of India-Massacre and Plunder of and some other matters a cause of quarrel, he Delhi-Death of Bâjee Râo-Bâlajee Râo-The Rohillas seized the city of Câbul, and marched for the -Invasion of India by Ahmed Dûranee-AHMED SHẬh- Indus. Meeting with little or no opposition, he The Marattas in Hindûstâri-Ghâzi-ud-dîn-ALUMGÎR II.
advanced toward the Jumna, and at length, within - Plunder of Delhi by Ahmed Dûranee-Conquest of the
one hundred miles of Delhi, he encountered the Punjab by the Marattas-Power of the Marattas-Attempt to make themselves Masters of all India - Battle of Pâni
army of Mohammed Shâh (1739). pat, and Ruin of the Maratta Power.
The troops of India would have been in no case
a match for the hardy warriors led by Nadir ; but The Suffavee dynasty had now occupied the throne the jealousy which prevailed between Asof Jâh of Persia for more than two centuries ; it had, con- and Sâdut Khân contributed still further to ensequently, like every other Oriental dynasty, sunk feeble them. They were therefore easily overcome and lost all energy beneath the degrading influence in the engagement which ensued, and Mohammed of absolute power. In the reign of Hussun Khan was obliged to enter the camp of Nâdir, and ac(1722), the Ghiljys, a tribe of the Afghâns who in- company him to Delhi. In that city the Persian habited the country about Candahâr, and who had troops, whose discipline was high, conducted themsome years before made themselves masters of selves with much propriety, until, upon a report of that city, led by an enterprising chief named Nâdir's death, the inhabitants rose and killed Mahmûd, resolved to attempt the overthrow of about 700 of them. Nâdir then, after making fruitthe Persian power, with which for some years less efforts to appease the tumult, and having been they had been at war. At the head of only 25,000 himself assailed with missiles as he rode through hardy warriors, Mahmûd marched from Candahâr, the city for that purpose, gave orders for a general and directed his course for Isfahân, the Persian massacre. The butchery lasted from sunrise till capital. In the vicinity of that city he encountered late in the afternoon, when he issued orders for it the Persian army, of far superior number, splen
to cease. The number of the slain is variously didly equipped, and well supplied with artislery. stated from 150,000 to 8000, but that of 30,000 But victory was on the side of the warriors of the seems nearer to, though perhaps under the truth. mountains, and the wealthy and luxurious city with But it was money, not blood, that Nâdir sought 200,000 inhabitants was invested. Though the in India, and the work of pillage now began. Every Afghans were now only 20,000 in number, by their thing of value belonging to the crown was seized, activity and vigilance they were enabled to repel torture was employed to make the nobles and the all sallies, and cut off all supplies, and, after sus- inferior inhabitants discover their wealth; the taining the horrors of famine for six months, the governors of provinces were forced to yield contritown was forced to surrender. The king came butions, and Nâdir at length, having obtained all forth at the head of his nobles, and placed the the wealth that he thought India could bestow, crown on the head of the conqueror.
quitted Delhi after a residence of fifty-eight days, After a reign of little more than two years, taking with him a treasure estimated at upwards of Mahmûd died raging mad, and was succeeded by thirty millions sterling. He formed a treaty with his nephew named Ashreff (1724). This able prince Mohammed, whom he replaced on the throne, by defended his dominions with success against the which all the provinces west of the Indus were Ottoman Turks and the Russians; but he failed in ceded to Persia ; and this treaty put a final end to his contest with the Persians led by the greatest the rule of the house of Timûr in Afghanistân. inan that modern Persia has produced.
The state of misery and distress in the capital A son of Shah Hussun, named Tamasp, had fled and the empire may easily be conceived, and it from Isfahân, and taken refuge with the tribe of might have been expected that the Marattas would Kajar on the shores of the Caspian Sea. Here he have taken advantage of it to extend their power was joined by a predatory chief named Nadir, a in Hindûstan. But Bajee Râo preferred resuming native of Khorasân, whose daring exploits had operations in the Deckan, where he engaged in rendered him famous in the country. Nâdir, at- hostilities with Nasir Jung, the son and deputy of taching his fortunes to the royal cause, took the Asof Jâh. He met, however, with a more vigorous name of Tamasp Coolee, or servant of Tamasp, opposition than he had anticipated, and was glad to and, under his able guidance, the troops of Persia come to an accommodation with his opponent. He finally succeeded in driving the Ghiljyes out of the then set out on his return to Hindâstân, and had country (1729). Having carried on wars with reached the Nerbudda when death surprised him success in various quarters, Nâdir finally felt him- (1740). self sufficiently strong to depose Tamasp, and His successor in the office of pêshwa was his son place the diadem on his own brows. This he did Bâlajee Râo, who was also a man of considerable with great solemnity in a general assembly of his ability. But he had potent rivals and enemies to arıny and of all the great officers of the realm on contend with, and it required all his address to the plain of Môghân (1736).
overcome their intrigues. The most formidable of Nâdir now resolved to avenge on the Ghiljyes these rivals was Ragujee Bôsla, who had the the evils they had inflicted on Persia, and to re- charge of collecting the chout in Berâr and the store Candahâr to the empire. After sustaining forest-country to the east of it, which rendered him a long siege, that city surrendered (1738), and his in fact nearly the sovereign of that region. He conquest of the Ghiljye territory brought him even attempted to collect the chout to the north of now into contact with the dominions of the empe- | the Nerbudda, but Bâlajee marched in person into
that country; and while he was there, and was pre- | less effort to avenge him, retired with his men into his paring to insist on the execution of the treaty con- own country; and his influence was such, that within cluded with his father by Asof Jâh, Ragujee in- a short time he was declared king at Candahâr, and vaded Bengal. The emperor, in his alarm, offered to his dominions extended from the Indus to the Balajee the cession of Mâlwa, on condition of his frontiers of Persia. Knowing the weakness and the aiding him against Ragujee. The offer was gladly wealth of India, where he had been with Nâdir, he accepted; the pêshwa forth with marched through resolved to attempt conquest in it, and, passing the Bahâr and reached Moorshedabad, the capital of Indus with only 12,000 men, he took Lahore and Bengal, in time to protect it against Ragujee, advanced to the Sutlej. Here an army under the whom he routed and drove out of the province. He vizir and prince Ahmed was prepared to oppose then returned to Sattára (1743), against which he him ; but he crossed the river where there was no found Ragujee in full march ; and so strong was the ford, got into their rear, and took the town of Sirconfederacy that had been formed against the hind, where their stores and baggage lay. He then pêshwa, that he deemed it advisable to detach assailed the entrenched camp of the Indians ; but, Ragujee from it by conceding to him the right of being repulsed in several attacks, he repassed the levying tribute in Bahâr and Bengal. Ragujee's river and marched homewards (1748). attempts on Bengal were finally concluded by the Within a month after the battle of Sirhind the cession of Cuttac, the southern part of Orissa, and emperor Mohammed died, and was succeeded by the annual payment of twelve lacs of rupees as the his son Ahmed Shah. chout of Bengal (1751).
The late vizîr had been killed by a cannon-ball The deaths of Asof Jâh and of Rajah Sâho oc- at Sirhind, and the office was now vacant. Ahmed curred during this period. The former returned to offered it to Asof Jâh, and on his declining it he gave the Deckan to suppress the rebellion of his son, Nasir it to Sufder Jung, the son of Sâdut Khân the Jung, and he died there in the year 1748? ; Saho's viceroy of Oude. As Ahmed Dûranee was at this death occurred in the following year. A series of time engaged in the western part of his dominions, intrigues for the succession followed; but the the vizir, Ally Mohammed being now dead, thought pêshwa succeeded in placing a prince, named Rajah the occasion good for making an attempt to destroy Râm, on the throne. He was then engaged in hos- his neighbours the Rohillas. He committed the tilities with the successor of Asof Jah, who was charge of the war to the Afghân chief of Furaided by the French ; but we shall defer our ac- rockabâd, but this general happening to fall in count of these transactions.
battle, the vizîr endeavoured to derive advantage The most remarkable event in Hindústân at this from that event, by depriving his widow of the time was the rise of the Rohillas, a people destined greater part of her territory. The people, however, to act a conspicuous part in the future history. rose and called in the Rohillas; the vizîr was Numbers of the Afghåns of the district of Rôh obliged to take the field against them; his nume(whence they were called Rohillas) had been in the rous but ill-disciplined troops yielded an easy imperial service. There was among them a man victory to the enemy, and the Rohillas soon apnamed Ally Mohammed, who was said to have been peared before the walls of both Lucknow and a Hindoo, and who had been adopted by a Rohilla Allahabad (1750). soldier. He entered the army as a common soldier, The vizîr saw now no resource but to call in the and, being a man of talent and energy, he rose, like Marattas. He applied to the two chiefs Holkar so many men of the same character, to some rank and Scindia, to whom the pêshwa had given settleand influence. He obtained the management of ments in Mâlwa, and the promise of a large subsidy some jagheers ; he gradually increased his posses- induced them to lead their forces to his aid ; he sions and took more and more of the Afghans into also was joined by the rajah of the Jâts. At the his pay and service, and at length he felt himself head of this combined force, he defeated the Rostrong enough to refuse remitting the income of the hillas, and drove them to the lower ranges of the lands he held to Delhi. He defeated the troops Himalaya. As he permitted the Marattas to levy sent against him, and eventually became master of their subsidy from the conquered territory, it was the country between the Ganges and Oude, hence- many years before the country recovered from the forth named Rohilcund. The emperor at length effects of their ravages (1751). took the field against him in person, and he was When the vizir returned to Delhi, he found that then obliged to submit and content himself with the Ahmed Důranee had again invaded the Punjab, government of Sirhind (1745).
which had been ceded to him by the emperor on his The north-west frontier was destined to send demand ; he also found that his own influence with more plunderers in on India. Nâdir Shâh having the emperor and his mother had been engrossed become abhorred for his tyranny by the Persians, by a favourite eunuch. This difficulty he easily a conspiracy was formed against him, and he was removed by inviting the favourite to a banquet, at assassinated in his tent near Meshîd (1747). Ahmed which he caused him to be assassinated. But this Khân, the chief of the Afghâns of the Abdálee only raised up to him a more formidable opponent tribes, who were in his service, having made a fruit- in the person of Shuhab-ud-dîn', the grandson of
Asof Jāh, a young man of great energy and ability, 7 When he was first made viceroy of the Deckan (above,
whom he had himself patronised and raised to the p. 43), the title of Nizâm-ul-Mulk, i. e. Regulator of the
rank of Ameer-ul-ômrah, with the title of GhâziState, had been conferred on him ; and this has been the title of his descendants down to the present day.
ud-dîn.. This young man readily joined the em8 The original seats of the Abdâlees were the mountains peror against his benefactor.
A civil war was carof Ghôr, but they were now settled principally about Herât. ried on for six months in the streets of Delhi, when Ahmed, from some unexplained motive, changed their
9 His father, Ghâzi-ud-dîn (see p. 44), died in 1753, at name to Dûranees, by which name they are known in Indian
Aurungobâd, by poison it was said, when on his march history.
against his brother, Salabut Jung.
A. D. 1754–60.
POWER OF THE MARATTAS.
the vizîr, learning that a body of Marattas was Indus to Pêshâwar, and then crossed it, and coming to the aid of his opponents, consented to keeping to the mountains, as it was the rainy seamake peace, and retire to Oude. Ghâzi-ud-din son, advanced till he reached the other side of the then turned his arms against the Jâts, and, while Jumna. He there fell on a body of the Marattas, he was thus engaged, the emperor, who was grown commanded by Scindia, which he cut to pieces, their quite weary of his arrogance and insolence, with- leader being among the slain. Another division, drew, under the pretence of hunting, with what under Holkar, as it was making southwards was troops he had about him, in order to try to effect overtaken by the Dûranee troops sent in pursuit his emancipation, but hâzi-ud-din soon sent the of it, and utterly destroyed (1759). Marattas after him, who made him a prisoner. He At this time Ghâzi-ud-dîn, fearing the vengeance forthwith repaired to the imperial camp, where he of his royal master should Ahmed Shâh be victodeposed the emperor, and put out the eyes of both rious, issued his orders for the murder of that unhimself and his mother. He then placed on the happy monarch, and placed another prince of the throne a prince of the blood royal, under the title family on the throne ; but his puppet was never of Âlumgîr II. (1754.)
acknowledged. Shâh Alum, the heir, was at this The ambitious and active Ghâzi-ud-dîn soon after time in Bengal, where we shall meet him in the tried to recover the Punjâb from the Dûranees ; progress of our narrative. but he resolved to proceed by stratagem, not by The Maratta power was now at its height; nearly force. The widow of the late governor ruled it in all India, from Himalaya to Cape Comorin, was the name of her young son, and the vizîr, advancing either directly subject to it or paid it tribute. The to Lahore under the pretext of espousing her pêshwa, who was its real head, had brought it to a daughter, to whom he was betrothed, surprised the degree of order such as it had never previously town, and made the regent a prisoner in her bed. known. Its army, instead of consisting of mere Ahmed Shah, as soon as he heard of this treacher- marauding bands, now contained a large body of ous deed, put himself at the head of his army, and well-mounted and well-paid cavalry, and a force of speedily appeared within twenty miles of Delhi. | 10,000 infantry, disciplined by those who had Here Ghâzi-ud-dîn, by means of the late regent of served with the Europeans on the coast of Corothe Punjab, with whom he had been reconciled, ob- mandel. It also possessed, for the first time, a tained his own pardon. But Ahmed required money, large train of artillery. The pride and self-conand Delhi became a scene of plunder and mas- fidence which this force produced was only stimusacre, as in the time of Nadîr ; for, though Ahmed | lated to exertion by the account of the disasters of was not ferocious like him, he was not so well able Scindia and Holkar, and it was resolved to make a to restrain his troops, by whom a massacre still strenuous effort for the complete empire of India. more wanton and barbarous was perpetrated on The command of the Maratta army was given to the Hindoo pilgrims at Muttra. The hot weather, Sedasheo Råo, the pêshwa's cousin, thence called which the Afghâns cannot endure, coming on, and the Bhâo, i.e. Brother. He was accompanied by causing mortality among them, Ahmed led his Wiswas Râo, the pêshwa's son and heir, and by all troops home. He espoused a princess of the house the great Bramin and Maratta chiefs. He advanced of Timûr, and at the request of the feeble emperor, to Delhi, which had a small Důranee garrison; the as a protection to him against the vizîr, he made Marattas entered by a neglected bastion, and the an able Rohilla chief, named Najeeb-ud-doula, citadel yielded to the power of their artillery. The commander of the forces at Delhi (1757).
Bhâo plundered the palace and every public ediGhazi-ud-dîn, who was then at Furrockabâd, set fice of all their ornaments ; he seized the splendid all the regulations of Ahmed Shâh at nought; but, throne, and stripped off the silver ceiling from the not feeling himself alone sufficiently strong, he hall of audience. He was going to proclaim Wiscalled in the never-failing aid of the Marattas. He was Râo emperor of India, but he was induced to was joined by a force under the pêshwa's brother, delay it till he should have driven the Dûranees out Ragoba, and taking possession of Delhi, he laid of the land (1760). siege to the fortified palace. It held out for a It was the advice of the prudent old rajah of month, at the end of which time the emperor the Jâts, that the Marattas should leave their in(Najeeb-ud-doula having previously made his es- fantry and artillery in his country, and carry on cape from it) opened the gates, and received the war in the usual Maratta fashion with their Ghâzi-ud-dîn as his vizîr. Ragoba then was in- cavalry, and the climate would then, he said, soon duced, by the intelligence he received of the state force the Dûranees to retire. But the Bhâo spurned of the Punjab, to attempt the conquest of it. He at this counsel, and resolved on regular warfare. met with no opposition, the Dûranees retiring over Ahmed Shâh was at this time encamped on the the Indus at his approach ; and, leaving a Maratta frontiers of Oude, arranging matters with Shujagovernor, he returned to the Deckan (1758). ud-doula and his other allies ; and as soon as the
Shuja-ud-doula, son of Sufder Jung, of Oude, and rains permitted he put his troops in motion, and the other Mohammedan princes of India, seeing the advanced toward Delhi. A bold and rapid pasgreat increase of the Maratta power, now combined sage of the Jumna which he made inspired the for their mutual protection. The Marattas imme- Marattas with such respect for his prowess, that to diately invaded and ravaged Rohilcund in their be out of his reach they retired to Pânîpat, and usual manner ; but Shuja-ud-doula fell suddenly there they formed an intrenched camp, defended on them, and drove them with great loss over the by their numerous artillery. The Bhâo's force Ganges, and, as they heard that Ahmed Shâh was consisted of 55,000 regular and 15,000 irregular on his march, they proposed a peace, to which the cavalry, with 15,000 disciplined infantry. He had confederates agreed. The Dûranee Shâh, who 200 guns, and numerous wall-pieces, and a large had been engaged in reducing the Belooches in the supply of rockets, which were much used in Indian southern part of his dominions, marched up the warfare. The whole number within his lines, inclusive of the soldiers and their followers, is stated | which however did no mischief, as the balls went at 200,000 persons. The army of Ahined Shâh over the enemies' heads. Their disciplined infantry was composed of 40,000 Afghâns and Persians, then advar.ced with charged bayonets on the Ro13,000 Indian horse, and 38,009 Indian infantry, hillas who were on the right, and routed them with of which the Rohillas were the only effective por- great slaughter, and then took the centre in flank, tion. He had about thirty pieces of cannon, and a which was at the same time assailed in front by good many wall-pieces.
the Bhâo and Wiswas Râo with the flower of the The Shâh encamped in the neighbourhood of the Maratta cavalry. Ahmed, seeing the peril of his Marattas, whose lines he did not venture to attack. centre, brought up the reserve, but the advantage Meantime, a body of about 12,000 Maratta cavalry still was on the side of the Marattas. He then had advanced from the lower Jumna and was cut- rallied all his men and made his whole line adting off his supplies, and great distress began to be vance, and directed one division to wheel and take felt in his camp; but an active detachment came them in flank. This maneuvre was successful. up with the freebooters and cut them to pieces, and “All at once, as if by enchantment,” says the writer the Maratta camp was now in its turn straitened who was present," the whole Maratta army turned for provisions, as the enemy had got the command their backs and fled at full speed, leaving the field of the open country. Constant skirmishes took of battle covered with heaps of dead.” No quarter place, and the Marattas made some fsuitless attacks was given, the pursuit continued for fifteen or on the Dûranee lines. Ahmed's allies were urgent twenty miles, the peasantry cut off those that with him to bring matters to issue by a general escaped the soldiers, and the whole number of the action; but his reply was, “ This is a matter of war slain is said to have been 200,000. The Bhâo with which you are not acquainted. In other himself and Wiswat Râo were among the dead, affairs do as you please, but leave this to me." and every chief of note was either slain or wounded. He used also to say to them, “Do you sleep ; 1 The pêshwa did not survive the shock which the will take care that no harm befalls you.” In effect, tidings of this great defeat gave him. Dissensions he was indefatigable ; he omitted no precaution, broke out ainong the Maratta chiefs, and it was and he was on horseback nearly the whole day. some time before the Maratta power became again
At length the Bhâo, having endeavoured in vain formidable. to effect a peace through the mediation of Shuja- Ahmed Dûranee, after his victory, went on to ud-doula, resolved to conquer or perish in the field, Delhi, whence, after a short stay, he returned to rather than see his whole army die of starvation ; his own country, and never again concerned himand ere daybreak on the morning of the 6th of self with the affairs of India. These now began January, 1761, the whole Maratta army, placing to assume a new character; for the people from their artillery in front, advanced to assail the hostile the far West, into whose hands the empire was deslines. Ahmed Shâh, having had timely information, tined to come next, had just at this time begun to drew his troops up in front of his camp. The action establish themselves in Bengal. To relate the began by the discharge of the Maratta cannon, I formation of their empire is now our task.