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Download the Pdf Version of Akbarnama by Abul Fazl: The Most Comprehensive Account of Mughal India
Do you want to learn more about the history and culture of Mughal India, one of the most powerful and prosperous empires in the world? Do you want to read the official chronicle of the reign of Akbar, the third Mughal emperor, who was known for his military conquests, administrative reforms, religious tolerance and cultural synthesis? Do you want to see the beautiful and intricate miniature paintings that depict the events and scenes of the Mughal era? If your answer is yes, then you should download the pdf version of Akbarnama by Abul Fazl, which is available for free online.
The Akbarnama, which means the Book of Akbar, is a three-volume work that covers the history of Akbar's reign from 1556 to 1605. It was commissioned by Akbar himself and written by Abul Fazl, who was one of the Nine Jewels of his royal court. Abul Fazl was a scholar, historian, biographer and philosopher who had a close relationship with Akbar. He was also a champion of Akbar's policy of religious tolerance and cultural synthesis.
The first two volumes of the Akbarnama narrate the events and achievements of Akbar's life, such as his conquests, reforms, administration, diplomacy, patronage, personal traits and spiritual beliefs. The third volume, known as the Ain-i-Akbari, describes the structure and functioning of his empire, including its geography, economy, society, culture, religion and arts. The Akbarnama is not only a historical document but also a literary masterpiece that showcases Abul Fazl's eloquence and erudition in Persian prose.
The original manuscripts of the Akbarnama contained many miniature paintings that supported the text and added visual appeal. These paintings were created by at least forty-nine different artists from Akbar's imperial workshop between 1592 and 1594. They represent the best of the Mughal school of painting, which blended Persian, Indian and European influences. The paintings depict scenes from battles, court ceremonies, festivals, hunting expeditions, portraits and landscapes. They also reflect Akbar's vision of creating a harmonious and tolerant empire that embraced diversity and pluralism.
The illustrated manuscript of the Akbarnama is now preserved at the Victoria and Albert Museum in London. It was bought by the museum in 1896 from Mrs Frances Clarke, whose husband had acquired it during his service as Commissioner of Oudh (1858-1862). The paintings and illuminated frontispiece were removed from the volume to be mounted and framed for display.
How to Download Abul Fazl's Akbarnama Pdf for Free
If you want to access this magnificent work of art and history without travelling to London or spending a fortune, you can download the pdf version of Abul Fazl's Akbarnama for free from various online sources. Here are some steps to follow:
Find a reliable website that offers the pdf download of the Akbarnama. You can use archive.org, which is a non-profit digital library that provides free access to millions of books, movies, music and other cultural artifacts. Archive.org has a scanned copy of the Akbarnama in Persian with an English translation by Henry Beveridge (1897-1939), which was published by the Asiatic Society of Bengal in 1907-1939. This edition contains all three volumes of the Akbarnama along with 116 miniature paintings from the Victoria and Albert Museum manuscript.
Download the pdf file to your device. To do that, go to archive.org and search for "Akbarnama" in the search bar. Select the result that says "The Akbar nama of Abu-l-Fazl". You will see a page with information about the book and its contents. On the right side of the page, you will see a box with various options for downloading or viewing the book online. Click on "PDF" to download the pdf file. A new window will open with a preview of the pdf file. You can scroll through it to check its quality and completeness. To save it to your device, click on "Download" at the top right corner. Select a location on your device where you want to save the file and click on "Save". The download will start and may take some time depending on your internet speed and file size.
Enjoy reading or viewing Abul Fazl's Akbarnama on your device. Once the download is complete, you can open the file with any pdf reader application and enjoy reading or viewing Abul Fazl's Akbarnama at your own pace and convenience. You can learn more about Akbar's life and achievements, his policies and reforms, his relations with other rulers and religions, his patronage of arts and sciences, his personal hobbies and interests, his family and friends, his battles and conquests, his dreams and visions, his death and legacy. You can also admire the beauty and skill of the miniature paintings that accompany the text, which capture various aspects of Mughal culture and society in vivid colors and details.
Why You Should Read Abul Fazl's Akbarnama
Reading Abul Fazl's Akbarnama is not only a way to enjoy a fascinating work of art and history, but also a way to enrich your knowledge and understanding of Mughal India and its legacy. Here are some of the benefits of reading Abul Fazl's Akbarnama:
You will learn about the life and achievements of Akbar, one of the greatest rulers of India and the world. You will discover how he expanded his empire, reformed his administration, promoted religious tolerance and cultural synthesis, patronized arts and sciences, and fostered a spirit of humanism and rationalism.
You will appreciate the eloquence and erudition of Abul Fazl, one of the most learned and influential scholars of his time. You will admire his style and skill in Persian prose, his use of sources and references, his analysis and interpretation of events, his insights and opinions on various topics, and his loyalty and devotion to Akbar.
You will marvel at the beauty and intricacy of the miniature paintings that illustrate the text. You will see how they reflect the artistic excellence and diversity of the Mughal school of painting, which blended Persian, Indian and European influences. You will also see how they capture various aspects of Mughal culture and society in vivid colors and details.
You will gain a comprehensive and detailed overview of the structure and functioning of the Mughal empire, including its geography, economy, society, culture, religion and arts. You will also get rich statistical details about things as diverse as crop yields, prices, wages and revenues.
You will explore the traditions and culture of the people living in India during the Mughal era. You will learn about their customs, beliefs, practices, festivals, languages, literature, music, architecture, art and more. You will also see how Akbar respected and appreciated the diversity and pluralism of his subjects.
Reading Abul Fazl's Akbarnama is a rewarding and enlightening experience that will enrich your mind and soul. It is a treasure trove of information and insight that will help you understand the history and culture of Mughal India and its impact on the world.
What are the Challenges of Reading Abul Fazl's Akbarnama
Reading Abul Fazl's Akbarnama may not be an easy task for everyone, especially for those who are not familiar with the language, culture and context of Mughal India. Here are some of the challenges that readers may face while reading Abul Fazl's Akbarnama:
The language barrier: The Akbarnama was written in Persian, which was the literary language of the Mughals, but not necessarily the native language of all their subjects. Persian is also a complex and rich language that has many nuances and subtleties that may not be captured by translations. Moreover, the Persian used by Abul Fazl may differ from the modern Persian spoken today. Therefore, readers who do not know Persian may have difficulty in understanding the original text or finding a reliable and accurate translation.
The cultural barrier: The Akbarnama reflects the culture and society of Mughal India, which was a diverse and pluralistic empire that encompassed various regions, religions, ethnicities and languages. The Akbarnama also contains many references to customs, beliefs, practices, festivals, literature, music, architecture and art that may be unfamiliar or obscure to modern readers. Therefore, readers who do not have sufficient background knowledge or cultural sensitivity may have difficulty in appreciating or interpreting the text.
The contextual barrier: The Akbarnama narrates the events and achievements of Akbar's reign, which spanned almost half a century and involved many political, military, diplomatic, religious and cultural developments. The Akbarnama also provides a detailed account of the structure and functioning of the Mughal empire, including its geography, economy, administration and statistics. Therefore, readers who do not have sufficient historical knowledge or analytical skills may have difficulty in following or evaluating the text.
These challenges may discourage some readers from reading Abul Fazl's Akbarnama or prevent them from enjoying its full benefits. However, these challenges can also be overcome by using some strategies and resources that can help readers to overcome the language, cultural and contextual barriers. Some of these strategies and resources are:
Using a good translation: Readers who do not know Persian can use a good translation of the Akbarnama that is faithful to the original text and conveys its meaning and style. One such translation is the one by Henry Beveridge (1897-1939), which was published by the Asiatic Society of Bengal in 1907-1939. This translation contains all three volumes of the Akbarnama along with 116 miniature paintings from the Victoria and Albert Museum manuscript. It also has extensive notes and appendices that explain various terms and references in the text.
Using a good commentary: Readers who are not familiar with the culture and context of Mughal India can use a good commentary that provides background information and analysis of the text. One such commentary is the one by Irfan Habib (2018), which was published by Tulika Books in 2018. This commentary covers the first volume of the Akbarnama and provides a comprehensive introduction to the life and times of Akbar and Abul Fazl. It also has detailed annotations that clarify various aspects of the text.
Using supplementary materials: Readers who want to learn more about the Akbarnama and Mughal India can use supplementary materials that can enrich their reading experience. Some of these materials are books, articles, websites, videos and podcasts that can provide additional information and perspectives on various topics related to the text. Some examples of these materials are:
The Illustrated History of Mughal India by Roshen Dalal (2011), which is a concise and accessible overview of the history and culture of Mughal India.
The Empire of the Great Mughals: History, Art and Culture by Annemarie Schimmel (2004), which is a comprehensive and scholarly study of the art and culture of Mughal India.
The website https://www.vam.ac.uk/articles/the-akbar-nama, which is an online exhibition by the Victoria and Albert Museum that showcases the illustrated manuscript of the Akbarnama.
The video https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0Yy6j3Zqf4k, which is a lecture by Irfan Habib on Abul Fazl's Akbarnama.
The podcast https://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b00w4jtx, which is an episode of In Our Time by BBC Radio 4 that discusses Akbar's reign.
By using these strategies and resources, readers can overcome the challenges of reading Abul Fazl's Akbarnama and enjoy its benefits as a work of art and history.
Abul Fazl's Akbarnama is a remarkable work of art and history that chronicles the reign of Akbar, the third Mughal emperor, and his achievements in expanding, reforming and enriching his empire. It is also a testament to the friendship and loyalty between Akbar and Abul Fazl, who shared a vision of creating a harmonious and tolerant society that embraced diversity and pluralism. The Akbarnama is not only a historical document but also a literary masterpiece that showcases Abul Fazl's eloquence and erudition in Persian prose. The Akbarnama is also a treasure trove of information and insight that can help readers to understand the history and culture of Mughal India and its impact on the world.
Reading Abul Fazl's Akbarnama may pose some challenges for readers who are not familiar with the language, culture and context of Mughal India. However, these challenges can be overcome by using some strategies and resources that can help readers to overcome the language, cultural and contextual barriers. By using a good translation, a good commentary and supplementary materials, readers can enjoy reading Abul Fazl's Akbarnama and appreciate its benefits as a work of art and history.
If you are interested in downloading the pdf version of Abul Fazl's Akbarnama for free, you can follow the steps mentioned in this article and access this magnificent work online. You will not regret reading Abul Fazl's Akbarnama as it will enrich your mind and soul with its beauty and wisdom. 4aad9cdaf3