Auction Date: 26/11/2014 at 01pm
India – Sikh History – Important early account of the Sikhs by William Francklin 1798. Francklin, William. The History Of The Reign Of Shah-Aulum, The Present Emperor Of Hindostaun. Containing The Transactions Of The Court Of Delhi, And The Neighbouring States, During A Period Of Thirty-Six Years. Francklin provides an excellent and accurate account of the Sikhs. On page 73 he introduces the Sikh religion and its founder Guru Nanak Ji (Nanick Shah) and goes on to write of Guru Tegh Bahadhur Ji being put to death by Aurenzeb. Describing the Sikh character he writes "Theseus are armed with a spear, fcymetar and excellent lock. Their Horses are strong, very patient under hardship, and undergo incredible fatigue" (pg 76) Francklin goes into detail, even mentioning Banda Singh Bahadur as the chief of the Sikhs and his execution in Delhi. He also states "Inured from their infancy to the hardships of a military life, the Seiks are addicted to predatory warfare" (pg 76) and on pg 75 a fascinating table is drawn up of the Sikh Misl and their respective leaders and the number of men under each misl. Francklin states the table was drawn up in Pannepat in 1793-1794, they are Beejee Sing, Tanah Sing, Jeffah sing, Kurrun Sing, Herri Sing, Shahur Sing of Patiala and the famous Runjet Sing of Laeh Ghur (Maharjah Ranjit Singh). Ranjit Singh eventually consolidated the misls into the Sikh empire in 1799 a year after this book was published after he captured Lahore. The total number of men under the Sikh misls numbers at 248 000 in 1794. The Sikhs are mentioned further in the book ie Ranjit Singh on page 88 + 89, Francklin provides a highly detailed account of the Sikhs just a year before Ranjit Singh was proclaimed Maharajah. A most fascinating publication and one of the earliest account of the Sikhs. The Book also contains a large Map (1798) of India, Francklin identifying Sikh territory in the Punjab Region (spelt Seik). Over 9¾" - 12" tall. Original gilt stamped leather binding is in poor condition, front cover detached, corners and spine ends badly bumped, parts of spine missing. Interior, however, is in very good condition, 254 pp, all plates present and in very good condition, very Scarce.