Here begins the ‘Khazā‘īnul Futūḥ,’ every gem of which is a lamp for the soul. * When the breeze of Divine favour began to blow over the wishes of the youthful monarch, not a hundredth part of whose good fortune has been yet realized (May God always strengthen his branches!), many victories blossomed on his sword and spear from the Bihār* of Lakhnautī to the Bihār of Mālwa. He grew like a tree in the territory of Karra by the bank of the Ganges and threw out his branches (so wide) that he attained to the dignity of the ‘Shadow of God’.* Wherever in the forest or by the bank of the river, there was a mawās,* whether in cultivated land or wilderness, he trod it underfoot with his army. Then on Saturday, the 19th Rabī‘ul Akhir, A.H. 695 he moved towards the garden of Deogīr, from which direction the spring comes; and striking its branches like a storm, cleared them of their leaves and fruits. Rām Deo, a tree of noble origin in that garden, had never before been injured by the tempestu­ous wind of misfortune; but (the Sulṭān) in his anger first uprooted him and then planted him again, so that he once more grew into a green tree. Next, loading his elephants with precious stones as the rainy season clouds (are laden with water), and placing bags of gold, more in quantity than the saman-i-zar* that grows on the earth, over Bactrian camels and horses* swift as the wind, he arrived in Karra-Mānikpūr on the 28th of Rajab, A.H. 695. Now that black-headed bulbul, the pen, sings by its scratchings on paper, of the accession of this tall cypress to the throne. From the first day of his accession till now, A.H. 709, whichever way he has turned his bridle under the shadow of the canopy, the odour of his conquests has been disseminated with the winds. Indeed all forts opened at his impetuosity as buds ‘open’ at the blowing of the breeze. * I hope from Almighty God that He will for ever preserve the memory of pious kings on the pages of time. And may the excellent virtues of the Emperor be recorded (in this book) in such a way as to become famous throughout the world, and may the pitch of (my) voice rise high enough to drown the drums of Sanjar and Maḥmūd, though in affairs of government and conquests they were great and successful monarchs!*

Account of the accession of the conquering monarch, the soles of whose feet have brought happiness to the throne. * As Providence had ordained that this Moslem Moses was to seize their powerful swords from all infidel Pharaohs and dig out of the earth the immense (Qārūnī) treasures of the rāīs, till the calf-worshipping Hindūs in their hearts began to consider the cow contemptible and the Emperor, with the bow of Shu‘aīb,* became the shepherd of all his subjects, therefore the deceased Alf Khān* was sent to him as Aaron had been sent to Moses. The hopeful message came to his ear: ‘We will strengthen your arm with your brother and we will give you both an authority.’ With the auspicious advice of his brother, the Imperial Moses mounted the throne, which was high as the ūr, on Wednesday the 16th Ramazān, A.H. 695. He gave away quintārs after qintārs* of gold—‘her colour is intensely yellow, giving delight to the beholder’ —to every ignoble person. Every time he opened the palm of his hand to give away some precious pearls, he showed the ‘white hand’ of Moses in generosity. Owing to the scattering of emeralds, it seemed that the meadows of Mānikpūr were inlaid with gems. And as the enemy* preponderated in strength, both the brothers raised their hands in prayer: ‘O our Lord! Surely we are afraid that he may hasten to do evil to us.’ The heavenly voice replied to give them strength: ‘Fear not, surely I am with you.’ At the appointed time the Emperor reached the precincts of the City.* But as the ruler of this side, with the pride of Pharaoh in his head, waited for him on the bank of the blue Jamna, the inspiration from Heaven came again to his heart: ‘Fear not, surely you will be the uppermost.’ So relying on his dragon-spear, he came to the precincts of the Imperial Capital. On Monday, 22nd il Ḥijjah, A.H. 695 the Emperor’s proclamation, ‘Obey my command!’ was heard from east to west. And then owing to his justice he became the shepherd of the people; the wolf in killing goats became like the wolf of Joseph.

If I am allowed, I will show the superiority of good government over the glory of conquests. * Every man gifted with the crown of wisdom, if he takes correct judgment for his guide, will after a little cogitation come to the conclusion that the dignity of the ‘ruler’ is superior to that of the ‘conqueror’. For the term ‘ruler’ is rightly applied to Almighty God, while the title of ‘conqueror’ cannot be legitimately used for any but kings of the earth. Philosophers have said that the conquest of the world is with the object of retaining it: the man, who conquers but cannot retain, is in fact himself conquered. And it is inevitable that when he seizes the world, the world should seize him also. This, too, is clear as day to all men that the conquering and keeping of the world is a quality of the sword of the sun; for from east to west the sun brings the earth under the rays of his sword and keeps it. But the mere conqueror is like a flash of lightning; for an instant he seizes the whole world and then immediately disappears. The conqueror of this age (May God strengthen his hand over the Capital and the provinces!) so highly excels in the qualities of the ‘ruler’ as well as the ‘conqueror’, that neither the pen nor the tongue can describe his powers. As a matter of necessity, therefore, I will speak of his virtues in such manner as my capacities allow; and according to the premises stated above, a description of his administrative measures will precede the account of his conquests in the arrangement of this book; so that every item may find a proper place without disturbing the continuity of the narrative. The sock is for the foot and the hat is for the head; the man, who has brains in his head, does not wear his sock over it.*

Account of the administrative measures that have been promulgated in the reign of the Emperor, who is extremely devoted to this art:—* The fortunate star of all mankind arose on the day when it was made evident to the Emperor’s enlightened mind: ‘And against these we have given you a clear authority.’* For when I raise up my eyes, I see that this exalted Dawn* has a greater love and affection for the sons of Adam than the sun has for the moon and the stars of the sky or the moon for the particles of the earth. In the first place, throughout the Empire, from east to west and from north to south, he has often remitted the tribute from the ra’īyat. Secondly, he has seized from the Hindū rāīs with the blows of his sword, just as the sun absorbs water from the earth, treasures which they had been collecting since the time of Mahrāj and Bikarmājīt, star by star. The public treasury is so full that it can be neither described by the pen of Mercury nor weighed in the balance of Venus. He gives away treasures by the balance of Virgo, so that people, who only possessed copper, are drowned under tankas* of gold and silver like the Pisces. On the day of the Emperor’s munificence, the Balance in the sky is lighter than the balances on the earth.

Account of the distribution of treasures of gold by elephant-loads and a trifle more:—* Before this time when Mahmūd, the giver of gold, gave away an elephant-load of gold, his great liberality became famous through the world. But the Emperor distributes gold in a measure which nothing can excel. He has ordered large elephants to be weighed in boats, and the gold-bricks used in weighing them have been given away to the poor. What monarch can rival the prince in whose city treasures, weighed out by elephants, are given away.

Account of the distribution of horses swift as the wind, when every gift consisted of more than a hundred horses:—* If I were to describe his gifts of horses, the stable of my praises would be unable to include them. Kings are munificent; and the Emperor every day gives away fortunes to the necessitous. It is seldom that he makes a smaller gift than of a hundred or fifty (horses); but if he gives one horse only, it is such that another like it cannot be found. With the blows of his sword he has seized the stables of all the rāīs. Some of these horses he gives to the horse-breakers, so that with the strokes of their whips they may make the horses run as swift as deer. Others are given to the pāīks (footmen) so that they may ride on them with the help of their sharp stirrups. The grooms (mufridān-i-rakāb) are also given horses. In former days the calves of the runners had grown thin from running on foot, but now their feet seldom leave the stirrup. Some horses are given to the amīrs, who formerly owned unbroken colts but now ride horses swift as the wind. As this cloud* rains horses, there is no doubt that the rose, which was formerly a foot-man, will now come out of the ground on horseback.

Account of his making the means of happiness abundant for everyone, so that no one may be restrained in his enjoyment during the reign:—* Next, in order to increase the means of livelihood for the general public, he reduced the tax on shop-keepers, who had been selling their wares dear. An honest officer (rāīs) was installed over them to converse with sharp-tongued sellers through the whip of justice and to give the capacity of talking to the dumb (purchasers). Clever inspector (mutafaḥḥis) made full inquiries into the weight of the stones.* Every dishonest (seller), who used his own black heart for his ‘stone’, had all hardness knocked out of him. Severity and rigour reached such a pitch that all ‘stones’ (weights) were made of iron and their correct weight written upon them; so that if any one gave less than the correct measure, the iron turned into a chain round his neck. If he was impudent still, the chain became a sword and the extreme punishment was meted out to him. When the shop-keepers saw this severity, they did not meddle with the iron-weights; in fact, they con­sidered them to be castles of iron round their hearts and regarded the inscriptions on the weights as amulets for the protection of their souls. You might say that the inscriptions were really not on iron but on hearts of iron. For on hearts such as these the Emperor’s just regula­tions came as easily as inscriptions on wax and remained as permanently as inscriptions on iron.

Description of the justice meted out in this reign, so that the dragon has become submissive before the ant. * If I attempt to describe the justice of the Imperial Court, that two-horned deer, the pen, will have to put a chain round the neck of the lion of meaning.* Wonderful, indeed, is his justice, when from fear of his punishment mad elephants kneel down before panting ants, and tigers repent of their morning draught of animal blood under his arched sword! His justice has broken the necks and claws of lions and overthrown the power of dog-faced tyrants.* The head of the pig-eating oppressors hangs low, and the blood of goat-stealing criminals has been shed on the ground like the blood of goats.

Reform of the affairs of nobles and commons—Prohibition of adultery and drink. * Though the giving of water (to the thirsty) is one of the most notable virtues of the pious Emperor, yet he has removed wine and all its accompaniments from vicious assemblies; for wine, the daughter of grape and the sister of sugar, is the mother of all wicked­ness. And wine, on her part, has washed herself with salt and sworn that she will henceforth remain in the form of vinegar, freeing herself from all evils out of regard for the claims of ‘salt’.* Moreover, all prostitutes, who with their locks under their ears, had broken their chains and stretched their feet, have now been lawfully married. From the ribbon, that tied their hair, they have now turned to the ‘ribbon’ that ties them in marriage. Those whose skirts had obtained a bad reputation, because they earned their living by prostitution, have now been so reformed that they sit in their houses, patching up their skirts with the greatest repentance and rubbing their hands together.* All the roots of sin and crime have been cut off.

Peace and order during the Emperor’s reign, when no one dare pick up a fallen jewel from the street. * Out of regard for all his subjects, this maintainer of peace has so worked with his sharp sword, that from the banks of the river Sind (Indus) to the Seacoast no one has heard the name of robber, thief or pickpocket. Night-prowlers, who formerly used to set villages on fire, now attend to travellers with a lighted lamp. In whatever part of the country a traveller might lose a piece of rope, either the rope is produced or compensation given. Cutpurses, pickpockets and those who dig open graves* had been busy in their profession from ancient times. But now the sword of punishment has cut off their hands and feet. And if some of them are still sound in body, their hands and feet have become so useless, that you would think they were born without them.

Massacre of blood-sucking magicians, when blood bubbled out of the neck of those whose lips had worked mischief. * Blood-sucking magicians —who by the use of (magical) words sharpened their unwise teeth on the flesh of other people’s children and caused a stream of blood to flow, which pleased them greatly—were buried in the earth up to their necks while people threw stones at them. Thus punishment for the blood they had drunk was meted out on their heads. All men have to suffer the agonies of death, but those who drink this wine (i.e., human blood) are thus destroyed.*

Massacre of the ‘fraternity of incest’ (aṣḥāb-i-ibāḥat), when punish­ment for their deeds was meted out to them. * Next the pious supporter of the sharī‘at ordered all members of the ‘fraternity of incest’ to be brought before him. Truthful inquisitors were appointed to catch everyone of them and make thorough inquiries into their assemblies. It was discovered that among these shameless wretches, mothers had cohabited with their own sons and aunts (mother’s sisters) with their nephews; that the father had taken his daughter for his bride and there had been connection between brothers and sisters. Over the head of all of them, men as well as women, the saw of punishment was drawn… The saw with its heart of iron laughed loudly over their heads in tears of blood. Those, who by a ‘secret stroke’ (Ẓarb-i-pinhān) had become one, were now openly sawed into two, and the soul that had sought union (waṣl) with another soul, was now compelled to leave its own body.*

Account of the cheapness of corn, when a single ‘dāng’* turned the scale. * As this cloud of generosity is extremely anxious for the public welfare and the comfort and prosperity of nobles and commons, he has kept low the price of grain, from which villagers and citizens derive an equal advantage, during periods when not a drop of rain has fallen from the painted clouds. Whenever the white clouds have had no water left and destruction has stared people in the face, he has cheapened the price of grain for every section of the public by generously opening the royal stores.* The clouds, consequently, have felt ashamed at their own niggardliness and in envy of his bountiful hands have dissolved into rain. To spur them on to this act, the lightning has often laughed loudly over the heads of water-laden clouds and then fallen on the ground.* For the lightning knows well that the clouds sometimes rain and sometimes do not, and when they rain, they rain water only. How can they be compared to our beneficent Emperor, who always rains and always rains gold?

Regulations of the ‘Place of Justice’ (Dārul ‘Adl),* the generous gate of which has been opened for the public. * Next he constructed the ‘Place of Justice’ more open than the forehead of honest businessmen and brought to it all things that the people require. He ordered that all packages of cloth brought from the provinces were to be opened here and nowhere else; and once opened, they were not to be tied up again.* And if anyone opened his packages elsewhere, the joints of his body were to be ‘opened’ with the sword. As to the commodities of the ‘Place of Justice’ and the cloth which is required by rich and poor, there are all varieties of cloth from kirpās to ḥarīr which hide the body; from behārī to gul-i-bāqlī, which are used both in summer and winter; from shi‘r to galīm, which differ greatly in their fibres; from juz to khuz, which are similar in their structure; and from Deogīrī to Mahadeonagri, which are an allurement both for the body and the mind.* * As to fruits and other necessities of the table, if I were to describe in detail all the fine fruits that grow out of the ground, the narrative would become too long and I would be kept back from my real purpose; but the Emperor has provided in the ‘Place of Justice’ fruits and all other things that nobles and commons require for their meals, so that in the midst of the noise and tumult everyone may be able to select carefully the best and most suitable articles.* You profess to give a just (judgment). Can you find (a judgment) just enough to the Emperor’s generosity?