The author of the Tabakát-i Akbarí assigns as his reasons for composing his work, that he had “from his youth, according to the advice of his father, devoted himself to the study of works of history, which are the means of strengthening the under­standing of men of education, and of affording instruction by examples to men of observation.” He found that in “the wide plains of Hindústán, which form an empire of vast extent,” the “governing classes had assumed the title and discharged the duties of rulers” in many of its divisions, “such as Dehlí, Gujarát, Málwa, Bengal, and Sindh,” and “the authors of their times have written histories of their affairs, and have bequeathed them as memorials to posterity. * * * It is most extraordinary, therefore, that not a single work containing a complete com­pendium of the affairs of this (entire) division (of the world) has yet been written by any historian; neither have the events connected with the centre of Hindústán, the seat of govern­ment of this Empire, the capital Dehlí, been collected in one book. The work which is best known is the Tabakát-i Násirí which Minháju-s Siráj compiled, commencing with Sultán Mu'izzu-d dín Ghorí, and concluding with Násiru-d dín bin Shamsu-d dín: from thence to the time of Sultán Fíroz is written in the history of Zíá-i Barní; but from that time to to-day, because for the greater portion of the time there was much disturbance in India, and the people had the misfortune to be deprived of a powerful Imperial government, I have only met with a few detached and incomplete compilations. I have not heard of a single history that comprises an account of the whole of India; and now since the whole of the inlying and out­lying provinces of Hindústán have been conquered by the world-subduing sword of God's vicegerent, and all the fractions of the earth have been united in one grand whole, and many kingdoms beyond the confines of Hindústán, which none of the great sovereigns who preceded His Majesty had ever acquired, have been included in his Empire, and it is to be hoped that the seven climes will yet come under the shade of the standard of the good fortune of that illustrious personage, and thus be protected and secure peace and prosperity, I conceived the idea of com­piling, in a simple style, a history which should embrace an account of all the kingdoms of Hindústán, from the times of Subuktigín, 367 A.H. (which is the date of the introduction of Islám into Hindústán), up to 1001 A.H., or the thirty-seventh year of the Iláhí era, dividing it into chapters, according to the several dynasties which reigned, closing each chapter with an ac­count of the conquest by His Imperial Highness of the particular province under notice. This abridgment of all the victories of His Imperial Highness will be given in the proper place; the account of these victories in full detail being found in the Akbar-náma , which 'Allámí Abú-l Fazl has compiled with so much ability.”* He quotes twenty-nine different works as his standard authorities, and in the instance of the Táríkh-i Mubárak-Sháhí he copied his original very closely.* Though he states in his Preface, as above, that he brings down the history to the thirty-seventh year of Akbar's reign (A.H. 1001), in the body of the work he records the events of another year, and expresses a hope that he may live to carry on the work to a later period.

Nizámu-d dín was a good Musulmán, and no allusion is made in his pages to Akbar's wanderings from the fold. But with the information derivable from other sources a tolerably accurate inference may be drawn from the gradual diminution and eventual cessation of the records of Akbar's pilgrimages to the tombs of the saints.

Sir H. Elliot adopted the Table of Contents given by Stewart in his Catalogue of Tipú Sultán's Library, although he found that it contained both more and less than he had seen in other copies. The following table is borrowed from Mr. Morley, who had the advantage of several MSS. to compare. It agrees, as he says, with the author's own account of the contents in his intro­duction, and the only difference found is in the order of sequence of the books.