[THIS is the work of the celebrated wit and satirist, Mirzá Muhammad Ni'amat Khán, whose poetical sobriquet was 'Álí. His writings are much valued in India for the excellence of the style, which is highly florid; but it is very obscure, and is more pregnant with metaphor than meaning. The author was appointed to the office of news-writer by Aurangzeb, and the Wakái' is especially devoted to the history of the siege and con­quest of Golkonda. The Makhzanu-l Gharaib states that his ancestors were physicians of Shíráz, but that he was brought up in Hindústán. He was appointed by Aurangzeb to the mansab of bakáwalí, with the title of Ni'amat Khán, but he was ungrateful to his patron and satirized him. At length, from improper conduct, he fell into disgrace. “His verses and ghazals are not excellent, but his satire is pleasant and pungent.” It appears that he had some knowledge of medicine. The Táríkh-i Chagha-táí also speaks of his strong powers of satire, and states that he received the title of Dánishmand Khán in the first year of the reign of Bahádur Sháh. He afterwards wrote a Sháh-náma, and died at Dehlí in 1122 A.H. (1710 A.D.), in the 4th year of Bahádur Sháh, or according to another authority, two years earlier. The author is the person referred to in the following passage from “The Critical Essay”: “Mirzá Muhammad, generally called Ni'amat Khán Hájí, was an eminent personage, who obtained the title of Dánishmand Khán, and he has recorded the events of that monarch's (Aurangzeb's) reign as far as the third year. Although his work is written in a very pleasing style, yet it occasionally offends the reader's delicacy by indecent jests and coarse witticisms, in which the author was too much accustomed to indulge.” In the Catalogue of Jonathan Scott's library, the Wakái' is said to be a most curious work, exhibiting anecdotes of private character in a humorous and entertaining style; but, says Sir H. M. Elliot, “I conceive that allusion must be made to the Muzhakát, which has been lithographed at Lucknow in the same volume as the author's Ruka'át.” The Wakái' has been printed at Bombay in a volume of 319 pages. It was also published at Lucknow in 1843. The Editor of this edition, after lauding the author in the Preface, says that “the work contains very difficult and complicated passages not suited to the comprehension of common people; so, with great pains and diligent research in Persian and Arabic dictionaries, he has supplied marginal notes, turning the most difficult passages into a smooth and easy style.”

There is an abstract of a portion of this work among the papers, but it is a short dry summary of no value, either as a specimen of the work, or as a contribution to history.*]