ISBN: 978 984 8715 07 9

Cover Type: HB

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The Wonders of Vilayet

By Kaiser Haq (Translator) Mirza Sheikh I'tesamuddin (Author)

Publisher(s): Writers.ink   

First Published: 2002 No. of Pages: 156 Weight (kg): 0.5

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This is the First book-length account of the West by a South Asian.  Mirza Sheikh l’tesamuddin,  a Bengali munshi  who had Served the East India Company before becoming a  Mughal Courtier,  was Sent by Badshah Shah Alam II on a Diplomatic Mission to the British Court. He set sail in January 1766, and though nothing came of the mission, his journey of nearly  three years  resulted in an Extraordinary memoir  in Persian, Shigurf Nama-e-Vilayet or ‘Wonderful Tales about Europe’ . Besides being a Unique historical document it is a Vastly  entertaining  travel narrative. Though never published in the original, an abridged and flawed English translation appeared in 1827. This book is the First Complete Version in English.

The Mirza belonged to the time of transition between the mughal and British periods and therefore was not a colonial subject. But he was enchanted Britain.  Highly educated and a curious Observer of alien Cultures, he wrote about his Visits to the theatre, The Circus Freak shows, the ‘Madrassah of Oxford’,  the Scottish Highlands, and on a more serious note, the British social-political system atad the factors that led to india’s  decline and Europe’s ascendancy

This book features in: Academic and Reference Books South Asian Studies

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