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THE LAST GREAT MOGHOL

The Court of the Great Moghol had indeed fallen, by the middle of the 19th century. No more money; no more power; no more territories. Shah Bahadur, last successor in a famous lineage, was a charming elderly man. A poet and musician, he was splendidly bejewelled despite a lack of funds, and he held Court with brilliant artists, musicians, and writers.

And suddenly in 1857 the Great Mutiny broke out; primarily in the capital city of Delhi. The mutineers, using him as a totem, proclaimed him emperor of India against his will. He held no power whatsoever and could not repress the massacres. The English however took the situation in hand; they crushed the rebels and blamed the mutiny on Shah Bahadur. He was shut into the tomb belonging to his distant and glorious ancestor Humayun along with nineteen of his sons who were executed by the English. He himself was sent into exile in Burma where he could only write one last poem before passing away.


by Prince Michael of Greece