The Babur Nama, a journal kept by Zahir Uddin Muhammad Babur (1483–1530), the founder of the Mughal Empire, is the earliest example of autobiographical writing in world literature, and one of the finest. Against the turbulent backdrop of medieval history, it paints a precise and vivid picture of life in Central Asia and Afghanistan—where Babur ruled in Samarkand and Kabul—and in the Indian subcontinent, where his dazzling military career culminated in the founding of a dynasty that lasted three centuries.
Babur was far more than a skilled, often ruthless, warrior and master strategist. In this abridged and edited version of a 1921 English translation of his memoirs, he also emerges as a sensitive aesthete, naturalist, poet and lover. Writer, journalist and internationally acclaimed Middle eastern and Central asian expert, Dilip Hiro breathes new life into a unique historical document that is at once objective and intensely personal—for, in Babur’s words, ‘the truth should be reached in every matter’.
Abridged, edited and with an introduction by Dilip Hiro