The idle ramblings of a Jack of some trades, Master of none

Jun 7, 2011

Jahangir the Cruel #2

Here's another tale of the viciousness of the Mughal Emperor Jahangir. A Pathan warrior once offered his services to one of royal princes, claiming to be skilled in all manner of weaponry. He said he was so good that he would work for the prince only if he were paid a thousand rupees a day. The prince was taken aback at his audacity, but was impressed enough to present him to his father.

Jahangir was addled as usual with opium and drink, and slurred that he wanted the Pathan to fight a lion. When the man protested that it was no test of skill to fight an animal unarmed, the Emperor was in no mood to change his mind. He ordered his toughest and most aggressive lion to be brought to the arena to be pitched against the Pathan warrior.

The man fought the creature for a brief while, reported the English traveller William Hawkins. It then escaped its keepers, and despite being in chains, still rent the man limb from limb.

The Emperor was so pleased with the bloodshed that he ordered ten of his horsemen to wrestle the lion. Three of them were killed before the proceedings were brought to a halt.

And no, I'm not sure what happened to the lion.


km said...

The emperor had an unusual sense of humor, that's all.

Fëanor said...

Usual among his circles, though, I suspect.

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