Alamgirnama: A Mughal Timeline

Discussion in 'Alternate History Discussion: Before 1900' started by Madhav Deval, Aug 29, 2018.

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  1. Madhav Deval Well-Known Member

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    Agricultural equipment remains pretty unaffected- most mansabdars and those with access to higher education, are only concerned with the buying and selling of crops and are pretty content to leave the actual growing to the farmers. Nevertheless, there are travelling traders who are transporting certain specialised equipment across the empire.

    There is a craze amongst the upper classes, sparked by Jai Singh to invest in canals and many who don’t conduct business near navigable rivers or have the access to enough capital to invest in canals are extending and improving networks of private toll roads.

    The Portuguese were pretty much ousted before the last century was over, to the joy of many who’d been forcibly converted. They still have an Indian Ocean presence but it’s weaker than the combined Mughal- British- French presence, so they aren’t pushing it and are focusing on Brazil. The Portuguese officials were given the choice of exile or joining the Mughal bureaucracy and most chose that and entered the mansabdar class. They were given no monopolies and we’re generally restricted to only trading with Portuguese colonies, not Portugal itself. In fact, Mughal traders have secured the same religious rights in Portugal as in spain with an Ibaadat Khana in Porto, and have secured the same deal of no import tariffs for textiles as was given to the English, though they haven’t managed to make Portugal reduce English imports.
     
  2. souvikkundu25140017 Well-Known Member

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    The way Mughals are going, I think we will see a sort of hybrid version of Islam, maybe something similar to canon Bahai faith?
     
  3. Threadmarks: 11. Hey look, it's Nader Shah!

    Madhav Deval Well-Known Member

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    Wikipedia

    Campaigns of Sikander Qoli
    The ever shifting powers in Iran had allowed the Ottoman and Russian empires to push their border forward into Persian territory, pushing them out of the Caucasus, as confirmed in the treaty of Resht in 1713. The main powers vying to reunify the country were the Afghans, the Qajars and the Zands and this was the scene that Sikander Shan Safavi emerged onto in 1716 as the legitimist Safavid candidate. Originally, very few leaders were willing to trust him as, forget the legitimate Safavid heir, he hadn’t even been to Persia prior to his exile from Hindustan, however through personal intercessions from the aging Abbas the third along with assurances that he was a true Shia and his presence in no way represented a Mughal invasion of Persia managed to sway influential magnates to his side, starting with Fath Ali Qajar in 1718. He gains the support of the Qajar tribes and for the next few years captures and loses territory based around Isfahan without being able to consolidate much. In 1719, Abbas Safavi dies, leaving Sikander Shan the official Safavid monarch with the regnal title Sikander Shah. Though a gifted commander, he was not very imaginative.

    As the years went on, he was able to consolidate most of western Iran, inflicting a crushing defeat on the Zand tribes in 1723 which allowed him to turn his attention east to the Afghans. Around this time, Sikander Shan personally recruited a new commander, Nader Qoli Beg, a man who had been harassing Afghan forces within their heartland of Khorasan and had already indirectly been a great help. He proved an able commander and immediately won the respect of the Safavid forces, which made it much easier for him to declare a conspiracy against Sikander Shan by the Qajars which lead to a mass culling of all the conspirators.

    As his forces marched east, the Gharzai ruler of the time, Mirwais Hotaki, looked to the throne of Delhi for aid, which obviously put the Peacock throne in a difficult situation. They had been the ones to put the Afghans in Persia in the first place, so anyone who forced them out would damage Mughal prestige, though this was not especially important as the prestige of a Mughal becoming Shahenshah of Persia would more than replace what had been lost there. What could be important was the fact that the loyalty of Afghan tribes was something they depended on for the security of Kandahar and Kabul subahs and if those two subahs were lost, Mughal boundaries would become much less defensible, which could even open up a zone of weakness leading straight to Delhi itself. If the Afghans in Kabul felt that the Mughal throne didn’t protect the entirety of the Afghan people, the entire defensive system of the empire would be thrown out of balance. On the other hand, they couldn’t ally with someone who was actively warring against another branch of the Mughal family.

    The final agreement, as reached in the 1728 treaty of Kandahar, was a true compromise, in that it satisfied absolutely no-one. Nader Qoli, who had now taken the title Sikander Qoli, stormed out of the room as soon as he heard the terms because as per the treaty, his homeland and power base in Khorasan was to be retained under Afghan control. In the end though, Sikander Shah agreed to the treaty, on the condition that the indemnity that the Afghans had to pay would be paid immediately. Mirwais Hotak had nowhere near the reserves needed to pay what had been asked for immediately so he was forced to take a loan from the Khazana-I Hind bank in Kandahar.

    With his eastern front pacified, Sikander Shah was free to recover territories lost to the Ottomans and Russians in the west. The Peacock throne had learnt from its last attempt to secure its northern border that it's best not to destabilise things with an attempted coup and the best course of action was a strong Iran but one thats primarily focused on western territories. It was in these campaigns that Sikander Qoli truly reached his own as a commander, with victories that no contemporary commander would have thought possible. At his side through the whole thing was a Mughal chronicler who analysed his tactics and sent news of them to Delhi, from where the knowledge was disseminated through military academies across the continent of India. By 1734, he had reversed the Persian losses in the Caucasus, ousting the Russians from their exclave on the Caspian sea and temporarily capturing Baghdad and Diyarbakir and coming in sight of the Mediterranean, before he was forced to give it up in exchange for Ottoman acceptance of Persian suzerainty over Georgia and Azerbaijan. Meanwhile, the court at Isfahan was having more and more difficulty trying to fund this campaigning and in 1736, Armenian and Georgian traders were encouraged to set up their own bank modelled on the Khazana-I Hind, the Khazana-I Jahan. Furthermore, he attempted to create the same business based system of controlling nobles as had been instituted in India, though with markedly less success. This was symbolic of the extent to which the cultural roles had been reversed over the past half a century, from Persia being the cultural capital of the east to India moving onto that role. Sikander Qoli became more and more difficult to deal with in the years following his success in Mesopotamia due to his inability to liberate Khorasan and the diplomatic structure that had closed off Turan to his ambitions as well, to the extent that Sikander Shah was worried he might attempt to lead a coup against the Isfahani government. So, Sikander Shah of the joint Safavi-Gurkani dynasty, descended from Abbas the Great, Akbar the Great, Ismail Safavi, Timur, Chagatai Khan, Chingiz Khan, descendant of the greatest monarchs the world had ever known, offered Sikander Qoli something better than the throne. He offered him his bloodline. Sikander Shah had no sons, and despite repeated trying, his only living child was Aurangabadi Mahal Begum- a woman. Sikander Qoli had a son and with their union, Reza Qoli Mirza became next in line to the Safavid throne. The Gurkani dynasty took their name from the Persian word for son-in-law, because their founder, Amir Timur Gurgan was the son in law of the line of Chingiz Khan. Now, the Afshari dynasty became the Gurkani of the Gurkani’s in arguably the single most militarily remarkable dynasty in the history of the earth.

    With his pride sated, Sikander Qoli set upon his campaigns with newfound vigour, though his cruelty also increased as he imitated his idols Timur and Chingiz. With the latest of Mughal guns and artillery, he and an ottoman force that joined him later pushed on into the Caucasus, further and further, until the citizens of Astrakhan rebelled against their Russian overlords and Sikander Qoli marched into his new conquest victorious in 1741. This move effectively turned the Caspian into a Safavid lake and threatened Russian shipping through the Volga river and the attempts to hold and regain this would prove an insatiable source of conflict. What id did show however, was that the Gunpowder empires United could hold their own against Russian Hussars.

    Next, Sikander Shah commissioned two fleets to protect his Caspian possessions and satisfy the expansionary faction in court without running into the supply difficulties that had plagued the Russian campaign, by moving into the Persian gulf. Reza Mirza led this second fleet and by 1744, they had successfully exploited a succession struggle in Oman to seize that, and by 1748, they had also taken Zanzibar. Here though, they were forced to give the Omani imam the trade monopoly to Zanzibar. This marked the start of overseas persian imperialism.
     
    Last edited: Jun 19, 2019
  4. Cregan Well-Known Member

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    Muslim League of Three Gunpowder Emperors, yes!!
     
  5. haider najib Well-Known Member

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    Won't the ottomans be pissed that the shias are expanding. Also peter tue great russia was defeated by the ottomans and persia?
     
  6. Madhav Deval Well-Known Member

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    Now let’s see how long it lasts

    Yeah they are not fans of the fact that astrakhan and Oman now have Shia rulers but seeing as they managed to secure a win as well, they’re not complaining too much yet. The Safavids wouldn’t try and convert any Indian traders because that would lose them their biggest ally but the native population won’t have that protection. Still, the current Safavid shah grew up in India so he’s all too familiar with how forced conversions make governing harder. Also, Peter the great died in 1725, currently Empress Anna’s on the throne in Russia.
     
  7. haider najib Well-Known Member

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    Sorry i mean the reforms are still their this is a modern russian army defeated by non reformed ottomans and perisans.
     
  8. Madhav Deval Well-Known Member

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    I know- it’s unusual and partly just down to the luck of the situation and inexperienced commanders thinking it would be easier than it was, like the people of astrakhan throwing in their lot with the Persians. The Russian army is still better than the ottomans or the Persians overall (even if the difference is a little bit smaller compared to OTL), and when the Russians come back to Astrakhan they will be baying for blood.
     
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  9. Xianfeng Emperor Amateur Iran-o-phile

    Seems like India is on its way towards further linguistic integration. Given the Empire's sheer population, might the Mughaps proceed to develop a more Chinese-esque system of governance--one focused upon maintaining the internal stability of the country and harmony of its ethnic groups than expansionism?
     
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  10. Madhav Deval Well-Known Member

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    Yeah I think stability is going to become the byword of future emperors- then again though expansionism can’t be completely given up considering there is a massive group of people in the Kshatriyas that consider it their god given duty to fight
     
  11. haider najib Well-Known Member

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    Rajputs vs samurai when?

    I can easily see expanison into land on interest getting alot of support. Also how you play it off, you can do it off 'as too long has the people of hindustan been invaded now its are time to claim the world'. Muslims would support it to get more muslims, rajputs for the fight, and maybe a national consensus/ ideas to expand and conquer.
     
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  12. Aghstadian Well-Known Member

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    Maybe Mughal can do small-scale expansion (compared what they do in the past), like Assam or Balochistan and few tributaries here and there.
     
  13. Xianfeng Emperor Amateur Iran-o-phile

    I imagine future wars would continue to be centered around securing the Empire's regional interests. I see that there have been increased mentions of the Russians. Is an alternate Great Game between Delhi and St. Petersburg on the horizon? The Mughals would do well to make a mad dash for the Ferghana.

    Regarding the Kshatriyas, I have to say it's my first time hearing about them, so forgive me if I have any severe misconceptions or beginner errors. How bound by tradition are they--would they abandon their martial practices with economic affluence (somewhat similar to the Eight Banners/Janissaries); or would they be somewhat more devoted to their faith?
     
  14. Madhav Deval Well-Known Member

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    Well, I think the Mughals already have a claim on Ferghana, and if they felt their regional system of alliances isn't strong enough to protect Kabul subah, they could press that claim. Babur ruled ferghana before Hindustan and the Khans of Kokhand that currently rule Ferghana claim descent from Babur. Whether the Mughals would be inclined to recognise this descent is a question because if they did accept that descendants of Babur could rule independently of the Peacock throne, thats a dangerous precedent to spread, considering the volatile succession situation and the possibility that the empire could fracture under separate princes at the death of their predecessors. But anyways, currently court elites are turning away from the north and the west and turning to their maritime sphere of influence and it would take a serious threat to drag their attention back up.

    As for Kshatriyas, they could never abandon completely their martial status, though many of them have joined the Mughal ruling class as tax collectors and civilian administrators rather than as faujdars. Still every Kshatriya family with an iota of power has members that count as mansabdars and a lot of them decided to become military officers when the powers were separated under Aurangzeb. The thing is, they depend on the Mughal state campaigning for a salary as they only get paid during a war, so as a security if their business' aren't doing very well, they would be lobbying the state to expand during economic depressions. As long as they are receiving income from their business' and are assured the societal position of a Kshatriya, with guaranteed admission to military schools, they won't push for an expansionary government, especially considering the widespread security in the subcontinent right now and the lack of a need for a military caste.
     
  15. haider najib Well-Known Member

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    The one good thing with mughals are they can china their conquest and flood areas with settlers making them core territories and removing nationalism in areas, with the dutch trying to hekp rebellions in the empire its only time now the mughals take indonesia for themselves.
     
  16. Madhav Deval Well-Known Member

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    Does anyone accidentally do that thing where they're leaving focusing on an empire for a later update but you still have their relations with a neighbour but the butterflies from a change you had a while ago will have changed those relations in ways you didnt realize because you were leaving them for later.....
    no, just me?
    Well I've just realised the I've forgotten something about the Ottoman empire that will have been affected by butterflies and changes the joint Persian campaign for Astrakhan in 1740. If you haven't figured it out yet, my next update will bring the Ottomans up to the 1740's too. Kudos to anyone who can figure out what I'd forgotten.
    I'm now venturing into areas where my knowledge is slightly less secure so I'd really appreciate it if people could keep popping up with ideas on butterflies in places like the Ottoman empire and central europe
     
    Last edited: Oct 26, 2018
  17. haider najib Well-Known Member

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    Have the ottomans survive, reform the army and get ride of the janissaries. Keep the crimea so the ottomans don't have to go overr the caucuses.
    Also ask @Koprulu Mustafa Pasha he knows the ottomans in this period.
     
    Last edited: Oct 26, 2018
  18. EmperorBuaya Well-Known Member

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    Don't forget, Persia isn't the only neighbour of the Mughals. While Persia and Mughal might have better years in TTL than OTL, there's another power in the Far East, namely Qing Dynasty (China). If things were going well, perhaps Mughal and China will become allies in the face of Western colonialism.

    As for Central Europe ideas, perhaps the Austrian Empire strengthened itself in anticipation of another Ottoman invasion. Also, the Russians. The Great Game might ended up as Mughal-Russian rivalry in Central Asia.
     
  19. haider najib Well-Known Member

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    Or allie with japan and do in china. The qing don't see anyone as an equals this is a battle of egos which mughals dont want to lose same with china.
    I wanna see a mughal korea or taiwan here.
     
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  20. Xianfeng Emperor Amateur Iran-o-phile

    The Qing considered Russia an equal even after they defeated Russia in the Sino-Russian war. I can imagine the same for the Mughals.
     
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