Gwalior

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That fort, which is the pearl of the necklace of the castles of Hind... ~ The History of India as told by its own Historians
The summit of which the nimble-footed wind from below cannot reach, and on the bastion of which the rapid clouds have never cast their shade, and which the swift imagination has never surmounted, and at the height of which the celestial sphere is dazzled ~ The History of India as told by its own Historians

Gwalior is a major and the northern-most city in the Indian state of Madhya Pradesh and one of the Counter-magnet cities. Located 319 kilometres (198 mi) south of Delhi, the capital city of India, Gwalior occupies a strategic location in the Gird region of India. The city and its fortress have been ruled by several historic northern Indian kingdoms. From the Kachchhapaghatas in the 10th century, Tomars in the 13th century, it was passed on to the Mughal Empire, then to the Maratha in 1754, followed by the Scindia in the 18th century. A study of urban pollution in 2016 found the city to have the highest level of air pollution in India, and the second highest in the world.

Quotes[edit]

  • [There are ] a number of impressive Jain sculptures along the cliffs of the ravine that were carved in the 1400’s. The biggest of them is image number 20 of Adinatha, which stands 17 meters tall. As we wander around the fort, some of the things we will see are the 9th century Teli-ka-Mandir, a tall Hindu temple that rises 75 feet high and is covered with carvings, and has an unusual design for a temple. There is also the Suraj Kund, a lake that cured Suraj Sen of leprosy after the hermit Gwalipa made Suraj drink from it. The Sasbahu temples are along the east wall, dating back to the ninth century. The larger one was once a Vishnu temple and the interior is especially interesting with pillars and walls covered with carvings.
    • Knapp Stephen, Spiritual India Handbook (2011)
  • When the affairs of this tract was settled, the royal army marched, in the year 592 h., (1196 a.d.) "towards Galewar (Gwalior), and invested that fort, which is the pearl of the necklace of the castles of Hind, the summit of which the nimble-footed wind from below cannot reach, and on the bastion of which the rapid clouds have never cast their shade, and which the swift imagination has never surmounted, and at the height of which the celestial sphere is dazzled.....
    • Muhammad of Ghor. About the capture of Gwalior. Hasan Nizami. Elliot and Dowson, Vol. II : Elliot and Dowson, History of India as told by its own Historians, 8 Volumes, Allahabad Reprint, 1964. pp. 227-228 Also quoted in Jain, Meenakshi (2011). The India they saw: Foreign accounts.
  • In compliance with the divine injunction of holy war, they drew out the bloodthirsty sword before the faces of the enemies of religion...Solankh Pal who had raised the standard of infidelity, and perdition, and prided himself on his countless army and elephants, and who expanded the fist of oppression from the hiding place of deceit, and who had lighted the flame of turbulence and rebellion, and who had fixed the root of sedition and enmity firm in his heart, and in the courtyard of whose breast the shrub of tyranny and commotion had shot forth its branches, when he saw the power and majesty of the army of Islam," he became alarmed and dispirited. " Wherever he looked, he saw the road of flight blocked up." He therefore " sued for pardon, and placed the ring of servitude in his ear," and agreed to pay tribute...
    • About the capture of Gwalior. Hasan Nizami. Elliot and Dowson, Vol. II : Elliot and Dowson, History of India as told by its own Historians, 8 Volumes, Allahabad Reprint, 1964. pp. 227-228 Also quoted in Jain, Meenakshi (2011). The India they saw: Foreign accounts.
  • In the reign of the great Prince Alamgir,
    Like the full shining moon,
    The enlightener of the world,
    Praise be to God that this happy place,
    Was by Motamid Khan completed as an alms.
    It was the idol temple of the vile Gwali,
    He made it a mosque, like a mansion of paradise.
    The Khan of enlightened heart,
    Nay light itself from head to foot,
    Displayed the divine light, like that of mid-day,
    He closed the idol temple:
    Exclamations rose from earth to heaven,
    When the light put far away the abode of darkness,
    • Inscription on mosque on the right hand side of the Ganesa Gate in the fort at Gwalior. Archaeological Survey of India, Four Reports Made During the Years 1862-63-64-65 by Alexander Cunningham, Varanasi Reprint, 1972. p. 335.
  • At the same time the Sultan thought that though ‘Sultan Sikandar had led several expeditions for conquering the fort of Gwalior and the country attached to it but met with no success.’ Consequently he sent ‘Azam Humayun, the governor of Kara, with 300,000 horsemen and 300 elephants for the conquest of Gwalior… After some time the royal army laid a mine, filled it with gunpowder, and set fire to it. He entered the fort and took possession of it after the wall of the fort was breached. He saw there a bull made of brass, which the Hindus had worshipped for years. In keeping with a royal order, the bull was brought to Delhi and placed at the Baghdad Gate. It was still there till the reign of Akbar. The writer of this history saw it himself.
    • Sultan Ibrahim Lodi (AD 1517-1526) at Gwalior (Madhya Pradesh). Tabqat-i-Akhari by Nizamuddin Ahmad
  • An example, as to how the tradition lives in India through the ages, may be cited. Alexander Cunningham found during his stay in the Gwalior Fort ... an epigraph recording the construction of a Sun Temple at Gwalior... The Sun Temple mentioned in the inscription had supposedly been destroyed. But there existed on the eastern bank of the Suraj-Kund a small temple... The inscription mentioned purnima of the month of Karttika as the date of its consecration and, surprisingly, even after one and a half millenniums, the tradition was still alive and till late a fair was annually held here on the Karttika-Purnima and devotees used to worship in the temple with the water of the Suraj-Kund and this author was able to identify it mainly on the basis of this living tradition.
    • Nath, R., & Historical Research Documentation Programme (India). (1991). Architecture & site of the Baburi Masjid of Ayodhya: A historical critique. Jaipur: Historical Research Documentation Programme. p. 41
  • Sultan Sikandar passed the rainy season of that year at agra. After the rising of the star Canopus, he assembled an army, and set forth to take possession of Gwalior and territories belonging to it. In a short space of time he took most of the Gwalior district, and after building mosques in the places of idol-temples returned towards Agra.
  • “It so happened that Raja Man, the ruler of Gwalior who had been warring with the Sultans for years, went to hell. His son, Bikarmajit, became his successor. The Sultan captured the fort after a hard fight. There was a quadruped, made of copper, at the door of the fort. It used to speak. It was brought from there and placed in the fort at Agra. It remained there till the reign of Akbar Badshah. It was melted and a cannon was made out of it at the order of the Badshah.”
    • Sultan Ibrahim Lodi (AD 1517-1526), Gwalior (Madhya Pradesh) Tarikh-i-Shahi, S.A.A. Rizvi in Uttara Taimur Kalina Bharata, Aligarh, 1955, Vol. I, p. 343 In Goel, S.R. Hindu Temples - What happened to them
  • “…When the thought occurred to Sultan Ibrahim, he sent ‘Ãzam Humayun on this expedition… The Afghan army captured from the infidels the statue of a bull which was made of metals such as copper and brass, which was outside the gate of the fort and which the Hindus used to worship. They brought it to the Sultan. The Sultan was highly pleased and ordered that it should be taken to Delhi and placed outside the ‘Red Gate’ which was known as the Baghdad Gate in those days. The statue was so fixed in front of the ‘Red Gate’ till the time of the Mughal emperor, Akbar the Great, who ordered in AH 999 that it be melted down and used for making cannon as well as some other equipment, which are still there in the government armoury. The author of this history… has seen it in both shapes.”
    • Sultan Ibrahim Lodi (AD 1517-1526) Gwalior (Madhya Pradesh).Tarikh-i-Khan Jahan Lodi, translated by Muhammad Bashir Husain, second edition, Lahore, 1986, quoted in S.R. Goel, Hindu Temples What Happened to them, Vol. II
  • 'Next day, at the time of the noon prayer, we went out for seeing those places in Gwalior which we had not yet seen' Going out of the Hathipole Gate of the fort, we arrived at a place called Urwa'...'Solid rocks surround Urwa on three sides' On these sides people have carved statues in stone. They are in all sizes, small and big. A very big statue, which is on the southern side, is perhaps 20 yards high. These statues are altogether naked and even their private parts are not covered'...'Urwa is not a bad place. It is an enclosed space. Its biggest blemish is its statues. I ordered that they should be destroyed.'
    • Baburnama, Translated from the Hindi version by S.A.A. Rizvi included in Mughal Kãlîna Bhãrata: Bãbur, Aligarh, 1960, In Goel, S.R. Hindu Temples - What happened to them
  • “…The fortress of Badalgarh, which lies below the fortress of Gwaliar, a very lofty structure, was taken from Rai Man Singh and fell into the hands of the Muslims, and a brazen animal which was worshipped by the Hindus also fell into their hands, and was sent by them to Agra, whence it was sent by Sultan Ibrahim to Dihli, and was put over the city gate. The image was removed to Fathpur in the year AH 992 (AD 1584), ten years before the composition of this history, where it was seen by the author of this work. It was converted into gongs, and bells, and implements of all kinds.”
    • Tãrîkh-i-Firishta by Firishta. Sultan Ibrahim Lodi (AD 1517-1526) Gwalior (Madhya Pradesh)
  • “…The Dehly army, arriving before Gualiar, invested the place… After the siege had been carried on for some months, the army of Ibrahim Lody at length got possession of an outwork at the foot of the hill, on which stood the fort of Badilgur. They found in that place a brazen bull, which had been for a long time an object of worship, and sent it to Agra, from whence it was afterwards conveyed to Dehly, and thrown down before the Bagdad gate (AH 924, AD 1518).”
    • Tãrîkh-i-Firishta by Firishta. Sultãn Ibrãhîm Lodî (AD 1517-1526) Gwalior (Madhya Pradesh)

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