AMĪNĀ QAZVĪNĪ

 

AMĪNĀ-YE QAZVĪNĪ, MĪRZĀ MOḤAMMAD AMĪN B. ABI’L-ḤOSAYN (ḤASAN), also known as MĪRZĀ AMĪNA or AMĪNA-YE MONŠĪ, Mughal historian and poet of Shah Jahān’s reign. A native of Iran, Amīnā moved to India some time before 1040/1630. In 1042/1632 he entered Shah Jahān’s service as a monšī and was patronized by the learned minister Afżal Khan, whom he accompanied to Kashmir during the emperor’s visit in 1043/1633-34. His first essay, on Prince Awrangzēb’s encounter with the elephant Sodhākar, pleased the emperor, for whom he later prepared an account of the Bundela war. In 1635, Amīnā was commissioned to write a regnal history up to the tenth year, the Pādšāh-nāma, also called Šāh Jahān-nāma or Tārīḵ-e Šāh Jahānī-e dah sāla, which he completed in 1055/1645. The work is divided into three parts: the moqaddema, which deals with Shah Jahān’s birth, early training, and ancestors; the maqāla, containing a history of the first ten years of Shah Jahān’s reign; and the ḵātema, giving a biographical account of the saints, learned men, physicians, and poets of the period. Although Amīnā had planned another volume on the second decade of Shah Jahān’s reign, he did not write it. According to ʿAmal-e Ṣāleḥ, he was transferred to a post in the intelligence service; it is more likely that the reason for Shah Jahān’s choice of another scholar, Mollā ʿAbd-al-Ḥamīd Lāhōrī, was that the latter could emulate the preferred style of Abu’l-Fażl’s Akbar-nāma. The Pādšāh-nāma remains the basic work on the early history of Shah Jahān and served as a model for a number of later works. Amīnā has been credited by some bibliographers with the authorship of two maṯnawīs, Bāḡ-e Eram and Bahrām o Golandām, but it is not certain whether they were written by him or by a different poet with the taḵalloṣ Amīn.

 

Bibliography:

Amīnā-ye Qazvīnī, Pādšāh-nāma, B.M. ms. Or 173, Add. 20734; Bankipore ms. no. 566.

Moḥammad Ṣāleḥ Kanbū, ʿAmal-e Ṣāleḥ, Calcutta, 1923, 1939, I, pp. 11-12; III, pp. 385-86, 438-39.

ʿAbd-al-Ḥamīd Lāhōrī, Bādšāh-nāma, Calcutta, 1867, I, pp. 9-10.

B. P. Saksena, History of Shahjahan of Dihli, Allahabad, 1958, pp. iv-v, 250.

Elliot, History of India VII, pp. 1-2.

Rieu, Pers. Man., pp. 258-59.

Cat. Banikipore VII, pp. 71-73.

Storey, I, pp. 566-67.

Marshall, Mughals in India I, p. 72.

Ḡolāmčīn-e Maʿānī, Taḏkerahā II, p. 489.

(Hameed ud-Din)

Originally Published: December 15, 1989

Last Updated: August 3, 2011

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