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Manuscripts

Farman of Jalaluddin Mohammad Akbar

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Farman of Jalaluddin Mohammad Akbar
1560 A.D.

Language: Persian Script: Taliq
Materials: Paper
Dimensions: L: 52 W: 26 cm.
Acc. No. 92.28

This plain piece of paper with text contained within a framed space and imperial seal imprinted on it, an official document, a writ, order, or directive, was known in Islamic administrative system as Farman. An imperial directive issued on different subjects: political, social, administrative or economical, Farman was the most widely used form of writ under Mughal rulers. While a grant bestowing any rights on a person, body, shrine or state, 'sanad', a certificate of title, or 'mafi', exemption from paying, were known also by such terms Farman was the writ that encompassed all them and all classes of other official documents.

As certifies the impression of the Mughal Emperor Akbar's official seal, this Farman, made in Persian using 'taliq' script, was issued by the court and under the authority of Jalal al-Din Muhammad Akbar, better known as only Akbar. The Farman grants 650 bighas, that is, about 130 hectares of land, the area around Karba Sandila Sarkar in Lucknow, to Shaikh Sa'd Allah. This Farman extends the period of an earlier grant made in favour the same Shaikh Sa'd Allah relating to this very piece of land but now to his entire lifetime. Farmans of early Mughal emperors, to include Akbar, were simple texts however, those of the later emperors introduced a lot of ornamentation to include lavish rich borders and the composition was quite elaborate and had aesthetic aspect. Not the emperor's signatures but the imperial seal imparted to it its due authority.

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Farman of Jalaluddin Mohammad Akbar