A Warlord’s Memoir Is Surprisingly Modern and Charming, When It’s Not Gruesome

A Warlord’s Memoir Is Surprisingly Modern and Charming, When It’s Not Gruesome

The New York Times-Arts·2020-12-01 06:10

Zahiru’d-din Muhammad Babur (1483-1530), a descendant of Genghis Khan, was a warlord from Central Asia who invaded India and founded the Mughal dynasty. He kept a record of his life, now known as “The Babur Nama.”

In it we witness him doing things warlords were wont to do: foe-crushing, plundering, head-lopping, flaying, impaling and so forth. One didn’t want to give one’s enemies the impression one was soft.

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