TWĀRĪKH-I-AHMADĪ, or Tārīkh-i-Ahmad, is a book written by Abdul Karīm Alavī and published by Mustafāī Press, Lucknow, in 1850. Alavī was a prolific writer and his works include besides many translations from Arabic into Persian, the Tarīkh-i-Ahmad which became the most popular of his works and was translated into Urdu under the title Waqiāt-i-Durrānī and published by Nizāmī Press, Cawnpore (now Kānpur) in 1875. The style is simple and lucid and not cumbersome and he refrained from ornate phraseology to praise Ahmad Shāh Durrānī for his achievements. He did not use derogatory language against the opponents of Ahmad Shāh Durrānī, and narrated the events faithfully.

        Commencing with the genealogy of Ahmad Shāh Durrānī, he narrated the achievements of the Shāh in detail and his successors in brief up to the assassination of Shāh Shujā'. He gave the details of battles of Ahmad Shāh Durrānī with the Sikhs.

        The author has given a detailed description of the five Doābs of the Punjab and has described the famous rivers, passages and important cities of these Doābs. The historical value of the work is great as several of the geographical facts have changed over the years. About one hundred and fifty years earlier the River Rāvī used to flow adjacent to the Fort of Lahore and there were separate routes from Eminābād to Lahore and Amritsar.

        The author has described the stages in travelling from Peshāwar to Kābul, Kābul to Qandahār, Qandahār to Herāt and Herāt to Chist. He has mentioned the distance between various stages and the time spent while travelling from one stage to another and the facilities available along each route. The traders and the troops travelled through these stages, and made halts there.

        While writing about the history of the Durrānīs, the author has narrated some interesting events. He writes that during the reign of Shāh Jahān, 'Alī Mardan Khān, Viceroy of Lahore, planned the Shālāmār Gardens. He has also recorded that never a person suffered from small pox at Qandahār.


    Kirpal Singh ed., A Catalogue of Persian and Sanskrit Manuscripts. Amritsar, 1962

Bhagat Siṅgh