(navigation image)
Home American Libraries | Canadian Libraries | Universal Library | Community Texts | Project Gutenberg | Biodiversity Heritage Library | Children's Library | Additional Collections
Search: Advanced Search
Anonymous User (login or join us)
Upload
See other formats

Full text of "Akbar, The Emperor Of India"

16                        AKBAR, EMPEROR OF INDIA.
at the muster for worthless material and also to loan them
to other knights during muster.
The number of men able to bear arms in Akbar's realm
has been given as about four and a half millions but the
standing army which was held at the expense of the state
was small in proportion. It contained only about twenty-
five thousand men, one-half of whom comprised the cavalry
and the rest musketry and artillery. Since India does not
produce first class horses, Akbar at once provided for the
importation of noble steeds from other lands of the Orient
which were famed for horse breeding and was accustomed
to pay more for such animals than the price which was
demanded. In the same way no expense was too great for
him to spend on the breeding and nurture of elephants, for
they were very valuable animals for the warfare of that day.
His stables contained from five to six thousand well-trained
elephants. The breeding of camels and mules he also ad-
vanced with a practical foresight and understood how to
overcome the widespread prejudice in India against the
use of mules.
Untiringly did Akbar inspect stables, arsenals, military
armories, and shipyards, and insisted on perfect order in
all departments. He called the encouragement of seaman-
ship an act of worship13 but was not able to make India,
a maritime power.
Akbar had an especial interest in artillery, and with it
a particular gift for the technique and great skill in mech-
anical matters. "He invented a cannon which could be
taken apart to be carried more easily on the march and could
be put up quickly, apparently for use in mountain batteries.
By another invention he united seventeen cannons in such
a way that they could be shot off simultaneously by one
fuse.14 Hence it is probably a sort of mitrailleuse. Akbar
"Noer, II, 378.
14 Noer, I, 429.  The second invention, however, is questioned by Buchwald