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By Robert Sewell

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CHAPTER 7. The City of Vijayanagar in the Reign of Deva Raya II. D. ), 1443) Description given by Nicolo to Bracciolini −− The capital −− Festivals −− Immense population −− Abdur Razzak's description −− His journey −− The walls −− Palaces −− The Mint −− Bazaars −− The great Mahahnavami festival. It will be well to suspend our historical narrative for a time in order to acquire some idea of the appearance and condition of the great city of Vijayanagar in these days. D. Sultan Mujahid of Kulbarga had heard so much of the beauty of this capital that he desired to see it, and it had grown in importance and grandeur during the succeeding half−century.

I am not aware which version is the more accurate. But even if these added words be accepted as part of the original, the difficulty is capable of being explained away by the supposition that perhaps the ambassador was presented to one of the princes and not to the king himself. The king appears to have been in doubt as to whether the traveller was not an impostor in representing himself as an envoy from Persia, and may have refrained from granting a personal interview. Several inscriptions of the reign are extant.

D. 1423, for if the river had been in flood there would have been no fear of the enemy's crossing it. In the early months of the Christian year that river is usually shallow in the open country east of the Hindu capital and away from the hills that surround it, having only thin streams running in its rocky bed. Indeed, Firishtah himself tells us that the river was at that time fordable. Then ensued a dramatic episode. The Muhammadan cavalry had crossed the river and devastated the country of the Raya, who remained inactive, and the Sultan determined on a direct frontal attack.

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