Sambhaji Kadambari .....by Vishwas Patil.20
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Sambhaji: A Novel That Sheds Light on the Life and Legacy of Shivaji's Son
Sambhaji was the second Chhatrapati of the Maratha Empire, who succeeded his father Shivaji after his death in 1680. He fought bravely against the Mughal emperor Aurangzeb for eight years, but never surrendered any of his forts or ships. He was captured and tortured by the Mughals, but refused to convert to Islam or betray his people. He was executed at the age of 32, leaving behind a heroic and tragic legacy.
For centuries, Sambhaji's image was distorted and maligned by various historians and writers, who portrayed him as a rebel, a tyrant, a drunkard, and a womanizer. He was also accused of killing his own brother and half-brother, and of neglecting his kingdom and subjects. His achievements and contributions were ignored or downplayed, while his faults and failures were exaggerated or fabricated.
In 2006, Vishwas Patil, a renowned Marathi novelist and historian, published Sambhaji, a novel that challenged these negative stereotypes and presented a more balanced and nuanced picture of the Maratha king. Patil based his novel on extensive research and historical documents, as well as oral traditions and folklore. He depicted Sambhaji as a poet, a scholar, a statesman, a warrior, and a visionary, who faced many challenges and difficulties in his short but eventful life.
Sambhaji is not only a biographical novel, but also a historical epic that narrates the political and social turmoil of the late 17th century India. It portrays the complex relations between the Marathas, the Mughals, the Portuguese, the Siddis, the Rajputs, and other regional powers. It also explores the cultural and religious diversity of the subcontinent, as well as the conflicts and dialogues between Hinduism, Islam, Christianity, Sikhism, and Jainism.
Sambhaji is a novel that celebrates the spirit of resistance and resilience of the Maratha people, who fought for their freedom and dignity against all odds. It is also a novel that honors the memory and legacy of Sambhaji, who sacrificed his life for his ideals and values. It is a novel that inspires us to learn from our history and to respect our heroes.
One of the most remarkable aspects of Sambhaji's life was his love for learning and literature. He was well-versed in several languages, including Marathi, Sanskrit, Hindi, Persian, Arabic, and Portuguese. He wrote poetry and prose in Marathi and Sanskrit, and translated several works from other languages. He also patronized many scholars and poets in his court, and encouraged the development of Marathi literature and culture.
Sambhaji was also a visionary leader who had a global outlook and a keen interest in science and technology. He established diplomatic relations with foreign powers, such as the Ottoman Empire, the Safavid Empire, and the English East India Company. He also sent emissaries to Europe to learn about their advancements in warfare, medicine, astronomy, and navigation. He tried to modernize his army and navy by importing guns, cannons, ships, and other equipment from abroad.
However, Sambhaji's life was also full of challenges and hardships. He had to deal with internal dissent and external threats from various enemies. He had to face the betrayal of some of his relatives and generals, who joined hands with the Mughals or rebelled against him. He had to cope with the loss of his wife Yesubai and his son Shahu, who were captured by the Mughals. He had to endure the pain and humiliation of being tortured and mutilated by his captors.
Despite all these difficulties, Sambhaji never gave up his hope and courage. He never compromised his principles or his faith. He never bowed down to the Mughal emperor or accepted his terms. He died as a martyr and a hero, who inspired generations of freedom fighters and nationalists in India. ec8f644aee