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Collection of Interesting Historical Facts of Akbar Era..(members to post Historical facts only)

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Collection of Interesting Historical Facts of Akbar Era..(members to post Historical facts only)

Post by --sumana13-- on 2014-02-09, 20:24

Introduction

On popular demand .... this thread has been created ....a treat for those inquisitive souls ... who want to know about the real life and actual drama that took place 400 yrs back .... In order to get the feel of Akbar's  era ...
So here lies unfolded before your eyes the true action that inspired Ekta Kapoor  to make the serial Jodha Akbar ... Read and enjoy ...


Any one wishes to ask any queries or want some info please leave your queries in the WU thread of the day ... Our knowledgeable girls will surely provide you all the  input of you need ...






index .
1. History of Akbar A True Monarch: Akbar The Great 


2. A visit to the Agra Fort ....the seat of Moghul rule


3. Sharing some info about Akbar's children ..


4. Navratnas of Akbar's court had  (Nine Jewels)


5. Miniature paintings from Ain-i-Akbari


6. Map of Moghul Empire 


7. The Tomb of Akbar the Great is an important Mughal architectural masterpiece in Sikandra
8. View the Shahi Hammams


9. Koh-i-Nur: A Diamond's Incredible Journey


10. EXCERPTS: Life in a Mughal harem


11. The Guru Bairam Khan ...


12. The birth of Jehangir ...


13. Reforms made by Abu'l Faith Jallauddin Muhammad Akbar... 


14. Sharing some videos of Mughal Architecture


15. Abdul Rahim khan-I-Khana and his couplets 

16.Anarkali : Emperor Akbar's Concubine and Prince Salim's lover

17. Marium-Uz-Zamaani

18. Mirza Muhammad Hakim - Part I  

19. Siblings of Akbar The Great ( Children of Humayun)

20. Ruqaiya Begum Sultan- Empress of the Moghul Empire

21. Marriage of Emperor Humayun-Hameeda Banu and Birth. of Akbar



credits 

Neha, Sandhya, Tanthya, Pollyanna, Lynnie, Boloji,Chandu1234, JASMINE  ..for the info
Google , Ain-i-Akbari  ..for pics ..
Neha for Videos ....


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Re: Collection of Interesting Historical Facts of Akbar Era..(members to post Historical facts only)

Post by --sumana13-- on 2014-02-09, 20:35

A True Monarch: Akbar The Great (1543-1605)


Akbar was only thirteen when his father died of an unfortunate accident in the palace at Delhi. In his haste to rush down the stairs to answer the call for prayer, Humayun slipped and fell to his death. This sudden turn of events left the newly reclaimed Mughal Empire in peril once again. Akbar, who was born during Humayun’s flight from Delhi after his loss to Sher Shah, was in Panjab at the time of his father’s demise. With no other claimants to the throne, Akbar was thrust into the forefront of an empire in jeopardy. Unlike his father and grandfather, Akbar was an Indian by birth. While his father was hiding in the Thar Desert, in a Rajput fort in Umarkot (now in Pakistan), under the protection of Hindus, Akbar was born to Hamida in October 1542. His education had not gone well both because of the stress of a family on the run as well as his inability to learn to read or write, surely because of dyslexia.

Akbar was lucky to have ayram Khan as regent in those early teenage years. Under his tutelage the empire was protected form 1556 to 1560. After Humayun’s sudden death, while Akbar was still in Panjab, Hemu, a wretchedly puny but crafty man, quickly attacked Delhi and the Mughal force took flight. An unlikely adversary, Hemu, who was a chief minister of one of the Sur claimants, had to be driven from Delhi after a major victory in what was called the second battle of Panipat. Hemu riding on an elephant, the ‘Hawai’ (wind), took an arrow in his eye that pierced right through his head. Seeing their leader slump on his great beast the rest of the army scattered in confusion. Hemu was captured and beheaded in front of the young victor, Akbar. After this Delhi would not slip out of Mughal hands for another three centuries.

The loyal Bayram Khan was a Shia Muslim amongst the Sunnis. He fell victim to intrigue and betrayal and was provoked into revolting and then killed. Adham Khan, who is the son of Akbar’s erstwhile nurse stepped in and carried on the business of extending the empire and putting down the insurgency in the neighboring states. The legendary Baz Bahadur, who was the sultan at Malwa was defeated and his lover, the Rajput princess, whom the lovelorn Bahadur had serenaded, committed suicide by drinking poison, in the true Rajput tradition. Adham Khan, by now was corrupted by power and felt the wrath of the nineteen-year-old emperor and was flung headlong from the terrace to meet his maker.

Barely out of his teens, Akbar quickly consolidated power and centralized the administration. Ministers were dispensed with lest they grow ambitious and dissident commanders were dealt with swiftly. Unlike any other Muslim ruler in India, Akbar took keen interest in his subjects and Hindu ascetics, like jogis and sanyasis. He was most tolerant of all Mughal rulers and let his subjects practice their faiths without any fear of persecution. He also encouraged marriages between Hindu Rajputs and Muslims. His first and the most beloved wife (first of thirty-three wives) was the daughter of Kacchwaha Rajput raja of Amber (Kacchawahas built Jaipur later). Raja’s son and grandson became loyal lieutenants of Akbar and were treated as nobles. Rajasthan never again became a thorn on Akbar’s side as it had for all the previous Sultans and Emperors.

Akbar never discriminated between Muslims and Hindus and conferred nobility to many, with equal justice in mind. His only failure was one Udai singh of Mewar, whose son, a prisoner in Akbar’s court escaped and fled south. In 1567 Akbar himself marched south and participated in the siege of Chittor. Udai Singh and his son escaped but Akbar continued his siege and eventually occupied the fort. Udai Singh is the founder of the city of Udaipur with the lovely lake, where later, a Jagat Singh built the renowned palace on the lake. For Akbar defeating Chittor was a matter of honor (izzat) and this win effectively sealed his glory in the history of the Mughals. Historian Abu’l – Fazl in his Akbar-nama, recorded the events of Akbar’s rule.

Akbar also undertook the building of a new capital in Sikri (later called Fatehpur Sikri) and planned to move his capital from Agra to Sikri. Despite being married to many wives he was heirless and propitiated his respects to a member of the Chisti family called Shaikh Salim Chisti of Sikri. The Sufi holy man correctly predicted that the emperor would have three sons. The first male child was born to his Rajput wife and was named Salim (later Jahangir) in honor of Chisti. The fulfilled prophesy of Chisti of Sikri also had an important role in his folly of building a new capital in Fatehpur Sikri. After completing his father Humayun’s tomb, he undertook an ambitious plan to build an extravagant palace and other buildings in the middle of nowhere.

Akbar was a keen student of the various religions of India. Sufism flourished and the Bhakti cult as well as the Jain and Sikh followers of Guru Nanak fascinated Akbar. In his mind he formed an amalgam of various religions like Islam, Hinduism, Jainism and Sikhism. He even had Portuguese padres from Goa visit his court to give him a sermon on Christianity. He then sought a religion that encompassed the best elements of the various religions and proposed a new one called Din Ilahi or the Divine Faith. However, he did not vigorously promulgate his new religion and it never gained in popularity, as the tenets were not clearly spelled out. As expected he soon ran afoul with the ulema, who considered his actions blasphemous and a threat to Islam. His half brother Hakim, the governor of Kabul sent a fatwa enjoining all Muslims to revolt. With the help of his Hindu lieutenants Akbar was able to defeat Hakim in Lahore and then made a triumphant entrance into Kabul in 1581. Akbar went on to secure his borders and annex more and more territory. Not only Gujarat, Orissa and Rajasthan were subdued but Kashmir was also conquered. Sindh and Kabul were also under Akbar’s control by 1595. Fatehpur Sikri was having trouble with water supply and Salim, his eldest son was showing signs of restlessness about potential succession. Akbar then chose the security of the fort in Agra, abandoning Fatehpur Sikri. It was during this time that Akbar was busy with extending his empire into Deccan. The assault on Ahmadnagar became confused with the internal threat to Akbar from his son and resulted in a halfhearted attempt and least rewarding of Akbar’s conquests.

Akbar was also an exact contemporary of Elizabeth I of England but was the ruler of far greater number of people in India than the sparse population of England. The population of the subcontinent of India at the end of the sixteenth century is estimated at 140 million people with most of them living in the territory controlled by Akbar, between the Himalayas and the Deccan plateau. Compare this with the population of five million in England and 40 million in Western Europe. Akbar was indeed a true monarch and India with its enormous manpower quickly became rich again.

The benevolent monarch suspended all unjust taxation of non-Muslims. These taxes, called jizya had been collected ever since the Muslim rulers took control of India. Initially the Brahmins and some Buddhists were exempt but later Feroz Shah Tughlaq had made the taxes mandatory for all non-Muslims. Though handicapped with learning disabilities, Akbar appreciated art and music and honored artists, whoever they were. Miniature paintings from his era are considered to be masterpieces and the legendary musician Tansen was his royal singer in his court. Akbar’s reign also began an unprecedented period of political stability in India. A crafty and intelligent minister Birbal is the subject of much folklore.

The emperor’s waning years were mired in sadness. His own son, Prince Salim turned against him. In the year 1600, when Akbar was away, Salim attempted to seize Agra. The father and son reconciled but Salim again declared himself emperor in 1602. Salim murdered the trusted memorialist of Akbar, Abu’l-fazl, when he was sent to Salim to broker a truce between father and son. Akbar finally agreed to have Salim as his successor. However when Akbar died in 1605, perhaps form grief, the question of succession was far from settled. Salim’s son Khusrau was also vying for the throne, supported by the Delhi nobles. The erstwhile history of Muslim rulers with their tendency towards fratricide and patricide was again upon the Mughals.

The filial piety seen for two generations of Mughals would be forgotten and replaced by routine violence prior to each succession. The internal strife, as a result, would be a larger threat to Mughal rule than any external pressure.


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Re: Collection of Interesting Historical Facts of Akbar Era..(members to post Historical facts only)

Post by --sumana13-- on 2014-02-09, 20:35

A visit to the Agra Fort ....the seat of Moghul power during Akbar's reign 













The interior courtyard of Jahangiri Mahal, inside Agra Fort. Favorite See All Share. 25 / 175. The interior courtyard of Jahangiri Mahal, inside Agra Fort.




angoori baag ( those days had vines of juicy sweet grapes)






Royal chamber of Emperor


don't miss the fountain 







The Nagina Mosque inside Agra Fort, Agra.



Diwaan-i-aam hall of public audience





the royal seat in DEA




Diwan-i-khaas ..Hall of private audience 







Moti Masjid was built inside the Agra fort in 1654 during the reign of Shah Jahan (1627-1558). Inside Agra Fort.



DEK & Angoori baag 



view inside Agra fort .. area for cavalry




Mariam Zamani Palace/Jodha bai palace... where all of Akbar's Hindu wives resided







The forbidding exterior of the building indicates its function as a zenana (Mughal harem), where most of the palace women lived in guarded seclusion.



Harem for the ladies of lower ranking 



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Re: Collection of Interesting Historical Facts of Akbar Era..(members to post Historical facts only)

Post by --sumana13-- on 2014-02-09, 21:30


Sharing some info of Akbar's children .. 

....credits Neha


1. Fatima Sultan Begum (1561-1562): She was daughter of Ruqaiya Sultan. It is not clear that this child was stillborn or died in infancy. I got two accounts, one states Ruqaiya had a miscarriage when she was heavily pregnant in her 6-7th month of pregnancy and other stated Ruqaiya lost her child when it was of 7-8 months.  


2. A daughter born to MUZ, it is still unclear whether the child died in infancy or was stillborn. 


3. Hasan and Husain (1564): some docs says the twins were born to MUZ and some says they were from a concubine Bibi Aram Baksh. Born in month of october these children could not survive. Husain died 10 days later and Hasan died 15 days later of their birth. (I was told these twins were born to MUZ when I visited Fatehpur Sikri)


4. Salim Aka Jehangir (1569) : born to MUZ @ Fathepur Sikri


5. Shahzadi Khanum Sultan(1569) : born to a concubine named Bibi Salima(died @ Lahore in 1599)(not to be confused with Salima Sultan) after around 2-3 months of Salim's birth. She was brought up by Mariam Makani (Hamida Banu).


6. Shah Murad aka Pahadi(1570) : born to a concubine named Bibi Khaira @ Fatehpur Sikri and was given to Salima Sultan. 




7. Shahzadi Meethi Begum (1571) : born to a concubine and died in infancy @ Fatehpur Sikri.


8. Shahzadi Mahi Begum (1571): born to daughter of Maharaja of Jaisalmer, died @ Fatehpur Sikri.


9. Shah Daniyal (1572) : born to a concubine named Bibi Mariam (She was most probably from Armenia, died @ Lahore 1596) @ the house of Sheikh Danial (a successor of Garib Nawaz Khwaja Moinuddin Chisti) Ajmer. He was sent to Amber/Amer in the care of wife of Raja Bharmal/BihariMal but for a very short period of time. Later he was brought up by MUZ. 


11. Shahzadi Shakrunnisa Begum (1572-1573) : born to a lower rank begum(or concubine) Bibi Daulat Shad. She was the most beloved sister of Jahangir. He mentioned his love for her as a child has for its mother. She and Khanum Sultan got married on the same day in 1593 @ Lahore where Akbar shifted his court. 


10. Khusru Mirza(not to be confused with Jahangir's son, birth year unknown) : born to Raj Kanwari-princess of Bikaner, most probably died in infancy. 


11. Shahzadi Aram Banu(1584) : born to Bibi Daulat Shaad and was the most beloved child of Akbar along with Daniyal and Salim. She remained unmarried. 


Note : All 3 daughters Khanum, Shakrunnisa and Aram are buried near Akbar's tomb in Sikandara, Agra.

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Re: Collection of Interesting Historical Facts of Akbar Era..(members to post Historical facts only)

Post by --sumana13-- on 2014-02-09, 21:34

NavratnasAkbar's court had Navaratnas (Nine Jewels)
Meaning a group of nine extraordinary people. 


They included:
Abul Fazel (Akbars's chief advisor and author of Akbarnama)


Faizi (Akbar's poet laureate)


Mian Tansen (a Hindu singer who converted to Islam)


Birbal (a noble known for his wittiness)


Raja Todar Mal (Akbar's finance minister)


Raja Man Singh (trusted general of Akbar)


Abdul Rahim Khan-I-Khana (a noble and a renowned poet)


Fakir Aziao-Din


Mullah Do Piaza

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Re: Collection of Interesting Historical Facts of Akbar Era..(members to post Historical facts only)

Post by --sumana13-- on 2014-02-09, 21:50

Miniature paintings from Ain-i-Akbari
Well researched, the book is consistent with the large body of material available on Akbar, vitally that which was written during, and shortly after, his reign. Chief among these are the Ain-i-Akbari













Battle Scene from the Akbarnama





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Re: Collection of Interesting Historical Facts of Akbar Era..(members to post Historical facts only)

Post by --sumana13-- on 2014-02-09, 21:57



Tan Sen

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Re: Collection of Interesting Historical Facts of Akbar Era..(members to post Historical facts only)

Post by --sumana13-- on 2014-02-09, 21:58

Map of Moghul Empire 



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Re: Collection of Interesting Historical Facts of Akbar Era..(members to post Historical facts only)

Post by --sumana13-- on 2014-02-09, 22:13

The Tomb of Akbar the Great is an important Mughal architectural masterpiece in Sikandra
Tomb of the Greatest of all the Mughal emperors. It is Akbar the Great's era thats considered the "Golden Age" of Mughal Empire

Beyond the main arch is an ornate foyer, then a dark passage leading into the chamber where Akbar rests.





A beautiful Muslim Lamp hanging at The Tomb of Akbar the Great





Wide angle view of Akbar the Great's tomb at the Sikandra in Agra, india. 


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Re: Collection of Interesting Historical Facts of Akbar Era..(members to post Historical facts only)

Post by --sumana13-- on 2014-02-09, 22:36

The Royal hamams


Jodha's hamam

 The Royal Hammam (baths)

interior of Royal hamam

 Various  hammams for royalty in various mahals/residences/hojras











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Re: Collection of Interesting Historical Facts of Akbar Era..(members to post Historical facts only)

Post by --sumana13-- on 2014-02-09, 22:36

Koh-i-Nur: A Diamond's Incredible Journey

The most famous diamond of India, Koh-i-Nur, has a colorful history and journey over more than five hundred years.  It has been said that whoever owned the Koh-i-Nur ruled the world. 


 Koh-i-Nur was an enormous diamond.  It weighed around 186 carats (eight misqals) and according to Babur, its value was enough to feed the whole world for ‘half a day.’  Koh-i-Nur had a reputation of either bestowing its owner the status of world conqueror and ruler, or utter misery, misfortune and death.  Because Babur was the first to mention the diamond in his memoir, it came to be sometimes known as ‘Babur’s diamond.’ Babur says that his son Humayun offered it to him because of its beauty and clarity, but he promptly gave it back to Humayun. 

Koh-i-Nur’s 700 Year Journey

  1. In 1304, Ala-ud-din Khilji came to possess the diamond, presumably presented to him by the Deccan king.
  2. The diamond came into the hands of the raja of Gwalior from unknown sources.
  3. In 1526, Humayun was ‘gifted’ the diamond in Agra by the family of Vikramaditya, raja of Gwalior.
  4. Humayun offered the diamond to his father Babur, who promptly gave it back to Humayun.
  5. In 1540 Humayun lost his empire and fled to Persia with the diamond.
  6. Humayun presented Koh-i-Nur to the Persian ruler Shah Tamasp in exchange for support in regaining his empire.
  7. Shah Tamasp gifted the diamond to the Sultan of Golconda – date unknown.
  8. Mir Jumla, a Persian adventurer in Hyderabad gave the diamond to Aurangzeb, when he was the governor of Deccan.
  9. Aurangzeb gave the diamond to his father, Shah Jahan that became one of his priceless possessions. (circa 1630’s)
  10. Nadir Shah of Persia invaded Delhi and stole the Koh-i-Nur (and the Peacock Throne), and transported it to Tehran c.1739.
  11. Nadir Shah’s blind grandson, Shah Rukh gave the diamond to Ahmad Shah Abdali (circa 1751).
  12. Shah Shuja, Abdali’s grandson gave the diamond to Raja Ranjit Singh of Punjab, in exchange for protection (circa 1813).
  13. As part of the Treaty of Lahore, Dalhousie took possession of Koh-i-Nur in 1849 and presented it to Queen Victoria in 1850.
  14. The diamond was re-cut under the directions of Prince Albert and now resides out of sight in Windsor Castle.


The Curse of Koh-i-Nur




The Koh-i-Nur stayed in Delhi for one hundred years until Nadir Shah of Persia, after plundering Delhi, carried the diamond back to Persia in 1739.  He had heard of the priceless stone and come particularly in search of it in Delhi.  His initial attempts to find the stone were not successful.  A woman in the then Mughal emperor Muhammad Shah’s harem betrayed the Emperor, and informed Nadir Shah that the Emperor hid the diamond in his turban.  So the shrewd Nadir Shah had to resort to a clever trick. He ordered a grand feast to coincide with the restoration of Mohammed Shah to his throne (which itself was an insult to the Mughal Empire of erstwhile fame and glory). During the course of the ceremony, Nadir Shah suddenly proposed an exchange of turbans, a well-known oriental custom signifying the creation of brotherly ties, sincerity and eternal friendship. 


Mohammed Shah was taken aback but at the same time was hardly in a position to resist such a request. With as much grace as he could summon, he accepted. Eventually when Nadir Shah went to his private apartment for the night, and unfolded the turban to find the diamond concealed within. He then exclaimed "Koh-i-Nur", meaning "Mountain of Light". The most famous diamond in history now had a name.   Later the diamond was in the possession of Shah Rukh, one of the grandsons of Nadir Shah.  Shah Rukh had suffered immeasurably and was even blinded by his foes, but refused to part with the Koh-i-Nur.  After he was dethroned and blinded, he was allowed to live as the Governor of a province in Persia, but tenaciously held on to the precious diamond.  


A wily warrior Aga Muhammad by name had a penchant for diamonds and was determined to take it away from Shah Rukh.  He crafted a quiet coup on the city and held Shah Rukh’s feet to fire (literally), and demanded that he part with the Koh-i-Nur.  Shah Rukh refused and suffered more inhuman torture which he endured.  Finally he made alliance with Ahmad Shah Abdali, an Afghani ruler, who helped in his dire plight in 1751.  (The infamous Ahmad Shah Abdali had followed in the footsteps of Nadir Shah and attacked Delhi repeatedly in order to fill his coffers in 1756 and againg in 1760).  


After Shah Rukh’s death, Abdali took the diamond and it stayed in Afghanistan for the next three generations.  From Abdali it passed on to his son Timur Shah (who moved the capital from Khandahar to Kabul).  Timur was a weak ruler but quite potent in other ways, as he left behind 23 sons to contend for the throne.  Upon the death of Timur Shah in 1793, Koh-i-Nur was inherited by his eldest son Shah Zaman.  A fraternal dispute developed between Shah Zaman and his brother Shah Shuja and the former lost his eyesight as well as the Koh-i-Nur in the ensuing power struggle.   There is an interesting story of the diamond in Shah Zaman’s possession.  The Shah, who had been blinded by his brother Shah Mahmud, had hidden the diamond in the wall of his prison cell.  A guard accidentally brushed his hand against the chipped plaster and discovered the diamond. Thus another brother Shah Shuja, who now was ruling Afghanistan came to possess the diamond. Shah Shuja wore it proudly on his breast and the British envoy Elphinstone (of Bombay) saw the diamond and mentioned it to his colleagues. (After this the British never lost sight of the diamond, as will be seen later in the story).  


 In any case, Koh-i-Nur did not bestow good fortune on the family of Persians and Afghans who had plundered Delhi.  It only brought misfortune and misery to the grandson of Nadir Shah, in his tenacious clinging on to the rock, despite being blinded and tortured.  It did not fare well with the Afghan family of Abdali either.  His grandson Shah Zaman had been blinded by his own brother and incarcerated, but still refused to part with the diamond.  Shah Shuja himself was later overthrown and forced to seek shelter in India, under Raja Ranjit Singh. 

Myth and Controversy


The Koh-i-Nur has wrought misery to many of its owners, especially the ones who plundered Delhi and took it back to Persia and Afghanistan.  It has also been used as a tool to entice alliances and support.  The prediction that it would either bestow rulership of the world or miserable death to its owners was not entirely a myth.   Diamonds have been relegated almost divine status in India from centuries.  They fare prominently in many mythological stories.  A stone such as Koh-i-Nur could easily be an object of worship.  Legend has it that the stone was first recovered from the beds of River Godavari by Karna, the legendary warrior in Mahabharata.  He had worn this diamond as a talisman.     But the journey of Koh-i-Nur is more or less documented after Humayun was ‘gifted’ it by the fugitive family of Vikramaditya of Gwalior in Agra.  Its final resting place seems to is in the Windsor Castle, as a priceless crown jewel.  It was acquired by the British monarchy during the apogee of the British Empire.  However, the sun has set over the British Empire and there is no guarantee that the Koh-i-Nur will never again embark on another journey.  


 The story of Koh-i-Nur is not devoid of controversies.  How many of the stories and anecdotes are true and how many are fiction?  There is no agreement that the diamond Humayun acquired from the raja of Gwalior’s family that Babur mentioned in his memoir is the same diamond as the one Nadir Shah called Koh-i-Nur.  ‘Babur’s diamond,’ as it was called before Nadir Shah laid his eyes on it, may be a different diamond all together.  If the diamond that Babur wrote about belonged to Ala-ud-din Khilji, how did the rajas of Gwalior come to possess it?  Was it restored to the rajas by the Sultan Khilji after a peace treaty?  This is an unlikely occurrence because of the well known reputation and disposition of the Sultan. 



How and when did Aurangzeb get the diamond back from the Sultan of Golconda?  Aurangzeb had attacked Hyderabad with the help of Mir Jumla in 1656.  That was only two years before he incarcerated his father and proclaimed himself as the Emperor.  Was the diamond that Mir Jumla gave Aurangzeb the famed Koh-i-Nur?  Or did Mir Jumla give it directly to Shah Jahan in an attempt to convince him to attack Golconda?  Did the wily Mir Jumla give two diamonds, one each to father and son?  Was the diamond that Aurangzeb had cut by a Venetian lapidary, a different diamond than Koh-i-Nur?  Another diamond that was called ‘the Mogul’ has now disappeared and its whereabouts unknown.   Were the Mogul, Babur’s diamond and the Koh-i-Nur one and the same?  Koh-i-Nur and Babur’s diamond have been described by various observers.  Their weights and cut seem to be the same.     Just over a century later we are in a better position to evaluate some of the famous diamonds of history. We now have details of the treasures amassed by the Czars, Shahs and other monarchs. 


We know for sure that there are three diamonds in existence, which have a direct bearing upon the questions raised concerning the identity of the Great Mogul, Koh-i-Nur and Babur's diamond. They are the Orlov, weighing 189.62 metric carats, now in the Kremlin; the Darya-i-Nur with an estimated weight of between 175 and 195 metric carats and presumed to still be among the Iranian Crown Jewels; and the Koh-i-Nur, whose former weight before it was re-cut, was 186 carats, equivalent to 190.3 metric carats. 


Regarding identifying truly historic diamonds with gems that we know exist today, the suggestion that Koh-i-Nur and the Great Mogul once formed parts of the same stone is impossible: the Koh-i-Nur is a white diamond where as the Orlov - if we assume it to be the Great Mogul (which it most likely is) - possesses a slight bluish-green tint. So, the Daryai-i-Nur has been identified for sure as the largest fragment of the Great Table Diamond; a very strong case exists for identifying the Orlov as being cut from the 280-carat Great Mogul; and a less-strong, but nevertheless valid case can be made for identifying the Koh-i-Nur as Babur's diamond.    


 These questions probably will never be answered fully to a researcher’s satisfaction.  There are not enough historical records available to answer them.  But in the interim, the glory and the myths of Koh-i-Nur lives on and has been recognized as one of the world’s greatest diamonds.

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Re: Collection of Interesting Historical Facts of Akbar Era..(members to post Historical facts only)

Post by --sumana13-- on 2014-02-10, 08:44

EXCERPTS: Life in a Mughal harem
By Soma Mukherjee

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How did the women in the royal household of the Mughals live? Soma Mukherjee sheds some light

THE Mughal ladies spent their entire lives inside the emperor’s harem. A feeling of awe and mystery even today fills one’s mind when one hears of the Mughal harem. Many things have been written and many things have been guessed about the life of Mughal ladies. The manner in which the Mughal women spent their lives, their places of residence, their food and clothes, purdah and religion, pleasures and pastimes, learning and education and even their love and resentments, have always remained matters of interest to many. The Mughal women were no ordinary women. They were royal women. And therefore, their social life was certainly very much different from that of the ordinary women of the mediaeval times.

The harems of the Mughal emperor consisted of a large number of women and in it lived women of different races, provinces and communities. Manucci stated that there were “within the palace two thousand women of different races”. Apart from Muslim women, there were Hindu women including Rajput ladies, and even Christian women in the harem of the Mughal emperors. The harems of Babar and Humayun were modest in size. But from Akbar’s time onwards the Mughal harem became an elaborate affair having a large number of women. Akbar’s harem had approximately 500 women. The harems of Jehangir, Shahjahan and the puritan Aurangzeb were also very large. According to Hawkins, Jehangir had “three hundred wives where foure be chief as queens”. According to Terry’s estimates Jehangir’s harem consisted of “four wives, and concubines and women beside ... enough to make up their number a full thousand”.

When one thinks of the women who lived inside the harem, only the picture of the king’s wives, concubines, dancing and singing girls and slave and servant girls comes to one’s mind. But the harem did not comprise only the women belonging to these categories. Of course, these women did live in the harem, but there were many others who also lived there. They were the mothers, stepmothers, foster-mothers, aunts, grandmothers, sisters, daughters and other female relatives of the king. Even the male children lived inside the harem till they grew up. Then, there were the ladies-in-waiting, slave and servant girls and a number of women officials and guards who were appointed by the emperor for taking care of the various needs of the harem. There were eunuch guards also guarding the surrounding areas of the harem quartes. Female fortune-tellers also lived inside the harem. Some women and eunuchs acted as spies and they kept the emperor informed about the activities of the harem women. Women usually came into the harem through marriage, birth, purchase, appointment or as gifts.



Lifestyle
The lives of the harem ladies were governed by strict rules of purdah. These ladies usually did not have the liberty to move out of the harem as they liked. If at all they went out, their faces were well hidden behind veils. But inside the harem they could move around as they pleased. They were also provided with various kinds of luxuries and comforts. The daily life in the harem was full of gaiety and mirth. At least, this is the picture that foreigners like Bernier and Manucci, who once in a while had access to the harem as physicians, give in their accounts.

They led lives of great comfort, luxury and materialistic pleasure. These ladies lived in grand apartments luxuriously furnished, with lovely gardens, fountains, tanks and water channels attached to them. They wore beautiful and expensive clothes made from the finest material and adorned themselves with jewellery from head to toe. They rarely went out, but when they did, most of the times the ladies of rank travelled in style and comfort in richly decorated howdahs on elephant backs and palanquins.

The daily needs of the emperor and his harem inmates were fulfilled to a great extent by the imperial departments. Their food came from the imperial kitchen called the Matbakh. The Akbar Khana provided drinking water and wine. During summers ice cold water was supplied to the imperial household. The Maywa Khanah provided fruits to the household. Rikab Khanah or the bakery was in charge of supplying bread. The imperial karkhanas provided the royal ladies with beautiful dresses, jewellery, household and fancy articles.




* * * * *

Recreation and pastime
Since the harem ladies rarely went outside the palace, most of their time was spent inside the seraglio. The harem staff had their respective duties to perform. The royal ladies mostly spent their time by adorning, decorating and beautifying themselves. Various arrangements were made for their recreation inside the harem. There were female superintendents of music and dance and a number of lady singers and dancers. The ladies played many indoor games. Sometimes they read books like Gulistan and Bostan of Shaikh Sadi Shirazi. Some of the royal ladies went a step ahead than the others and did great works like building monuments and gardens, composing works of literary value, participating in trade and commerce and sometimes even taking part in contemporary politics.


Status and position
On the whole, the life of a Mughal lady revolved round the emperor. All the harem ladies did not enjoy equal position. Their status and the position of authority and respect in the harem was determined by the place they had in the emperor’s life or in his heart. Their mutual relationship amongst themselves was usually friendly and cordial. But jealousies were prevalent though it was not shown directly. Everyone tried their best to please the emperor and nobody wanted to show her bad qualities like jealousy, quarrelsome nature or short-tempered attitude. To give the king or prince his first male child was a great honour and competition in this regard often resulted in a woman’s trying to miscarry the pregnancies of other women around her. Worries or unpleasantness were usually kept away from them. Death was not usually mentioned throughout the palace. When a lady fell ill she was shifted to the Bimar Khanah. Only the death of very prominent harem ladies was mourned.

The more important position a lady occupied, the more privileges she enjoyed. If she was childless, she was allowed to bring up the child of some other loyal lady as her own. Maham Begam, one of Babar’s principal wives and the mother of Humayun, had lost four children after Humayun’s birth. She was given Hindal and Gulbadan, the children of another wife Dildar Begam, and she brought them up. The childless first wife of Akbar, Ruqqaiah Sultan Begam, was given Prince Salim’s son Khurram after the child was born. She brought him up with a lot of love and care as revealed by Jehangir in his memoirs when he wrote, “My father had given my son Khurram into her charge, and she loved him a thousand times more than if he had been her own.” Shahjahan’s second son Prince Shuja was brought up by Nur Jahan Begam as per Jahangir’s wishes.



The status of mother
During the Mughal age, the first lady of the realm was usually the emperor’s mother and not his chief queen, except in the case of Nur Jahan and Mumtaz Mahal. Only after the death of the Queen Mother did the chief consort of the emperor take her place. All the Mughal emperors starting from Babar, showed great respect to their mothers. The Babar Nama and Gulbadan Begam’s Humayun Nama have many instances which reveal the great honour and respect shown to the mothers by the emperors. After the coronation ceremonies it was the mother whom the emperor first visited. So was the case on other days of rejoicing like festivals and birthdays.

Abul Fazal said that when long fasts came to an end, the first dishes of meat went to Akbar from his mother’s place. Once when Akbar’s mother was travelling in a palanquin from Lahore to Agra, Akbar was travelling with her. At one place he took the palanquin upon his own shoulders and carried her from one side of the river to another. At one place in the Tuzuk-i-Jahangiri, Jehangir reveals his love and respect for his mother in these words:

“On the same day her Majesty the revered Maryam-Zamani (his mother) came from Agra, and I acquired eternal good fortune from the blessing of waiting on her. I hope that the shadow of her bringing up and affection may be perennial on the head of this suppliant.”



* * * * *

Deference to elder women
Apart from their own mothers and foster-mothers, the other wives of their father were also looked upon with a lot of respect by the Mughals. Jodha Bai was Jehangir’s own mother. But he had great respect and affection for Ruqaiya Begam and Salima Sultan Begam also. Akbar respected Haji Begam a lot. The grandmothers, aunts and other elderly relations were also respected and well cared for. The memoirs of Babar and Jehangir and the Humayun Nama of Gulbadan Begam reveal many a time the esteem that the Mughal emperors had for their mothers and other elderly lady relatives. A.S Beveridge states, “It may be said that both Babar and Haider convey the opinion that deference to elder women was a permanent trait of their age and set.” These ladies too many a time, including difficult times, lent their active support to their emperor and many crises were solved. Various incidents from the Babar Nama reveal the amount of respect that Babar had for the ladies of his family even if they belonged to his rival camp. From Gulbadan Begam’s accounts too we have evidences proving this. In one place Gulbadan Begam wrote:

“All through the four years that my father was in Agra he used to go on Fridays to see his paternal aunts. One day it was extremely hot, and her highness my lady (Akam) said, “The wind is very hot indeed; how would it be if you did not go this one Friday? The begams would not be vexed. His Majesty said, Maham! It is astonishing that you should say such things! The daughters of Abu-Sa’id Sultan Mirza, who have been deprived of father and brothers! If do not cheer them, how will it be done?”

Gulbadan Begam goes on to say:

“To the architect, Khwaja Qasim, his Majesty gave the following order: ‘We command a piece of good service from you. It is this: Whatever work, even it be on a great scale, our paternal aunts may order done in their palace, give it precedence, and carry it out with might and main.’”

The respect and affection that the Mughal emperors had for the mothers, aunts and grandmothers extended to the sisters as well. Gulbadan Begam gives many instances in her Humayun Nama revealing the love that Babar and Humayun had for their sisters. Babar held his elder sister Khanzada Begam in high esteem and she too underwent many a difficulties for her brother’s sake. Though Gulbadan was not Humayun’s own sister, Humayun loved her very much and he cared a lot for his other sisters too. If any sister met any calamity like widowhood, the brother was always there to provide her with shelter. When Gul Chihra Begam became a widow, Humayun gave orders to bring her back to Agra. Jehangir in his memoirs lovingly mentions his sisters Shukr-un-Nisa Begam and Aram Banu Begam, though born of different mothers.


--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Excerpts from the book: Royal Mughal ladies and their contribution- By Soma Mukherjee

Gyan Publishing House, New Delhi
Available in Pakistan with Indus Publications,
25 Fareed Chambers, Abdullah Haroon Road, Karachi Tel: 021-5660242
ISBN 81-212-0760-6
286pp. Indian Rs580


Last edited by --sumana13-- on 2014-02-10, 09:14; edited 1 time in total

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Re: Collection of Interesting Historical Facts of Akbar Era..(members to post Historical facts only)

Post by --sumana13-- on 2014-02-10, 08:57

The Guru Bairam Khan ...

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As to his outward appearance, ‘Akbar,’ wrote his son, the Emperor Jahangir, ‘was of middling stature, but with a tendency to be tall; he had a wheat-colour complexion, rather inclining to be dark than fair, black eyes and eyebrows, stout body, open forehead and chest, long arms and hands. There was a fleshy wart, about the size of a small pea, on the left side of his nose, which appeared exceedingly beautiful, and which was considered very auspicious by physiognomists, who said that it was a sign of immense riches and increasing prosperity. He had a very loud voice, and a very elegant and pleasant way of speech. His manners and habits were quite different from those of other persons, and his visage was full of godly dignity.’ Other accounts confirm, in its essentials, this description. Elphinstone writes of him as ‘a strongly built and handsome man, with an agreeable expression of countenance, and very captivating manners,’ and as having been endowed with great personal strength. He was capable of enduring great fatigue; was fond of riding, of walking, o

hunting, and of all exercises requiring strength and skill. His courage was that calm, cool courage which is never thrown off its balance, but rather shines with its greatest lustre under difficulty and danger. Though ready to carry on war, especially for objects which he deemed essential to the welfare of the empire or for the common weal, he did not rejoice in it. Indeed, he infinitely preferred applying himself to the development of those administrative measures which he regarded as the true foundation of his authority. War, then, to him was nothing more than a necessary evil. We shall find throughout his career that he did not wage a single war which he did not consider to be necessary to the completion and safety of his civil system. He had an affectionate disposition, was true to his friends, very capable of inspiring affection in others, disliked bloodshed, was always anxious to temper justice with mercy, preferred forgiveness to revenge, though, if the necessities of the case required it, he could be stern and could steel his heart against its generous promptings. Like all large-hearted men he was fond. of contributing to the pleasures of others. Generosity was thus a part of his nature, and, even when the recipient of his bounties proved unworthy, he was more anxious to reform him than regretful of his liberality. For civil administration he had a natural inclination, much preferring the planning of a system which might render the edifice his arms were erecting suitable to the yearnings of the people to the planning of a
campaign. On all the questions which have affected mankind in all ages, and which affect them still, the questions of religion, of civil polity, of the administration of justice, he had an open mind, absolutely free from prejudice, eager to receive impressions. Born and bred a Muhammadan, he nevertheless consorted freely and on equal terms with the followers of Buddha, of Brahma, of Zoroaster, and of Jesus. It has been charged against him that in his later years he disliked learned men, and even drove them from his court. It would be more correct to say that he disliked the prejudice, the superstition, and the obstinate adherence to the beliefs in which they had been educated, of the professors who frequented his court. He disliked, that is, the weaknesses and the foibles of the learned, and when these were carried to excess, he dispensed with their attendance at his court. What he was in other respects will be discovered by the reader for himself in the last chapter of this book. Sufficient, I hope, has been stated to give him some idea of the characteristics of the latent capacity of the young prince, who, fourteen years old, had under the tutelage of Bairam Khan won the battle of Panipat, and had marched from the field directly, without a halt, upon Delhi. Few, if any, of those about him knew then the strength of his character or the resources of his intellect. Certainly, his Atalik, Bairam, did not understand him, or he would neither have assassinated Tardi Beg in his tent at Sirhind, nor have suggested to the young prince to


plunge his sword into the body of the captured Hemu. But both Bairam and the other nobles of the court and army were not long kept in ignorance of the fact that in the son of Humayun they had, not a boy who might be managed, but a master who would be obeyed.
Akbar remained one month at Delhi. He sent thence a force into Mewat to pursue the broken army of Hemu and to gain the large amount of treasure it was conveying. In this short campaign his general, Pir Muhammad Khan of Sherwan, at the time a follower of Bairam but afterwards persecuted by him was eminently successful. Akbar then marched upon and recovered Agra.
But his conquests south of the Sutlej were not safe so long as the Punjab was not secure. And, as we have seen, he had been forced to leave at Mankot, driven back but not overcome, a determined enemy of his House in the person of Sikandar Sur. In March of the following year (1557) he received information that the advanced guard of the troops he had left in the Punjab had been defeated by that prince some forty miles from Lahore. Noblemen who came from the Punjab told him that the business was very serious, as Sikandar had made sure of a very strong base at Mankot, whence he might emerge to annoy even though he were defeated in the field, and that his victory had encouraged his partisans. Akbar recognised all the force of the argument, and resolved to put in force a maxim which constituted the great

strength of his reign, that if a thing were to be done at all, it should be done thoroughly. He accordingly marched straight on Lahore, and, finding Lahore safe, from that capital into Jalandhar, where his enemy was maintaining his ground. On the approach of Akbar, Sikandar retreated towards the Siwaliks, and threw himself into Mankot. There Akbar besieged him.
The siege lasted six months. Then, pressed by famine and weakened by desertions, Sikandar sent some of his nobles to ask for terms. Akbar acceded to his request that his enemy might be allowed to retire to Bengal, leaving his son as a hostage that he would not again war against the Emperor. The fort then surrendered, and Akbar returned to Lahore; spent four months and fourteen days there to arrange the province, and then marched on Delhi. As he halted at Jalandhar, there took place the marriage of Bairam Khan with a cousin of the late emperor, Humayun. This marriage had been arranged by Humayun, and to the young prince his father’s wishes on such subjects were a law. Akbar re-entered Delhi on the 15th of March, 1558. Bairam Khan was still, in actual management of affairs, the Atalik, the tutor, of the sovereign, and he continued to be so during the two years that followed, 1558 and 1559. It was not easy for a young boy to shake off all at once the influence of a great general under whom he had been placed to learn his trade, and possibly Akbar, though he did not approve many of the acts  
autthorised in his name by his Atalik, did not feel himself strong enough to throw off the yoke. But the removal by the strong hand of men whom Akbar liked, but who had incurred without reason the enmity of Bairam, gradually estranged the heart of the sovereign from his too autocratic minister. The estrangement, once begun, rapidly increased. Bairam did not recognise the fact that every year was developing the strong points in the character of his master; that he was adding experience and knowledge of affairs to the great natural gifts with which he had been endowed. He still continued to see in him the boy of whom he had been the tutor, whose armies he had led to victory, and whose dominions he was administering. The exercise of power without a check had made the exercise of such power necessary to him, and he continued to wield it with all the self-sufficiency of a singularly determined nature.
Round every young ruler there will be men who will never fail to regard the exercise by another of authority rightly pertaining to him as a grievous wrong to the ruler and to themselves. It is not necessary to inquire into the motives of such men. For one reason or another, often doubtless of a selfish, rarely of a pure and disinterested nature, they desire the young and rightful master of the State to be the dispenser of power and patronage. That there was a cluster of such men about Akbar, of men who disliked Bairam, who had been injured by him, who expected from the prince favours which they could not hope to


obtain from the minister, is certain. Female influence was also brought to bear on the mind of the sovereign. His nurse, who had attended on him from his cradle until after his accession, and who subsequently became the chief of his harem, urged upon him that the time had arrived when he should take the administration into his own hands. Akbar was not unwilling. He was in his eighteenth year. The four years he had lived since Panipat had restored to him part of the inheritance of his father, had been utilised by him in a manner calculated to develop and strengthen his natural qualities. But, though he saw and disliked the tendency to cruelty and arbitrary conduct often displayed by his chief minister, he had that regard for Bairam which a generous heart instinctively feels for the man who has been his tutor from his childhood. Experience, too, had given him so thorough an insight into the character of Bairam that he could not but be sensible that any breach with him must be a complete breach; that he must rid himself of him in a manner which would render it impossible for him to aspire to the exercise of any power whatever. Bairam, he knew, would have the whole authority, or it would be unsafe to entrust him with any.
Various circumstances occurred in the beginning of 1560 which determined Akbar to take into his own hands the reins of government. He went therefore from Agra to Delhi resolved to announce this determination to his minister. Bairam himself had more than



once given an example of the mode in which he rid himself of a rival or a noble whom he hated. His methods were the dagger or the sword. But such a remedy was abhorrent to the pure mind of the young Emperor. Nor – so far as can be gathered from the records of the period – had anyone dared to whisper to him a proposal of that character. The course which his mother and his nurse had alike suggested was to propose to the minister in a manner which would make the proposition have all the effect of a command, an honourable exile to Mekka. Bairam had often publicly declared that he was longing for the opportunity when he could safely resign his political burden into the hands of others and make the pilgrimage which would ensure salvation. Akbar then, anxious to prevent any armed resistance, on arriving at Delhi, issued a proclamation in which he declared that he had assumed the administration of affairs, and forbade obedience to any orders but to those issued by himself. He sent a message to this effect to his minister, and suggested in it the desirability of his making a pilgrimage to Mekka.Bairam had heard of Akbar’s determination before the message reached him, and had quitted Agra on his way



to the western coast. He was evidently very angry, and bent on mischief, for, on reaching Biana, he set free some turbulent nobles who had been there confined. He received there Akbar’s message, and continued thence his journey to Nagaur in Rajputana, accompanied only by nobles who were related to him, and by their respective escorts. From Nagaur, by the hand of one of these, he despatched to the Emperor, as a token of submission to his will, his banner, his kettle-drums, and all other marks of nobility. Akbar, who had been assured that Bairam would most certainly attempt to rouse the Punjab against him, had marched with an army towards that province, and was at Jhajhar, in the Rohtak district, when the insignia reached him. He conferred them upon a former adherent of Bairam’s, but who in more recent times had lived under the displeasure of that nobleman, and commissioned him to follow his late master and see that he embarked for Mekka. Bairam was greatly irritated at this proceeding, and turning short to Bikaner, placed his family under the care of his adopted son and broke out into rebellion. But he had to learn the wide difference of the situation of a rebel against the Mughal, and the trusted chief officer of the Mughal. On reaching Dipalpur, the news overtook him that his adopted son had proved false to his trust and had turned against him. Resolved, however, to rouse the Jalandhar Duab, he pushed on for that well-known locality, only to encounter on its borders the army of the Governor of

the Punjab, Atjah Khan In the battle that followed Bairam was defeated, and fled to Tilwara on the Sutlej, thirty miles to the west of Ludhiana. Akbar, who had been on his track when his lieutenant encountered and defeated him, followed his late Atalik, and reduced him to such straits that Bairam threw himself on his mercy. Then Akbar, remembering the great services he had rendered, pardoned him, and, furnishing him with a large sum of money, despatched him on the road to Mekka. Bairam reached Gujarat in safety, was well received there by the Governor, and was engaged in making his preparations to quit India, when he was assassinated by a Lohani Afghan whose father had been killed at the battle of Machciwara. Akbar, meanwhile, had returned to Delhi (November 9, 1560). He rested there a few days and then pushed on to Agra, there to execute the projects he had formed for the conquest, the union, the consolidation of the provinces he was resolved to weld into an empire. His reign, indeed, in the sense of ruling alone without a minister who assumed the airs of a master, commenced really from this date. The Atalik, who had monopolized the power of the State, was gone, and the future of the country depended now entirely upon the genius of the sovereign.

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Re: Collection of Interesting Historical Facts of Akbar Era..(members to post Historical facts only)

Post by --sumana13-- on 2014-02-10, 09:05

The birth of Jehangir ...

credits Lynnie FB and boloji


Akbar with his beloved wife Marium alias Jodha/Harkha Bai


Prince Salim (b 1569 of Hindu Rajput princess from Amber) showed signs of restlessness at the end of a long reign by his father Akbar. During the absence of his father Akbar. During the absence of his father from Agra he pronounced himself as the king and turned rebellious. Akbar was able to wrestle the throne back but the prince was showing no signs of remorse. There was also an unconfirmed story of strained relationship between father and son due to Salim’s amorous advances to an ordinary dancing girl. Deeply in love and enchanted by the dancing girl, Anarkali, who was of common birth, Salim was ready to make her his queen. This union, surprisingly, was said to have been unacceptable to Akbar and the girl was abducted and deported to a far off land. Though the historians do not mention the existence of such a girl called Anarkali, the folklore certainly has survived. This also might have exacerbated the strain between the monarch and the prince.


Salim did not have to worry about his sibling’s aspirations to the throne. His two brothers, Murad and Daniyal, had both died early from alcoholism. Ironically a similar fate would await Salim at the end of his reign when he also succumbed to the ill effects of excessive drinking. But his challenge came from a surprising member of his family. His son Khusrau was favored by the nobles and made an attempt to unseat Salim, who by 1602 had proclaimed himself as the emperor and renamed himself Jahangir (World Conqueror). Khusrau laid siege to Lahore but was captured by Jahangir and blinded. The cruelty of the previous Sultans of Delhi had now pervaded into the Mughal emperors. Hitherto unknown fraternal and filial murder and torture at the time of succession was to become the norm and almost expected in the kingdom. Jahangir explained that a king should consider no man his relation and sovereignty did not regard the relation between father and son. Treacherous perfidy during succession would not shock any future Mughal heirs.

Jahangir began his era as a Mughal emperor after the death of Akbar in the year 1605. He considered his third son Prince Khurram (future Shah Jahan-born 1592 of Hindu Rajput princess Manmati), his favorite. Rana of Mewar and Prince Khurram had a standoff that resulted in a treaty acceptable to both parties. Khurram was kept busy with several campaigns in Bengal and Kashmir. Jahangir claimed the victories of Khurram – Shah Jahan as his own. However, Kandahar, which had been won by Akbar, was lost to Persia’s Shah Abbas. Further defeats were handed in Northern Afghanistan. Some success was at hand in the Deccan when an African slave, Malik Ambar, brought from Baghdad, serving under the sultante of Ahmadnagar, helped Khurram-Shah Jahan.
The monarch meanwhile was basking in the glory of his son’s victories. He also had unlimited sources of revenue largely due to a systematic organization of the administration by his father, Akbar. The opulence of the Mughals had reached its pinnacle during Jahangir and Shah Jahan’s rule, thanks to Akbar’s foresight. Jahangir built his famous gardens in Kashmir and spent much time relaxing and delegating his work to others. One such person was Jahangir’s wife, Nur Jahan, whom he married in 1611. She was the thirty-year-old widow of one of his Afghan nobles. Her father, Persian born Itimad-ud-Daula became a minister and closest advisor to the emperor. Very able Nur Jahan along with her father and brother Asaf Khan, who was a successful general, ran the kingdom. Jahangir was the monarch in absentia. Addicted to alcohol, he was content to let his wife govern.

After the fiasco in Kandahar, the relationship between Khurram and Jahangir soured. Khurram suspected that Nur Jahan favored her son-in-law Prince Shariyar (son of Jahangir from a slave), who was married to her daughter Ladli Begum, from her first marriage. Khurram was in rebellion with his father and in this the African slave Malik Ambar and Nur Jahan’s brother Asaf Khan aided him. Khurram- Shah Jahan was married to Asaf Khan’s daughter Mumtaz Mahal. Prince Shariyar was murdered and Nur Jahan spent her last years building a tomb for her father Itimad-ud-Daula in Agra. She could have little influence over the willful Shah Jahan or her niece Mumtaz Mahal.

Jahangir had kept a diary that can pass marginally as memoirs. He describes inane and insignificant details of his garden and daily happenings around the palace. It only serves to give a glimpse of the emperor’s life in a superficial way. Though not a soldier, Jahangir was an ardent patron of Mughal art and an avid builder. He built Akbar’s five-tiered tomb in Sikandra. The emperor kept busy building in Lahore, Allahabad and Agra. While the de facto emperor, Nur Jahan was attending to administrative details, Jahangir found solace in loitering in his gardens and appreciating art and nature.

The darkest incident of his rule perhaps was the disposition of a peaceful leader of newly formed religion called Sikkhism. Akbar had watched the blossoming of the new religion founded by Guru Nanak, with fascination. Jahangir, in a controversy with its leader, was responsible for the death of Sikh Guru Arjan Singh (who died in Mughal prison) and this would have lasting consequences for future Mughal emperors. The peaceful religion of Sikhism would turn militant later when Jahangir’s grandson Aurangzeb murdered the ninth Sikh Guru Tegh Bahadur. Jahangir, the laid back emperor died in 1627 from alcohol abuse and Prince Khurram–Shah Jahan’s reign as the emperor began.

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Re: Collection of Interesting Historical Facts of Akbar Era..(members to post Historical facts only)

Post by --sumana13-- on 2014-02-10, 13:08

Reforms made by Abu'l Faith Jallauddin Muhammad Akbar...
shared by Sandhya



 Akbar,(born Oct. 15, 1542—died 1605),  was the greatest of the Mughal emperors of India, who reigned from 1556 to 1605 and who extended Mughal power over most of the Indian subcontinent. In order to preserve the unity of his empire, Akbar adopted programs that  were ahead of his times and won the loyalty of the non-Muslim populations of his realm. He reformed and strengthened his central administration and also centralized his financial system and reorganized tax-collection processes. Although he never renounced Islam, he took an active interest in other religions, persuading Hindus, Parsis, and Christians, as well as Muslims, to engage in religious discussion before him. Illiterate himself, he encouraged scholars, poets, painters, and musicians, making his court a centre of culture.

Here are a few of the reforms that may be dealt with in the serial in the days to come:

(1)  He abolished the Pilgrim Tax in 1563 with a view to winning over the good-will of theHindus. The Muslims opposed this act of the Emperor on the ground that it involved a huge loss to the royal treasury. Another argument was that as the Hindus had been paying the tax for a long time, the same was not inequitable. But Akbar preferred to lose annually a sum of Rupees one crore in order to win over the goodwill of the Hindus.


(2)  The next reform was the abolition of Jizya which was a tax on the "conscientious faith of any man." This measure went a long way in removing the deep-rooted bitterness in the minds of the Hindus against the Muslim rulers.


(3)  Akbar tried to remove the custom of Sati from the Hindus in general and the Rajputs in particular. Special inspectors were appointed to keep a watch on the voluntary or forced Sati. No woman was to be burnt against her will (1590-91).


(4)  Akbar discouraged child-marriages and the system of female infanticide. A law was made that no boy below the age of 16 and no girl below the age of 14 was to be married. Consent of the bride and bridegroom was made necessary for the performance of a marriage. By another law, it was provided that no son or daughter of a nobleman could be married without the ascertainment of their age by an official of the police.


Two officers called Turbegs were appointed in big towns to inquire into the circumstances of the bride and bridegroom. 


(5) If a Hindu was converted to Islam in his childhood, he was given the option to become a Hindu again if he so desired.


(6)  Akbar abolished the system of the enslavement of the wives and children of the conquered people. All persons in India were to be free.


(7) The Jagir system was abolished and all Jagirs were converted into Crownlands. The state became the owner of those lands and collected the revenues directly. The officers were to be paid salaries.


(8) Mir Arz was appointed to receive petition from the public and submit them to the Emperor.


(9)  Trial by ordeal was abolished.


(10) A record office was set up and the proceedings of the court were to be recorded.


(11)  Important changes were made in the organisation of the royal mint. Abdul Samad was appointed the mint master. Different officials were put incharge of the provincial mints of Bengal, Lahore, Jaunpur, Gujarat and Patna. Pure gold was used for coins and those were ofstandard weight. His coins were superior in weight accuracy, purity and artistry.


(12) And of course, his contribution to art and literature is ummatched. He created a huge library and had huge volumes written and translated in various languages. His court was always adorned by poets, architects and artisans. Tansen, Birbal, Abul Fazl and our own little Rahim Khanekhana (his poetry is a pleasure to read even now) are a few among the many.


(13)  His system of administration was unparalleled. He reorganized the various departments and regularized their functions.  The revenue, military and judiciary were well appointed and well paid, but he retained the ultimate say in all departments.


(14) With Todar Mal who was the revenue officer of Sher Shah Suri as well, he devised the Dashala system of tax collection that was based on fair and reasonable taxation based on the productivity of the land. 


(15)  His military and trade policies helped his empire triple in size and wealth.


(16)  He also introduced widow remarriage.


(16) Officers were appointed in accordance with their capability and loyalty irrespective of religion. 


There might have been many more. But Akbar was the Emperor who brought in pluralism and tolerance which formed the basics of the modern day Republic  India.( To us now this may all seem regular because we are accustomed to these ideals since childhood. But to bring in the change in a hard-set superstition filled society, Akbar must have had to face many obstacles and difficulties.) Truly, his rule was considered as RamRajya by even theHindus of that period. 


I only hope that the serial keeps the romance track and reforms track apart, except perhaps suggestive contributions from his three wonderful chief wives. Real credit for all his achievements should be given only to the exceptional Shahenshah who really ruled the hearts of his riyaya then and is still ruling even 500 years after.


PS: Other notable junctures in his history are:


 His conquest of the Rajputana that began with Amer and then Dhawalgarh continued and culminated with the victory over the Chittagorh(1567) and Ranthambore(1568) after which he built the city of Fatehpur Sikhri (1569) .It was the year that Salim was born as well(1569)


Akbar defenestrated Adham Khan for killing Atga Shamshuddin in (1962) (the year Jodha is married to Akbar- the serial is so far correct as per history). Maham Anga died soon after. Akbar constructed their tombs Bhul Bhulaiya north of Qutub Minar. It is said that her slave tried to kill Akbar (our Resham??) but failed in the attempt.



But after Jahangir, many of the reforms began to fade away, laws were diluted, the old-thinking re-established itself and old systems were practiced again.


 

Friends, if anybody can contribute more, enlighten about Akbar's other talents, achievements  and eminence, interesting incidents in his life, please share .[/quote]

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Re: Collection of Interesting Historical Facts of Akbar Era..(members to post Historical facts only)

Post by neha on 2014-02-10, 14:45

Sharing some videos of Mughal Architecture

Angoori Bagh and Khas Mahal : Anguri Bagh and Khas Mahal, are part of Agra Fort in Agra, Uttar Pradesh. 'Khas Mahal' or 'Aramgah-i-Muqaddar' built by Shah Jehan, for his two daughters Jahan Ara Begum Sahiba and Roshan Ara Begum has river on the one side and Anguri Bagh on the other. Anguri Bagh also built by Akbar and then repaired by Shah Jehan was the principal square of the zenana apartments or the living area of the royal ladies.




Agra Fort :







Akbari Mahal : Built during 1565-69, the building served residential purposes and was once part of a larger palace complex. The original structure was a huge complex of suites and chambers set up around a large stone-paved courtyard. Situated between the Jehangiri Mahal and Bengali Burj, the Akbari Mahal is so designed as to ensure maximum security for the women inmates. Anguri Bagh (garden of grapes), a garden set in geometrical patterns. As the name suggests, the royals grew fine grape vines and beautiful flowering plants here.


Jahangiri Mahal : Jehangiri Mahal (Jehangir's Palace), is a magnificent structure inside the Agra fort in Uttar Pradesh state. An arched ornate gateway leads one to the structure. A beautiful façade and the octagonal towers on either sides add to the elegance of the red sandstone structure.The main entrance leads to a square-shaped hall from where one can head to the identical annexes on the northern and southern sides. The complex has rooms, halls, corridors, galleries and spacious verandahs. The palace was built during 1565-69.



Diwan-i-Aam and Diwan-i-Khas, Agra Fort : Diwan-i-am and Diwan-i-khas are two majestic structures in Agra Fort, Uttar Pradesh state. Diwan-i-am or the ‘hall of public audience’ is where Mughal Emperors addressed the public. The massive hall has a flat roof and is divided into three aisles. Two arched red sandstone gateways on the north and south lead to the hall. The building, originally built in red sandstone, is plastered over with white shell paste resembling white marble.Diwan-i-khas or the ‘hall of private audience’ was used by the emperor to receive the honoured guests and nobility. The hall has an ornate wooden roof with gold and silver leaves resembling sun rays



Mariam's House or Sunahara Makan, Fatehpur Sikri : Situated on the south east side of Panch Mahal in Fatehpur Sikri is the Sunahra Makan, a building in the Imperial Harem complex. This beautiful structure is embellished with murals and gold coloured paintings and is popularly known as Maryam’s House.
Fatehpur Sikri or the City of Victory is one of the popular travel destinations in the city of Agra in Uttar Pradesh state, India. Built by the Mughal emperor Akbar, Fatehpur Sikri has been included in the UNESCO World Heritage List of monuments


Turkish Sultana's Pavilion (Hujra-i-Anup Talao), Fatehpur Sikri :
Commonly known as the Turkish Sultana’s Pavilion, Hujra-i-Anup Talao is a small and beautiful structure which has been described as a ‘superb jewel casket’. The carvings on its bracket friezes, pillars and pilasters are so intricate that they appear to be the work of wood-carvers rather than that of stonemasons.The pavilion has square piers and is connected to the ground floor of the Khwabgah complex through a verandah and a portico in the west. The carvings of this structure show the arabesque designs of bell, floral and herring-bone shapes. The dado panels depict scenes of forests and gardens.Fatehpur Sikri, one of the historic travel destinations in Uttar Pradeh, India, was built by the Mughal Emperor Akbar. Included in the UNESCO World Heritage Site, Fatehpur Sikri was the first planned city of the Mughals.


Anup Talao or Peerless Pool, Fatehpur Sikri : Anup Talao or Peerless Pool lies to the north-east of the Diwan Khana-i-Khas in the Khwabgah Complex at Fatehpur Sikri. It has a central island linked by four bridges to its sides.


Balconies of Agra Fort : The balconies of Agra fort give the travelers a beautiful view of the famous monument to love, Taj Mahal and a cool view of the river Yamuna. The balconies are made in typical Mughal architectural style with domes


Jehangir's Chain of Justice in Agra Fort : The Muthamman Burj, an octagonal building made of white marble (built by Akbar’ son Jehangir) inside Agra fort is famous for Jehangir’s Chain of Justice (Adl-i-Zanjir). The chain was setup as a link between the people and Jehangir himself. Standing outside the castle of Agra anyone was free to pullthe chain with sixty bells and have a personal hearing from Jahangir himself.


Birbal's House in Fatehpur Sikri : The house of Raja Birbal, the great man of wit at Akbar's court is a double storied building with beautiful carvings on the walls and ceilings. The buildings at Fatehpur Sikri are superb examples of Akbar’s fusion style of architecture.Built of red sandstone, Fatehpur Sikri is a beautiful blend of Hindu and Islamic architectural elements. The sandstone is richly ornamented with carvings and latticework.


Diwan-i-Khas (Jewel House), Fatehpur Sikri : Diwan-i-Khas is one of the most famous structures in Fatehpur Sikri. This Hall of Private Audience is situated in the northeast corner of the royal complex and is also called as the Jewel House.The singular column at the center of its interior distinguishes it from the other buildings. Its interior is dominated by a massive, richly carved pillar (Lotus Throne Pillar) which supports one of the most elaborate capitals ever conceived.


The Palace of Jodha Bai(MUZ), Fatehpur Sikri : Jodha Bai’s Palace is the largest and the most important of the palaces in the Imperial Harem (Haram Sara) in Fatehpur Sikri. It is near Jahangir Mahal and was built by Akbar the Great for his favourite Rajput queen Jodha Bai. Jodha Bai’s Palace is a good place to study the different architectural styles in the buildings of Fatehpur Sikri. One can find the fusion of Hindu (Rajasthani and Gujarati) and Muslim styles here.


Fatehpur Sikri : The architecture of Fatehpur Sikri reflects the talent and architectural philosophy of Akbar, the greatest of all Mughal emperors. Akbar built this huge complex as his imperial capital. Sikri was the first planned city of the Mughals in India.
Built in Mughal architectural style and hewn out of red sandstone, this structure houses a range of palaces like Jodha Bai’s Palace, Birbal’s Palace, Panch Mahal and the Diwan-i-Khas. The imposing Buland Darwaza or the gateway deserves special mention


Exterior, Jodha Bai's Palace - Fatehpur Sikri : Situated towards north east of the largest mosque in India, the Jama Masjid, Agra, Uttar Pradesh, is the Palace of Jodha Bai, the queen of Akbar. Jodha Bai’s Palace is the largest and most important of the Imperial Harem (Haram Sara) in Fatehpur Sikri. The Jodha Bai Palace is a blend of Hindu and Muslim architectural styles with typical columns and cupolas. Built by the Mughal Emperor Akbar, Fatehpur Sikri (the City of Victory) was the capital of the Mughal Empire for several years.


Nagina Masjid in Agra Fort : Nagina Masjid is inside the Agra Fort and is made of white marble. The Fort was built by the great Mughal Emperor Akbar. The Nagina Masjid is also called Gem Mosque. This building was constructed by the Emperor Shah Jehan as a prayer palace with typical cusped arches. It was for the ladies of the court.The Gem Mosque is situated in the north- west corner of the Machili Bhavan. There is a Mina Bazaar for the royal ladies to buy things from the marble balcony beneath the Nagina Masjid.The Fort of Agra is an amazing structure comprising  sprawling palaces showcasing not only the Mughal empire under Akbar, but also the advancement of Mughal art and architecture. Agra fort and city is an incredible Indian travel destination.


The Tragedy of Shah Jehan : The final years of mighty Mughal emperor Shah Jehan was a gloomy period with the king being imprisoned by his son Aurangazeb. The emperor and his daughter Jahanara Begum were imprisoned at Musamman Burj, an octagonal structure in the Agra fort, for eight years.Musamman Burj, an elegant octagonal structure, was built by the emperor for his consort Mumtaz Mahal. The only comfort for the king during his imprisonment was perhaps the exotic sight of Taj Mahal, the memorial he built for his wife, from Musamman Burj. It is said that the emperor breathed his last here.


Humayun's Tomb :






Sher Mandal : Sher Mandal situated inside the Purana Qil'a (Old Fort) in Delhi is an observatory built by Sher Shah, founder of Sur Empire in northern India. This double-storeyed octagonal tower of red sandstone was used as a personal observatory and library by the Mughal emperor Humayun after he recaptured the fort.On top of the tower is an octagonal chhatri (dome-shaped pavilion) which is supported by eight pillars and decorated with white marble. It was in Sher Mandal where emperor Humayun tripped on the stairs and met with his tragic death.


Purana Quila : Purana Qila or the Old Fort in Indraprastha was constructed by the Mughal emperor Humayun. Situated on the banks of Yamuna it is the inner citadel of the city of Dina-panah. Featured here is the interior of the Purana Qila. The fort is roughly rectangular in shape having a circuit of nearly two kilometers.


Akbar's Tomb, Sikandara Agra: Akbar the Great Mughal Emperor's Tomb, built 1605-1613, is located in Sikandra, just outside the city of Agra in the Indian State of Uttar Pradesh. The construction of this mausoleum was started by Akbar himself, who was secular minded and blends Hindu, Christian, Islamic, Buddhist, Jain themes.


Adham Khan's Tomb : This monument was built by Jalal-ud-Din Muhammad Akbar.Adham Khan, son of Maham Anga, a wet nurse of Akbar, was a nobleman and general in Akbar's army. In 1561, he fell out with Ataga Khan, Akbar's Prime Minister, and husband of Ji Ji Anga, another wet nurse, and killed him, whereupon he was thrown down from the ramparts of Agra Fort twice, by the order of the emperor Akbar and died.


Khan-i-Khana's Tomb : Khanzada Mirza Khan Abdul Rahim Khan-e-Khana (17 December 1556 -- 1627), also known as Rahim is a renowned composer during the time of Mughal emperor Akbar. He was one of the main nine ministers (Diwan) in his court, also known as the Navaratnas. Rahim is famous for his Hindi couplets and his books on Astrology.The village of Khankhana, is named after him, which is located in the Nawanshahr district of the state of Punjab, India.His tomb is situated in Nizamuddin on the Mathura road ahead of Humayun's Tomb in New Delhi, it was built by him for his wife in 1598, and later he was himself buried in it in 1627. Later, in 1753-4, marble and sandstone from this tomb was used for the making of Safdarjung's Tomb, also in New Delhi.


Begum Shahi Mosque (Mosque of Mariam Uz Zamani Begum), Lahore : Is a mosque situated in the Walled City of Lahore, Punjab, Pakistan. It was built by Nuruddin Salim Jahangir, for his mother Mariam-uz-Zamani, a Hindu wife of Mughal Emperor, Akbar. The mosque is located inside the old Masti Gate and is one of Lahore's first mosques.



neha
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Re: Collection of Interesting Historical Facts of Akbar Era..(members to post Historical facts only)

Post by --sumana13-- on 2014-02-10, 16:17

Abdul Rahim khan-I-Khana and his couplets

Shared by Chandu1234



Abdul Rahim Khan-I-Khana was the son of Akbar’s trusted caretaker, Bairam Khan who had Turk ancestry.
After Bairam Khan was murdered, his wife became the second wife of Akbar, which made Abdul Rahim Khan-e-Khan his stepson, and later he became one of his nine prominent ministers, the Navaratnas, or nine gems.
Although a Muslim by birth, Rahim was a devotee of Lord Krishna and wrote poetry dedicated to him. He was also an avid Astrolger, and the writer if two important works in Astrology Khet Kautukam and Dwawishd Yogavali are still popular. [2]
He is well known for his strange manner of giving alms to the poor. He never looked at the person he was giving alms to, keeping his gaze downwards in all humility. When Tulsidas heard about Rahim's strange method of giving alms, he promptly wrote a couplet and sent it to Rahim:

Aisi deni den jyu, kit seekhe ho sain
Jyon jyon kar oonchyo karo, tyon tyon niche nain

"Sir, Why give gifts like this? Where'd you learn that?
Your hands are as high as your eyes are low"

Realizing that Tulsidas was well 'Aware' of the 'Truth' behind creation, and was merely giving him an opportunity to say a few lines in reply, he wrote to Tulsidas in all humility:

Denhar koi aur hai, bhejat jo din rain
Log bharam hum par kare, taaso niche nain

"The Giver is someone else, bestowing, day and night.
The world gives me credit: so, down are my eyes."

His two sons were killed by Akbar's son Jehangir and their bodies left to rot at the Khooni Darwaza because Rahim was not in favour of Jehangir's accession to the throne at Akbar's death.

His tomb is situated at New Delhi.

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Re: Collection of Interesting Historical Facts of Akbar Era..(members to post Historical facts only)

Post by --sumana13-- on 2014-02-10, 18:59

Anarkali : Emperor Akbar's Concubine and Prince Salim's lover
Shared by JASMINE



Sharf-Un-Nissa or Nadira Begum was a slave girl who migrated to Lahore from Iran with a trader’s caravan. A servant in the royal harem of the Mughal Emperor Akbar, she was a skilled singer and a graceful dancer. One day when the empress ordered her to sing for the Emperor, she mesmerized him completely. He was so captivated with her voice as well as beauty that he entitled her with a suitable name of – “Anarkali – Bud of a Pomogrenate”.
Akbar fell prey to her beauty and even made her his concubine. She was a slave and so was made a concubine, I’m sure if should have been of blue blood, Anarkali would have been suitable to become the Emperor’s next queen. With her intelligence and beauty, Anarkali soon became Akbar’s favorite concubine. Not many in the royal harem were pleased with Akbar’s love for her and soon women got jealous of her. However, it was not just her beauty that captivated Akbar, it was Anarkali’s ability too.
Anarkali was greatly talented when it came to fine arts and this delighted the Emperor who was a great connoisseur of art himself. She was also a skilled miniaturist and even painted in the Lahore Palace. Historic records reveal that she was the mother of Prince Daniyal, Akbar’s second son after Prince Salim.
Anarkali and Prince Salim

It is not a secret that Prince Salim, the son of Akbar and Harkha Bai was a rude spoilt boy who spent most of his time in wine and women. Fed up of his bad habits, Akbar had sent Prince Salim to the army so that he could learn how to be a good ruler. Following which he was brought back to the kingdom.

It was the month of April, spring was in the year when Lahore was celebrating Akhri Charshumba, the second month of the Islamic calendar. The royal family male members were getting reading for the function. Sadqua, the offering of all kinds were getting ready in a gold plate with silver jowls of mustard oil and before offering the cold coins the male members were seeing their face. Salim too was offered the plate and while seeing his reflection, he saw the beautiful Anarkali. And this is how the passionate love affair started.

Soon the two met covertly in the gardens of Lahore, expressing their love to each other. However, true love like fire can’t be hidden for a long time and tales of their love soon started circulating. One of the jealous concubines then confronted the news to the Emperor. At first the emperor could not believe his ears and so he ordered his loyal eunuch to keep a watch on the two. The two lovers, however, were not aware of the watching spy and continued their romance. The eunuch soon confirmed the news to the Shahenshah who was furious with both, the betrayal of his concubine and the treachery of his son. And so he resolved to give her the exemplary punishment by sending Salim to another mission and punishing Anarkali brutally.

The End
There are two entirely different versions of the end of this beautiful woman.
First, she was taken to the region near current Anarkali Bazaar in Lahore by Akbar’s guard men and buried alive in a large ditch after strapping her to a board of wood.
A second description of the story illustrates that the Emperor Akbar helped Anarkali run off from the trench through a series of secretive tunnels with her mother only with the guarantee of Anarkali to disappear from the Mughal Empire and never to return back. Thus it is not known whether Anarkali survived or not after 1599. 

 Anarkali was 44 when she was having an affair with Prince Salim who was 30. Prince Daniyal was 27 at that time, the story however doesn’t find any mention in the Akbar-Nama and Ain-i-Akbari for obvious reasons

(frnds I'm not sure about the authenticity of this info....came across it while luking at some pics in google)

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Re: Collection of Interesting Historical Facts of Akbar Era..(members to post Historical facts only)

Post by --sumana13-- on 2014-02-10, 19:12


Marium-Uz-Zamaani

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Mariam-uz-Zamani, also known as Heer KunwariJodha BaiHira Kunwari or Harka Bai, (October 1, 1542 – May 19, 1623) was an Empress of theMughal Empire. She was the wife of Mughal Emperor Akbar. She was his first and chief Rajput wife and the mother of the nex tMughal EmperorJahangir, and grandmother of the following Mughal Emperor Shah Jahan.
Mariam-Uz-Zamani was referred to as the Queen Mother of Hindustan, during the reign of the Great Mughal, Emperor Akbar. She was the longest serving Hindu Mughal Empress. Her tenure, from 6 February 1562 to 27 October 1605, is that of over 43 years.
Her marriage to Akbar led to a gradual shift in his religious and social policy. Akbar's marriage with Rajkumari Heer Kunwari was a very important event in Mughal history. She is widely regarded in modern Indian historiography as exemplifying Akbar's and the Mughal's tolerance of religious differences and their inclusive policies within an expanding multi-ethnic and multi-denominational empire.
MARRIAGE
             Akbar's marriage with Heer Kunwari had far-reaching results. It led Akbar to take a much more favorable view of Hinduism and his Hindu subjects.In a marriage of political alliance, Heer Kunwari was married to Akbar on February 6, 1562 at Sambhar near Jaipur, Rajasthan, India. Heer Kunwari became the third wife of Akbar after Ruqaiya Sultan Begum, who was Akbar's first wife, and Salima Sultan Begum, the widow of his most trusted general, Bairam Khan. Mariam, as mother of the heir-apparent, took precedence over all the other wives of Akbar.
Though she remained a Hindu, Heer Kunwari was honoured with the title Mariam-uz-Zamani ("Mary of the Age") after she gave birth to Jahangir. Despite her being a non-Muhammadan wife, she held great respect and honour in the Mughal household.

The Mariam-uz-Zamani Palace at Fatehpur Sikri.
In the beginning of 1569, Akbar was gladdened by the news that his first Hindu consort, Heer Kunwari was expecting a child, and that he might hope for the first of the three sons promised by Sheikh Salim Chisti, a reputed holy man who lived at Sikri. An expectant Heer was sent to Sheikh's humble dwelling at Sikri during the period of her pregnancy. On August 30, 1569, the boy was born and received the name Salim, in acknowledgement of his father's faith in the efficacy of the holy man's prayers.
Her title, Mariam-uz-zamani, 'the Mary of the Age', has been mistaken sometimes with Akbar's mother, whose title was Mariam-makani, 'dwelling with Mary'.
Akbar's marriage with Hindu princess Heer Kunwari produced important effects on both on his personal rule of life and on his public policy. The custom of Hindu rulers offering their daughters for marriage to Muslim rulers, though not common, had been prevalent in the country for several centuries. Yet Akbar's marriage to princess of Amber/Amer is significant, as an early indication of his evolving policy of religious eclecticism. The marriage with the Amer princess secured the powerful support of her family throughout the reign, and offered a proof manifest to all the world that Akbar had decided to be the Badshah of his whole people i.e. Hindus as well as Muhammadans.
Akbar took other Rajput princesses in marriage. The rajas had much to gain from the link to imperial family. Akbar made such marriages respectable for rajputs.
Her niece, Manbhawati Bai or Manmati bai, daughter of her brother Bhagwan Das, married Prince Salim on 13 February 1585. Man bai later became mother to Prince Khusrau Mirza and was awarded the title of Shah Begum by Jahangir.
 
                       Religion
Akbar developed Hindu inclinations and allowed his Hindu wife to perform the customary rites in the royal palace. Thus, contrary to the usual practice of sultans, Akbar allowed her to remain a Hindu and to maintain a Hindu temple in the royal palace. He himself participated in the puja she performed. She was a devotee of Lord Krishna. Her palace was decorated with paintings of Lord Krishna and frescos.
 
                          Family advancement and Power consolidation
Akbar's friendly relations with the Rajputs began after his marriage with Heer Kunwari. This was an important step which profoundly influenced his future policies. The marriage, secured for him the support of her family, from among whom he drew his leading counsellors.
On his marriage with Heer Kunwari, Akbar summoned Raja Man Singh Inephew of Heer Kunwari and son of Raja Bhagwan Das of Amer, the heir to the throne of Raja Bharmal, and took him into the imperial service, by giving him an office in his court. Raja Bhagwan Das was also enrolled amongst the nobility. Later, they both rose ultimately to high offices.
The Rajas of Amer especially benefitted from their close association with the Mughals, and acquired immense wealth and power. Of twenty-seven Rajputs in Abu'l-Fazl list of mansabdars, thirteen were of Amber clan, and some of them rose to positions as high as that of imperial princes. Raja Bhagwan Das, for instance, became commander of 5000, the highest position available at that time, and bore the proud title Amir-ul-Umara (Chief Noble). His son, Man Singh I, rose even higher to become commander of 7000. This position was not enjoyed by any one except the imperial princes. This marriage was thus, beneficial to both Mughals and Kachwaha Rajputs of Amer.
Akbar also allowed one of his sons, Prince Daniyal, to be brought up by Raja Bharmal's wife in Amer, as a gesture of honour to the raja's family.
 
  Political influence and power
Mariam uz-zamani was reported to have been a highly astute business woman, who ran an active international trade in spices, silk, etc., and thus, amassed a private fortune which dwarfed the treasury of many a European king. She was among the most prodigious women traders at the Mughal court. No other noblewoman on record seems to have been as adventurous a trader as the Queen mother.
Mariam Zamani owned ships that carried pilgrims to and from the Islamic holy city Mecca. In 1613, her ship, the Rahīmī was seized by Portuguese pirates along with the 600-700 passengers and the cargo. Rahīmī was the largest Indian ship sailing in the Red Sea and was known to the Europeans as the "great pilgrimage ship". When the Portuguese officially refused to return the ship and the passengers, the outcry at the Moghul court was quite unusually severe. The outrage was compounded by the fact that the owner and the patron of the ship was none other than the revered mother of the current emperor. Mariam-uz-Zamani's son, the Indian emperor Jahangir, ordered the seizure of the Portuguese town Daman. This episode is considered to be an example of the struggle for wealth that would later ensue and lead to colonization of the Indian sub-continent.
She was one of the only four members of the court (another was the emperor) and the only woman to have the rank of 12,000 cavalry, and was known to receive a jewel from every nobleman "according to his estate" each year on the occasion of New Year's festival. Like only a few other women at the Mughal court, Mariam-uz-Zamani was granted the right to issue official documents (singularly called farman), usually the exclusive privilege of the emperor. Issuing of such orders was confined to the highest ladies of the harem such as Hamida Banu Begum, Mariam-uz-Zamani,Nur Jehan, Mumtaz Mahal, Nadira Banu and Jahanara Begum. Mariam Zamani, like Nur Jehan, used her wealth and influence to build gardens, wells, and mosques around the countryside.
 
Death

Tomb of Mariam-uz-Zamani, Sikandra, Agra
Mariam uz-Zamani died in 1623. Even in her death, she remained closest to her husband. She is Akbar's only wife to be buried close to him, as per her wish. A vav or step well was constructed by her son, Emperor Jahangir,as per her last wishes. The grave itself is underground with a flight of steps leading to it. Her tomb, built in 1623-27, is on the Tantpur road now known as in Jyoti Nagar. Though she remained a Hindu throughout her life, she was buried according to Islamic custom, near her husband's mausoleum. Mariam's Tomb is only a kilometre from Tomb of Akbar the Great. The tomb's location reduced its chances of becoming a tourist attraction, but likewise, its lack of visibility meant it fell into a state of disrepair. Later, taken over by ASI, her resting place is now dignified.
There are some interesting aspects to the tomb, principally the ASI slab at the entrance which proclaims the tomb to be that of Mariam Uz Zamani, the princess of Amer who married Akbar and later gave birth to Jahangir. Another interesting aspect of the tomb is that the building looks identical from the front and back and unlike other Mughal era structures, the back entrance is not a dummy.
The Mosque of Mariam Zamani Begum Sahiba was built by her son Nuruddin Salim Jahangir in her honour and is situated in the Walled City of Lahore, present day Pakistan. It is one of the earliest mosques in Lahore. The mosque also has a distinction of being one of the biggest mosques in present day Pakistan.
 
 
 
PIC OF MUZ(guess the child is salim)
 

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Re: Collection of Interesting Historical Facts of Akbar Era..(members to post Historical facts only)

Post by neha on 2014-02-10, 23:10

Mirza Muhammad Hakim - Part I


Mirza Hakim was the 3rd and youngest son of Emperor Humayun and his wife Begum Mah-Chuchak Sahiba(Daughter of Mukim Beg Arghun, most of the Humayun's children were from this begum). He was born at Bala-i-Hisaar, a fortress at Kabul, Afghanistan on 29th April 1553. On the same day another son Mirza Ibrahim (he died young) was born to Badshah Humayun with his wife Khanish Agha(Daughter of Juchuq Mirza Khwarazm). In 1554 Humayun announced then 1 year old Hakim Subhedar of Kabul under the charge of Munim Khan to which Akbar confirmed in 1556 when he came to the throne. After death of Humayun Mah Chuchak Begum took active interest in the politics of Kabul and tried to dominate the scene for the next eight years. Munim Khan, in 1561 returned to the court of Akbar after Bairam Khan's demise appointing his son Ghani Khan in charge of Kabul. Begum Mah-Chuchak who was highly ambitious took advantage of this opportunity and gradually started a firmer grip over Kabul. In 1563 she dismissed Ghani Khan and took Kabul under her control. Upon Ghani Khan's return to Akbar's court, he sent Munim Khan and his son with army to which Mah-Chuchak with the help of Afghans defeated him at Jalalabad and Munim Khan was compelled to retreat .
Shah Abul Maali a turbulent noble form the family of great Sayyids of Tirmiz and once a favourite courtier of Humayun having escaped from the prison from Lahore arrived at Kabul in search of protection and refuge and approached to Begum. The Begum consulted her confidential advisers and finally she welcomed him, treated him with generosity and married her daughter Bakhtunnisa Begum to him with a view to strengthen the position of her family. But Shah Abul Maali did not like the influence of Mah Chuchak begum and started asserting his position. In order to establish his complete supremacy over the politics of Kabul he conspired against Begum.  In April, 1564 Maali entered the household of Begum by one way, and the two of his men by another. There were a number of women in the house, and by mistake they shed the blood of an innocent lady. When it appeared that they had blundered, and that it was not the Begam, they went looking for her and joined Maali. They endeavoured to effect their object, and when the Begam became aware of the facts, she shut the door of her room in the face of the tyrants. Maali broke the door with the help of the two men, and entered and put the Begam to death. After shedding the blood of the Begam, he hastened in search of Hakim. He took him out from among young boys and brought him into the diwankhana by the side of himself. The men of the Hakim's household attended on him unwillingly. He also imprisoned all the nobles, and a number of the Begam's servants joined together to kill Maali.One of them, gave information to Maali and the latter armed himself and his adherents and prepared for battle. Those ambitious ones took the right-hand road to the fort, while Maali advanced from another side. A number were killed on both sides, but Maali's party was victorious and drove the other faction out of the fort. When night let fall her curtain, every one went off in a different direction. Muhammad Qasim, the brother of Haidar Qasim, and who was in prison, made his escape and went off to Badakhshan. He informed Mirza Sulaiman of the tragedy of Kabul and of the wickedness of Maali,and urged him to come to Kabul. Mirza Hakim, in spite of his tender years, was horrified at the catastrophe of his mother; and by the advice of well-wishers secretly sent messengers to Mirza Sulaiman in quest of relief, and to incite him to come.
  Mirza Sulaiman on hearing of what had happened, collected the army of Badakhshan and marched to Kabul, accompanied by his wife Waali Nimat Khurram Begam. Maali was agitated by the news of Mirza Suleiman's purpose. He collected his troops, and, as in his folly he regarded Mirza Hakim as being on his side, and he made arrangements for his accompanying the army. He took the initiative and marched out of Kabul before Mirza Sulaiman could get there, and arriving at the river of Ghorband took possession of the head of the bridge. From the other side Mirza Sulaiman came rapidly with the Badakhshan forces to the bridge, and both sides drew up in line. Just then a body of troops from Kabul were seen on the right(most probably Munim Khan's army which Akbar sent as a help), and Maali sent off a number of Kabul's to oppose them. After the two forces had engaged, news was brought to Maali that the Kabulian's had been defeated. He thereupon placed Mirza Hakim in the centre of the troops facing Mirza Sulaiman, and went off to assist his defeated men. Upon this opportunity Hakim's men seized his horse's rein and drove him to the river, and in haste brought him to Mirza Sulaiman. The whole Kabul army became disorganised after this event and dispersed. When Maali came back and learnt the state of affairs, he got utterly confused, and gave up fighting and accepted defeat. The Badakhshanians pursued him, seized him and brought him before Mirza Sulaiman, who came rejoicing to Kabul along with Hakim. Two days afterwards he sent that tyrant in chains to the Hakim, who ordered him to be strangled. Mirza Sulaiman and Khurram Begum got married their daughter to Mirza Hakim and handed over Kabul to him.  


Source : AkbarNama and accounts of History of Badakhshan and Kabul.

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Re: Collection of Interesting Historical Facts of Akbar Era..(members to post Historical facts only)

Post by neha on 2014-02-11, 00:28

Siblings of Akbar The Great (Children of Humayun)

Brothers :  

1. Shahzada Al-aman Mirza : born to his chief consort Bega Begum(Haji Begum) on November 1528 at Badakhshan, Afghanistan. Babur highly criticised Humayun for choosing an inauspicious name for the child. He died young.

2. Shahzada Muhammad Farrukh-fal Mirza : born to Mah-Chuchak begum at Bala-i-Hissar, Afghanistan in 1547. He died some days before Mirza Hakim's birth.

3. Shahzada Muhammad Hakim Mirza : born to Mah-Chuchak Begum at Bala-i-Hissar, Afghanistan on 29th April, 1553.

4. Shahzada Ibrahim Sultan Mirza : born to Begum Khanish Agha(Daughter of Jujuq Mirza Khwarizm) on the same day as Mirza Hakim. He died in infancy.

Sisters :

5. Shahzadi Aqiqa Sultan Begum : born to Bega Begum at Kabul in 1531. This daughter was lost/killed at the battle of Chausa fought between Humayun and Sher Shah of Sur in 1539.  Humayun highly regretted bringing his daughter to Hindustan. Humayun's two wives/concubines Chand Bibi(who was 6-7 month's pregnant) and Shad Bibi were also lost/killed during this battle.  

6. Shahzadi Bakhshi Banu Begum : born to a concubine Gunwar Bibi in the Garden of Khwaja Dost, Lahore on 12th October, 1540 where Humayun took residence along with Hindal Mirza.

7. A daughter born to Bega Begum in 1544 at the camp near Sabzawar, Afghanistan where Humayun took refuge. She died in infancy.

8. A daughter born to Hamida Banu at Persia in 1545 when Humayun took refuge in Shah Tahmasp of Iran. She died in infancy.

9. Shahzadi Jahan Sultan Begum : born at Bala-i-Hisar,Kabul on 1546. She died young.

10. Shahzadi Bakhtunnisa Begum :  born to Mah-Chuchak Begum at Kabul, in January 1551. She is burried near Humayun's tomb.

11. Shahzadi Sakina Banu Begum : born to Mah-Chuchak Begum at Kabul, she is buried near Humayun's tomb.

12. Shahzadi Amina Banu Begum : born to Mah-Chuchak Begum at Kabul, she died young.

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Re: Collection of Interesting Historical Facts of Akbar Era..(members to post Historical facts only)

Post by --sumana13-- on 2014-02-16, 16:16

Ruqaiya Sultan Begum
Empress of the Mughal Empire


Shahzadi of the MughalEmpire Tenure 11 February 1556 – 27 October 1605 Consort Akbar House Timurid dynasty Father Hindal Mirza Mother Sultanam Begum Born 1542 Afghanistan Died 19 January 1626 (aged 84) Agra, India Burial Gardens of Babur Religion Islam

Ruqaiya Sultana Begum (Arabic:; also spelled as Ruqayya, Ruqayyah) (1542 – 19 January 1626) was an Empress of the Mughal Empire. She was the first wife of Emperor Akbar.  She was also the longest serving Mughal empress having a tenure of over 49 years.She was born a Mughal princess (Shahzadi) and was the only daughter of Mughal prince Hindal Mirza, who was Akbar's youngest paternal uncle.She was also the granddaughter of Emperor Babur, the founder of the Mughal Empire and the first Mughal emperor, as well as the niece of the second, Humayun.

She played a crucial role in negotiating a settlement between her husband and her
stepson, Jahangir, when the father-son relationship turned sour in the early 1600s,
eventually helping Jahangir's accession to the throne. Family Shahzadi Ruqaiya Sultan Begum was born into the Timurid dynasty as a Mughal princess, and was the only daughter of Mughal prince Hindal Mirza, the youngest and favourite son of the first Mughal emperor Babur from his wife Dildar Begum.

Ruqaiya's mother, Sultanam Begum, was the daughter of Muhammad Musa Khwaja and
the younger sister of Mahdi Khwaja, who was the brother- in-law of Emperor Babur, being the husband of his sister, Khanzada Begum.Ruqaiya's oldest paternal uncle was the emperor Humayun, who later became her father-in-law as well, while her most notable paternal aunt was Gulbadan Begum, the author of Humayun Nama ("Book of Humayun").

Being the granddaughter of Emperor Babur and a Timurid princess, Ruqaiya, as well as her first cousin, Akbar, were descendants of the lines of the highest Central Asian aristocracy: Timur or Tamerlane the Great through his son Miran Shah, and Genghis Khan through his son Chagatai Khan. As it was customary for a Mughal princess, Ruqaiya was well educated and was fluent in many languages such as the Turki language (which was a Chughtai language), Persian, Arabic and Urdu

Marriage
Hujra-I-Anup Talao or the Turkish Sultana House, a pleasure pavilion attached to a pond, was used by Empress Ruqaiya At the age of nine, Ruqaiya married her first cousin, Akbar, in November of 1551 at Kabul, Afghanistan, shortly after his first appointment as a Viceroy in the province of Ghazni.


The marriage was arranged by Ruqaiya's uncle and Akbar's father, Humayun, and took place soon after the untimely death of Ruqaiya's father, Hindal Mirza, who died in a battle. Humayun conferred on the young couple, all the wealth, army and adherents of his deceased younger brother, Hindal, and Ghazni, which was one of Hindal's jagir, was given to his nephew and son-in-law, Akbar.


Ruqaiya became an Empress of the Mughal Empire at the age of fourteen years following her husband's accession to the throne in 1556. Throughout her 53 years of marriage, Ruqaiya remained childless, but was given the primary responsibility for the upbringing of her grandson, prince Khurram (the future Emperor Shah Jahan).


Just prior to Khurram’s birth, a soothsayer had reportedly predicted to Ruqaiya Sultan Begum that the still unborn child was destined for imperial greatness. So, when Khurram was born in 1592 and was only six days old, Akbar ordered that the prince be taken away from his mother and handed him over to Ruqaiya so that he could grow up under her care and Akbar could fulfill his aging wife's wish, to raise a Mughal emperor. Khurram remained with her until he had turned 13. The young prince was then, finally, allowed to return to his father's household, and thus, be closer to his biological mother. 

Ruqaiya oversaw Khurram's education as well for she, unlike her husband, was well educated.Ruqaiya and Khurram, therefore, shared a close relationship much like the relationship that Akbar had shared with Khurram (the prince had been a favourite of his grandfather). Khurram's father and Ruqaiya's step-son, Jahangir, noted that Ruqaiya had loved Khurram "a thousand times more than if he had been her own son".

Despite the fact that she did not bear him any children, she was always kept in high regard by her husband, as he held great respect and affection for her. Ruqaiya was thus, a senior and high ranked figure in the imperial harem and at court during her husband's reign as well as in his successor's (Jahangir) reign. She took a precedence over other wives of Akbar in terms of birth. She was his only wife who was the most supreme in terms of birth, being herself a Timurid princess and thus, a member of the Timurid dynasty.


The Empress also took active part in court politics. In the early 1600s, Ruqaiya, Salima Sultan Begum and Maryam Makani, along with other ladies of the harem, played a crucial role in negotiating a settlement between Akbar and Jahangir, (when their relationship had turned sour), eventually helping to pave the way for Jahangir's accession to the throne.

During Jahangir's reign, Ruqaiya and Salima Sultan Begum again played a crucial role in successfully securing pardon for the powerful, Khan-i-Azam, Mirza Aziz Koka, who had been sentenced to death by Jahangir. Apart from her own palace at Fatehpur Sikri, Ruqaiya owned palaces outside the fort in Agra, ear the Jamuna river, a privilege given to Mughal princesses only and sometimes to empresses who were kept in high esteem.


In 1607, Ruqaiya went for a pilgrimage to the mausoleum of her father Hindal, in Kabul, while being accompanied by both Jahangir and Khurram. Within the same year, Sher Afghan Quli Khan, the jagirdar of Burdwan died and his widowed wife, Mihrunnissa (later Empress Nur Jahan) was summoned to Agra by Jahangir to act as lady-in-waiting to the Empress Ruqaiya.[10] Given the precarious political connections of Sher Afghan before his death, his family was in great danger and therefore for her own protection, Mihrunnissa   needed to be at the court in Agra.


Nur Jehan and her daughter, Ladli Begum, served as ladies-in-waiting to the Empress for four years while earnestly endeavoring to please their imperial mistress.[19] The relationship that grew up between Ruqaiya and Mihrunnissa appears to have been an extremely tender one which remained so until Ruqaiya's death in 1626. The Dutch merchant, Pieter van den Broecke said: "This Begum [Ruqaiya] conceived a great affection for Mehr-un-Nissa; she loved her more than others and always kept her in her company."


Death
Gardens of Babur at Kabul, Afghanistan Ruqaiya died in 1626, at the ageof 84 having outlived herhusband by 20 years. She wasburied on the fifteenth level inthe Gardens of Babur (Bagh-e-Babur) in Kabul, which is also the resting place of hergrandfather, Emperor Baburand her father, Hindal Mirza.Her tomb was built by her step-grandson, Emperor Shah Jahan.

While recording her death in his autobiography, Jahangir fondly speaks of Ruqaiya and make note of her exalted status asAkbar's first wife.


Last edited by --sumana13-- on 2014-02-16, 18:40; edited 3 times in total

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Re: Collection of Interesting Historical Facts of Akbar Era..(members to post Historical facts only)

Post by neha on 2014-02-16, 16:42

Marriage of Emperor Humayun-Hamida Banu and birth of Akbar

Emperor (Humayun) came to see her Highness my mother(Dildaar Begum, mother of Gulbadan Begum and Hindal Mirza). The mirza' s haram and all his people paid their respects to his Majesty at this meeting. Concerning Hamida-banu Begam, his Majesty asked: 'Who is this?' They said: 'The daughter of Mir Baba Dost.' Khwaja Mu'azzam was standing opposite his Majesty, who said : ' This boy will be one of my kinsmen.' Of Hamida-banu he said :'She too, is related to me.' In those days Hamida-banu Begam was often in the mirza's residence (mahall). Another day when his Majesty came to see her Highness my mother, he remarked : 'Baba Dost is related to us. It is fitting that you should give me his daughter in marriage.' Mirza Hindal kept on making objections, and said :'I look on this girl as a sister and child of my own. Your Majesty is a king. Heaven forbid there should not be a proper alimony, and that so a cause of annoyance should arise.' His Majesty got angry, and rose and went away. Then my mother(Dildaar Begum) wrote and sent a letter, saying :'The girl's mother has even before this been using persuasion.It is astonishing that you should go away in anger over a few words.' He wrote in reply :'Your story is very welcome to me. Whatever persuasion you may use, by my head and eyes, I will agree to it. As for what they have written about alimony, please Heaven, what they ask will be done. My waiting eye is on the road.' My mother fetched his Majesty, and on that day she gave a party. When it was over, he went to his own quarters.On another day he came to my mother, and said :'Send someone to call Hamida-banu Begam here.' When she sent, the begam did not come, but said : 'If it is to pay my respects, I was exalted by paying my respects the other day. Why should I come again?' Another time his Majesty sent Subhan Quli, and said :'Go to Mirza Hindal, and tell him to send the begam.' The mirza said :'Whatever I may say, she will not go. Go yourself and tell her.' When Subhan Quli went and spoke, the begam replied : 'To see kings once is lawful ; a second time it is forbidden. I shall not come.' On this Subhan Quli went and represented what she had said. His Majesty remarked : 'If she is not a consort (na mahram), we will make her a consort (mahram) .' For forty days the begam resisted and discussed and disagreed. At last her highness my mother, Dil-dar Begam, advised her, saying: 'After all you will marry someone. Better than a king, who is there ?' The begam said :'Oh yes, I shall marry someone; but he shall be a man whose collar my hand can touch, and not one whose skirt it does not reach.' Then my mother again gave her much advice. At last, after forty days (discussion), at midday on Monday (fault) Jumidu-1-awwal (sic) 948H. (September,1541), and in Patr (sic), his Majesty took the astrolabe into his own blessed hand and, having chosen a propitious hour, summoned Mir Abu'1-baqa and ordered him to make fast the marriage bond. He gave the mir two lakhs of ready money for the dower (nikahana), and having stayed three days after the wedding in Patr, he set out and went by boat to Bhakkar.
   In Umarkot he left many people, and his family and relations, and also Khwaja Mu'azzarn to have charge of the haram. Hamida-banu Begam was with child. Three days after his Majesty's departure, and in the early morning of Sunday, the fourth day of the revered Eajab, 949H.(14th October,1542),there was born his imperial Majesty, the world's refuge and conqueror, Jalalu-d-din Muhammad Akbar Gazi. The moon was in Leo. It was of very good omen that the birth was in a fixed Sign, and the astrologers said a child so born would be fortunate and long-lived. The Emperor was some thirty miles away when Tardi Muhammad Khan took the news to him. He was highly delighted, and by way of reward and largesse (nisdr) for the tidings he forgave all soever of Tardi Muhammad Khan's past offences. He gave the child the name he had heard in his dream at Lahore, the Emperor Jalalu-d-din Muhammad Akbar. There was a nautch in celebration of Akbar's birth.

SOURCE : Memoirs of Gulbadan Begum(Humayun Nama)

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Re: Collection of Interesting Historical Facts of Akbar Era..(members to post Historical facts only)

Post by --sumana13-- on 2014-03-12, 13:40

Akbar's military conquests 
...shared by Sandhya


Friends,


This is in continuation to the earlier thread on Akbar's reforms. This is about his military achievements. Akbar was a great imperialist who practically spent his whole life conquering one territory after another. When he ascended the throne in 1556, he could hardly be said to be the master of any territory. But because of his policy, wisdom and military skill, he laid the foundation of a vast empire.

 

The basis of his military prowess and authority was Akbar's skillful structural and organisational calibration of the Mughal Army.  The Mansabdari system has been acclaimed for its role in upholding Mughal power in the time of Akbar.  Akbar's army excelled in cannons, firearms, war elephants and was well known for fortifications.

 

1.Conquest of Delhi and Agra 1556 A.D.,
As a result of his success in the second battle of Panipat, Akbar occupied Delhi and Agra with the help of his regent Bairam Khan.
(This was mentioned in the introductory episode of the serial. It was shot very well in the movie too.)

 
2.Gwalior Ajmer and Jaunpur 1556-1560
For four years, Bairam Khan acted as a guardian for Akbar and added these territories in the Mughal Empire during this period.  In 1558, Akbar took possession of Ajmer,  the aperture to Rajputana. Late in the same year, a Mughal commander defeated and annexed Jaunpur in the eastern Gangetic valley. The Mughals had also besieged and defeated the Sur forces in control of Gwalior.
(This is also mentioned in the earlier episodes. Jallu earned the name Jallad during this time. )

 
3 Malwa 1560 - 62
In 1560, an expedition was sent against Baz Bahadur, the Afghan Ruler of Malwa. He was defeated by the Mughal Generals Aadham Khan and Pir Muhammad.  But Aadham Khan retained all the spoils and followed through with the Central Asian practice of slaughtering the surrendered garrison, their wives and children,  Akbar personally rode to Malwa to confront Adham Khan and relieve him of command.


(We saw all this in detail. . Wow! Jalal had his shamsheer () at AK's neck when our white witch MA pleaded on his behalf and Jalal as usual forgave. More so because MA destroyed proofs. Didn't Jallu look extremely good looking in that light blue dress in that episode? )

 
Pir Muhammad Khan was then sent in pursuit of Baz Bahadur but was beaten back.  Baz Bahadur temporarily regained control of Malwa until, in the next year, Akbar sent another Mughal army to invade and annex the kingdom.

 
(This happened only a few episodes ago.. AK and PM are in Malwa right now.)

 
Malwa became a province of  Akbar's regime. Later, Baz Bahadur  took service under Akbar

 
4. 1562 ...Akbar, as a part of his expansion policy entered into friendly and matrimonial alliances with many Rajput rulers. In 1562, he married the daughter of Raja Bharmal of Amer and Amer became a vassal state of the Mughal Sultanate.

 
(This is all that the general books mention of the most important aspect of our serial!)

 
5. 1564 Gondwana

 
Gondwana  a small state  in modern Madhya Pradesh, was ruled by Rani Durgavati, on behalf of her son Raja Vir Narayan. This hilly area in central India was of interest to the Mughals because of its herd of wild elephants. Akbar did not personally lead the campaign because he was preoccupied with the Uzbek rebellion, but left the expedition in the hands of Asaf Khan, the Mughal governor of Kara. Rani Durgavati offered tough resistance and fought bravely, but was defeated in the battle of Damoh while Raja Vir Narayan was slain at the Fall of Chauragarh, the mountain fortress of the Gonds.  Asaf Khan misappropriated the spoils of the war, was taken to task by Akbar, he fled and then came back and was given his position again.

 
(I  hope Rani Durgavati's story is shown by our CVs...).

 
6. Chittore  1567-1568

 
The Mughals had already established domination over parts of northern Rajputana in Mewar, Ajmer and Nagoor. (The aread that were under the Subedari of Shariffu before the fake pregnancy track and which Jalal split and gave individually) Now, however, Akbar was determined to drive into the heartlands of Rajputana. Most Rajput states accepted Akbar's suzerainty. But the ruler of Mewar,Udai Singh however, remained outside the imperial fold.
In 1567, Akbar moved to reduce the Chittor fort in Mewar. The fortress-capital of Mewar was of great strategic importance as it lay on the shortest route from Agra to Gujarat. Udai Singh retired to the hills of Mewar, leaving two Rajput warriors, Jaimal and Fatta. For four months, (Oct 1567 to Feb 1568) the Rajputs successfully kept the Mughals at bay. Akbar himself escaped death many times. On 23rd Feb 1568, Jaimal was fatally wounded by a shot from Akbar's gun. The Rajput  women committed jauhar and the men fought very bravely, but Chittore ultimately fell to the Mughals.
Udai Singh then founded the city of Udaipur but his illustrious son Maharana Pratap (our ever-'green' dress warrior ...when will the CVs give our MP a different coloured new dress?) and grandson Amar Singh bravely defied the Mughals throughout their lives.
 
7. 1569 - 1570   Ranthambhor, Khalinjar, Bikaner, Jaisalmer and Jodhpur
After Chittore, the Ranthambor fortress, one of the most powerful ones was captured followed by  Khalinjar, Bikaner, Jaisalmer and Jodhpur. The rulers of Bikaner and Jaisalmer married their daughters to Akbar.
 
(Kyun Jalal kyun? Aren't the overflowing numbers in the harem enough?)
 
8. 1572-73 Gujarat
 
Akbar's next military objectives were the conquest of Gujarat and Bengal, which connected India with the trading centres of Asia, Africa, and Europe through the Arabian Sea and Bay of Bengal respectively.
 
Gujarat, with its coastal regions, possessed areas of rich agricultural production in its central plain; an impressive output of textiles and other industrial goods, and the busiest seaports of India. Gujarat was attacked in 1572, and its ruler Muzaffar Shah was found hiding in the cornfield who submitted with least resistance. However, when Akbar returned, Muzaffar Shah started to give trouble. Akbar came back in 1573  and crushed the revolt with a heavy hand. The Buland Darwaza was built in FS to commemorate this victory.
 
9. 1574-76 Bihar and Bengal
 
Daud Khan the Afghan ruler of Bihar and Bengal refused to accept the suzerainty of Akbar. Expeditions were sent in 1574 and then again in 1576 to defeat him and Bihar and Bengal were annexed.  Munim Khan, the Mughal governor of Bihar, was ordered to defeat Duad Khan, but later, Akbar himself set out to Bengal. This was an opportunity to bring the trade in the east under Mughal control.
 
10. 1585-86 Kabul
 
Kabul  was under Akbar's half-brother Mirza Haakim (Our Jalal's love guru - ). However Mirza Haakim troubled Akbar and tried to invade Punjab in 1581 (On no!...how can our chocolate baby, chubby cute, complan boy do this to his bhai jaan) which was thwarted by Akbar. When Mirza Hakim died in 1585, Kabul was annexed to the Mughal Empire completely.
 
11.1586-95 Kaskmir Sind and Kandhar
 
The beautiful valley of Kashmir was added to the Mughal Empire when Bhagwan Das defeated its ruler Yusuf Shah in 1586. In 1591, In 1591, Abdul Rahim Khanekhana defeated the ruler of Sind Mirza Fani Beg and annexed Sind to the Mughal Empire. (Seems our cutie Rahim had his Momma dearest's flair for poetry and his papa dearest's flair for military expertise too.). Then it became easy for Akbar to defeat the Shah of Persia and conquer Kandahar.
 
12.1595-1601 The Deccan
 
Akbar was the first Mughal Monarch to pay attention to the Deccan. He tried to bring the various states of the Deccan under him - like Khandesh, Ahmadnagar, Bijapur and Golconda and succeeded. ( The story of Chand Bibi of Ahmadnagar who stood up to the Mughals is a popular one in Amar Chitra Katha).
 
(All these are about the main and interesting conquests of Akbar. There are many many more that I have left out as I didn't want the post to sound like a big  history essay.)
 
There is a dialogue in the serial in which Jalal says that he was a sipahi first. The sipahi in him was alive and active till his final days. While explaining about the Ratanpur Qila, he said that he conquered more than what he saw from the tallest tower of the fort. He had infact conquered more than anyone foresaw, given the diversity, complexity and strength of those he faced...He not just conquered, but he administered his sultanate very ably and left behind a legacy and an imprint in the History of India, equalled by very few kings after him. 
 
PS: These details are to the best of my knowledge and understanding. Friends, you are welcome to correct if inaccurate and  add  facts and anectodes.

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Re: Collection of Interesting Historical Facts of Akbar Era..(members to post Historical facts only)

Post by --sumana13-- on 2014-10-30, 13:07

 Price Salim and his  marriage.


Salim was made a Mansabdar of ten thousand(Das-Hazari), the highest military rank of the empire, after the emperor. He independently commanded a regiment in the Kabul campaign of 1581, when he was barely twelve. His Mansab was raised to Twelve Thousand, in 1585, at the time of his betrothal to his cousin Manbhawati Bai, daughter of Bhagwant Das of Amber. Bhagwant Das, was the son of Raja Bharmal and the brother of Akbar's Hindu wife Mariam uz-Zamani.


The marriage with Manbhawati Bai took place on 13 February 1585. Manbhawati gave birth to Khusrau Mirza. Thereafter, Salim married, in quick succession, a number of accomplished girls from the aristocratic Mughal and Rajput families. One of his early favourite wives was a Rajput Princess, known as Jagat Gosain or Princess Manmati, who gave birth to Prince Khurram, the future Shah Jahan, Jahangir's successor to the throne. The total number of wives in his harem was more than eight hundred.[citation needed]


Jahangir married the extremely beautiful and intelligent Mehr-un-Nisaa (better known by her subsequent title of Nur Jahan), on 25 May 1611. She was the widow of Sher Afgan. Mehr-un-Nisaa became his indisputable chief consort and favourite wife immediately after their marriage. She was witty, intelligent and beautiful, which was what attracted Jahangir to her. Before being awarded the title of Nur Jahan ('Light of the World'), she was called Nur Mahal ('Light of the Palace'). Her abilities are said to range from fashion designing to hunting. There is also a myth that she had once killed four tigers with six bullets.

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