By Andre Wink
Largely considered as the best of the Mughal emperors, Jalal ad-Din Akbar (1542-1603) was once an impressive army tactician and well known demagogue. Ascending to the throne on the age of 13, he governed for part a century, multiplied the Mughal empire, and left at the back of a legacy to rival his notorious ancestor Chinggis Khan. This lucid biography presents glimpses into Akbar's way of life and highlights his contribution to new tools of imperial keep an eye on.
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Additional resources for Akbar (Makers of the Muslim World)
When the imperial camp was pitched on the bank of the Chambal, a halt of two weeks was ordered to enable the entire army 38 AKBAR to cross the river – which was in full flood – in boats. After this crossing, which caused many casualties (one of the special elephants was carried away by the torrential river), the army marched to Gwalior and then halted again at Narwar, a town near the elephant forests. There the hunting began. Several hunting parties were formed which undertook to catch wild elephants with ropes, then drag them back to the camp and slowly tame them with grass, grain, water, and gentle persuasion.
On July 22, when Akbar was about to go, the Kashmiris closed all the routes and passes into their country. Although he could not take them along he spent a month of that year’s fall in the Kashmir valley. ” This time he went fowling on Dal Lake – with his harem ladies. 5 TAMING THE MONGOL BEASTS A s we saw in the previous chapter (p. It is the positive outcome of this transformation that concerns Abu-l-Fazl – because he regards it as one of Akbar’s great achievements. The “taming” or “civilizing” of the originally nomadic Mongols was, of course, a gradual process that took place over centuries.
It was not until the seventeenth century – the reigns of Jahangir and Shah Jahan – that Mughal emperors became sybarites and began patronizing truly magnificent architecture and other 36 CLOUDS AND ELEPHANTS AND MUD 37 forms of display. Even this much more lavish Mughal style barely lasted half a century. That emperor – the last of the Great Mughals – spent the final twenty-five years of his life in fruitless campaigns against an elusive enemy in the rocky tableland of the Deccan,amidst outbreaks of epidemics that could wipe out as much as a third of his army in just one week.
Akbar (Makers of the Muslim World) by Andre Wink