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Q1. When, how and by whom the rule of Mughal Empire was revived?
In 1555, by Humayun, after defeating Adil Shah Suri of the Sur Dynasty near Sirhind with the able assistance of his trusted general Bairam Khan. He came back to power in July 1555 and died in January 1556 in a freak accident.
Q2. When and how did Humayun die?
In January 1556 he died of a freak accident of falling down from the stairs of a library.
Q3. Who succeeded Humayun?
AKBAR - he was crowned as the King immediately after his father Humayun's death in 1556. He was only 14 years old then, and Bairam Khan was made the Regent.
Q4. Akbar, even at the age of 14, had to face a battle. What was it?
The Afghans, led by Hemu, besides driving out the Moghuls from the Agra Bayana region, captured Delhi also. Thus, Akbar had to battle it out with Hemu in the II Battle of Panipat in 1556, when Hemu was injured in his eyes and his army fled. Thus Akbar was able to capture back Delhi.
Q5. When did Akbar took over the power independently and what happened to him from the family side?
Akbar took over the power in 1560 when he became 18 and wished to rule independently. However, his predominance was not well received within the family and he was transferred to Agra from Delhi by his step mother MAHAM ANAGA.
Q6. What happened to Bairam Khan, the Regent, once Akbar took over independent charge of the empire?
He was compulsorily made to go on a pilgrimage to Mecca. Unfortunately, in 1561, on his way, he was killed by an Afghan at Patan in Gujarat.
Q7. What were akbar's military conquests during his tenure from 1556 to 1605?
With a series of success Akbar ensured that Mughal rule prevails upon entire northern India from Agra to Gujarat, Agra to Bengal, and upto borders of Assam and also Deccan in his later years. His conquests were:
1. Malwa from Bez Bahadur in 1561.
2. Gondwana in 1564
3. Gujarat in 1572
4. Bihar and Bengal - 1574
5. Mewar in 1576
6. Kabul in 1581
7. Kashmir and Baluchistan - 1586
8. Sind in 1591
9. Orissa in 1592
10. Qandahar in 1595
11. Khandesh and parts of Ahmadnagar in 1601.
Q8. What did Akbar do after gaining victory over Gujarat in 1572?
In memory of his victory over Gujarat he built the famous monument "Buland Darwaza" at Fatehpur Sikri, a city also built by him.
Q9. What event was the cause of Akbar's invasion of Kashmir, although the last ruler of Kashmir, Yusuf Khan (Afghan) was ready to surrender and accept Akbar's suzerainty?
The main reason for Akbar not accepting Yusuf Khan's offer of surrender was that he killed Akbar's most trusted Brahmin friend Birbal. Raja Bhagwan Das, a general of Akbar persuaded Yusuf Khan to accept Akbar. But, for reason above, Akbar decided to invade Kashmir.
Q10. In which battle did Akbar defeat Rana Pratap to annexe Mewar?
The Ranas of Mewar were defying the Mughal suzerainty.Thus, Akbar had to battle it out with Rana Pratap at "Haldighatti" in 1576, with Man Singh leading the Mughal forces.
Q11. What were the events and actions of Akbar that indicates his tolerance and secular attitude towards other religions?
1. BIRBAL - a Hindu Brahmin was his best friend. 2. RAJA BHAGWANDAS - a Hindu was one of his trusted general. 3. MAN SINGH - adopted son of Raja Bhagwandas was given senior position in the Mughal imperial hierarchy. 4. He repealed the Jaziya Tax levied on non Muslim population. 5. He married a Rajput princess and she was allowed to practice Hinduism.
Q12. Whom did Akbar marry?
Akbar married the Kachchwaha Rajput princes Hira Kunwari , daughter of Raja Bharamal of Amber, Rajsthan, which helped his relation with Rajputs.
Q13. When did Akbar die?
Died in 1605 due to illness. He was buried at Sikandra (now in Pakistan).
Q14. How the advisors and eminent personalities of Akbar's court were called and who were they?
They were called "NAVARATNAS" meaning "Nine Gems". They were:
1. ABUL FAZL - Chief Advisor and author of Akbar Nama and Ain-iAkbari.
2. FAIZI - Poet Laureate who wrote Nal-u-Daman, a Persian poetic version of the Sanskrit story of Nala Damayanti.
3. MIAN TANSEN - A Hindu (Ramtanu Pandey) singer, musician, composer coverted to Islam.
4. BIRBAL - A highly witty noble - a very close friend of Akbar, who was killed by the Kashmiri ruler Yusuf Khan.
5. RAJA MAN SINGH - A Hindu and most trusted general of Akbar, instrumental in the Rajput's acceptance of Akbar.
6. RAJA THODARMAL - A Hindu and Finance Minister.
7. ABDUL RAHIM KHAN I KHANA - An important noble and a renowned poet in Persian, Sanskrit and Hindustani.
8. FAKIR AZID DIN - Advisor.
9. MULLAH DO RAZA - Advisor.
Q15. Who succeeded Akbar to the throne?
SALIM - later to be called JEHANGIR (meaning conqueror of the world) and his full original name was Nuruddin Muhammad Jehangir. He was born to Jodha Bai, and he was named as SALIM, in honour of the Sufi Saint Shaikh Salim Chisti, and Salim is believed to have born by the blessings of this saint. He was born in 1569.
Q16. When did Jehangir assume the throne?
In 1605, at the age of 36, after the death of Akbar.
Q17. Jehangir married how many times and who was the notable among them?
He was married 20 times. The notable wife among them was - Mehr-un-Nisa widow of 'Sher Afghan', who died fighting against the Governor of Bengal. She was later to be titled as "Nur Mahal" (Light of the Palace) and "Nur Jahan" (Light of the world) by which name she came to be known and called in the history thereafter.
The other notable and the historically important wife was Jagat Gosain, a Rajput princess, through whom was born Prince Khurram - later to be known as 'Shah Jahan" and to rule later.
Q18. Which son of Jahangir revolted against him and what was the punishment meted out to him?
In 1606, Khusrau revolted against him. He was imprisoned and blinded to make him unfit for the throne later. He was under the custody of Khurram (Shah Jahan) and died in 1621 at Burhanpur.
Q19. What was Jahangir's military campaigns?
Nothing much. But he managed to get into an understanding with Amar Singh, the successor of Maharana Pratap of Mewar, which improved the relations. The peace was agreed upon in 1615.
Q20. What step by Jahangir during his rule changed the history of India two centuries later?
It was during his period, the British East India company got the permission for trading in India. The British team was led by Captain Hawkins visited the court of Jahangir in 1609 and got the permission to open a factory at Surat. However, the decision was kept pending due to the objections of the Portuguese. Later, when the Portuguese were defeated by the British under Captain Best in the Battle of Swally near Surat, in 1612, the order for opening a factory at Surat was granted in 1613.
Q21. When did Jahangir die, and where was he buried?
Jahangir died in 1627 at Bhimbar in Kashmir, and was buried at the Dilkusha garden at Shahdara near Lahore.
Q22. Who succeeded Jahangir to the Mughal empire throne?
SHAH JAHAN - 1627-1658. Enroute to his throne, he had to face lot of family claimants and all of them were murdered.
Q23. What was the full/real name of Shah Jahan?
Shahabuddin Muhammad Shah Jahan and Khurram, until he proclaimed himself as Emperor Shah Jahan.
Q24. Shah Jahan was married to whom?
Q25. What are Shah Jahan's military campaigns and achievements?
Shah Jahan's regime was not one of adventurous and he did not wage much of wars, excepting a few unsuccessful efforts to capture Transoxiana (Central Asia) which he could not due to its geographical mountainous conditions, between 1639-1647. Heavy human loss made him to abort this attempt. This was the only notable military campaign. On the other hand, he was able to take over Daulatabad from Ahamadnagar kingdom, Bijapur and Golconda, then Khandesh, Berar, Telengana through coercion and treaties and made them all his provinces under Munghal empire. He appointed Aurangazeb as the Viceroy of the provinces.
Q26. In 1657, Shah Jahan fell ill. What was the commotion that took place in the Mughal empire?
A war of succession followed which turned into a civil family war between 1657-1659 among his four sons - Aurangazeb (Governor of Deccan), Dara Shikoh (crown prince), Shuja (Governor of Bengal) and Murad Baksh (Governor of Malwa and Gujarat). Within the family, the sisters Jahanara Begum and Begum Shahiba supported Dara Shikoh while the other sister Roshanara took sides with Aurangazeb, and some others also joined the confusion as informers and supporters. Finally
1. Shah Shuja, who was ruling Bengal, unable to withstand the onslaught on him, escaped to Arakan with his family.
2. Aurangazed had Murad Baksh killed.
3. Dara Shikoh who was fleeing was caught by Afghan Chief Malik Jiwan and was brought to Delhi and murdered for religious reasons.
In the meantime, Aurangezeb had his father confined to the ladies palace, Agra fort, where he remained for ten years until his death in 1666. While all this happenings, Aurangazeb proclaimed himself as King around 1658 at Delhi.
Q27. What are the famous architectural monuments built during Shah Jahan's period?
1. Taj Mahal - Agra - built in memory of his beloved wife Mumtaz Mahal. 2. Red Fort, Delhi; 3. Jama Masjid - Delhi; 4.Shalimar Gardens - Lahore; 5. Jahangir Mausoleum - Lahore.
Q28. Who succeeded Shah Jahan to the throne of Mughal empire?
AURANGAZEB in 1658 and remained in power until 1707. His coming to power was probably the most brutal way in the Mughal history. He made his brother Shah Shuja to flee with his family to Arakan in Buram, and murdered his other two brothers Dara Sikoh and Murad Baksh and above all these, he had his father Shah Jehan imprisoned in Agra Fort for nine years, where he died finally.
Q29. What was Aurangazeb's full name and how was he also known?
Abu Muzaffar Mohiuddin Muhammad Aurangazeb. Also known as Alamgir.
Q30. How was Aurangazeb's rule?
His rule was a departure from his predecessors rule of co-existence. He was more towards the Islamic improvement and neglecting and suppressing of other religions including the Islamic Shia sect of people. Some his actions mentioned below are indicative of his rule:
1. Enforcement of Sunni laws and suppression of Shia practices.
2. Customs duty for Muslims was reduced while it was doubled for Hindus.
3. In 1669, he issued general order for demolition of Hindu temples and religious centres. The Viswanatha temples at Benares and Kesava Rai temple at Mathura was completely destroyed.
4. He reimposed the Jaziya tax on non muslims in April 1679.
5. He tried to convert the 9th Sikh Guru Tegh Bahadur to Islam and when he refused, he had him executed, leading to revolts from Sikhs.
Q31. What were the military achievements and set backs of Aurangazeb?
The first ten years of Aurangazeb's rule was militarily and politically successful. All minor uprisings were crushed. In 1661, he tried to capture the Ahom dynasty of Assam through Mir Jumla, a general. Although the Mughals reached its capital, could not last long due to various reasons and had to retreat. Enroute Mir Jumla died, after entering into a peace treaty with the Ahom Raja. Thereafter, it was the beginning of set backs as well as territorial gains for the Mughal empire:
1. The excesses on Hindus committed by Add-un-Nabi the Faujdar of Mathura. This brought Jat ( a community in northern India) people together and they showed their resentment over Mughals by fearlessly reached upto Agra and Delhi and also Akbar's Tomb at Sikandra, dug the grave for any hidden treasures.
2. In 1675, the Guru Tegh Bahadur was executed on the orders of Qazi of Delhi, for refusing to convert to Islam. This made the 10th Guru Gobind Singh and other such communities to revolt against the Mughals. Then onwards the Sikhs and the Mughal forces were regularly in clashes till Aurangazeb's death.
3. His fourth son Akbar II, in 1681, with the support of the Rajputs declared himself emperor. This made Aurangazeb to march against him and managed to alienate the Rajputs from Akbar. Akbar II fled to the Maratha's court of Sambhaji.
4. Annexed Bijapur in 1686 from Sikandar Ali Shah, ending the Adil Shahi dynasty and annexed the region to the Mughal empire.
5. In 1687, Golconda was annexed from Abul Hasan Qutub Shah.
6. He could make little inroads into Marathas by capturing Sambhaji and executing him at Sangameshwar. But he could not sustain his efforts as the Marathas indulged in guerilla warfare and his position in Deccan weakened considerably.In total, he controlled entire South Asia and Afghanistan.
Q32. When did Aurangazeb die?
In 1707, at the age of 87 at Ahmednagar. His death brought an end to the Mughal empire's effectiveness, though few others also ruled later.
Q33. What are the architectural monuments contributed by Aurangazeb?
BIBI KA MAQBARA - His first wife's mausoleum at Aurangabad. BADSHAHI MASJID at Lahore.
Q34. Who were the other rulers of Mughal empire to follow?
BAHADUR SHAH - 1707-1712 - Son - succeeded Aurangazeb, after a war of succession with his brothers. He reconciled with the Sikhs by taking Guru Gobind Singh into the Mughal service. But after the death of Guru Gobind Singh, the Sikhs revolted against him under Banda Bahadur. He also reconciled with the Bundelas and the Jats by taking their chiefs Chatrasal and Chauraman respectively into Mughal empire service. He died in 1712.
JAHANDAR SHAH 1712-1713 - Son of Bahadur Shah I - He succeeded the throne of Mughal empire after a war of succession with his brothers, with the help of Zulfiqar Khan a noble. His tenure was shortlived as he was defeated in a battle at Agra with his nephew Faruq Siyar in January 1713 and later killed in February 1713.
FARUQ SIYAR - 1713-1719 - Grand son of Bahadur Shah I through the second son Azim Usn Shah. He defeated his predecessor Jahandar Shah with the help of Sayyid Brothers - Abdullah and Hussain Ali Khan. He was a weak king and not an able administrator and he was too much dependent on Sayyid brothers. This dependency brought him the end, as he was murdered by the Sayyid brothers and another grand son of Bahadur Shah, Rafi ud Darajat was made the empire, who died soon.
RAFI UD DARAJAT (SHAH JAHAN II) 1719 - his tenure was very short as he died of some lung ailment.
MUHAMMAD SHAH - 1719-1748 - He succeeded Shah Jahan II, again with the help of Sayyid brothers. However, due to over dominance of the Sayyid brothers and difference of opinion and misbehaviour by them, led to their death by murder with the help of some his nobles. During his rule, the Mughal started disintegrating, as his Chief Minister Nizam Ul Mulk, conspired with the Marathas, had the governor of Deccan Mubaraz Khan killed and founded his own state of Hyderabad. (Thus came the rule of Nizams in Hyderabad). Besides Hyderabad, some regions along Indus region were also lost. Most notable loss of artifact was the "Peacock Throne" with the Kohinoor diamond was lost to Nadir Shah, an Afghan, who captured Delhi. This happened in 1738-39. During his tenure, the Marathas under Bhajirao also started inflicting decisive defeats and he started loosing territories. Thus the Mughal rule was further getting weakened. Finally in 1748 he died.
AHMAD SHAH - 1748-1754 - Son of Muhammad Shah. He inherited a weakened Mughal empire. His nobles were also had their own internal quarrels upsetting the emperor. In an attempt to set right the internal differences between his nobles, he lost out badly and he was imprisoned and blinded by one of his nobles Imad Ul Mulk .In the meantime,he also had to face the major invasion by Ahamad Shah Abdali of Afghanistan (who was formerly a general of Nadir Shah) in 1748. Thus, his rule was not gainful to the Mughal empire. He died in 1775.
ALAM GIR II 1754-1759 - He was helped to succeed Ahamad Shah by Imad Ul Mulk the Wazir. During his tenure, the Mughal empire was further weakened by the invasion of Ahamd Shah Abdali and capturing of Punjab Sind regions. His own Wazir Imad Ul Mulk , allied with the Marathas and inflicted a heavy defeat of his Prime Minister Najib ud Daula. Finally in November 1759, he was murdered by Imad Ul Mulk's hired assassins.
SHAH ALAM II - 1759-1806 - Son of Alamgir II - succeeded the throne in 1759 and preferred to stay away from Delhi in fear of the Wazir Imad Ul Mulk. His reign played an important role in the history of India, in that he was defeated in the Battle of Buxar in 1764 by the British. All his further attempts to revive the empire failed and finally in 1803, the British captured Delhi, and allowed him to continue as a puppet ruler under them. He died in 1806.
AKBAR II - 1806 - 1837 - After Shah Alam's defeat and death at the hands of the British, the Mughal empire merely in the throne and all other control were exercised by the British. The notable event that happened during his tenure was that of his conferring the title "Raja" on Ram Mohan Roy and requesting him to go to England to plead his case for the Emperor's pension.
Q35. Who was the last Mughal Emperor?
BAHADUR SHAH II 1837-1858-1862. (Bahadur Shah Zafar)
Q36. What was the full name of Bahadur Shah II?
Abu Zafar Sirajuddin Muhammad Bahadur Shah Zafar. He was born to Akbar II. He married a Hindu, Lalbhai in 1775.
Q37. What are the events during the rule of Bahadur Shah Zafar?
Nothing much politically nor any military achievements, as he inherited an empire that was almost depleted, with Marathas and Punjab emerging as a major power house during his regime, while the British slowly and steadily annexing every possible region. The south and southeast states were already under British. Thus he was left with only a small area around Delhi to rule. The notable event that took place during his rule was the Sepoy Mutiny of 1857 (more about it later) which was the death nail on the Mughal empire.
Q38. How the end of Mughal empire and the last emperor took place?
The Sepoy Mutiny of 1857 spread across the country and the movement requiring a unifying force and desired to have Bahadur Shah Zafar as the emperor of India. This took place after a combined forces seized Delhi, and had Bahadur Shah to lead. However, the movement was crushed by the British. Bahadur Shah and his three sons were captured. His three sons were executed in front of him and he was deported to Rangoon (Burma) where he died on 7.11.1862, along with him the Mughal Empire.