Emperor Akbar

By : Neha Dhyani

Updated : May 20, 2022, 7:09

Emperor Akbar the Great was a Mughal (Indian) emperor who was known for his religious tolerance, imperial power, and support of the arts during the 16th century.

Akbar was the child of Nasiruddin Humayun and ascended him as Emperor in 1556 when he was only 13 years old. After replacing his father Humayun at a key stage, he gradually expanded the Mughal Empire to encompass practically the whole Indian subcontinent.

Emperor Akbar - Early life

On October 14, 1542, in Sindh, Pakistan, Akbar was born to the second Mughal Emperor Humayun and his young bride Hamida Banu Begum. Despite having forefathers such as Genghis Khan and Timur, his family had been on the run after relinquishing Babur's freshly founded realm.

Little Akbar was nurtured by an uncle in Afghanistan, while his parents were in exile in Persia. He honed important talents such as hunting, but he never learned how to read. Nonetheless, Akbar had worked on philosophy, history, religion, science, as well as other disciplines, read to him throughout his life, and he could repeat entire passages from memory.

Emperor Akbar - Ascending the throne

Humayan died in 1555, only a few months after taking back Delhi. At the age of 13, Akbar assumed the Mughal throne and then became Shahanshah (King of Kings). Bayram Khan, his boyhood protector and a great warrior/statesman served as his regent.

For geostrategic considerations and to keep bothersome warriors away from the capital, the new emperor embarked on an aggressive military expansion campaign. The Mughal army would go on to capture much of north India, encompassing what is now Pakistan, and Afghanistan in the years to come.

Akbar established a very effective bureaucracy to administer his huge empire. He assigned mansabars, or military governors, in charge of the several areas, who reported directly to him. As an outcome, he unified India's several fiefdoms into a single empire that lasted until 1868.

Akbar was a brave individual who was eager to lead the fight in combat. Because of his fearlessness and self-assurance, Akbar was able to implement novel policies in government and stick to them in the face of opposition from the more conservative advisers and consorts.

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Emperor Akbar - Legacy

Akbar covered the terrain with walled cities of royal pleasure and comfort, aiming to dazzle the native rajas and advertise the greatness of his reign, expressing the ancestral love of the arts on a massive scale. Akbar built his magnificent Red Fort alongside the Jamuna River in the gorgeous capital city of Agra. Since then, Agra has become the storehouse for all of the riches and talent of one of the world's most powerful civilizations.

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Emperor Akbar - Death

Emperor Akbar, who was 63 years old at the time, was diagnosed with dysentery in October 1605. He died at the end of the month after a three-week illness. In the imperial capital of Agra, the emperor was buried in a splendid mausoleum

Akbar's legacy of religious tolerance, firm but fair central control, and liberal tax policies that allowed commoners to thrive established a precedent in India that can be traced back to Mohandas Gandhi's thought. His passion for art resulted in a combination of Indian and Anatolian traditions that came to represent the pinnacle of Mughal excellence in miniature painting and magnificent buildings. Under Akbar's grandson Shah Jahan, who developed and constructed the world-famous Taj Mahal, this synthesis would achieve its pinnacle.

Most importantly, Akbar the Great demonstrated to rulers of all nations that patience is not a flaw and that open-mindedness is not synonymous with indecisiveness. As a result, he is remembered as one of the finest rulers in human history more than 4 centuries after his death.

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FAQs on Emperor Akbar

Q1. When was Emperor Akbar born?

Ans. Emperor Akbar was born on October 15, 1542

Q2. What was Emperor Akbar's stance on art?

Ans. Despite his illiteracy, Emperor Akbar appreciated those who possessed talent and had a deep affection for art. He was a big supporter of art and was always eager to pick up new skills from others.

Q3. What were Emperor Akbar's views on other religions?

Ans. Emperor Akbar was tolerant and accepting of all other religions

Q4. How many ministers did Emperor Akbar have?

Ans. In Emperor Akbar's court, he had nine ministers known as the Navratnas, or "nine gems."