The Mughal Empire
1. Who were the Mughals?
a. Mughal Empire in
b. Tradition of the nomadic warrior clans that
periodically swooped down from the grasslands and deserts of
2. Mughal Rulers
(1483-1530) conquered northern
b. Policies toward non-Muslims
i. Muhammad and immediate successors: uncompromising, harsh
ii. Harsh policy toward the local population: Hindus and Buddhists were not “true believers”, so Muslim warriors plundered and destroyed many local shrines and killed or drove off the monks and nuns. Buddhism never quite recovered from that blow.
iii. Many conversion to Islam (some forced, some voluntary). Many members of lower castes sought to escape social discrimination through conversion.
In time, some Muslim rulers granted more tolerance to
(ruled 1556-1605): Grandson of Babur, extended Mughal control over most of
i. Religious tolerance.
ii. The “Divine Faith”
d. Shah Jahan (ruled 1628-1658) restored Islam as the state religion.
Golden age of Mughal
ii. Mumtaz and the Taj
Struggle for succession between his sons.
e. Aurangzeb: revival of traditional Islamic practice
i. Dara Shikoh: deeply influenced by Sufism, had several Hindu scriptures translated in to Persian.
Mingling of the
for heresy. Considered a lover of
Hinduism and enemy of Islam.
3. Decline of the Mughal Empire
Aurangzeb’s efforts to impose Islam weakened rather
than strengthened the empire. Corruption
among government officials and oppression of the people led to widespread revolts
against the central power.