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Precolonial India 12061707

Pre-colonial India
Key institutions in place Larger population, more wealth & power than Persian Safadivs or Ottoman Turks Long-term development in trade, finance, culture & society ready in place for the British

The Ram Bagh Garden, Agra

Pre-colonial India VV
Expansion of agricultural frontier, extensive commercial networks, gradual technological change & development of political & religious institutions

Pre-colonial India
Muslims & Hindus interacted and were influenced by each other in culture & politics= a vibrant society

Delhi Sultanate Moghuls

Pre-colonial India: Delhi Sultanate late 13th 14th C

Turko-Afghan regimes, NW Interested in agricultural surplus so sought milt. successes Not able to achieve total control: rights to land given to subordinates as payment for loyalty Possibility of individual achievement through milt. means These invaders were called Yavana= Ionian ( 327-325 BCE invasion of Alexander the Great)

Mughal Emperor Akbar

Delhi Sultanate
Core milit. & Ec. institutions not religious(ie, non-Islamic) Collaborated with Ulamas & Sufi shaikhs: focus of community life Non- Muslim rulers patronised the Brahmans- learned caste, Sanskrit texts Persian was the language of Muslim rulers & used for bringing new learning from other parts: Government Law Political theory Religion Literature (poetry) Technology- warfare, cropping patterns, irrigation techniques

Delhi Sultanate -Persian

Persian also promoted urban growth & road networks= regional trade & beyond Earlier- Muslims settled in the south- Malabar coast, Sind (north) THUS: vibrant exchange of trade & ideas achieved by Muslim political expansion Ethnic & Linguistic diversity Afghanis Persians Others eg, Ibn Battuta (d.13689?)Moroccan traveller, chief judge of Delhi in 14th C

Delhi Sultanate: Ethnic & Linguistic diversity- Afghanis, Persians & others
Ibn Battuta (1603-1639) Moroccan Traveller , Chief judge of Delhi in the 14th C
I approached the sultan, who took my hand and shook it, and continuing to hold it addressed me most affably, saying in Persian, This is a blessing, your arrival is blessed, be at ease; I shall be compassionate to you and give you such favours that your fellowcountrymen will hear of it and come to join you. Then he asked me where I came from and I said to him, From the land of the Maghrib. Every time he said any encouraging word to me I kissed his hand , until I had kissed it seven times, and after he had given me a robe of honour, I withdrew.

Pre-colonial India
People of these dynasties were mainly non-Muslims left to their own laws & customs Paid tax No conscription Sultanates & Moghuls not interested in conversion of the people but in expansion of power Intermarriage Recap: Muslim and non-Muslims lived together and absorbed aspects of each others cultures 15th - 16th C Regional Kingdoms: Jaipur, Gujarat, Delhi, Malwa

Mongol Descendents

The Mughal Empire 15261707

Babur (1526-1530) The First of the Mughals.

The Great Mughal Emperors were:


He was a direct descendant of the Turkish Ghengis Khan

&Timur from Tamerlane. Humayun (1530-1556) The Luckless Leader Akbar (1556-1605) The Great Jehangir (1605-1627) The Paragon of Stability Shah Jehan (1627-1658) The Master Builder Aurangzeb (1658-1707) The Intolerant


Shah Jehan 1627 - 1658 The Master Builder

Shah Jehan 1627-1658

Shah Jehan succeeded his father in 1627. Better ruler than Jehangir. Restored the efficiency of government. Recovered territories. Maintained peace Foreign traders were allowed into India & trade grew The empire expanded. Shah Jehan was a patron of the arts Built many great architecture buildings including the Taj Mahal & the Peacock Throne [a gold throne encased many precious gems]

Shah Jehan 1627-1658

Taj Mahal. Built in honour of his wife who died during childbirth. Took over a decade to build and it nearly bankrupted the empire. 1657 - Shah Jehan became seriously ill & a dispute over the succession of the throne followed between his three sons. Aurangzeb deposed Shah Jehan in a coup detat in 1658. Shah Jehan was imprisoned in the Octagonal Tower of the Agra Fort from which he could see the Taj Mahal. He died in 1666 and was buried next to his wife in the Taj Mahal.

Ascended the throne after disposing his father & beating out his two brothers. Despot severely persecuted Hindus of Northern India. Empire declined under his reign He removed the tax-free status for Hindus Destroyed their temples Crushed semi-autonomous Hindu states

Aurangzeb The Intolerant 1658-1707

Primary interest: Promote Islam vs tolerance

1857 Bahadur Shah II, the last Mughal emperor

Deposed in 1858. India was brought under the direct rule of the British Crown. This brought the end of the Mughal Empire.

Mughal Art
The Mughal Empire and the Great Mughals will always be remembered as a great influence on the artistic and cultural life of India. Their architectural style is still evident in many buildings. The notable flowering of art & architecture under the Mughal Empire is due to several factors. Provision of a secure framework within which artistic genius could flourish. Both Hindu and Muslim artists collaborated The empire commanded wealth & resources that were unmatched in Indian history. The Mughal emperors were themselves patrons of art whose intellectual ideas & cultural outlook were expressed in the architecture.

The Mughal period: flexibility & openness

Far-reaching political, economic, & social reconfigurations
(rearrangements/adaptations): Culture life flourished Painting & architecture- Persian influenced but with Indian touches Medicine from Arabic& Greek texts Music Trade routes & dispersal of knowledge & technology (eg, gunpowder) Population growth New food /plant sources: tobacco, maize, peppers, chillies, mangoes, tomatoes
How does this compare to the Renaissance in Europe?

The Success of the Mughals

It is agreed among many scholars that the Mughal empire was the greatest, richest & most long-lasting Muslim dynasty to rule India. This period of Mughal rule produced the finest & most elegant art & architecture in the history of Muslim dynasties. The Mughal emperors, with few exceptions, were among the worlds most aesthetically minded rules. Although Turkish & Persian in background, the Mughals were not Muslim rulers of India but Indian rulers who happened to be Muslims. This idea is most evident in Akbars obsession of a utopian India for Hindus and Muslims. The longevity & success of the Mughal empire: ambitious & mainly able rulers. But Akbar (1556-1605) perhaps the Mughal emperor responsible for much of the prosperity & harmony achieved during the Mughal Empire.

Works Cited
* * * The Mughal Empire, 1526-1707. The Cambridge Encyclopedia of India. Ed. Fancis Robinson. New York: Cambridge UP, 1989. Moreland, W.H. and Atul Chandra Chatterjee. A Short History of India. 4th ed. New York: David McKay Co., 1957 Wallbank, T. Walter. India: a survey of the heritage and growth of Indian nationalism. New York: Henry Holt and Co., 1948. Welch, Stuart C. The Art of Mughal India. Japan: Book Craft Inc., 1963. Wolpert, Stanley. India. Englewood Cliffs: Prentice Hall, Inc., 1965. Wolpert, Stanley. India. Berkley: University of California Press, 1991. Woodruff, Philip. The Men Who Ruled India. New York: Schocken Books, 1953.
*denotes sources from which pictures were obtained with descriptions