Story of Nur Jahan: the most powerful woman in 17th Century India

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Today we will tell you story of the most powerful woman in the 17th century India. This is the story of Nur Jahan, and her role in the expansion of the Mughal Empire was exceptional.
Mughals established their empire in India in the early 16th century. They ruled a large part of the Indian subcontinent for more than 300 years, and It was one of the largest and most powerful dynasties that ruled India.

Nur Jahan was one of the many rulers who ruled the continent during the Mughal period. She was a patron of art, culture and architecture and also built a magnificent city, many grand palaces, mosques and mausoleums. Perhaps this why Nur Jahan is still alive in the folk literature of India, Pakistan and Bangladesh.


Nur Jahan’s stories are shared in houses of Agra and parts of North Pakistan. Agra and Lahore were two major cities during the Mughal rule, especially in Nur Jahan’s time. The elders of these cities, the tourist guides still tell stories about how Nur Jahan and Jahangir fell in love with each other. Or how Nur Jahan saved a village by hunting a tiger. She shot at the man-eating tiger while sitting on the elephant.People know stories of Nur Jahan’s romance and his bravery. However, They are not talking about her political acumen and ambitions.


Nur Jahan was an attractive woman who took over the Mughal empire in the face of all odds. She was a great poet, a mastered hunter and was fond of new experiments in architecture. Nur Jahan designed the tomb of her parents in Agra. This also inspires the design of Taj Mahal. She emerged as a brilliant leader in a male-dominated world.


Interestingly, Nur Jahan did not belong to a royal family, yet she went from being a Mallika to a skilled politician and the favourite wife of Jahangir. Eventually, she ruled the vast Mughal Empire.In the year 1617, silver coins were issued with Nur Jahan’s name printed next to Jahangir. Court records, foreign diplomats, business people and guests also recognized Nur Jahan’s special status. In one incident, Nur Jahan surprised everyone by coming to the royal verandah reserved only for men.


This was not the only resistance against orthodox traditions by Nur Jahan. Be it hunting, issuing royal decrees and coins, designing public buildings, taking decisions to help poor women, or leading marginalized people, Nur Jahan did all this in her time. She lived an extraordinary life.When Jahangir was taken captive, she also led the army to rescue him. After this, Nur Jahan’s name became immortal in history and the imagination of people.

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