a dynasty of rulers in India (1526-1858). Its founder, Babur Timirud, came from Mongolistan (at that time, the name for Middle and Central Asia). This is the source of the dynasty’s name, “Mogul” (Hindi, Mughal). Rulers of this dynasty were called “Great Moguls” by 17th-century European travelers.
The Great Moguls’ state, which had its period of greatest flowering under Shah Jahan, was a centralized feudal monarchy. In the 17th century it included all of India (with the exception of the extreme southern part) and Kabul. However, even at that time, despite the superficial brilliance and power of the Mogul state, a growing internal crisis led to internecine war and the fall of the state soon after Aurungzeb’s death in 1707. The Great Moguls’ influence declined, and the amount of land they controlled was drastically reduced. By the mid-18th century the Great Moguls were de facto rulers of Delhi and the surrounding area. By the end of the 18th century, they had become puppets in the struggle among the most powerful feudal lords of northern India. European colonialists took advantage of this situation, and in 1803 the British East India Company seized Delhi.
The Great Moguls continued to be considered the formal rulers of India until 1858, when the British colonial government abolished the dynasty. The members of the Great Mogul dynasty were Babur (ruled 1526-30), Humayun (1530-39 and 1555-56), Akbar (1556-1605), Jahangir (1605-27), Shah Jahan (1627-58), Aurungzeb (1658-1707), Bahadur Shah (1707-12), Jahandar Shah (1712-13), Farrukh-Siyar (1713-19), Muhammed Shah (1719-48), Ahmad Shah (1748-54), Alamgir II (1754-59), Shah Alam II (1759-1806), Akbar II (1806-37), and Bahadur Shah II (1837-58).
REFERENCESIstoriia Indii v srednie veka. Moscow, 1968.
Kennedy, P. A History of the Great Moghuls . . ., vols. 1-2. Calcutta, 1905-11.
K. A. ANTONOVA