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Mughal India: Art, Culture and Empire

By Sheila Corr | Posted 5th December 2012, 10:43
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The Mughal Empire was founded in the early 16th century, an Islamic dynasty descended from Genghis Khan which flourished through a couple of centuries and at its peak governed the Hindu population of most of the Indian subcontinent. Mughal Emperors, especially the early ‘great’ ones, were generous patrons of the arts, commissioning architectural masterpieces such as the Taj Mahal and the Red Fort at Delhi. The fabulous paintings and illuminated manuscripts they owned were so valuable that when assessed after Akbar’s death, the worth of his imperial library was comparable to his weaponry.

The activities of the East India Company hastened Mughal decline and, after the 1857 uprising, some of their rich visual and intellectual culture ended up in the India Office Library, now part of the British Library, providing the core of the treasures displayed in this exhibition

Mughal India: Art, Culture and Empire is at the British Library, London until April 2nd 2013

From The Archive:

The Mughals Strike Twice

The two 16th-century battles of Panipat, which took place 30 years apart, are little known in the West. But they were pivotal events in the making of the Mughal Empire as the dominant power of northern India, as Jeremy Black explains.

The Mughal Dynasties

Francis Robinson looks for the distinctively tolerant and worldly features of Mughal rule in India and that of the related Islamic dynasties of Iran and Central Asia.


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