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The greatest of the Mughal emperors, Jalal ad-Din Akbar (1542-1603) was a formidable military tactician and popular demagogue. Ascending to the throne at the age of thirteen, he ruled for half a century, expanded the Mughal empire, and left behind a legacy to rival his infamous ancestors Chinggis Khan and Timur. Renowned for his attempts to integrate the diverse religious heritage of India, he was a true polymath who although illiterate was widely active in a number of intellectual pursuits.

In this fascinating biography, Andre Wink provides glimpses into Akbar’s daily life and highlights his contribution to new methods of imperial control, surveillance and record-keeping. Contrasting his reign with those of his nomadic Mongol ancestors, this lucid study is an essential read for anyone interested in the history of India and South Asia.

More books in this series: Makers of the Muslim World