HISTORY MEME : (5/9) Kings/Queens - Akbar & his ‘Navaratnas’ (nine gems of court)

Akbar (14 Oct 1542 – 27 Oct 1605), known as Akbar the Great, was Mughal Emperor from 1556 until his death. He was the third and greatest ruler of the Mughal Dynasty in India. Akbar succeeded his father, Humayun, under a regent, Bairam Khan, who helped the young emperor expand and consolidate Mughal domains in India. A strong personality and a successful general, Akbar gradually enlarged the Mughal Empire to include nearly all of the Indian Subcontinent north of the Godavari river. His reign significantly influenced the course of Indian history. During his rule, the Mughal empire tripled in size and wealth. He created a powerful military system and instituted effective political and social reforms. By abolishing the sectarian tax on non-Muslims and appointing them to high civil and military posts, he was the first Mughal ruler to win the trust and loyalty of the native subjects. He had Sanskrit literature translated, participated in native festivals. Thus, the foundations for a multicultural empire under Mughal rule was laid during his reign.

 Despite his illiteracy, Akbar, was a great lover of the artists and intellectuals. His passion for knowledge and interest in learning from great minds led him to attract men of genius to his court, known as the ‘Nine courtiers of Emperor Akbar’ or Navratnas. They were Abul Fazal , Faizi, Raja Man Singh , Miyan Tansen, Raja Todar Mal, Abdul Rahim Khan-I-Khana, Fakir Aziao-Din, Mullah Do Piaza and the most famous of them all - Raja Birbal(+)

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