Gulbadan Begum

Gulbadan Begum

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Gulbadan Begum

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The Imperial Princess Gulbadan Begum (c. 1523 – 1603) was a Perso-Turkic Princess, the daughter of Emperor Zāhir ud-Dīn Mohammad Babur of India, she is most known as the author of Humayun Nama, the account of the life of her brother, Humayun. Yasmeen Murshed, The Daily Star, June 27, 2004. Later, her nephew, Prince Jalal-ud-Dīn ascended the imperial throne as Emperor Akbar the Great.

Her name means literally "princess with a body like roses" in Persian. She was a descendant of the lines of highest Central Asian aristocracy: Timur through his son Miran Shah, and Genghis Khan through his son Chagatai Khan. Her mother was Dildar Begum and she was sister to Humayun, the second Mughal emperor.

She also finds reference throughout, Akbarnama, the Book of Akbar, written by Abul Fazal, and much of her biographical details are accessible through the work.


When Princess Gulbadan was born her father had been lord in Kabul for 19 years; he was master also in Kunduz and Badakhshan, had held Bajaur and Swat since 1519, and Qandahar for a year. During 10 of those 19 years he had been styled "padshah", in token of headship of the house of Timur and of his independent sovereignty. Two years later Babur set out on his last expedition across the Indus to conquer an empire in India. Gulbadan Begum was brought to India at the age of six, was married...
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