The Mughal Empire

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The Mughal empire was one of the largest centralized states known in pre-modern world history. It was founded in the early 1500s and by the end of the following century the Mughal emperor ruled almost the entire Indian subcontinent with a population of between 100 and 150 millions. As well as military success, the Mughal emperors displayed immense wealth and the ceremonies, etiquette, music, poetry, and exquisitely executed paintings and objects of the imperial court fused together to create a distinctive aristocratic high culture. In this volume, Professor John Richards traces the history of this magnificent empire from its creation in 1526 to its breakup in 1720. He stresses the dynamic quality of Mughal territorial expansion, their institutional innovation in land revenue, coinage and military organization, ideological change, and the relationship between the emperors and Islam. Professor Richards also analyzes institutions particular to the Mughal empire, such as the jagir system, and explores Mughal India's links with the early modern world. The Mughal Empire offers a concise and up-to-date synthesis of this spectacular period in the history of India, Pakistan, and Bangladesh. It will be widely read by students and specialists of South Asian history and civilization and will be of interest to travellers wishing to know more about the background to the great Mughal monuments.
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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"This is a succinct, readable, and comprehensible summary of one of the most important eras in India's history....It should become the major text on Mughal history." Choice

"Richards's volume fills an important gap. Until now there has been no basic narrative, political history of the Mughal empire....Richards's approach has the virtue of integrating a great deal of the newest research into a familiar framework....His clear and concise synthesis of the new scholarship on the Mughal empire in India provides a context for the student and a point of departure for all subsequent scholarly work in the field." American Historical Review

"...a clearly written, intelligent synthesis of scholarship on a major topic of the history of the Indian subcontinent. The volume will, without doubt, become the textbook of choice for this subject." Barbara D. Metcalf, Asian Thought and Society

"...a readable, expanded narrative history of the Mughal Empire from its foundation in 1526 to the onset of its decline in the early eighteenth century. It is written and organized in the familiar Cambridge History style, and will serve as a suitable standard reference for general Mughal political history." Richard Foltz, Harvard Middle East and Islamic Review

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780521251198
  • Publisher: Cambridge University Press
  • Publication date: 2/29/2008
  • Series: New Cambridge History of India Series
  • Pages: 340
  • Sales rank: 1,132,218
  • Product dimensions: 5.98 (w) x 8.98 (h) x 0.87 (d)

Table of Contents

List of maps and tables
General editor's preface
Introduction 1
1 Conquest and stability 6
2 The new empire 29
3 Autocratic centralism 58
4 Land revenue and rural society 79
5 Jahangir 1605-1627 94
6 Shah Jahan 1628-1658 119
7 The War of Succession 151
8 Imperial expansion under Aurangzeb 1658-1689 165
9 The economy, societal change, and international trade 185
10 Maratha insurgency and Mughal conquest in the Deccan 205
11 The Deccan Wars 225
12 Imperial decline and collapse, 1707-1720 253
Conclusion 282
Glossary 298
Bibliographic essay 304
Index 311
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