In this post, i am writing about 2 'myths' associated with Mughal Emperor Akbar, viz. , about His DOB and His name which is often confused as his Title.
I. About his Date of Birth
Akbar's DOB has been deliberately kept under shades. Akbar was born in the Fort of Umerkot (now in Pakistan), in the Palace of The Rajput King, Raja Veersal, amidst the sands of Rajputana, while his parents were in exile, after defeat from the Suri ruler, Sher Shah who hunted them out of their empire.
In the Akbarnama of Abu'l Fazl, Vol.-1, Page-70(Beveridge, Sr-910, ASB, Calcutta,1907):
Akbar's DOB is stated as, 5 Raj-'ab 949, that is, 15 October 1542. The day is said to be Sunday. And, name as Jalal-ud-din.
But, in the private records of Humayun, Tez-kirah-al-Waqiat of Jauhar, Vol.1, Page-45/46 (M.C. Stewarts, EIC, MRAS, 1832):
Akbar's DOB is stated as 14 Sha'ban 949, that is, 23 November 1542. The day is said to be Thursday. And, name as Badr-ud-din.
|Young Akbar with Humayun and Hamida Bano Begum..Portrait from Akbarnama|
So, why this discrepancy.?. The answers are as follows:
Akbar was born on 23 November 1542. That was a full moon day. Hence, he was named as Badruddin, that time . Badr means Full Moon. And, Din means Faith. But, after capturing Kabul when Humayun was settled, in 1546, on the advice of some astrologers of the court, Humayun 'changed' Akbar's DOB to 15 October 1542, to ward off 'evil spirits' cast by the enemies on Akbar. Since, the DOB was 'changed' . Hence, the name also required a change, as the earlier name, was given due to the fact that Akbar was born at the time of Full Moon(Badr).
Now his name was changed to Jalal-ud-din. Jalal means 'Sublimity/Splendour' , and Din means Faith. An explanation provided is that, in 1540, before the birth of Akbar, when Humayun was wandering after losing his kingdom to Sher Shah Suri, that time, in his dream an Old man appeared, who said that a son would be born to him soon, whom he should name as Jalal-ud-din. So, after regaining his kingdom, in 1546, this name was FINALLY given to Akbar. The day chosen for this re-naming was Sunday on astrological grounds, and the date was 15 October/5 Raj-'ab because it was the day of the conception of the Prophet.
And now, we know Akbar's DOB as 15 October, and not the actual 23 November. And, the horoscopes given in Akbarnama is also according to this 'new' DOB.
The following horoscope was made by Maulana Chand, the same person who prepared beautiful verses on the birth of Hasan and Husain (19 October 1564), the twin sons of Akbar and Mariam-Uz-Zamani Begum.
II. About the 'Title' of Akbar
After describing the issue of Akbar's DOB, here is another disclosure. Akbar was not a 'title' given to Jalal-ud-din Mohammed. It was a part of his ACTUAL name since birth. The name of Hamida Bano Begum's father was Mir Ali 'Akbar' . Humayun had suffixed the word 'Akbar' at the end of Jalal's name, as a gesture of respect to his father-in-law, who was a Shia.
|3 year old Akbar united with Hamida Bano Begum and Humayun in Kabul|
How Akbar was Born | The Incredibly Romantic Story of the Birth of Mughal Emperor Akbar as a Refugee in a Rajput Citadel of Amarkot | With Akbarnama portraits depicting celebrations on Akbar's birth
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The article has been posted under the Mughals(Akbar) section of this history BLOG.