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Humayun-The Mughal Emperor

Humayun The Mughal Empire


Humayun-The Mughal Emperor was the second ruler of the Mughal Empire, born on March 6, 1508. He was the eldest son of Babur, the founder of the Mughal dynasty. Humayun ascended to the throne in 1530 after his father’s death. His reign faced challenges, including internal strife and external threats. He lost the empire to Sher Shah Suri but later reclaimed it in 1555. Humayun’s reign laid the foundation for the flourishing Mughal Empire under his son Akbar. He died in 1556, leaving a lasting impact on the dynasty’s trajectory.

Life of Humayun-The Mughal Emperor:

Humayun, the second ruler of the Mughal Empire, led a tumultuous life marked by both triumphs and challenges. Here is an overview of key events in his life:

  1. Early Life (1508-1526): Humayun was born on March 6, 1508, in Kabul, the eldest son of Babur, the founder of the Mughal dynasty. In his early years, he accompanied his father in various military campaigns.
  2. Ascension to the Throne (1526): After Babur’s death in 1530, Humayun ascended to the Mughal throne. He faced internal strife, with challenges from his brothers and external threats from regional rulers.
  3. Struggles for Power (1530-1540): Conflicts marked Humayun’s reign, including battles against Sher Shah Suri, a Pashtun ruler who eventually defeated Humayun in 1540, forcing him into exile.
  4. Exile and Return (1540-1555): Humayun spent years in exile, seeking support from various rulers. He faced hardships but remained determined to reclaim his empire. In 1555, with the help of Persian forces, he defeated Sikandar Shah Suri and regained control of Delhi.
  5. Reconquest and Death (1555-1556):Humayun’s second reign, though short-lived, held significance as he initiated the reconstruction of the Mughal Empire and laid the foundation for its future successes. However, his life was cut short when he succumbed to a tragic accident in 1556.
  6. Legacy: Humayun’s legacy lies in his role as a transitional figure in the Mughal dynasty. His struggles and eventual return paved the way for the empire’s flourishing under his son, Akbar. Humayun’s commitment to the arts and culture also contributed to the rich heritage of the Mughal era.

Battles Fought By Humayun-The Mughal Emperor:

Humayun, the second ruler of the Mughal Empire, faced numerous battles and conflicts throughout his reign. Some of the key battles fought by Humayun include:

  1. Battle of Panipat (1526): Humayun fought alongside his father, Babur, in the first Battle of Panipat against Ibrahim Lodhi, the Sultan of Delhi. The Mughals emerged victorious, establishing the Mughal Empire in India.
  2. Battle of Khanwa (1527): Humayun and Babur faced Rana Sanga of Mewar in this battle. The Mughals achieved success, consolidating their control over northern India.
  3. Battle of Chausa (1539): Humayun faced Sher Shah Suri in this battle, resulting in a defeat for the Mughal ruler. This loss marked a significant setback for Humayun, leading to his exile.
  4. Battle of Kannauj (1540): Also known as the Battle of Bilgram or Battle of Gwalior, it was fought between Humayun and Sher Shah Suri. Humayun faced another defeat, leading to his exile to Persia.
  5. Exile and Battles in Sindh and Persia (1540-1555): During his period of exile, Humayun faced various challenges, including conflicts with local rulers in Sindh and engagements in Persia. He sought refuge and assistance from different quarters to reclaim his empire.
  6. Battle of Sirhind (1555): With the support of the Safavid ruler of Persia, Humayun re-entered India and faced Sikandar Shah Suri at the Battle of Sirhind. Humayun emerged victorious, leading to the reestablishment of the Mughal Empire.

These battles and conflicts illustrate the turbulent nature of Humayun’s reign, marked by both victories and defeats. Despite facing adversity, Humayun’s determination to reclaim his empire ultimately paved the way for the continued success of the Mughal dynasty under his son, Akbar.

Exile And Death Of Humayun:

After suffering defeats in battles against Sher Shah Suri, Humayun-The Mughal Emperor went into exile in 1540. The period of exile was marked by hardships and struggles as he sought refuge in different regions and sought support to reclaim his lost empire. Here is a summary of Humayun’s exile and subsequent death:

  1. Exile in Sindh and Persia (1540-1545): Following his defeat in the Battle of Kannauj in 1540, Humayun fled to Sindh, seeking refuge with its ruler, Sultan Husain Mirza. However, his presence there was marked by political intrigues, and he faced challenges from local chieftains. In 1543, he left Sindh and sought asylum in the court of the Persian Safavid ruler, Shah Tahmasp.
  2. Battle of Qandahar (1545): While in Persia, Humayun actively participated in the military campaigns of Shah Tahmasp. He was granted the city of Qandahar, and he successfully defended it against Uzbek forces. However, internal disputes and tensions arose between Humayun and the Persian authorities.
  3. Return to India (1545-1555): Humayun, with the assistance of the Safavid ruler, gathered a force to reclaim his lost empire. In 1545, he successfully recaptured Kabul. Over the next few years, he gradually advanced into northern India, ultimately defeating Sikandar Shah Suri at the Battle of Sirhind in 1555.
  4. Reign and Death (1555-1556): Humayun’s return to the throne was short-lived. While in Delhi, he died on January 27, 1556, due to a fatal fall from the library staircase in his palace. The circumstances of his death remain somewhat mysterious.
  5. Legacy: Despite the challenges and setbacks during Humayun’s reign, his efforts and determination to reclaim the empire played a crucial role in shaping the course of Mughal history.

Humayun’s Tomb:

Humayun’s Tomb is a magnificent architectural masterpiece located in Delhi, India. Constructed in the mid-16th century, it stands as a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Here’s a brief overview:

  1. Construction: Empress Bega Begum, Humayun’s widow, commissioned the tomb in 1569, nine years after Humayun’s death. Mirak Mirza Ghiyas, the chief architect, completed the construction in 1572.
  2. Architecture: The tomb exemplifies Mughal architecture and is considered a precursor to the Taj Mahal. It showcases a Persian-influenced charbagh (four-part) garden, intricate geometric patterns, and a prominent central dome. The tomb structure consists of red sandstone and white marble.
  3. Garden Complex:Water channels divide the large garden complex into four main parts, setting the tomb within. The garden, designed in the Persian Charbagh style, symbolizes paradise.
  4. Central Dome: The central dome of the tomb is a striking feature, with a double-layered design and a height of around 140 feet (42 meters). The high central arches, chhatris (domed pavilions), and decorative elements showcase the Mughal architectural style.
  5. Tomb Chambers: Humayun’s Tomb not only houses the tomb of Emperor Humayun but also contains the graves of other significant members of the Mughal dynasty.
  6. Influence: The architectural style of Humayun’s Tomb had a profound impact on later Mughal buildings, including the Taj Mahal. It represents a fusion of Persian, Central Asian, and Indian architectural elements.
  7. UNESCO World Heritage Site: UNESCO inscribed Humayun’s Tomb, along with its garden complex, as a World Heritage Site in 1993, recognizing its cultural and historical significance.

Overall, Humayun’s Tomb stands as a testament to the grandeur of Mughal architecture and is a popular historical and cultural landmark in Delhi.


In conclusion, Humayun-The Mughal Emperor, the second ruler of the Mughal Empire, played a pivotal role in the establishment and subsequent survival of the dynasty. His reign was marked by both triumphs and challenges, including victories in battles, defeats, and a period of exile. Despite facing significant setbacks, Humayun’s determination and strategic alliances enabled him to reclaim the Mughal Empire. His contributions laid the foundation for the flourishing Mughal dynasty under his son, Akbar. The architectural legacy of Humayun, exemplified by the iconic Humayun’s Tomb, reflects the grandeur and sophistication of Mughal culture. While his reign was relatively short, Humayun’s impact on the trajectory of the Mughal Empire remains significant in the broader context of Indian history.

Frequently Asked Question:

Q1. What was Mughal emperor Humayun famous for?

Ans1. He was the first person who developed a citadel in Delhi, named as “Din Panah”. However, at the time of Sher Shah Suri, the structure underwent slashing. It is said that Humayun laid the foundation of Mughal art and initiated the integration of Persian art and culture himself.

Q2. Why did Humayun leave India?

Ans2. Humayun fled to Sindh following his defeat at the hands of Sher Shah. He wanted to seek the help of his brother Askari in fielding another army against the Sher Shah but upon receiving word that Askari was planning on imprisoning him, he abandoned the plan.

Q3. Who was Humayun’s Favourite wife?

Ans3. Hamida Banu Begum was chief and most favourite consort of the second Mughal emperor Humayun and the mother of his successor, the third Mughal emperor Akbar. She is also known by the title Maryam Makani, which was given to her by her son, Akbar.

Read Also: Mughal Emperor Akbar (1556-1605)

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