Mughals, Mongols, and Mongrels: The Challenge of Aristocracy and the Rise of the Mughal State in the Tarikh-i Rashidi

in Journal of Early Modern History
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The present article seeks to re-evaluate the problem of the Central Asian military elite that emigrated to Afghanistan and the Indian subcontinent in the sixteenth century during the foundation of the Mughal Empire. By reading the Tarikh-i Rashidi, the historical composition of Mirza Haydar Dughlat (d. 1551) and the main literary source for the period, modern scholars have developed two distinct historiographical strands of scholarship. Those mainly focused on Mughal India have used the text to argue for the absence of a meaningful political culture among the Central Asian elite. Others, mostly focused on Inner Asian history, have used the text for the opposite purpose of describing a fairly static “tribal” structure of Mirza Haydar’s world. I, on the other hand, will abandon the imprecise and essentially meaningless concept of “tribe” and will rather argue that Mirza Haydar instead chronicles the perspective of “aristocratic lineages” whose world was collapsing in the sixteenth century and who had to adjust themselves to changing conditions that saw the alliance of monarchs and servants through “meritocracy” both in their homeland as well as the new regions to which they moved.

Mughals, Mongols, and Mongrels: The Challenge of Aristocracy and the Rise of the Mughal State in the Tarikh-i Rashidi

in Journal of Early Modern History

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References

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Mirza HaydarTarikh82-85.

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Mirza HaydarTarikh95.

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Mirza HaydarTarikh95.

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Mirza HaydarTarikh96.

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Mirza HaydarTarikh105.

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Mirza HaydarTarikh160.

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Mirza HaydarTarikh408. This translation is adopted from W.H. Thackston Mirza Haydar Dughlat’s Tarikh-Rashidi: A History of the Khans of Moghulistan (Cambridge 1996) 178 modified.

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Mirza HaydarTarikh405.

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Mirza HaydarTarikh123.

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Mirza HaydarTarikh120-121.

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Fazl AllahTarikh-i ‘Alam’ara26.

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Mirza HaydarTarikh21-22.

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Mirza HaydarTarikh438. This is how the word is used for instance by Minhaj Siraj Juzjani author of the thirteenth-century history of Muslim dynasties entitled Tabaqat-i Nasiri.

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Mirza HaydarTarikh438-440.

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Mirza HaydarTarikh442.

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Mirza HaydarTarikh440.

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Mirza HaydarTarikh152.

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Mirza HaydarTarikh371.

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Mirza HaydarTarikh153-4.

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Mirza HaydarTarikh106.

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Mirza HaydarTarikh459.

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Mirza HaydarTarikh458-9.

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Mirza HaydarTarikh181.

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Mirza HaydarTarikh183.

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Mirza HaydarTarikh190.

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Mirza HaydarTarikh82. The translation here is Thackston’s slightly modified Thackston Mirza Haydar 29.

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Mirza HaydarTarikh97-8.

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Mirza HaydarTarikh190.

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Mirza HaydarTarikh167-168.

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Mirza HaydarTarikh373.

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Mirza HaydarTarikh374.

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Mirza HaydarTarikh391.

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Mirza HaydarTarikh399.

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Mirza HaydarTarikh682.

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