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  Nuruddin Jahangir (August 31, 1569 October 28, 1627) was the ruler of the Mughal Empire from 1605 until 1627. He signed a treaty with the British East India Company promising their merchants preferential treatment, opening the Indian subcontinent to Britain for the first time.
He is also the person known to history as Shehzada Salim of Anarkali fame, immortalized in the famous Urdu film Mughal-e-Azam. Prince Selim's personal nickname was Shaikhoo. The name Jahangir is from Persian جهانگير, meaning "Conqueror of the World", "World-Conqueror", or "Dominant over the World". Alternative spellings of the name include Jehangir, and Cihangir (in Turkish).

He was born as Prince Muhammad Salim in August 1569, the eldest son of the Mughal Emperor Akbar. Akbar ensured that his son received the best education possible. Salim started his studies at the age of four and was taught Persian, Turkish, Arabic, Urdu, history, arithmetic, geography and other sciences by important tutors like Abdur Rahim Khan-i-Khahan.

Prince Salim succeeded to the throne on the eighth day after his father's death. He took the name Jahangir and started his 22 years reign at the age of 36. Having seized power, he had to fend off his own son Prince Khusraw's claim to the throne. Khusraw was defeated and as a punishment, his eyes were taken out.

Jahangir started his reign with several popular acts. He released prisoners of war, promised to protect Islam and granted general amnesty to his opponents. He set up a "Chain of Justice" outside his palace. Anyone in trouble could simply pull the chain and receive a hearing from the Emperor.

Jahangir married his twentieth and last wife, the extremely beautiful and intelligent Mehr-un-Nisa, in May 1611. She was the widow of Sher Afgan, one of Jahangir's lords, who died under questionable circumstances. Mehr-un-Nisa was given the title of Nur Jehan on her marriage to Jahangir.

Jahangir was fond of ease and comfort. He was an alcohol addict and could be found day and night with wine goblets in his hands. He was also susceptible to the influence of others, a weakness exploited by many. Because of his inebriated state, Nur Jehan came to be the actual power behind the throne.

He died in 1627 and was buried in Shahdra, a suburb of Lahore, Punjab, Pakistan. His great mausoleum is still present and is a popular tourist attraction.

He was succeeded by his son by Shah Jahan.

It was during Jahangir's reign that the British got formal permission to trade freely in the Mughal Empire. This is often said to be his greatest blunder for these traders went on to become the rulers of the South Asia.

Jahangir was a good writer and loved nature. He recorded all sorts of wildlife in his autobiography Tuzk-e-Jahangiri. He liked paintings and collected many of them in his palace. Some of them are still found in museums.

 

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