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was the daughter of the Mughal emperor, Shah Jahan
Shah Jahan Shah Jahan (also spelled Shah Jehan, Shahjehan, , Persian: شاه جهان) (January 5, 1592 – January 22, 1666) Shah Jahan (also spelled Shah Jehan, Shahjehan, , Persian: شاه جهان) (January 5, 1592 – January 22, 1666) (Full title: His Imperial Majesty Al-Sultan al-'Azam wal Khaqan...
, and his third, and most favorite, wife, Mumtaz Mahal
Mumtaz Mahal born as Arjumand Banu Begum was a Mughal Empress and chief consort of emperor Shah Jahan...
Emperor Shahjahan’s fondness for his daughter was reflected in the multiple titles he bestowed upon her, which include Sahibat al-Zamani
(Mistress of the Age), and Padshah Begum
(Lady Emperor). Jahanara was known to members of the Mughal court as Begum
Begum, Begam or Baigum is a Turkic title given to female family members of a Baig or 'Beg', a higher official. The term Begum is derived from the word Beg, and means a female member of the Beg's family.Also used Begzadi, for Ex...
While Jahanara could have no children, never having married she was considered socially mature because of her celibate status.
Having risen to the head of the harem, Jahanara played an important role in the politics of the imperial family. This is seen through the instrumental position she held in the marriage arrangements of her three brothers. In addition she was politically active during the ‘War of Succession’ that took place at the end Shah Jahan’s reign as emperor. The ‘War of Succession’ took place in 1658 when Aurangzeb
Abul Muzaffar Muhy-ud-Din Muhammad Aurangzeb Alamgir , more commonly known as Aurangzeb or by his chosen imperial title Alamgir , was the sixth Mughal Emperor of India, whose reign lasted from 1658 until his death in 1707.Badshah Aurangzeb, having ruled most of the Indian subcontinent for nearly...
, Jahanara’s brother, challenged and eventually took power from Shah Jahan. During the conflict Jahanara supported her father’s claim to the throne and cared for him during his forced imprisonment, which lasted until his death in 1666. Upon her father’s death, Jahanara emerged from Agra Fort
Agra Fort, is a monument situated at Agra, is a UNESCO World Heritage site located in Agra, Uttar Pradesh, India. It is about 2.5 km northwest of its more famous sister monument, the Taj Mahal...
and was given a sizable monetary gift by Aurangzeb.