In My Hands Today…

Daughters of the Sun: Empresses, Queens and Begums of the Mughal Empire – Ira Mukhoty

In 1526 a Timurid warrior-scholar rides into Delhi to build an empire. With him ride his wives, his sisters, his daughters, his aunts and his distant female relatives.

Unhindered by a relatively recent conversion to Islam, these women will help found a culture of such magnificence and beauty that it will become a by-word for opulence in the world. These Mughal women of Hindustan — unmarried daughters, eccentric sisters, fiery milk-mothers and beautiful wives, will contribute to the great syncretic culture of the Mughals by writing biographies, building monuments, engaging in diplomacy, and patronizing the arts.

And even as the zenana changes from the earlier nomadic, tented spaces to the later more sequestered grandeur within the high stone walls of mighty qilas, the influence of the women remains visible and unquestioned. This book looks at the lives of these Mughal women, and the enigma of their disappearance, except as objects of curiosity, from our collective memory.

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