The sixth Mughal Emperor met his death on 3rd March 1707 at the age of 88. Born Muhi-uddin-Muhammad, he is better known by his sobriquet Aurangzeb, meaning ‘Ornament of the Throne’, or his official title, Alamgir (‘Conqueror of the World’).

The third of Shah Jehan’s sons, Aurangzeb was considered the most politically able, and eventually forced his ill father into house arrest. As Emperor, Aurangzeb reigned for 49 years and came to be known for his religiosity and his military tactic. Under him, the Mughal Empire stretched to its largest expanse, covering nearly the entire Indian Sub-Continent, and surpassed China to become the world’s largest economy.

His rule is characterized by its emphasis on new Islamic laws, such as the imposition of the Jizya, and shrewd aggression against opposition. While not as artistically inclined as his predecessors, Aurangzeb commissioned some notable architectural structures, including the Badshahi Mosque in Lahore.

Aurangzeb is widely recognized as the last legitimate Mughal Emperor, and his death is seen to mark the beginning of the decline of the Mughal Empire.

“I came alone and I go as a stranger. I do not know who I am, nor what I have been doing.” –Aurangzeb Alamgir