Qutlugh Nigar Khanum: The Mother of Babur, the Founder of Mughal Empire

Qutlugh Nigar Khanum

Qutlugh Nigar Khanum (also spelled Kutlak Nigar Khanum) was the first wife and chief consort of Umar Shaikh Mirza II, the ruler of Ferghana Valley. She was a princess of Moghulistan by birth. She was also the daughter of Yunus Khan who was known as the Great Khan of Moghulistan. She was also the mother of Emperor Babur, the founder of the Mughal Empire of India.

Quick Facts

  • Full Name: Qutlugh Nigar Khanum
  • Born: Not known
  • Died: 10th June 1505
  • Tenure: 1475 to 1492
  • Religion: Islam
  • Dynasty: House of Borjigin (by birth) | House of Timur (by marriage)
  • Spouse: Umar Shaikh Mirza II
  • Father: Yunus Khan
  • Mother: Aisan Daulat Begum
  • Famous as: Queen consort of Ferghana Valley

Marriage and birth of Babur

The marriage of Qutlugh Nigar Khanum and Umer Sheikh Mirza was a political alliance between two powerful Timurid families. Qutlugh Nigar Khanum was married to Umar Sheikh Mirza, a Timurid prince, with whom she had several children, including Babur. He was born in 1483 in Fergana, a region that is now part of Uzbekistan.

The influence of Qutlugh Nigar Khanum on Babur’s life

When Babur was just a young boy, his father passed away. Qutlugh Nigar Khanum stepped in as his primary caregiver. It was under her guidance that Babur developed an interest in literature, art, and military strategy. Babur became the ruler of Fergana at the age of 12 after his father’s untimely death.

Qutlugh Nigar Khanum, the mother of Babur, had a profound influence on the life of her son. She was a woman of great intellect, strength, and character who played a pivotal role in shaping the future of her son and the Mughal Empire.
Babur often spoke highly of his mother and credited her for his success. He was raised in a loving and nurturing environment where he was taught the importance of education, diplomacy, and military strategy. Qutlugh Nigar Khanum made sure that her son received the best possible education and training in the art of warfare.

How Qutlugh Nigar Khanum shaped the Mughal Empire

  • She was a woman of great strength, intelligence, and courage who not only managed to keep the kingdom intact but also expanded it by conquering new territories.
  • She used it to elevate the status of women in the empire. She encouraged women to take up education and made sure that they received the same opportunities as men.
  • Her most significant contribution to the Mughal Empire was her role in shaping the character of her son, Babur. Many historians believe that Babur’s success as an emperor was due to the strong foundation laid by his mother.