The tomb of Sahib Jamal in Lahore
|Died||c. 25 June 1599|
Tomb of Sahib Jamal, Lahore
|Issue||Sultan Parviz Mirza|
|House||Timurid (by marriage)|
Sahib Jamal was of Turkish origin and was the daughter of a respected Muslim religious personality, Khwaja Hasan of Herat, making her the cousin of Zain Khan Koka, who was a leading official in the Mugal Empire under Akbar, including serving for a time as governor of Kabul. Her father, Khwaja Hasan, was known widely for his scholarship and studies in the techniques of warfare. Akbar held him in high esteem, and often discussed with him the spiritual problems that often agitated his mind. Zain Khan's daughter, Khas Mahal was also married to Jahangir.
Salim had fallen in love with her and they got married in October 1589, in a lavish and grand marriage ceremony. Upon her marriage, she was given the title "Sahib Jamal", which literally means ("Paragon of Beauty") or ("Mistress of Beauty") which was chosen by Akbar himself, by which name she came to be styled thereafter.
In 1596 Salim became violently enamoured of Khas Mahal, the daughter of Zain Khan, and meditated marrying her. Akbar was displeased at the impropriety. The cause of Akbar's objection was Sahib Jamal who had already been married to Salim. Akbar objected to marriages between near relations. However, when Akbar saw that Salim's heart was immoderately affected, he, of necessity, gave his consent.
Death and burial placeEdit
There is a popular misconception that the Tomb of Sahib Jamal in Lahore is the tomb of the legendary dancing girl Anarkali. As per the legend, the tomb was said to be built by the Mughal emperor Jahangir for his love Anarkali, who was caught by Emperor Akbar for exchanging glances with Jahangir, at the time known as Prince Salim. Anarkali was reportedly a concubine of Akbar, and this action reportedly enraged Akbar so much, that he had Anarkali interred alive in a wall. When Prince Salim ascended the throne and took the name "Jahangir," he is reported to have ordered the construction of a tomb over the site of the wall in which Anarkali was reportedly buried.
18th century historian Abdullah Chagatai reported that the tomb was not the resting place for Anarkali, but instead for Jahangir's beloved wife Sahib Jamal. Many modern historians accept the credulity of this account. The building is currently used as the Punjab Archives, so access to the public is limited.
In addition to the 99 names of Allah, the cenotaph is inscribed with a Persian couplet written by the Emperor Jahangir which reads: "Ah! could I behold the face of my beloved once more, I would give thanks unto my God until the day of resurrection."
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