Babur is one of the most interesting personalities in history. His lineage makes him even more interesting. Babur descended from two of the greatest conquerors in history. Timur was Babur’s 3rd great grandfather on his father’s side while Genghis was Babur’s 10th great grandfather on his mother’s side.
Descended of Genghis Khan
As far as Genghis Khan is concerned, Babur’s mother had descended from Chagatai Khan, son of Genghis Khan. But it is more complicated than that and we need to understand the son-in-law system of the Mongols.
Son-in-law System in Mangols
Mongols used the word Guregen for a son-in-law. Mongols had a sort of restricted son-in-law system, where ambitious men from outside the family were married to Khanums (feminine of Khans, descendants of Genghis) and they began working for their fathers-in-law.
Only the descendant of Genghis Khan could be a Khan or Khanum. Khanum’s were strong powerful figures with a great deal of positive impact on the Mongol order.
As descendants of Genghis Khan
- Genghis Khan
- Chaghatai Khan
- Yesuntawa Khan
- Dawa Khan
- Aisan-bugha Khan
- Tughluq-timur Khan
- Khizr Khwaja Khan
- Muhammad Khan
- Sher-‘ali Aughlon
- Wais Khan
- Yunas Khan (Grandfather)
- Qutlugh Nigar Khanum (Daughter of Yunas Khan and mother of Babur)
Descended of Timur
In Timur’s time, the power of the Khans had declined but their prestige remained. Timur was a noble(not a Khan) who married multiple Chagatai and Jochi queens to build his legitimacy and get a boost in his career. Timur called himself Gurgeniya(son-in-law of Genghis Khan’s family)
But this did not end with Timur. Timur’s children, grandchildren, great-grandchildren continue to marry Khanums as did Umar Sheik Mirza, Babur’s father who married Qutlugh Khanum, his mother.
As descendants of Timur
- Miran Shah (Great great grandfather)
- Muhammad Mirza (Great grandfather)
- Abu Said (Grandfather)
- Umar Sheik (Father)
Thus, Babur has Genghis Khan’s blood not just from his mother’s side, but from his Timurid father’s side as well because his paternal ancestors began marrying Genghis Khan’s descendants from the time of Timur.
In the Mughal era in India, Timur’s line was emphasized while the Genghis Khan line was not. Silsilanamas started with Timur with no mention of Genghis. Court biographers proclaimed that Timur’s achievements were on par with or exceeded Genghis Khan.
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