Mogul

From Hull AWE
Jump to: navigation, search

Beware the word Mogul. It first entered English in the sixteenth century, when it was often written 'mogor[e]' or similar.

  • Mogul was used (often as 'the Great Mogul' or 'the Grand Mogul') principally to mean the Muslim Emperor of India, whose empire grew from 1526 until the advent of the British Raj, finally ending as a result of the 'Indian Mutiny'.
The word is nowadays more properly written as Moghul or Mughal.

This spelling follows the Urdu version of the Persian original, which was formed from the Mongol for 'Mongol'. (The Great Mughals were descended from the Mongol Emperors Genghis Khan and Timur.) The Mughal Emperors were first Ẓahīr-ud-Dīn Muḥammad Babur (ruled 1526-1530); his son Humayun (1530-1540, when deposed; and again 1555-1556); Akbar 'the Great' (1556-1605); Jahangir (1605-1627); Shah Jahan (1627-1658); Aurangzeb (1658-1707); Bahadur Shah I (1707-1712); Jahandar Shah (1712-1713); and twelve less important Emperors until Bahadur Shah II (1837-1857) was deposed by the British as a consequence of the 'Indian Mutiny' in 1857.

  • The extended meaning of the word, to mean 'a person wielding great power in [a particular] industry etc', 'a localized autocrat', is best spelled in the traditional way: 'a film mogul', a 'media mogul'; financial moguls (and others) meet annually at Davos, in Switzerland.
    • There is also a completely unrelated word mogul in the world of winter sports. This 'mogul' is derived from the regional German word Mugel, 'hillock': in skiing, it means 'bumps [in the snow surface]'. Mogul skiing is a freestyle sport in which competitors' athletic, acrobatic and aesthetic abilities are judged over a steep course, 200-270 metres long, with natural (or prepared) moguls.