Sur Empire

Sur Empire
Territory of Sur Empire in green
Capital Sasaram (Bihar)
Common languages Pashto, Hindavi[1]
Religion Sunni Islam
Government Sultanate
17 May 1532
Preceded by
Succeeded by
Mughal Empire
Mughal Empire
Today part of

 India  Pakistan  Bangladesh


The Sur Empire was an empire established by a Muslim dynasty of Afghan(Pashtun)[2] origin who ruled a large territory in northern part of the Indian subcontinent for nearly 16 years,[3] between 1540 and 1556, with Sasaram in modern-day Bihar serving as its capital.[3]


The Rohtas Fort in northern Pakistan was built under Sher Shah Suri, and is now a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

The empire was founded by Sher Shah Suri, an ethnic Afghan of the tribal house of Sur,[3] who supplanted the Mughal dynasty as rulers of North India during the reign of the relatively ineffectual second Mughal Humayun. Sher Shah defeated badshah-i-Hind ('Hindustani emperor') Humayun in the Battle of Chausa (26 June 1539) and again in the Battle of Bilgram (17 May 1540).[4]

The Sur dynasty held control of nearly all the Mughal territories, from modern-day eastern Afghanistan in the west to Bengal in modern-day Bangladesh in the east.

During the almost 17-year rule of the Sur dynasty, until the return of the Mughals to the throne, the region of the South Asia witnessed much economic development and administrative reforms. A systematised relationship was created between the people and the ruler, minimising corruption and the oppression of the public.

Their rule came to an end by a defeat that led to restoration of the Mughal Empire.

It was at the time of this bounty of Sultán Bahlol [Lodi], that the grandfather of Sher Sháh, by name Ibráhím Khán Súr,*[The Súr represent themselves as descendants of Muhammad Súr, one of the princes of the house of the Ghorian, who left his native country, and married a daughter of one of the Afghán chiefs of Roh.] with his son Hasan Khán, the father of Sher Sháh, came to Hindu-stán from Afghánistán, from a place which is called in the Afghán tongue "Shargarí,"* but in the Multán tongue "Rohrí." It is a ridge, a spur of the Sulaimán Mountains, about six or seven kos in length, situated on the banks of the Gumal. They entered into the service of Muhabbat Khán Súr, Dáúd Sáhú-khail, to whom Sultán Bahlol had given in jágír the parganas of Hariána and Bahkála, etc., in the Panjáb, and they settled in the pargana of Bajwára.[5]

Abbas Khan Sarwani, 1580

List of Sur dynasty rulers

The 178 grams silver coin, Rupiya released by Sher Shah Suri, 1540–1545 CE, was the first Rupee[6][7]
Name Picture Reign started Reign ended
Sher Shah Suri 17 May 1532[8] 22 May 1545[8]
Islam Shah Suri 26 May 1545[9] 22 November 1554[9]
Firuz Shah Suri 1554[10]
Muhammad Adil Shah 1554[10] 1555[11]
Ibrahim Shah Suri 1555[11] 1555
Sikandar Shah Suri 1555[11] 22 June 1555[11]
Adil Shah Suri 22 June 1555[11] 1556[11]

See also


  1. Alam, Muzaffar (1998). "The pursuit of Persian: Language in Mughal Politics". Modern Asian Studies. Cambridge University Press. 32 (2): 317–349. doi:10.1017/s0026749x98002947. Hindavi was recognized as a semi-official language by the Sor Sultans (1540-55) and their chancellery rescripts bore transcriptions in the Devanagari script of the Persian contents. The practice is said to have been introduced by the Lodis (1451-1526).
  2. Singh, Sarina; Lindsay Brown; Paul Clammer; Rodney Cocks; John Mock (2008). Pakistan & the Karakoram Highway. 7, illustrated. Lonely Planet. p. 137. ISBN 1-74104-542-8. Retrieved 23 August 2010.
  3. 1 2 3 Kissling, H. J.; N. Barbour; Bertold Spuler; J. S. Trimingham; F. R. C. Bagley; H. Braun; H. Hartel (1997). The Last Great Muslim Empires. BRILL. pp. 262–263. ISBN 90-04-02104-3. Retrieved 20 July 2011.
  4. "Sher Khan". The Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia, 6th edition. Columbia Encyclopedia. 2007. Retrieved 25 August 2010.
  5. Abbas Khan Sarwani (1580). "Táríkh-i Sher Sháhí; or, Tuhfat-i Akbar Sháhí, of 'Abbás Khán Sarwání. CHAPTER I. Account of the reign of Sher Sháh Súr". Packard Humanities Institute. Retrieved 4 September 2010.
  6. Mughal Coinage Archived 16 May 2008 at the Wayback Machine. Reserve Bank of India RBI Monetary Museum,
  7. Wikisource Chisholm, Hugh, ed. (1911). "Rupee". Encyclopædia Britannica. 23 (11th ed.). Cambridge University Press. p. 885.
  8. 1 2 Majumdar, R.C. (ed.) (2007). The Mughul Empire, Mumbai: Bharatiya Vidya Bhavan, ISBN 81-7276-407-1, p.83
  9. 1 2 Majumdar, R.C. (ed.) (2007). The Mughul Empire, Mumbai: Bharatiya Vidya Bhavan, ISBN 81-7276-407-1, pp.90–93
  10. 1 2 Majumdar, R.C. (ed.) (2007). The Mughul Empire, Mumbai: Bharatiya Vidya Bhavan, ISBN 81-7276-407-1, p.94
  11. 1 2 3 4 5 6 Majumdar, R.C. (ed.) (2007). The Mughul Empire, Mumbai: Bharatiya Vidya Bhavan, ISBN 81-7276-407-1, pp.94–96

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