History vs. Tamerlane the Conqueror - Stephanie Honchell Smith
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In Europe, Timur’s life served as the inspiration for Christopher Marlowe’s plays Tamburlaine the Great, Parts I and II; George Frideric Handel’s opera, Tamerlano; and Edgar Allen Poe’s poem Tamerlane. However, these depictions are largely fictionalized and tend to reflect Orientalist stereotypes rather than historical reality.
Timur’s descendants ruled Central Asia for over a century and are famous for their artistic and scientific achievements. The Timurid prince Babur moved south and founded the Mughal Empire in India in 1526. For more on the later Timurids, see this article on drinking culture, as well as the works of Maria Subtelny and Stephen Dale.
There are also several primary sources that provide firsthand accounts of the Timurid world, including Timur’s official biography, The Zafarnama; the account written by Ruy González de Clavijo, the Spanish ambassador to Timur’s court; and Babur’s memoir, known as the Baburnama.
Additional resources on the Timurids can be found in the Oxford Bibliographies entry on Timurid Art and Architecture.
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