Hargobind, Gurū

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Hargobind, Gurū (1595–1644). Sixth Sikh Gurū. Hargobind was born in Amritsar to Gurū Arjan Dev's wife, Mātā Gaṅgā, and survived Prithī Chand's attempts on his life. In 1606 Bhāī Buḍhā installed him as successor to his martyred father.

Hargobind's martial, princely style marked a new emphasis in Sikhism. He trained soldiers and built Lohgaṛh (castle of steel), a fortress in Amritsar, and the Akāl Takht where heroic feats were sung. Between 1628 and 1634 the Gurū was victorious in four engagements with Mughal forces. The Gurū died in Kīratpur 1644. Contemporary sources contain minor inconsistencies regarding his life, and Hargobind wrote no hymns, but a clear picture, reinforced by iconography, emerges of his impact on Sikhism.