Akbar (1542-1605) was the third Mughal Emperor who ruled over much of Northern and Central India. The family was Turko-Mongol in origin. Akbar, after ascending to the throne at the age of fourteen, cemented his power with successive victories over insubordinate local chieftains. He was a great patron of art and culture, somewhat analogous to Lorenzo the Magnificent of the House of Medici, who nourished the artistic community in Florence and turned the city into a locus of the Italian Renaissance. Akbar was known for his syncretic and liberal religious policy. Hindus, Muslims, Jains, Buddhists, Zoroastrians, and even Jesuits who had travelled all the way from Europe by sea to spread Christianity graced the royal court of Akbar. When he was thirty six years old, he had a mystical experience which seems to have been a turning point in his life.