Prince Salim, later known as Jahangir, was a child of many prayers. His full name at the time of his birth was Nuruddin Muhammad Salim.
Akbar, who had lost all the children of his early youth, ardently desired an heir who should live to inherit his vast empire. He prayed to God, besought the blessings of saints, and walked to the mausoleum of Khwaja Muinuddin Chishti at Ajmer and waited on other well-known saints of that time. At last Shaikh Salim Chishti of Fatehpur Sikri promised him three sons.
On August 30, 1956, Mariam-uz-Zamani, gave birth on 30th August, 1569, to a child who was named Nuruddin Salim. The mother of Salim, Mariam-uz-Zamani, was the Jaipur princess and is also known as Jodha Bai, Harkha Bai and Rukmawati Bai.
The emperor Akbar fulfilled his vow of making his journey on foot to Ajmer and paying his homage to the shrine of Khwaja Muinuddin Chishti.
Prince Salim was brought up with every possible care and affection and, when he grew up, arrangements were made for his education at the new capital, Fatehpur Sikri, where Akbar had erected a lofty palace surrounded by other magnificent buildings. His school going ceremony took place on November 28, 1573. One after another, a series of able tutor’s were appointed to teach the prince Persian, Turki, Arabic and Hindi, arithmetic, history and geography and other important sciences. Under his guidance of Abdur Rahim Khana, Salim mastered Persian and learnt Turki and Hindi. He also learnt to compose verses in Persian and to take delight in Hindi songs. He was taught history and geography and took interest in botany, zoology, music, painting and other fine arts. Physical and military education was not neglected. He was taught to cultivate physical exercises and to handle weapons of offence and defence. In due course he became a fine shot and a mighty hunter.
In conformity with the practice of that age, Prince Salim was associated with the work of military administration at an early age. During the Kabul campaign of 1581, he was placed in charge of a regiment of troops and, subsequently, employed to conduct independent military expeditions. Likewise, he was given training of a civil administrator. In 1577, he was elevated to the rank of 10000 in the imperial service and in 1585 promoted to that of 12000.
Prince Salim was married to Manbai at the age of fifteen. Manbai was the daughter of Raja Bhagwant Das of Amber. The marriage took place on 13th February, 1585 according to both Muslim and Hindu rites.