Well-known for its past and the glory of learning Jaunpur holds its own important historical, social and political status. Studying its past on the basis of panic accounts, rock edicts, archaeological remains and other available facts, the continuous existence of Jaunpur district is seen, in some form of the other, till the Late Vedic Period. The glory of the city on the Adi Ganga Gomti and its peaceful shores was a major pious ground for the meditations and contemplations of sages, Rishis and Maharshis from where the sounds of the vedmantras emanated. Even today, the Deva Vanees are echoing in temples along the banks of the Gomti in Jaunpur city.
In the field of education, this district has held an important position. Students from other countries have been coming here to learn Arabic and Persian. Sher Shah Suri too was educated here. Sufism too sprouted and flowered here. During the Sharki period this area showed the way via a unique Hindu-Muslim communal harmony whose legacy is still present here. Maharshi Yamadagni, upon some disagreement with Sahastrarjuna, the king of Punjab, the land of seven rivers, headed south and got captivated by the praiseworthy Nature of Gomti’s pristine aims. Maharshi Yamdagni established his ashram on the right banks of the Gomti between Zafrabad and Jaunpur. To the present day, there is an ancient temple at this spot. This temple is called the temple of Maharishi Yamdagni. This place is in Jamaitha village. Yamadagni started to live here alongwith his son Parashuram. This area was in the domain of the king of Ayodhya at the time and is called Ayodhyapuram. On account of the old enmity, king Sahastrarjun attacked the ashram and killed Maharishi Yamadagni. Enraged at the slaying of his father, the valorous Parashuram went to war and slaged his father’s assassious in battle. The first arrival in the district of Jaunpur was of Raghuvanshi Kshattriyas.
The king of Benares got his daughter married to the king of Ayodhya, Devakumar and gave away some part of his dominion as dowry in which the Raghuvanshis of Dobhi area settled themselves. Right after this occurred the arrival of Vatyagotri, Durgvanshi and Vyas Kshattriyas in this district. In this district the Bharas and Soiriyas held away. The Kshattriyas began to have conflicts with them. The Gaharwar Kshattriyas completely finished the domination of Bharas and Soiriyas. In the eleventh century the Gaharwar rajputs of Kannauj started making Jafrabad and Yaunapur (Jaunpur) rich and powerful. Vijaychand came here from Kannauj and got several mansions and forts built. Even today, the ruins of the fort south of Jafrabad can be seen. In 1194 A.D., Qutubuddin Aibak attacked Mandev or Mandeya (present day Jafrabad). After defeating the then king Udaypal, he entrusted power to Dewanjeet Singh and headed towards Banares. In 1389 A.D., Mahmood Shah, the son of Feroze Shah ascended the throne. He made Sarbar Khwaja a minister and, later in 1393 A.D. gave him the little of Malik-ul-Sharq and entrusted him with the area from Kannauj to Bihar. Malik-ul-sharq made Jaunpur his capital and established his reign from Etawah to Bengal and Vindhyachal to Nepal. The founder of the Sharqi Dynasty, Malik-ul-sharq, died in 1398 A.D. Whereupon, his foster son Saayed Murakshah ascended the throne of Jaunpur. His younger brother Ibrahimshah succeeded him to the thorne. Ibrahimshah proved to be an accomplished and able ruler. He implemented the policy of good will with the Hindus. During the Sharqi period, many grand buildings, mosques and mausoleums were built. Ferozeshah had lain the foundations of the Atala Mosque in 1393 A.D. but it was completed by Ibrahim shah in 1408 A.D. Ibrahimshah got started the construction of Jama Masjid and Bari Masjid which were completed by Husainshah. The unique aspect of Hindu-Muslim communal harmony which had been present during the Sharqi Parishad in Jaunpur district- which has held an important position in the fields of Education, Culture, Music, Arts and Literature- its fragrance exists even today. The Lodhy Dynasty held the reins of power on the throne of Jaunpur from 1484 A.D. to 1525 A.D. In 1526 A.D. Babar attached Delhi and defeated and killed Ibrahim Lodhi in the battle of Panipat. To conquer Jaunpur, Babar sent his son Humayun, who defeated the ruler of Jaunpur. Upon the death of Humayun in 1556 A.D. his 18 years old son Jalaluddin Akbar ascended to throne. In 1567 A.D. when Ali Kuli Khan rebelled, then Akbar himself attacked and Ali Kuli Khan was killed in the battle. Akbar stayed for several days at Jaunpur. Thereafter, he went back after appointing Sardar Muneem Khan as the ruler. It was during the reign of Akbar that the Shahi Pul (Jaunpur) was built. After the Pranic period, scholars link Jaunpur with thr eign of Chandragupta Vikramadigtya upto Manyeech and the fact that this place had been influenced by Buddhist thoughts also. The Bhars and Koiree Gujjar, Pratiharas and Gaharwars too have held power here. After the displacement of Mahmmad Gajnabi from here (11th cent.) the victory of Gauri and the Mohammad Gauri Gyanchand conflict and the subsequent transfer of the royal treasure to Arabi; the appointment in Jaunpur of Zafar Khan Tughlaq by his father Gayasuddin Tughlaq- all lead to the building of the present day city. In 1722 A.D. after being a part of the Mughal Sultanat for a century and a half, Jaunpur was entrusted to the Nawab of Awadh. Later in 1775 A.D. Jaunpur too, alongwith Benares went into the hands of the English from the king of Benares, Mansaram. From 1775 to 1788 A.D. Jaunpur was under the dominion of Benares and then it was in the hands of the Regiment Dekana. For the first time in 1818 A.D. the Deputy Collectorateship was established and later it became a separate district. In 1820 A.D., Azamgarh district was also brought under Jaunpur but some part of Azamgar in 1822 and the whole of Azamgarh in 1830 A.D. was separated from Jaunpur.