Shere Khan is a fictional tiger of the South Asia jungle, named after an Afghan Prince (Sher Shah Suri, The Lion King or The Tiger King) Kipling encountered on his trips to Afghanistan. The word Shere translates to "Tiger" in Urdu/Hindi. Shere Khan is the chief antagonist in two of Rudyard Kipling's Jungle Book stories featuring Mowgli. Shere Khan should be pronounced "Skere Khan" according to one of Rudyard Kipling's notes, however in movie adaptations his name has always been pronounced as it is written.
Despite being born with a crippled leg and derisively nickname Lungri (The Lame One) by his own mother, Shere Khan is arrogant and regards himself as the rightful lord of the jungle. It seems, however, that the only creature who looks up to him is Tabaqui, the cowardly, despised golden jackal.
In "Mowgli's Brothers", Shere Khan's failed attempt to hunt humans causes a human "cub" to stray from his parents. By the time Shere Khan catches up with the infant it has already been adopted by the Indian wolves Raksha and Father Wolf, who have named the child Mowgli. Despite Shere Khan's bluster, Mowgli is accepted into Akela's wolf pack and protected by Bagheera and Baloo. Furious at losing his kill, the tiger swears that the cub will be his some day.
Over the next decade, while Mowgli is growing up, Shere Khan infiltrates the wolf pack by promising the younger wolves rich rewards once Akela is deposed. His plan comes to a head when the young wolves maneuver Akela into missing his kill, and the pack council meets to expel him.
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