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Tooba Siddiqi

on 25 November 2013

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Transcript of Mughals


Sources and influences
Architectural and ornamental elements
Building materials


Historical and Geographical context of the dynasty

Capital: Agra, Fatehpur Sikri, Delhi.
Language: Persian (initially Chagatai Turkic and Also later Hindustani)
Government: Absolute monarchy, unitary state federal structure.
Area - Year1700: 3,200,000 km2
Population -Year 1700 estimate: 150,000,000
Density: 46.9 / km2 Today is in Pakistan, Afghanistan, India and Bangladesh

Mughal dynasty, also known as Mogul and Mongol, was a Muslim dynasty of Chaghtai-Turkic.
The Mughal Empire was the dominant power in the Indian subcontinent between the mid 16th century and the early 18th century
Founded in 1526, it officially survived until 1857, when it was supplanted by the British Raj.
The Mughal dynasty was notable for the ability of its rulers, who through seven generations maintained a record of unusual talent, and for its administrative organization. A further distinction was the attempt of the Mughals, who were Muslims, to integrate Hindus and Muslims into a united Indian state.
BABUR 1526-1530
HUMAYUN 1530-1556
AKBAR 1556-1605
JAHANGIR 1605-1627
SHAHJAHAN 1628-1658
AURANGZEB 1659-1707

Mughal Dynasty
The first of the Great Mughals was Babur ("The Tiger"), who invaded and conquered India in 1526.
He was also a diarist, an enthusiastic hunter and lover of gardens.
He died in the Ram Bagh gardens in Agra, and his tomb lies in gardens bearing his name in Kabul, Afghanistan.

The greatest of the Mughal Emperors, Akbar, was born in exile and ascended the throne at the age of 13 after his fathers short restoration
The emperor akbar bulit many structures in his time , his style devloped vigorously in his reing. His style was a mix of muslim and hindu . He constructed the royal city of fatehpur located 26 miles west from Agra. His best work was the southern gate of the mosque called buland drwaza

Jahangir was the eldest son of Mughal Emperor Akbar and was declared successor to his father from an early age.
During Jahangir’s reign the Hindu style vanished.
His great mosque at Lahore is in the Persian style covered with enamel carved lines , at agrahe completed the tomb of Itmad – ud - Daula
Shah Jahan ("Ruler of the World") inherited a near bankrupt empire from his father Jahangir.
The force and originality of style gave way under Shah Jahan to a delicate elegance and refinement of detail illustrated in palace and erected in agra and delhi some of his work is Taj Mahal , tomb of mumtaz , The Moti Masjid and the Jama Masjid
In Aurangzeb’s reign (1658–1707) squared stone and marble was replaced by brick or rubble with stucco ornament. Srirangapatna and Lucknow have examples of later Indo-Muslim architecture.
He made additions to the Lahore Fort and also built one of the thirteen gates which was later named after him (Alamgir).
He built the Badshahi Mosque which was constructed in 1674 under the supervision of Fidai Koka.

Mughal architecture is remarkably symmetrical and decorative amalgam of Islamic, Persian, Turkish, Byzantine and Indian architecture.
Mughal architecture first developed and flourished during the reign of Akbar the Great (ruled 1556 - 1605). Akbari architecture was known for its extensive use of red sandstone as a building material. Humayun's Tomb, the sandstone mausoleum of Akbar's father, was built during this period.
Mughal architecture reached its peak in refinement and attention to detail under Shah Jahan (r. 1628 - 1658). Shah Jahan commissioned the famous Taj Mahal, a white marble mausoleum dedicated to his wife Mumtaz Mahal.
Mughal architecture declined after the death of the emperor Aurangzeb in 1707.

Mughal architecture is the distinctive Indo-Islamic-Persian architectural style that flourished in the Indian subcontinent under the patronage of the Mughal empire from mid 16th to late 17th century.
. The Mughals during their rule over India, brought with them oriental charm of Persian art, Islamic architecture and an impressive character, that was going to be a part of the subcontinent forever. The architecture was one of the greatest gifts of the Mughal dynasty to India.
It gained influences from the Islamic Persian architecture, as it used the services of Iranian/Persian architects. It was further influenced by other existing and foreign cultures.

The use of jharokhas, chhatris, chajjas, torana motifs, etc. mirror a direct influence of the indigenous architectural style. These elements are regular features of Rajput buildings

Various Mughal buildings reflect the Hindu influence despite the use of Islamic architectural prototypes. Such amalgamations was one of the main reasons why the Mughal architecture was also known as Indo-Islamic architecture.
The recurrent hindu features in the Mughaal constructions included the balconies, half domed double portals, decorative brackets, ornate decorations, minars, etc
However, it owes its Islamic sources to the other Muslim dynasties aswell, the Delhi Sultanate, the Khaljis, the Tughlaqs, the Lodhis, the Sayyids and the Surs.

He built mosques with calligraphy and verses from Quran used to embellish the prayer chambers. Later, the mughal architecture also followed this styleLater, the mughal architecture also followed this style.

Mughal monuments like Jama mosque and Taj Mahal display these charachteristics. Apart from these, the tombs were also erected by following the Persian and Islamic characters.

Obvious Islamic influences in Mughal architecture are the extensive use of tile work, the iwan as a central feature in mosques,

the use of domes, the charbagh or garden divided into four and the centrepoint arch. The form of the building and some of the decorative motifs also suggest Islamic influence
Mughal architecture was, thus, the result of innovative genius that borrowed from Persian, Indian and even European sources

Nasir ud-din Muhammad Humayun was the second Mughal Emperor who ruled a large territory consisting of what is now Afghanistan, Pakistan, and parts of northern India from 1530–1540 and again from 1555–1556.
Like his father, Babur, he lost his kingdom early, but with Persian aid, he eventually regained an even larger one. On the eve of his death in 1556, the Mughal empire spanned almost one million square kilometers.

This influence can be seen by the carvings and decorations on the structures – Minarets looks like stalks of flowers, as well as flower inspired inlaid decorations, a motif commonly used in Hinduism.

The Mughal were inspired by Persian art and they had applied this art in many Mughal monuments in India, in the form of geometrical and other shapes.

“Different types of mural decorations have been used in Mughal monuments. These are tile decoration, mosaic, painting, stucco, incised and inlay”

The most popular mural styles are inlay, tile, stucco and mosaic. Inlay is one of the most popular of them.
This was known as Pietra-Dura (Stone-Hard). This art was related to Persia and adopted by the Mughals.
The very first example was found in the Ashrafi-Mahal and Tower of victory at Mandu
Due to this point some scholars believe that this art is an ancient art of India but before Mughal invasion to ndia some Persian artists were already residing in Gujarat by changing their names.
It can be seen in Buland Darwaza, Fathepur Sikri and Delhi Gate and in Jahangiri Mahal of Agra Fort.

Besides inlay Mughals art makes use of stucco as a decorative means in mosques and palaces. It has an important position among the various decorative arts in Persian architecture.

Mughal brought this art in India. “The new motifs revolutionalized the whole art. Iranian influence gave a new interpretation to the ancient art of Indian painting” SUBJECT MATTER AND THEME

The subject is divided into different categories as geometrical motifs, arabesque, calligraphy, flora and fauna and many motifs from Hindu mythology. Flora and fauna has importance in all categories and this has many reasons.

Mughals were the first who introduced paradise gardens under Persian inspiration .

Mughals adopted their theme of paradise effect.

They have used different types of geometrical shapes and in thmiddle of these shapes they have placed a seat for the majesty so that they could feel themselves in paradise with natural beauty. “The theme of this is based on the garden of Mughal period, inspired by Persian and Indian arts”

Due to the Taj Mahal being one of the major tourist attractions, there is a flourishing industry of Pietra-Dura artifacts in Agra ranging from tabletops, medallions, elephants and jewellery boxes and other decorative items. This art form is fully alive and thriving in Agra, though the patterns in the designs are more Persian than Roman or Medician.

Iwans are vaulted spaces, with the space enclosed by three walls and an opening. These architectural feature is built to resemble a gateway, and it is used extensively for both religious and secular buildings throughout Islamic Persia as well as South Asia

Extensive use of  arches –The use of arches in the Mughal monuments is a main feature of its architechture,they used them in the mosques,tombs and other religious monuments

Gardens, fountains and pools:

mughal architectural styles offers spacious gardens or pools with fountains as features to the buildings. Taj Mahal have well tended gardens in front of it as well as fountains and pools

it sits on top of a cylindrical drum, before tapering to a point and decorated with a finial. In Mughal architecture, sometimes multiple smaller domes decorate the rooftops of the buildings

Usage of Muqarnas

The stalactite like decoration are commonly used under arches, especially under the vaults of the Iwans,also can be seen in the minars
A jharokha (or jharoka) is a type of overhanging enclosed balcony used in Mughal architecture.
Jharokhas jutting forward from the wall plane could be used both for adding to the architectural beauty of the building itself or for a specific purpose.

are elevated, dome-shaped pavilions used as an element in Mughal architecture.
They are widely used, in palaces, in forts, or to demarcate funerary sites.
They are today seen on its finest monuments, Humayun's Tomb in Delhi and the Taj Mahal in Agra. Chhatris are basic element of Hindu as well as Mughal architecture
is the projecting or overhanging eaves or cover of a roof, usually supported on large carved brackets.


the style exhibit impeccable attention to symmetry of the buildings – it is not uncommon for a building to have same number of minarets and the same number of arches and pillars to each side of the buildings. even the pools and garden are often designed in a similar style, creating a mirror like effect
the style used calligraphy as decorative accents around the gate of the Iwan, as well as under cornices and around the arches surrounding the building.

is the distinctive ornamentation of Mughal Architectre. It is also the most distinctive characteristic of the Shahjehanian phase of Mughal Architecture which marks the beauty of this style.


carving the floral designs in the coloumns and on different architechture mostly used in the Mughal architecture

A jali is the term for a perforated stone or latticed screen, usually with an ornamental pattern constructed through the use of calligraphy and geometry.
Jali typically use Floral geometric patterns.

The building materials used for the Mughal architecture varies widely, depending on the region and the type of construction.
As with most other areas, many of the original buildings have not survived because they were made of less permanent materials such as wood, as well as having been subjected to deliberate destructions as a result of wars or rebuilding. However, a few materials stand out as characteristic of Mughal architecture.

Mughals primarily used red sandstone in their construction of monuments in the beginning, which was later replaced by other materials.
Red sandstone was used for construction due to its strenght and durability.
This materials is very strong under compression and so it could be used for trabeated construction where roofs were made of flat stone slabs supported on stone columns.
When domes were built these were sometimes constructed in the Persian tradition using squinches or pendentives, but more commonly they rested on horizontal flat beams laid over the corners of the structure.
Despite its strength and hardness the Indian masons trained in the Hindu tradition of building ornate temples were able to carve this sandstone with intricate details.
Another reason why mughals favored the use of sandstone was due the ease of availability of the material in the region. One of the greatest examples of buildings constructed y Mughals, that were made out of red sandstone can be found in the city of fateh pur sikhri

White marble is another type of stone that is often associated with Mughal architecture.
It was first used along with red sandstone as a stone cladding for the front of monumental buildings such as the tom of Humayun in Delhi where it is used as an inlay and outline for the red sandstone ground.
Later, during their reign, Mughals used white marble facing to cover the entire buildings, the best know example of which is Taj Mahal.
Mughals also used white marble as it was supposed to be the most beautiful, strong ad expensive stone to be used for the buildings. The use of such expensive materials for construction projected a sense power, as it is a symbol of luxury and wealth.

Baked bricks were also used for some elements of construction like domes and arches, although this was usually covered with plaster and facing stones.
Nanak Shahi bricks were decorative bricks used for structurals walls by the Mughals.
More of than not, the structures thery were used in, were based on trebeated construction system.
The surfaces of these bricks were usually treated with lime or gypsum plaster. Although sandstone and white marble were mostly favored for construction, many structures were built using such bricks.


The Badshahi Mosque (Emperor’s mosque) is the epitome of Mughal grandeur and their architectural passion.
Its construction began in Lahore in 1671 on orders of Mughal emperor Aurengzeb and took less than three years to finish.
It remained the biggest mosque of the world for 313 years.
Bold, vast and majestic, the Badshahi mosque is a harmonious amalgamation of Persian, Central Asian and Indian architecture.


It is said that Shah Jahan had this mosque built as a gesture of his gratitude to the people of Thatta.
This mosque of domes and arches is designed in such a way that the imam’s (prayer leader)voice can be heard in every corner of this building without the help of any loudspeaker.
Its construction started in 1644 and was completed in 1647.
Shah Jehan Mosque could accommodate 20,000 worshipers at a time.
It is spread over an area of 51,850 square feet.
Unlike other mosques, Shah Jahan Mosque has no minarets.

The Jami Masjid of Ahmedabad is one of the biggest and oldest mosques of India, built by a Bahmani ruler Ahmed Shah I (1411-1442), the founder of Ahmedabad, in 1423.
One of the major tourist attractions of Gujarat, Jami Masjid is known for its fine and amazing architecture.
The Mosque has a total of 260 pillars supporting 15 domes at different elevations.
The Jami Masjid also had tall minarets, which were destroyed in an earthquake.

Humayun’s tomb was built by his widow Haji Begum in 1565 A.D. in Delhi in 1569A.D., fourteen years after his death.
 The mausoleum stands in the centre of a square enclosed garden. The garden is divided and sub-divided into squares, typical of Mughal gardens.
  The lofty double storeyed structure is built on a huge high platform terrace which has a row of calls with arched openings.

The Mausoleum of Akbar at Sikandra near Agra was started by Akbar
It was completed by his son Jahangir in 1612 A.D. who changed the original design of his father.
Designed on the model of  a Buddhist Vihara, it is set in the centre of a square garden


The Mausoleum of Itmad-ud-Daula, the revenue minister of Jahangir and Nur Jehan’s father was built in Agra on the banks of the Jamuna.
Started by Jahangir it was completed by Nur Jehan in 1628 A.D. 
A small rectangular structure in white marble, inlaid with semi-precious stones and coloured glass, it is a delicate and beautiful piece of architecture.
It is the first pure marble monument and differs from the typical massive, red sand-stone structures of earlier Mughals. 
Situated in a garden amidst fountains, it has a square lower storey with four minarets in the four corners. 
A traceried pavilion forms the second storey. 

Located near the tomb of I'timad-ud-Daulah.
It was built in 1635 as a mausoleum for Allama Afzal Mullah of Shiraz, the Prime Minister in the court of Shah Jahan.
Colorful tiles, or 'chini' adorn the façade of the tomb, hence the name. On the walls and the ceiling, inscriptions and inlay work have been used.

Sher Shah's tomb at Sasaram in Bihar built in 1549 is in the centre of a large square tank and rises at 46 metres high.
Entrance to the tomb is through a domed structure.
It is a two storey construction on a terraced platform.
The upper terrace has pillared domes and the two storeys above have a pillared kiosk at the four corners.
The base of the large central dome has thirty two sides.
The tomb is decorated with coloured tiles, very few of which remain now.

The Taj Mahal is a mausoleum located in Agra, India.
The Mughal Emperor Shah Jahan commissioned it as a mausoleum for his favorite wife, Mumtaz Mahal.
Construction of the Taj Mahal was begun in Agra soon after Mumtaz's death.
The principal mausoleum was completed in 1648, and the surrounding buildings and garden five years later.
Construction began in 1632 and was completed in 1648
The Taj Mahal is a perfect fusion of Persian, Turkish and Indian architectural styles.
Twenty-two long years were spent on crafting this wonderful masterpiece from white marble and semi-precious stones
The interiors of the Taj Mahal display lapidary art using precious and semi-precious stones.
The exterior walls of the monument are adorned with calligraphy, floral motifs and geometric, abstract forms.
Verses from the Quran carefully selected by the Persian calligrapher have been etched with jasper on the marble pishtaqs
Diwan-i-Am or Hall of Public Audience, is a building typology found in many cities where the ruler meets the general public.
In this case, it is a pavilion-like multi-bayed rectangular structure fronting a large open space.
South west of the Diwan-i-Am and next to the Turkic Sultana's House stand Turkic Baths.

These beautiful gardens were the brain child of Mughal emperor Shah Jahan.
The construction began in Lahore in 1641 and was completed the following year.
Water for irrigating the Gardens came from a canal named Shah Nahar meaning the Royal canal that was brought from Madhpur in India, covering a distance of over 161 kilometers.
On this basin 410 fountains were built which spilled water into wide marble pools.
These fountains lower the hot summer temperatures of the surrounding areas.
In an era where there was no electricity, it is a credit to the ingenuity of the Mughal engineers who kept the fountains fully operational

The garden was developed on the orders of Emperor Shah Jahan in 1632 by Ali Mardan Khan around an abundant spring emerging from the slopes of the Zabarwan Mountains.
The waters of the spring are renowned for their cool and rejuvenating qualities.
The spring is sheltered under a pavilion which is of a later Kashmiri period.
The defining feature of this garden is its very high terraces and strong Mughal character of its gateway, cascades and retaining walls.
Chashma Shahi continues to retain the natural spring around which it was built and is unique for its high terraces, and distant, yet outstanding, views of the Dal Lake from its terraces.
The garden is known to be at its best during late afternoons and evenings.
This garden stands out from the rest of the gardens for its narrow rills and singular fountains within its pools - adopting the typology of early Mughal gardens of India.

Pari Mahal is also located west of the city centre of Srinagar, near Chasma Shahi, on the slopes of the Zebanwan mountains.
Prince Dara Shukoh, the eldest son of Shah Jahan, built the gardens around 1650.
It was built at the site of the ruins of a Buddhist Monastery and as a residential School of Sufiism at the instance of his revered spiritual tutor Mullah Shah Badakhshi.
It is believed that Pari Mahal was constructed for astronomical observations and teachings or astrological calculations under the Mughals.
Dara Shukoh named it after his wife Nadira Begum, supposed to be known as Pari Begum, the daughter of Prince Parviz, a son of Jahangir.

The garden is entered from the fourth terrace where there are a series of entrance buildings, which are believed to have contained a hamman.
Unlike most Mughal Gardens in Kashmir, the garden contains no water channels and cascades (chadars) that feed the water tanks. Instead water is supplied through a system of underground pipes.

Laid out in the 17th C. (1634 AD) by Mirza Abul Hasan, the Nishat Bagh is amongst the most prominent gardens that the Mughals developed in the erstwhile Hindustan.
The bagh or garden is located directly along the eastern bank of the Dal Lake on the foot of Zabarwan mountain range.
Nishat Bagh's exceptional quality lies therefore in its setting, the complex terraced layout, the play of water cascades, the views it offers, and its ecology.

Sher Shah built the Purana Quila in Delhi. Started by him, it was completed by Humayun.
Built of red and buff sand-stone, it is ornamented with black and white marble and coloured tiles.
A beautiful mosque inside the Quila with ornamental arches, decorative panels, geometrical designs and inscriptions is an example of the development of architecture and ornamentation during Sher Shah's reign.

A greater part of the fort at Agra was constructed by Akbar starting in 1565 AD and completed it in 1574 A.D. Situated on the bank of the river Jamuna, it is a massive and grand structure.  The special feature of this fort is the 2.5 kms. long and 21 metres  high circuitous wall of solid red sand stone.

The Lahore fort or the Shahi Qila was built by Emperor Akbar in 1556 on the banks of the River Ravi.
It was erected on the foundations of an old mud fort of an earlier era. Later Mughal emperors also extended it and added their vision to it.
The fort houses exotic structures like Diwan-e-Aam (Hall of Public Audience), Muktab-khana ( Clerks’ House), Diwan-e-Khas (Hall of Private Audience), Khwabgah-e-Jahangir (Jahangir’s Room of Dreams), the Lal Burj (intended as a summer pavilion) and the Shish Mahal ( the Palace of Mirrors), a multi-storied structure that was part of the royal residence constructed by Shah Jahan.
A beautiful Moti Masjid (the Pearl Mosque) is also located inside the Lahore Fort.

The Diwani Khas, an outstanding structure was meant for the Emperor to sit in audience with his ministers and listen to disputes and discussions.
  A novel structure, it is a large hall with a giant monolithic pillars in the centre with a circular railed platform on top like a cup which is supported by a circular array of beautifully carved brackets.
  From the  Central platform branch out four diagonal railed galleries symbolizing Akbar’s supremacy over his dominions. 
The gallery is continued on all four sides of the hall.
  The audience  sat in the galleries and in the hall below giving it the effect of a two-storey building. 
Sitting in the centre, Akbar heard discourses and discussions on religions.

The Red Fort, set amidst the bustling heart of Old Delhi, with its obligatory share of dust and memories, bears the stamp of a place that has seen much grandeur and knows it.
After Mughal Emperor Shahjahan shifted his capital to the royal quarters of Delhi, this colossal fort sprouted from the heart of his new city, Shahjahanabad.
History traces its way back from the dawn of Mughal power in Delhi, to the times when it was known as Qila-e-Mu'alla or the 'Auspicious Fort'
it encloses the palatial residence of the Mughal kings and the state treasury and mint.

The Bagh-e Babur garden is the final resting place of the first Mughal Emperor, Babur. Although present-day Afghanistan was not Babur's original homeland (he was born in Ferghana in present-day Uzbekistan), he felt sufficiently enamoured of Kabul that he desired to be buried here. When Babur died in 1530 he was initially buried in Agra against his wishes. Between 1539 and 1544 Sher Shah Suri, a rival of Babur's son Humayun, fulfilled his wishes and interred him at Babur's Garden
Lalbagh Fort (also Fort Aurangabad) is an incomplete 17th century Mughal fort complex in Dhaka, Bangladesh.The construction was started in 1678 AD by Mughal Subahdar Muhammad Azam Shah who was son of Emperor Aurangzeb and later Emperor himself.

Amal Akram,Bilal Sabri,Sana Nisar,Sumaiya Mohammed,Tooba Siddiqi

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