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Taj Mahal still remains the iconic building of all monuments built during the Mughal Empire! It of course remains as the token of love and flourishes as a benchmark of the Mughal dynasty. Mughal architecture is marked with the domes, gateways/Darwaza, minarets, etc, and it involves an Indo-Islamic architecture along with Persian and Turkish mix. The reign of Mughals was during the 16th and 17th centuries. It was Babur who established the empire through the Panipat war in 1526. Starting from Babur, to Akbar, Mughal architecture reached its zenith during the reign of Shah Jahan and Aurangazeb was the last of famous Mughal architect. So, here in this article let us have a historic trail through the palaces to forts, mosques to mausoleums covering the monuments built in the Mughal rule.
Buildings and Monuments Built in Mughal Rule
The monuments built under the patronage of Mughals were flourished under the artistic skills combined with both Indian and Islamic architecture. Let us discuss the important features of monuments built by each emperor of the Mughal Empire.
List of Important Monuments of Mughal Period
- Jama Masjid in Delhi
- Begum Shahi Mosque in Lahore
- Taj Mahal in Agra
- Red Fort in Delhi
- Pari Mahal in Srinagar
- Akbar’s Tomb in Agra
- Tomb of Itimad-Ud-Daulah in Agra
- Agra Fort
- Humayun’s Tomb
- Fatehpur Sikri in Agra
- Allahabad Fort in Prayagraj
- Akbari Fort & Museum in Ajmer
- Kabuli Bagh Mosque in Panipat
- Wazir Khan Mosque
- Shahi Bridge
- Various Mughal Gardens
- Shah Begum’s Tomb, Khusro Bagh, Prayagraj
- Tombs of Ustad-Shagird in Nakodar
- Taj-ul-Masjid in Bhopal
- Bibi Ka Maqbara in Aurangabad
- Zeenat-ul-Masjid in Delhi
- Safdarjung Tomb in Delhi
Monuments Built by Babur
The name Babri Masjid is named after the Mughal emperor Babur. It was built in 1528–29 (935 AH) by general Mir Baqi, as per the orders of the Babur.
Panipat Mosque or Kabuli Bagh Mosque
The mosque was named after Mussammat Kabuli Begum, Babur’s wife and is one of the largest mosques in India and is also known as Masjid-i Jehan-Numa (World-reflecting Mosque). The mosque was built in 1527 by the emperor Babur to mark his victory over Sultan Ibrahim Lodhi at the first Battle of Panipat, the first conquest of the Mughals over Hindustan, in 1526.
Later Humayun added a masonry Platform to the main building built by the Babur, after defeating Sher Shah Suri’s descendants near Panipat, called Chabutra Fateh Mubarak. It bears the inscription 934 Hijri (1557 CE). These buildings and the garden still exist under the name of Kabuli Bagh called so after Babur’s wife –Kabuli begum.
Monuments Built by Humayun
Humayun has built several architectural structures in Gwalior, Agra, and Delhi.
Humayun also built some beautiful religious buildings in the city of Din-Panah and the Gates of the Din Panah City, called Talaqi Darwaza, Bara Darwaza, Humayun Darwaza, and Sher Mandal.
Din-Panah or the Purana Qila (1530–1540; 1555–1556) is believed to be the fort of the ancient Indian city of Indraprastha where the legendary Pandavas ruled. The origins of this old fort lie on the walls of Din Panah, which is the new city of Delhi constructed by Mughal emperor Humayun. This was an ambitious architectural project of Humayun and is located on the bank’s river Yamuna at Delhi.
The inner citadel of the old fort has three gateways of which the Sher Mandal and Qalʾa-i-Kuhna Masjid were completed by 1540. The 3 gateways were built of red sandstone, have jharokhas which consists of the upper floor windows with their own pedestal, pillars, and roof, on the facade, and chhatris which are free-standing pillared pavilions on the superstructure, roofed by a dome or cupola.
- Talaqi Darwaza (Forbidden Gate) is the northern gate of the Purana Qila
- Bara Darwaza (Big Gate) in the Purana Qila
- Humayun Darwaza is the southern gate of the Old Fort.
The Qalʾa-i-Kuhna Masjid, Mosque of the Old Fort, was built of red stone, has five windows and, correspondingly, five arches on the facade, which have a periphery of lotus buds.
Monuments Built by Akbar
This was the main residence of the emperors of the Mughal Dynasty until 1638, after which the capital was shifted from Agra to Delhi. Ans it was in a ruined state and then Akbar, son of Humayun it rebuilt with red sandstone from Barauli area Dhaulpur district, in Rajasthan. It is included in the UNESCO Heritage sites of India.
Humayun’s tomb, Maqbara-i Humayun, is the tomb of the Mughal Emperor Humayun in Delhi. The tomb was built by the then emperor Akbar and commissioned by Humayun’s first wife and chief consort, Empress Bega Begum. It was constructed in 1558 and designed by Mirak Mirza Ghiyas and his son, Sayyid Muhammad. The monument included in the UNESCO Heritage list represents a leap in Mughal architecture, and together with its accomplished Charbagh garden.
Allahabad Fort in Prayagraj
This monument was built in 1583 as per the stone inscription inside the fort. The fort is on the banks of the Yamuna near its confluence with the river Ganges. It was named the fort Illahabas later called Allahabad
The 16th century Shahi Bridge (Munim Khan’s Bridge or Akbari Bridge or Mughal Bridge or Jaunpur Bridge) is a significant Mughal construction situated over the river Gomti in Jaunpur, Uttar Pradesh.
It was built by Munim Khan in 1568–69.
Fatehpur Sikri in Agra
This monument has found its place in UNESCO Heritage site from India was the capital of the Mughal Empire in 1571 by Emperor Akbar, serving this role from 1571 to 1585. The city was walled and an imperial palace was constructed and called as City of Victory, after Akbar’s winning of Gujarat campaign in 1573.
Tomb of Salim Chisti
This is one of the finest examples of Mughal architecture in India, built during the years 1580 and 1581. It was built with Fatehpur Sikri. This mausoleum enshrines the burial place of the Sufi saint, Salim Chisti, and was constructed by Akbar as a sign of respect for the Sufi saint.
Monuments Built by Jahangir
Tomb of Itimad-Ud-Daulah in Agra
Tomb of I’timad-ud-Daulah (I’timad-ud-Daulah Maqbara), located on the eastern bank of the river Yamuna, is a Mughal mausoleum built by Jahangir in the city of Agra, Uttar Pradesh. Also, described as a Jewel box, Bachcha Taj, or the”Baby Taj, etc.
The mausoleum was commissioned by Nur Jahan, the wife of Jahangir, as a tribute to her father Mirza Ghiyas Beg. Mirza Ghiyas Beg was given the title of I’timad-ud-Daulah, meaning pillar of the state.
Beegum Shahi Mosque
Beegum Shahi Mosque is officially called The Mosque of Mariyam Zamani Begum.
It is situated in the Walled City of Lahore, Punjab, Pakistan, and was built between 1611 and 1614 during the reign of Mughal Emperor Jahangir in honor of his mother, Begum Mariam -uz-Zamani, who was also known as ‘Maharani Jodha Bai’.
Akbar’s Tomb in Agra
This monument was built in 1605–1613 by the son of Akbar, Jahangir.
It took 3 or 4 years to complete the building and is situated on 119 acres of grounds in Sikandra, a sub of Agra. It is constructed mainly from a deep red sandstone, enriched with features in white marble.
Monuments Built by Shah Jahan
Taj Mahal in Agra
Taj Mahal, which means “crown” (tāj) “place” (maħall) still remains the best example of Mughal architecture. It is located on the right bank of the river Yamuna having a vast Mughal garden that encompasses nearly 17 hectares, in Agra, UP. The monument was commissioned in 1632 by the Mughal emperor Shah Jahan in memory of his wife Mumtaz Mahal.
The construction of the monument started in 1632 AD and was completed in 1648 AD.
The Taj Mahal was designated as a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1983 for being “the jewel of Muslim art in India and one of the universally admired masterpieces of the world’s heritage”(courtesy – Wikipedia).
Jama Masjid in Delhi
The Masjid-i Jehan-Numa (literary meaning – World-reflecting Mosque), commonly called the Jama Masjid of Delhi. This is one of the largest mosques in India. It was built in 1650 and 1656 and inaugurated by its first Imam, Syed Abdul Ghafoor Shah Bukhari. It is situated in the highest point of the Mughal capital – Shahjahanabad.
Red Fort in Delhi
It is named because of its building material red sandstone, originally red and white, its design is credited to architect Ustad Ahmad Lahori. The then Emperor Shah Jahan commissioned the construction of the Lal Quila on 12 May 1638, after deciding to shift his capital from Agra to Delhi. The fort represents the peak in Mughal architecture under Shah Jahan and combines Persianate palace architecture with Indian traditions.
Every year on India’s Independence Day, i.e. on 15th August, the Prime Minister hoists the Indian tricolor flag at the fort’s main gate and delivers independence day speech from its embankments.
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Shah Jahan Mosque
Often called Jamia Masjid of Thatta is a 17th-century building that serves as the central mosque for the city of Thatta, in Pakistan. Its restoration works were carried out by Emperor Aurangzeb in 1692, as well as by Murad Ali Khan Talpur in 1812.
Wazir Khan Mosque
The Mosque (Masjid Wazir Khan) is considered to be built in the 17th century located in the city of Lahore.
This reflects the style of Persian Hamam. The Shahi Hammam (Royal Baths), also known as the Wazir Khan Hammam, was built in 1635, in Lahore, Pakistan.
Built by the chief physician to the Mughal Court, Ilam-ud-din Ansari, who was otherwise known as Wazir Khan.
The Mughal garden complex is located in Lahore. This also has a place in the UNESCO Heritage site lists.
Monuments Built by Aurangazeb
This is the largest mosque of the entire Mughal era. The Royal Mosque or the Badshahi Mosque is a Mughal-era congregational mosque in Lahore, built-in 1671 and 1673 with carved red sandstone with marble inlay.
Zeenat-ul-Masjid in Delhi
Zeenat-ul Masjid commonly called Ghata Masjid meaning the cloud mosque was built in the year 1707 AD by Zinat-ul-Nissa, the second daughter of Aurangzeb. It is located at Shahjahanabad in Daryaganj near the river Yamuna. The mosque is believed to be motivated by Jama Masjid in Chandni Chowk built by Shah Jahan.
Bibi Ka Maqbara in Aurangabad
Bibi Ka Maqbara was completed between 1668 and 1669 and was commissioned in 1660 by the Mughal emperor Aurangzeb in the memory of his first and chief wife Dilras Banu Begum
‘Tomb of the Lady’ is located in Aurangabad, Maharashtra has a startling resemblance to the Taj Mahal, the mausoleum of Aurangzeb’s mother, Mumtaz Mahal.
This is the second-largest monument that Aurangzeb has built, the largest among these is the Badshahi Mosque.
Other Monuments Built in Mughal Rule
- Safdarjung’s Tomb constructed by Mughal Emperor, Mohammed Shah, is the last enclosed garden tomb in Delhi. It was built in 1753- 1754 as the mausoleum of Safdarjung, the viceroy of Awadh under the.
- Khusro Bagh Prayagraj is made of Chunar stone and was designed in 1606 by Aqa Reza, who was Jahangir’s chief architect.
- The Pari Mahal was built by Mughal Prince Dara Shikoh in the mid of 1600s.
- Taj ul Masjid was built by Nawab Shah Jahan Begum.
UNESCO Heritage Site
Of the total 38 World Heritage Sites in India, 05 are included from the monuments built by the Mughal emperors. The Agra Fort and the Taj Mahal were included in the heritage site list during the first session of inscription. Check the names of Mughal monuments included in the list.
List of Monuments Built in Mughal Rule included in UNESCO Heritage Site in India
|Mughal Monuments||Place||Year on which declared as UNESCO heritage site|
|Agra Fort||Uttar Pradesh||1982|
|Fatehpur Sikri||Uttar Pradesh||1986|
|Taj Mahal||Agra, Uttar Pradesh||1983|
|The Red Fort Complex||Delhi||2007|
The Monuments built in Mughal rule include all the above constructions along with the subparts attached to the main buildings by the then rulers within the 300 years of Mughal rule. Obviously the Mughal architectural peaked during Shah Jahan and diminished after Aurangazeb. We hope, aspirants got take away notes for their exam preparation from this article.