Image Map

When the Turkish rulers arrived in India, they brought with them, magnificent insights in architecture, culinary cuisines and fine arts. Indian architecture was greatly influenced by their styles.

Their buildings have a uniform pattern in structure and architecture. They have built some of the finest mosques, forts, palaces, gardens and cities.

The structures of the Charminar, the Gol Gumbaz and the Jama Masjid are a testimony of their fine architecture.

Picture1Charminar

Charminar is an important historical monument located in Hyderabad, in the state of Telangana, in South India. It is known for its unique and brilliant architecture.

The Charminar was built by Mohammed Quli Qutb Shah, the founder of Hyderabad, in 1591. It is said, that Mohammed Quli Qutb Shah prayed for the end of a plague in the city and vowed to build a mosque, at the place where he was praying. Built more than 400 years ago using granite, lime and mortar, it displays the signature style of the Mughal architecture.

Picture 2The term ‘Charminar’ is derived from two terms, ‘Char’ meaning ‘four’ and ‘Minar’ meaning ‘minarets’ or ‘pillars’, as it has four pillars, one on each corner.

The entrance of the monument is beautifully carved and consists of inscriptions from the Quran. It is an impressive square monument, with four imposing arches, which face the four main directions. Each arch also has a clock, which were installed in 1889. These four, gracefully carved minarets soar to a height of 48.7 metres above the ground.

Inside the minarets, 149 winding steps guide the visitors to the top floor, the highest point one can reach, which provides a panoramic view of the city.

The topmost floor has a mosque,which includes forty-five covered prayer spaces and some open space to accommodate people for Friday prayers.

Picture3Gol Gumbaz

The Gol Gumbaz is a 17thcentury Mughal monument located in Bijapur, Karnataka. It is the mausoleum of Muhammad Adil Shah, one of the rulers of the Adil Shahi dynasty who ruled Bijapur.

Legend has it, that this monument was built upon the orders of Adil Shah before his death, by the famous architect, Yaqut of Dabul.

The architectural style of the building includes the four minarets surrounding it. They are divided into seven floors and are crowned with a hemispherical dome. The central dome stands unsupported by any pillars, carved with elegant petals.

Picture4Gol means ‘round’ and Gumbaz means ‘dome’. The name translates to the ‘Circular Dome’. It is also known as the ‘Whispering Gallery’, because the sound reflections from the dome, allow the slightest of whisper to be heard several times, even when the speakers are standing across the dome from each other.

It is the largest dome in India and the second largest dome in the world, next only to St. Peter’s Basilica, in Rome. Adil Shah is buried here along with his wife, daughter and other close associates. The structure in front of the tomb has been converted into a museum.

Picture5Jama Masjid

 

Jama Masjid in old Delhi is one of the largest, as well as the most significant mosque in India. It is situated at the entrance of Chandni Chowk, a very busy market. It lies opposite the Red Fort and is surrounded by a large number of shops, which deal in a variety of goods.

The mosque dates back to the year 1656 and was built by the Mughal Emperor Shah Jahan, who also commissioned the Taj Mahal.

It was originally called the Masjid-i-Jahanuma (also written Masjid-i-Jahan Numa) meaning ‘mosque commanding a view of the world’. The Jama Masjid in Delhi is also known as the ‘Friday Mosque’ due to the weekly congregational prayers.

Picture6This monument is believed to have been built by five thousand artisans. It has two minarets and three domes. Jama Masjid stands on a rocky, elevated land and there are flights of steps, built of red sandstone, which will lead you to the mosque. The height at which the mosque is built, further adds to its majesty and grandeur. The hallmarks of this famous mosque are the wide staircases and arched gateways. The roof of the mosque stands covered with three onion shaped domes. The highest one is covered with gold. The domes are made up of alternating white and blackmarble, carrying a striped pattern. The north-eastern part of the mosque is considered to be very holy, because it houses a copy of the holy Quran written on deer skin and the relics of Prophet Muhammad.

This form of architecture reached its pinnacle in India, during the times of Shah Jahan. Middle East has many mosques and madrasahs as well.Great Mosque of Damascus, Selimiye Mosque. Edirne, Turkey, Nur-Astana Mosque, Astana, Kazakhstan, etc. are some their authentic and fine structures.