Segments in this Video

Itimad Ud Daula Mausoleum (02:21)


The mausoleum was built between 1622 and 1627; Nur Jahan sponsored its construction. Agra was the capital of the Mogul Empire in 1526.

Itimad Ud Daula Design (03:03)

The mausoleum has four minarets, an upper pavilion, and a surrounding garden with four matching sandstone pavilions; two pavilions are false portals.

Inside the Itimad Ud Daula (03:25)

Elevated walkways run along the outer wall and lead to the funeral monument; a waterfall once fed water into channels. A meter high base underscores the importance of the main building and the garden mimics the image of Eden.

Breaking with Tradition (04:31)

The mausoleum is constructed out of white marble with semiprecious stones inlaid in the exterior panels; the design embodies geometric laws. Borders and corbels highlight cartouches depicting surahs from the Qur'an; Abd al-Nabi al-Qarshi carved the sacred letters.

Tomb Design (02:52)

The square mausoleum has four identical facades and is completely symmetrical. The thick walls comprise over one third of the mausoleum's surface area; bricks are the main construction material. Minarets stabilize lateral forces.

Funeral Chamber (03:15)

The chamber contains two cenotaphs made of jasper; other square rooms contain cenotaphs of Nur Jahan's other family members. All bodies lie on their right side with their heads to the North. The rooftop pavilion mimics the funeral chamber.

Mausoleum Interior (03:33)

The paintings on the walls in every room describe paradise. Mogul architects link architecture and decoration in jalis to introduce light.

Image of Eden (02:24)

Nur Jahan and her family presumably meditated and prayed in the first floor pavilion. All the walls are jali screens with surahs above them. The mausoleum's design reveals the tolerance of emperor Jahangir.

Credits: Itimad Ud Daula, The Little “TAJ”: Architectures—Achievements in Modern Architecture (00:29)

Credits: Itimad Ud Daula, The Little “TAJ”: Architectures—Achievements in Modern Architecture

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Itimad Ud Daula, The Little “TAJ”: Architectures—Achievements in Modern Architecture

Part of the Series : Architectures—Achievements in Modern Architecture
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Finished in 1627, the mausoleum of Itimad-Ud-Daula is considered to be the precursor of the Taj Mahal - on which construction started just a few years later, in 1631. This remarkable monument reigns over the city of Agra, in the Indian State of Uttar Pradesh.

Length: 27 minutes

Item#: BVL94737

ISBN: 978-1-68272-101-8

Copyright date: ©2014

Closed Captioned

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