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The Taj Mahal - Agra - India
Journal Date: 21 January 2007
Journal Location: Agra - India
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Today we visited Agra , home of the Taj Mahal and what an amazing sight it is .... pictures do not do it justice but i hope you like these.

On June 17, 1631 Mumtaz Mahal died, after delivering her fourteenth child "Gauharar". Shahjahan stood dazed, unable to comprehend the situation. She had died leaving all her children, mother, and relations to his care. But he had promised her never to remarry and to build the grandest mausoleum over her grave. Her body received a temporary burial in the Zainabadi Garden in Burhanpur and in six months time removed to Agra. Shahjahan had already acquired from Raja Jai Singh a plot of land on the riverside. Here was to be built the Taj Mahal. Work on the tomb started in a frenzy with thousands of artisans and laborers toiling ceaselessly. The first anniversary urs was held in June 1632 amid royal pomp and show, attended by Shahjahan and Jahanara. The Mughal Emperor was a picture of grief.


and this is the first view you get as you walk under the gateway





to stand looking at this sight is an amazing feeling ... it is something everyone should experience ..





this is one of the buildings that sit next to the Taj Mahal, there is one either side














the tomb of Itmad-ud daulah


the intricate carvings which are found at the Taj Mahal and the tomb ... show the intense labour and skill of the local workmen





Itmad-ud daulah, one of the most beautiful of Mughal tombs, stands across the river Yamuna from the Taj Mahal, nearly one and a half kilometers up-stream. Belonging to the age of Jahangir, it contains cenotaphs of Mirza Ghiyas and Asmat Begum, parents of the powerful Mughal Empress Nurjahan queen of Jahangir, an exceptional beauty and an astute administrator. Mirza Ghiyas had left Persian in sheer penury in search of better prospects at the Mughal court. He benefited much from the influence of his daughter who he had once abandoned in the desert. Akbar offered him a good rank and privileges. Jahangir made him his prime minister with the title Itmad-ud-daulah (Pillar of the State). Nurjahan's brother Asaf Khan later became prime minister of Shahjahan. This Persian family formed at the Mughal court giving the grand Mughals two most celebrated queens-Nurjahan and Mumtaz Mahal (Lady of the Taj), daughter of Asaf Khan.






Agra Fort - Akbar, king at 14, began consolidating his empire and, as an assertion of his power built the fort in Agra between 1565 and 1571, coeval with the construction of Humayun's tomb in Delhi. The Agra fort retains the irregular outline of the demolished mud-wall fort of the Lodis. The lofty battlements o the new fort cast its protective shadow over the far stretching mansions of court that nobles and princes built along the riverfront. The magnificent towers, bastions and ramparts and majestic gateways symbolized the confidence and power of the third Mughal emperor, Akbar.









you can see the Taj Mahal from Agra Fort










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