Come, walk along the pathway beside the reflecting pool with fountains up to the mausoleum crafted in soft & pure marble and jewelled with semi precious stones, where in the serenity of paradise rests the Queen in peace with her King. Come to unfold the pages from the past to churn the charm out of its mystique and enrich your imagination about this marvel of an epic in stone. The grace of perfection of proportions and grandeur of geometrical patterns of well appointed gardens enhancing the poise of the whole complex together add magnificence to the delicacy of this monument of love, dedication and purity.
The Taj Mahal, a spectacle in white marble, unparalleled in grandeur that depicts the sheer opulence of an era. The awesome structure, the monument of love that Mughal Emperor Shah Jahan gave to the world, stands as a testimony of his intense love for his wife Mumtaz Mahal. It is a romance celebrated in marble and glorified with precious and semi-precious stones and that’s the way to appreciate it!
Uttar Pradesh, the Land of The Taj is rich in its cultural heritage and has always been a prominent arena of politics since the ancient times. Agra, the City of The Taj and once the capital of the Mughal Empire during the 16th through the early 18th centuries, enjoys a close proximity to the National Capital City of New Delhi.
Tourists from all over the world visit Agra to make a pilgrimage to Taj Mahal, India’s most famous architectural wonder, in a land where magnificent temples and edifices abound to remind visitors about the rich civilization of a country that is slowly but surely lifting itself into an industrialized society as well. Taj Mahal stands on the bank of River Yamuna, which otherwise serves as a wide moat defending the Great Red Fort of Agra, the center of the Mughal emperors until they moved their capital to Delhi in 1637. It was built by the fifth Mughal emperor, Shah Jahan in 1631 in memory of his third but the most favourite wife, in fact a soul-mate Mumtaz Mahal, a Muslim Persian princess. She died while accompanying her husband in Burhanpur in a campaign to crush a rebellion after giving birth to their 13th child. The death so crushed the emperor that all his hair and beard were said to have grown snow white in a few months.
When Mumtaz Mahal was still alive, she extracted four promises from the emperor: first, that he build the Taj; second, that he should marry again; third, that he be kind to their children; and fourth, that he visit the tomb on her death anniversary. However, due to ill health and being under house arrest by his own son and successor to the throne, Aurangzeb, barred him from continue to keep the last promise.
The Taj rises on a high red sandstone base topped by a huge white marble terrace on which rests the famous dome flanked by four tapering minarets. Within the dome lies the jewel-inlaid cenotaph of the queen. So exquisite is the workmanship that the Taj has been described as “having been designed by giants and finished by jewelers”. The only asymmetrical object in the Taj is the casket of the emperor which was built beside the queen’s as an afterthought.
Legend has it that during his eight years long ailment and imprisonment, Shah Jahan used to view The Taj lying on the bed through a diamond fixed in the wall in front at a particular angle. It’s a story of intense love and what a man does to honor this love.
National Geographic Documentary – Secrets Of The Taj Mahal
Information from: http://www.tajmahal.gov.in/