The greatness of Indian history: the Taj Mahal (photo)
A bit of history
The largest mausoleum, which is the Taj Mahal, was built in 1652 by one of the rulers of the Mughal Empire, whose possessions stretched from the Arabian Peninsula to the Pacific Ocean. Called himShah Jahanand he was the heir to the greatTamerlanawhich established the boundaries of this powerful state.
This huge tomb was built on his orders in order to perpetuate the memory of his wifeMumtaz Mahalwho died during the fourteenth birth. The site for the construction of the monument became the city of Agra, where the residence of the ruler was located - the famous Red Fort.
In the photo you can see that the building is truly monumental in size - twenty thousand workers and craftsmen who were assembled in all parts of India participated in its construction. In addition, it also required the use of the best natural materials, some of which could not be found in the country - the necessary structural elements were brought from many parts of the then state.
The leaders of the construction site, during which the Taj Mahal was created, were the best specialists who came from Turkey, Persia, China and Tibet. The main manager wasIsmail Khan Efendi- one of the best architects in Turkey, and the creator of a unique artistic image that distinguishes the mausoleum, became a TurkUstad Isa.
Shah-Jahan personally supervised the process of erecting the tomb - according to rumors, he could order the execution of workers or even craftsmen who were aware of various construction processes. He really wanted the Taj Mahal to be the only building of its kind in the world that would forever preserve the memory of his wife.
The mausoleum has survived to the present day in an untouched form - all wars that did not leave a single mark on the walls of the majestic building passed, despite the fact that the architects designed it taking into account the possibility of transferring an artillery attack. It is still located in the city of Agra, which has not changed its name, but became a kind of its center, which significantly improved the welfare of the nearby areas.
The photo shows that the mausoleum that adorns the city is built of white marble. However, in fact, this stone has a slightly yellowish tint and is translucent.
In addition, no photo can convey the magnificence of the color change that the Taj Mahal undergoes when changing the light level. Marble brought from Rajasthan in bright daylight appears white, at dusk and at dawn pink waves wander over it, and in the light of the moon it gleams perfectly polished with precious silver.
The city in which the mausoleum is located, on the map, is located in the very center of India - the place where traditional religions were supplanted by the Islam that came with the Great Moguls.
This fact is also reflected in a centuries-old monument. To the right and left of it there are two mosques, made of local red stone. Both are active and have a full staff of clergymen who daily preach and participate in prayers.Thanks to this, the Taj Mahal and the city in which it is located, have become one of the places of pilgrimage for devout Muslims.
The photo also shows that three long pools depart from the central mausoleum, two of which stretch to the mosques, and one to the central entrance to the architectural complex. In addition, a very large number of trees were planted on the territory of the historical monument, which were supposed to surround the deceased Mumtaz Mahal in the afterlife, ensuring its eternal stay in the Garden of Eden.
The city that surrounds the mausoleum is not too close to it - it is forbidden to approach it by road, it is not allowed to settle closer than a kilometer to the monument - even airplanes are not allowed to fly in the 10-kilometer zone around it.
In the photo you can see that most tourists, especially Muslims, walk to the Taj Mahal tomb, and some use a special electric bus that cannot be seen in any other city in India.In addition, trade is also prohibited - nearby markets, shopping centers, and entertainment facilities are located in residential neighborhoods that are more than a kilometer from the majestic architectural structure.
Currently, the Taj Mahal is undergoing slow destruction. This is due to the fact that the Jamna River, on the bank of which the city of Agra stands, has become shallowed considerably due to the economic use of its waters for reclamation and the creation of hydroelectric power plants. The governments of India, as well as the largest countries of the world, have attracted famous scientists and engineers to solve this problem associated with the gradual subsidence of the soil and the cracking of the fragile translucent stone used for construction.
To solve this problem, the Taj Mahal is cleaned every month from the layer of smog deposited on it and rubbed with white clay, which allows it to remain intact for a longer time.
An interesting detail that is always visible in photos and videos is the special perspective that the tomb has. Thanks to the uneven lines, it seems really huge - from a distance its height can be estimated at 200-300 meters, although in reality it is about 70 meters. It is thanks to the majestic appearance of the Taj Mahal, as if rising high above the city, trees and other structures, the mausoleum became a real symbol of India.
Sometimes locals tell the legend that a symmetrical temple of black marble was to be built on the other side of the river, but it was not completed due to the overthrow of Shah Jahan by his son. In fact, this legend is incorrect, although the mention of the black temple really exists in the annals. However, it is a reflection of the main architectural monument in the greenish waters of the central basin - in the photo you can see that the building in reflection does take on a dark gray shade.