Bara Imambara

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  • Topic: Lucknow, Badshahi Mosque, Bara Imambara
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Bara Imambara
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Coordinates: 26.860556°N 80.915833°E

Bara Imambara , Lucknow India
Bara: बड़ा इमामबाड़ा) is an imambara complex in Lucknow, India, built byAsaf-ud-daulah, Nawab of Lucknow, in 1784. It is also called the Asafi Imambara. Bara means big, and an imambara is a shrine built by Shia Muslims for the purpose of Azadari. The Bara Imambara is among the grandest buildings of Lucknow. -------------------------------------------------

Building Composition
The complex also includes the large Asfi mosque, the bhulbhulayah (the labyrinth), and bowli, a step well with running water. Two imposing gateways lead to the main hall. -------------------------------------------------

Relief Measure
The Bara Imambara was built in 1783, a year of a devastating famine, and one of Asaf-ud-Daula's objectives in embarking on this grandiose project was to provide employment for people in the region. According to reports, the famine continued for over a decade and the construction of the building continued for this time. It is said that ordinary people used to work in the day building up the edifice, while noblemen and other elite were called at night to break down all the structure raised, as they were incapable of doing anything else, according to a chronicle of the period. This see-saw efforts continued till the famine period was over. It was a project that preceded a Keynesian like intervention for employment generation. -------------------------------------------------

[edit]Architecture

The simple grave of Asaf ud-Daula under a canopy inside the Bara Imambara; a watercolor by Seeta Ram, c.1814-15 The architecture of the complex reflects the maturation of ornamented Mughal design, namely the Badshahi Mosque - it is one of the last major projects not incorporating any European elements or the use of iron. The main imambara consists of a large vaulted central chamber...
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