Topics: Taj Mahal, Shah Jahan, Agra Pages: 3 (740 words) Published: May 7, 2013
The Taj Mahal is a white marble mausoleum located in Agra, Uttar Pradesh, India. It was built by Mughal emperor Shah Jahan in memory of his third wife, Mumtaz Mahal. The Taj Mahal is widely recognized as "the jewel of Muslim art in India and one of the universally admired masterpieces of the world's heritage". Background:

It was in the memory of his beloved wife that Shah Jahan built a magnificent monument as a tribute to her, which we today know as the "Taj Mahal". Taj Mahal is constructed on the bank of Yamuna River which Shah Jahan has taken plot of land from Raja Jai singh. Shah Jahan provided the vision behind the entire concept, he was assisted in his endeavor by a number of architects to complete his dreams. Salient features:

1. Taj Mahal is the finest example of Mughal architecture, a style that combines elements from Persian, Turkish and Indian architectural styles 2. The Taj is marked by perfect symmetry and harmony, be it the shape of the four towering minarets; the cupolas (chhatris); the central arch in the façade; the perfectly arranged arched recesses on both the story. ; the intricate pietra dura (stone inlay work); the delicate lattice work on marble windows or the magnificent dome. Even the mosque and the guesthouse (mehmankhana) are a mirror image of one another. 3. Masons, stonecutters, inlayers, carvers, painters, calligraphers, dome-builders and other artisans were requisitioned from the whole of the empire and also from Central Asia and Iran. 4. The construction of Taj Mahal started in the year 1631 and was completed around 1653, employing thousands of artisans and craftsmen. It took approximately 22 years to build. 5. The Taj Mahal was constructed using materials from all over India and Asia and over 1,000 elephants were used to transport building materials.   6. Each tower of Tajmahal is 133 feet tall and building is 186 feet high and 70 wide....

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