Mughal Style Architecture [UPSC Medieval History Notes]

Mughals brought in Persian style into Indian Architecture. The character and structure of Mughal buildings displayed a uniform character and structure. Some of the main features of Mughal architecture are mentioned below.

  1. Large halls
  2. Very large vaulted gateways
  3. Delicate ornamentation
  4. Bulbous domes
  5. Slender Minarets with cupolas at the 4 corners

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What was the New Indian Architecture of the Mughal period called?

The Mughals constructed excellent Forts, Mosques, Mausoleums, Gardens and Cities. Mughal architecture begins with Akbar who displayed great passion for buildings with meticulous planning and constructing splendid edifices. He made the best use of the Hindu and Persian style of architecture. The salient features of Akbar’s buildings are the use of red sandstone inlaid with white marble and painted designs on walls and ceiling.

The new Indian Architecture of the Mughal period is called Mughal Architecture. The Mughal architecture was an amalgamation of Persian, Turkic, Timurid Iranian, Central Asian, and Indian Hindu style of architecture. Mughal architecture first developed and flourished during the reign of Akbar. In this period there was extensive use of red sandstone as a building material. Mughal architecture reached its peak during the rule of Shah Jahan. The decline of Mughal architecture began during the rule of Aurangazeb and post his death. The Mughals were known for building beautiful quadrilateral gardens.

What Great Buildings did the Mughals Create?

Some of the most famous buildings created during the Mughal era are given below.

  1. Taj Mahal – It was built by Shah Jahan between 1632 and 1653, in memory of his wife Mumtaz Mahal. The United Nations Educational Scientific and Cultural Organisation (UNESCO) recognized the Taj Mahal as a World Heritage Site in 1983. It is located in Agra.
  2. Red Fort – UNESCO designated it as the World Heritage Site in 2007. It was built by Shah Jahan when he decided to move the capital from Agra to Delhi. It was the residence of Mughal rulers.
  3. Shalimar Gardens – It is a 40-acre garden built by Shah Jahan in 1642. It was declared a World Heritage Site by UNESCO in 1981.
  4. Jama Masjid – Built by Shah Jahan. The construction was completed in 1656. 
  5. Badshahi Mosque – At the time of completion in 1673, it was the largest mosque in the world. It was built during the reign of Aurangazeb.
  6. Humayun’s Tomb – It was built in 1570 in memory of Emperor Humayun, it was declared as the world heritage site in 1993.

Who Built Buland Darwaza?

Buland Darwaza was built by Mughal Emperor Akbar, to commemorate his victory over Gujarat. It can be translated as Door to Victory. It was built in 1601 A.D and acts as an entrance to the Jama Masjid at Fatehpur Sikri. 

Candidates can find the general pattern of the UPSC Civil Service Exam by visiting the IAS Syllabus page.

Related Links

NCERT Notes: Mauryan Art And Architecture [Art & Culture Notes For UPSC] Indo-Islamic Architecture: Taj Mahal, Gol Gumbaz
Temple Architecture – Nagara, Dravida, Vesara NCERT Notes: Post-Mauryan Trends in Indian Art and Architecture – Part I
NCERT Notes: Mauryan Empire: Art & Architecture Buddhist And Jain Architecture In India – Facts and Important Details
Difference between Nagara and Dravidian Style of Temple Architecture Difference between Indian and Islamic Style Architecture


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