Day Trip to Agra from Delhi

Monday, August 30, 2010

Decoration Of Taj Mahal -Alamgir Khan Agra


                       The exterior decorations of the Taj Mahal are among the finest in Mughal architecture.
As the surface area changes the decorations are refined proportionally.
The decorative elements were created by applying paint, stucco, stone inlays, or carvings.
In line with the Islamic prohibition against the use of anthropomorphic forms, the decorative elements can be grouped into either calligraphy, abstract forms or vegetative motifs.


All beautyful inlay work in Taj mahal is noteble'
Craftsmen use simple peice of stone ( Zems) and created into followers,stems,leaves and buds. set io marble and fix it.


Calligraphy

The calligraphy was created by a calligrapher named Abd ul-Haq, in 1609. Shah Jahan conferred the title of "Amanat Khan" upon him as a reward for his "dazzling virtuosity". Near the lines from the Qur'an at the base of the interior dome is the inscription, "Written by the in

signific
ant being, Amanat Khan Shirazi.Much of the calligraphy is composed of florid thuluth script, made of jasper or black onex,inlaid in white marble panels. Higher panels are written in slightly larg
er script to reduce the sk
ewing effect when viewed from below. The calligraphy fo
und on the marble cenotaphs in the tomb is particularly detailed and delicate.


Abstract forms are used throughout, especially in the plinth, minarets, gateway, mosque, jawab and, to a le
ss
er extent, on the surfaces of the tomb. The domes and vaults of the sandstone buildings are worked with tracery of incised painting to create elaborate geometric forms. Herringbo
ne inlays define the space between many of the adjoining elements. White inlays are used in sandst

one buildings, and dark or black inlays on the white marbles. Mortared areas of the mar
ble buildin
gs hav
e been stained or pai
nted in a contrasting colour, creating geometric patterns of considerable complexity. Floors
and walkways use contrasting tiles or blocks in tessellation patterns.




On the lower walls of the tomb there are white marble dados that have been sculpted with realisti
c bas relief depictions of flowers a
nd vines. The marble has been polished to emphasise the exquisite detailing of the carvings and the dado frame

s and archway spandrels have been decorated with pietra dura inlays of highly stylised, almost geometric vines, flowers and fruits. The inlay stones are of yellow marble, jasper and jade, polished and leveled to the surface of the walls.




Interior Decoration

The interior chamber of the Taj Mahal steps far beyond traditional decorative elements. Here, the inlay work i

s not pietra dura, but a lapidary of precious and semiprecious gemstones. The inner chamber is an octagon with the design allowing for entry from each face, although only the door facing the garden to the south is used.


The interior walls are about 25 metres (82 ft) high and are topped by a "false" interior dome decorated with a sun m
otif. Eight pishtaq arches define the space at ground level and, as with the exterior, each lower pishtaq is crowned by a second pishtaq about midway up the wall. The four central upper arches form balconies or viewing areas
, and each balcony's exterior window has an intricate screen or jali cut from marble. In addition to the light from the balcony screens,

light enters through roof openings covered by chattris at the corners. Each chamber wall has been highly decorated with dado bas-relief, intricate lapidary inlay and refined calligraphy panels, reflecting in miniature detail the design elements seen throughout the exterior of the complex.



The octagonal marble screen or jali which borders the cenotaphs is made from eight marble panels which have been carved through with intricate pierce work. The remaining surfaces have been inlaid in extremely delicate detail with semi-precious stones forming twining vines, fruits and flowers.
Muslim tradition forbids elaborate decoration of graves. Hence, the bodies of Mumtaz and Shah Jahan were put in a relatively plain crypt beneath the inner chamber with their faces turned right and towards Mecca. Mumtaz Mahal's cenotaph
is placed at the precise center of the inner chamber on a rectangular marble base of 1.5 metres (4 ft 11 in) by 2.5 metres (8 ft 2 in).
Both the base and casket are elaborately inlaid with precious and semiprecious gems. Calligraphic inscriptions on the casket identify and praise Mumtaz. On the lid of the casket is a raised rectangular lozenge meant to suggest a writing tablet. Shah Jahan's cenotaph is beside Mumtaz's to the western side, and is the only visible asymmetric element in the entire complex. His cenotaph is bigger than his wife's, but reflec
ts the same elements: a larger casket on a slightly taller base, again decorated with astonishing precision with lapidary and c
alligraphy that identifies him. On the lid of this casket is a traditional sculpture of a small pen box.


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