Mughal Architecture in Pakistan

Mughal architecture in Pakistan

When Muslims captured the parts of Punjab, Kashmir and Frontier, they did not only introduced a new religion that is Islam but also brought a new form of architecture and visual arts in this land of pure.

Mosques, gardens, forts, palaces and mausoleums were built. These pieces of architecture were so distinct that they themselves divided the history of Pak Indo into two distinct parts: pre Islamic and Islamic periods.

When the British came as East India Company and rules for over a century, they also introduced English architecture in Indo Pak subcontinent. Later on, it seemed like the architecture of this regions has now a fusion of Mughal and English architecture.

When Pakistan came into being, British have left a running administration and infrastructure for both the governments of Pakistan as well as India. In Pakistan, almost all the major buildings are being built in collaboration with foreign firms. The results can be seen as hybrid architecture as the designers from outside Pakistan tried to give a modern look to the city.

Following is a brief account of the major Islamic architecture built by Mughal in Pakistan.

The Naulakha Pavilion

The Naulakha Pavilion is named for the mytical nine lakh rupees it took to built this. It is a small white marble building that has large arched entrance and a corvexs roof. It is located beside sheesh mahal courtyard. The structure is laid with many precious and semi precious stones. Due to its location, it provides an awesome view of the ancient city, Lahore.

Badshahi Mosque Lahore

The Badshahi mosque is the Mughal era mosque in Lahore. It was built by the sixth Mughal Emperor Aurangzeb in 1671. It is the second largest mosque in Pakistan. It is located to the west of Lahore Fort. The Badshahi mosque is a major tourist attraction in Pakistan.  The exterior of the mosque is made of carved red stones and the inlay is done with white marble.

Lahore Fort

The Lahore fort, also known as the Shahi Qila is located in north western corner of Lahore city. It has a huge structure and consists of many buildings and gates which include, Alamgiri gate, Diwan e Aam, Diwan e khas, Khuwab ghah, Makateeb khana, moti masjid, lal burj, kala burj , sheesh mehel and many others.

Shalamar Bhag

It is a Mughal garden complex  built in 1637 CE during the era of Shah  Jahan. It was completed in 1641. Shalamar gardens are one of the World Heritage Site inscribed by UNESCO due to its design and architecture.  Its architecture in inspired from the old shalamar gardens in Kashmir built by the Emperor Jahangir, Shah Jahan’s father. The shalamar gardens are laid out in the shape of parallelogram surrounded by high brick wall which has beautiful carvings on it.

Wazir khan mosque

The Wazir khan mosque is a Mughal era mosque. It was commissioned during the era of Mughal Emperor Shah Jahan. It is one of the most beautiful mosques built during the times. This mosque is famous for its intricate tile work known as kasha kari. The mosque is built of an elevated plateform which opens up to the wazir khan chowk in Lahore.

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