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Architectural Landmarks of the Sultanate Period: A Detailed Account

The architecture of the Sultanate Period manifested the aesthetic heritage of new sultans which include both religious and secular structures i.e. Indo-Islamic architecture. For Example- The dome is the prominent feature of the mosque in contrast to the Sikhar of Hindu temples. Here, we are giving an account of the architectural landmarks of the Sultanate period in which we have covered the name of builder, location and the characteristics of architecture.
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p style="text-align: justify;">The architecture of the Sultanate Period manifested the aesthetic heritage of new sultans which include both religious and secular structures i.e. Indo-Islamic architecture. For Example- The dome is the prominent feature of the mosque in contrast to the Sikhar of Hindu temples. Here, we are giving an account of the architectural landmarks of the Sultanate period in which we have covered the name of builder, location and the characteristics of architecture.

Architectural Landmarks of the Sultanate Period

1. Quwwat-ul-Islam Mosque

 Quwatul Islam

Source: Wikimedia

Location: Delhi

Builder: Qutub-ud-din Aibek

Characteristics: Despite being in ruins, it is still “one of the most magnificent works in the world’’. It is situated in Qutub Complex and consists of grand line of arches that closes its western side, extending from north to south for about 117 meters.

2. Adhai din ka Jhopra

 Adhai Din Ka Jhopra

Source: www.myowncity.in

Location: Ajmer

Builder: Qutub-ud-din Aibek

Characteristics: It is an early example of the Indo-Islamic architecture which was commissioned by Qutub-ub-din Aibek, on orders of Muhammad Ghori. It was designed by Abu Bakr of Herat. This mosque has a seven-arched walls covered with Islamic calligraphy in front of the pillared hall. Some of the historian state that construction took only 2 1/2 days but other say it was after a festival lasting 2 1/2 days; hence it is called Adhai-din-ka-Jhopra.

3. Qutub Minar

 Qutub Minar

Source: blogspot.com

Location: Delhi

Builder: Qutub-ud-din Aibek

Characteristics: It is the highest tower in India, complete with five storeys and projecting balconies. The first three storeys of the Qutub Minar are made of red sandstone and the last two are made of marble and sandstone. The minars of the Qutub contain numerous inscriptions in Arabic and Nagari characters. The architecture is based on Afghan architecture.

4. Tomb of Hazarat Nizamuddin Auliya

 Nizamuddin Aulia

Source: www.rajdhanidelhi.com

Location: Delhi

Builder: Alauddin Khilji

Characteristics: The tomb is square shaped chamber covered with dome shaped roof adorned in vertical stripes of black marble and crowned with an ornamental lotus cap. The tomb of poet Hazrat Amir Khusro and Mughal princess Jehan Ara Begum are also located within the tomb complex.

5. Alai Darwaza

 Alai Darwaza

Source: upload.wikimedia.org

Location: Delhi

Builder: Alauddin Khilji

Characteristics: It has a domed entrance which is constructed with the help of red sandstone and white marble. It is best example of Indo-Islamic architecture. The entire structure is constructed on highly scientific principles. It is beautifully carved with floral and geometric patterns in both white marble and red sandstone, creating a superb polychrome effect. Perforated latticework window screens (jali) are set in the recessed windows on both sides of the entrances. These marble screens set off the monotony of the vertical lines of calligraphic ornamentation. The most charming aspect of surface decoration is the lace-like interweaving of floral tendrils, repeated with a flawless symmetry on all the three entrances, elegantly designed and perfectly built.

6. Jammat Khana Masjid

 Jammat Masjid

Source: archnet.org

Location: Delhi

Builder: Built by Khizr Khan, son of Sultan Alauddin Khilji (Khilji Dynasty)

Characteristics: It is one of the earliest mosques in Delhi which consists of marble finials domes. The central bay and the entrance archway are embellished with bands of exquisite geometric motifs and Quranic inscriptions.

7. Tomb of Ghiyasuddin Tughlaq

 Ghiyasuddin Tomb

Location: Delhi

Builder: Muhammad Bin Tughlaq

Characteristics: It is a fortress-like complex, constructed on an artificial lake and has an oblique pentagonal plan with a battlement perimeter wall supporting conical bastions at each angle.

8. Tughlaqabad Fort

 Tughlaq Fort

Source: Wikimedia

Location: Delhi

Builder: Ghiyasuddin Tughlaq

Characteristics: It is a gigantic stone structure, with walls that are 10-15 metres high. Crowning the walls are battlement parapets and bastions. The fort-city of Tughlaqabad was supposed to have as many as 52 gates, out of which only 13 remain now.

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9. Moth ki Masjid

 Moth Ki Masjid

Source: c1.staticflickr.com

Location: Delhi

Builder: Wazir Miya Bhoiya (Prime Minister at the Royal Courts of Sultan Sikandar Lodi)

Characteristics: It is one of the most beautiful mosques that represent a stunning “Gumbad" or 'Domed' roof structure made up of raised stone platform which are embedded with columns.

List of Architectural Landmarks of the Sultanate Period

Structure

Location

Builder

Quwat-ul-Islam

Delhi

Qutub-ud-din Aibek

Adhai Din Ka Jhopra

Ajmer

Qutub-ud-din Aibek

Qutub Minar

Delhi

Iltutmish (Founded by Qutub-ud-din Aibek)

Tomb of Hazarat Nizamuddin Auliya

Delhi

Alauddin Khilji

Alai Darwaza

Delhi

Alauddin Khilji

Jammat Khana Masjid

Delhi

Alauddin Khilji

Tomb of Ghiyasuddin Tughlaq

Delhi

Muhammad Bin Tughlaq

Tughlaq Fort

Delhi

Ghiyasuddin Tughlaq

Moth ki Masjid

Delhi

Wazir Miya Bhoiya (Prime Minister at the Royal Courts of Sultan Sikandar Lodi)

In the above detailed account of the ‘Architectural Landmarks of the Sultanate Period’ gives clear vision about the characteristics of architectural structure which is very important for UPSC-prelims as well as mains exams and also useful for other competitive exams.

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