Fatehpur Sikri , India

Fatehpur Sikri is a town in the Agra District of Uttar Pradesh, India. The city itself was founded as the capital of Mughal Empire in 1571 by Emperor Akbar, serving this role from 1571 to 1585, when Akbar abandoned it due to a campaign in Punjab and was later completely abandoned in 1610.
Wikipedia

Built during the second half of the 16th century by the Emperor Akbar, Fatehpur Sikri (the City of Victory) was the capital of the Mughal Empire for only some 10 years. The complex of monuments and temples, all in a uniform architectural style, includes one of the largest mosques in India, the Jama Masjid.
UNESCO World Heritage Listing

Fatehpur Sikri is the famous deserted city, about twenty-three miles from Agra, built by Akbar. It was formerly merely a village, called Sikri, celebrated as the abode of Sheikh Salîm Chishti, a Muhammadan pîr, or saint. In 1564, Akbar, returning from a campaign, halted near the cave in which the saint lived. The twin children of his Rajput wife, Mariam Zâmâni, had recently died, and he was anxious for an heir. He consulted the holy man, who advised him to come and live at Sikri. The Emperor did so, and nine months afterwards Mariam, who was taken to Chishti’s cell for her confinement, gave birth to a son, afterwards the Emperor Jahangir. He was called Sultan Salîm in honour of the saint. Jahangir, who describes all these circumstances in his memoirs, adds: “My revered father, regarding the village of Sikri, my birthplace, as fortunate to himself, made it his capital, and in the course of fourteen or fifteen years the hills and deserts, which abounded in beasts of prey, became converted into a magnificent city, comprising numerous gardens, elegant edifices and pavilions, and other places of great attraction and beauty. After the conquest of Gujarat, the village was named Fatehpur (the town of victory).”

The glory of Fatehpur Sikri was short-lived. Akbar held his court there for seventeen years, and then removed it to Agra; some say on account of the badness of the water supply, others that the saint, disturbed in his devotions by the bustle and gaieties of the great city, declared that either he or Akbar must go.
A Handbook to Agra and the Taj Sikandra, Fatehpur-Sikri and the Neighbourhood (1904)


The Jodh Bai Palace, Fort Agra
c.1910
Published: K. Lall & Co., Agra

Not Fort Agra, but near Agra.

Google Street View
Plan of Fatehpur Sikri, 1917 (Jodh Bai Palace is #7)
Plan of Jodh Bai’s Palace

This imposing palace comprising the principal haramsara of Akbar has been wrongly ascribed to Jodh Bai who has nothing to do with Sikri. It is the most impressive of all the royal edifices. It consists of a large open quadrangle on the sides of which are suites of single-stories rooms with double stories blocks in the center and corners to break the sky-line. The Central block on the east forms a vestibule to the main entrance of the building and on the west is a small shrine supported on richly carved pillars. The shrine has niches for keeping images of Hindu deities and a platform for the principal deity. The Azure-blue glazed tiles of the rood of this palace are also noteworthy. It was most probably build between A.D 1570 and 1574.
Fatehpur Sikri: Fortified Ghost City of Mughal Empire

Though “Miriam’s House” is generally regarded as the abode of Mariam Zâmâni, there is a great deal to support the view that the spacious palace known as Jodh Bai’s Mahal, or Jahangiri Mahal, was really her residence. It is undoubtedly one of the oldest buildings in Fatehpur.

We know that Akbar went there on Mariam’s account; and, after Jahangir’s birth, Akbar’s first care would be to build a palace for the mother and her child, his long-wished-for heir. Mariam was a Hindu, and this palace in all its construction and nearly all its ornamentation belongs to the Hindu and Jaina styles of Mariam’s native country, Rajputana. It even contains a Hindu temple.2 It is also the most important of all the palaces, and Mariam, as mother of the heir-apparent, would take precedence of all the other wives.

On the left of the entrance is a small guard-house. A simple but finely proportioned gateway leads through a vestibule into the inner quadrangle. The style of the whole palace is much less ornate than the other zanana buildings, but it is always dignified and in excellent taste. It must be remembered that the severity of the architectural design was relieved by bright colouring and rich purdahs, which were used to secure privacy for the ladies of the zanana and to diminish the glare of the sunlight.
A Handbook to Agra and the Taj Sikandra, Fatehpur-Sikri and the Neighbourhood (1904)


Fathapur Sikri, Interior of the Mosque
Publisher: D. Macropolo

360 Cities: Jama Masjid, Looking out Towards Salim Chisti Tomb (panorama)
Plan of Fatehpur Sikri, 1917

The Jami’ Masjid of Fatehpur Sikri is the sacred complex of the fortified imperial city built by Akbar between 1571-85. A congregational mosque organized around a large courtyard, it was the largest mosque in India at the time of its construction. Its completion, according to an inscription, can be dated to 1571. The mosque complex, as well as the palace complex, contains similarities to earlier structures in Gujarat and Jaunpur. This may be attributed to Akbar’s conquests in Gujarat and Jaunpur, which were contemporary with his Fatehpur Sikri building projects.
ArchNet

The Jama Masjid (Friday Mosque) is a 17th-century mosque in the World Heritage Site of Fatehpur Sikri in India. The Mughal emperor Akbar personally directed the building of the Jāmiʿ Masjid (Great Mosque; 1571), which stretches some 540 feet (165 metres) in length. . . . The rectangular mosque comprises a central nave with a single dome, two colonnaded halls on either side, with two square chambers crowned with domes. Carved mihrabs adorn the main chamber and the two smaller rooms.

The mosque marks the phase of transition in Islamic art, as indigenous architectural elements were blended with Persian elements. The pillared dalan of the facade, the liwan with three arched openings framed by panels and crowned by five chhatris and the central mihrab adorned with an inlaid mosaic of stones that are bordered by glazed tiles, and golden inscriptions on a royal blue background is a tribute to this fusion. The interiors of the liwan are adorned with watercolour paintings depicting stylized floral designs. The dado panels, spandrels of arch and soffits are painted profusely. Unlike other monuments, where domes are supported on squinches, here corbelled pendentives support the dome. The Buland Darwaza and the Tomb of Salim Chishti are also a part of the mosque complex.
Wikipedia.

Sikri was the first planned city of the Mughals. In accordance with the sloping ridge, terraces on receding levels were made for the three main complexes; The mosque complex at the highest level, comprised of the Jama Masjid, Buland Darwazah and tomb of Sheikh Salim Chisti; the royal complex, on the lower level comprised of the rainwas (Harem), Mahal-I-Ilahi, Shahi-Bazar, Mina-Bazar, Baithak and a garden and the public complex, at the lowest level comprised of the Panch Mahal,Khwabgah, Shahi Kurub-Khanan, Anup Talao, the hall of the unitary pillar, chaupar and diwan-I-Am.
Fatehpur Sikri: Fortified Ghost City of Mughal Empire


FUTTEPORE SIKRI * Marble Tomb of Seik Selim Chisti.
Published: Bourne & Shepherd, Calcutta, Simla and Bombay

360 Cities: Salim Chisti Tomb, Marble Entrance Hall (interior panorama)

World Monuments: House of Shaikh Salim Chishti

Legend has it, that when Emperor Akbar could not have a child from his wife Jodhabai, he walked barefoot from the Agra Fort to a small village ‘Sikri’ about 45 kilometers away from the city to pray for a son to a Sufi saint Sheikh Salim Chishti, who was reputed to have great powers. Less than a year later, Jodhabai gave birth to a son and Akbar’s heir, whom Akbar fondly named ‘Salim’ after the saint and a few years later, even shifted his capital from Agra to Sikri, where he built a whole new city which was called ‘Fatehpur’. Sheikh Chishti passed on in the year 1572, when the new city was still under construction and Akbar commissioned a grand marble tomb of the saint to be built in the center of the main courtyard of the city, visible as soon as one entered the ‘Buland Darwaza’, which is the highest gateway in the world.
India Today: Fatehpur Sikri celebrates the 448th Urs of Sufi saint Sheikh Salim Chishti

Today, the tomb is a white marble structure raised on a plinth. Its ornamentation and construction are largely inspired by Gujarati tomb architecture, and include Hindu, Jain and Islamic elements. The original building commissioned by Akbar is believed to have been a smaller, red sandstone structure, consisting of today’s inner tomb chamber. Jahangir later introduced the verandah, the southern porch and the extensive marble cladding.
ArchNet

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