Discuss the salient features of the Mughal Architecture. How it was different from the earlier architecture of Delhi Sultanate?

Sultanate era marked the evolution and development of a new-type of Hindu-Muslim architecture in which decorative exuberance of the Hindu architecture was toned down and its place was taken by new elements such as use of geometrical shapes, calligraphy, inscriptional art etc. However, the elements of Hindu architecture still formed the basis.
The beginning of use of the false archs and false domes to true arch and domes and reached its mature phase as Indo-Islamic art in the Mughal Era began in the Sultanate age.
The most important features of the Mughal monuments in India are the bulbous domes with constricted necks, the slender minarets with cupolas at the four corners, large halls, massive vaulted gateways and delicate ornamentation. Red Sandstone was amply used in Mughal monuments.
The largest difference from other regions of Islamic art from the Mughal Art is that the Mughals produced many masterpieces in mausoleums than in mosques.
The Mughal art was essentially Persian in character in the beginning. The concept of Charbagh style brought the Persian Charbagh style to India.
Charbagh is a Persian-style garden layout, in which the main building is put at the centre of a quadrilateral garden, divided by walkways or flowing water into four smaller parts. Humayun’s tomb and Taj Mahal in India are the most famous examples of this style.

Question for UPSC Mains:
Discuss the salient features of the Mughal Architecture. How it was different from the earlier architecture of Delhi Sultanate?

Published: May 1, 2016 | Modified:June 27, 2019

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