DELHI - FEBRUARY 2008
Humayun, son of Badur and father of Akbar, died in odd circumstances in the beginning of 1556. He was descending the staircase of Sher Mandal in Purana Qila (see last post) his arms full of books, when the muezzin announced the call to prayer. It was his habit, wherever he heard the summons, to bow his knee. Kneeling, he caught his foot in his robe, tumbled down several steps and hit his temple on a rugged stone edge. He died some days later. Commissioned, it is believed, by Humayun's Persian widow, Hamida Banu Begam, and designed by the Persian architect Mirak Mirza Ghiyuath, the tomb is the first to mark the grave of a Mughal emperor; Humayun's father Babur, who founded the dynasty, had requested to be buried in a garden. Humayun's Tomb, whose plan is based on the description of Islamic paradise gardens, is now one of the best preserved Mughal monuments in Delhi and it was included in the UNESCO's World Heritage List in 1993, as it was the first garden-tomb (charbagh) on the Indian subcontinent. This is something to be disputed, as Sikandar Lodi's tomb seems to have been the first garden-tomb to be built in India...
"ALI ISA KHAN NIAZI'S TOMB - The Humayun complex has several tombs within its limits"
Edited: Thanks to Celine, I found that this one is the "GURDWARA DAMDAMA SAHIB" of the Sikh religion!
"TOMBS - Believed to be containing the remains of wives of Humayun or of later Mughal emperors or princes"
"ENTRANCE PORTAL - With the typicall Indian chhatris"
"HUMAYUN'S TOMB - Side view! The tomb sits at the centre of a plinth, about 7m high. The top of its central dome reaches almost 43m from ground. The dome is double-layered: the outer layer supports the white marble exterior, while the inner one defines the interior volume. The rest of the tomb is clad in red sandstone, with white marble ornamentation"
"HUMAYUN'S TOMB - It inspired several major architectural innovations, culminating in the construction of the Taj Mahal"
"INTERIOR CHAMBER - Each of the main chambers has eight smaller chambers radiating from it"
"SARCOPHAGUS - The sarcophagus of Humayun is found in the central domed chamber, the head pointing south, and facing east according to Islamic practice"