Islamic architecture, introduced in India, was a mixture of Persian, Timurid in Herat, Samarkand, Bukhara and other traditions in Central Asia. Islamic invasion in ninth century brought its own style of art and architecture. There were distinct technological improvements from twelfth century onwards. Brihadeshwara Temple Constructed in tenth century; belonged to Dravidian style. Kandariya Mahadeva Temple was constructed by King Dhangadeva of Chandela dynasty. Use of cement and new architectural style made construction of large structures easier. Kings invoked names of gods and goddesses while constructing temples. Temples represented a model of the world. Classic Indian art and folk influenced the architecture. Kings started the practice of making precious water available for public use during medieval period. Kings built temples to demonstrate their devotion to God. Turkish invaders destroyed Indian temples and Buddhist monasteries. Chola kings, particularly Rajendra- I, decorated temples with seized images from defeated kingdoms. Mughal Gardens known for their grandeur, were laid out in style of four arms making a cross. Jahangir and Nur Jahan popularised the use of char chinar trees.

Tughluqs were the first to build forts on grand scale. Forts had palaces inside the complete townships. Important elements of Mughal architecture in tombs were: central towering dome and tall gateway. Shah Jahan built Taj Mahal (Agra); Mussaman Burj (Agra fort); Shahjahanabad, Red Fort, Jama Masjid (Delhi); Jahangir’s Tomb (Lahore). Marble was the favoured building material. Shah Jahan and the nobility constructed homes on the banks of river Yamuna at Agra. Construction activity increased with exchange of ideas across regions in the eighth century. Mughal style, architects and skills stand unshaken today, even after the empire’s decline.

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