Monday, 20 February 2012

A Monument To Romantic Love



Taj Mahal, Agra (Uttar Pradesh), India

The Mughal emperor Shah Jahan built the Taj to enshrine the body of his favourite wife, Mumtaz Mahal, who died shortly after giving birth to her fourteenth child in 1631. He was devastated by her death and set out to create an unsurpassed, eternal monument to her memory.
The story is given an exquisite poignancy by the fate of Shah Jahan himself, who became a tragic and inconsolable figure.


Soon after the Taj Mahal's completion, Shah Jahan was deposed by his son Aurangzeb and put under house arrest at nearby Agra Fort, where I took the photo above from with the help of a little zoom. Upon Shah Jahan's death, Aurangzeb buried him in the mausoleum next to his wife.
*
My contribution to Julie's Taphophile Tragics

35 comments:

Neil J Murphy said...

I love the first shot, an original take on a cliche subject. Well done!

Pat said...

Lovely. I don't think I've ever seen the view in the last shot.

Lowell said...

These are postcards! Thanks for the commentary as I don't think I've ever heard the story behind this place!

magda said...

A wonderful monument and a memorable love story!
Your photos are wonderful!
Have a nice week!

Sylvia K said...

Awesome captures and sad history! I was surprised to find that the Taj was also the subject of a poem written by my blogger friend, Suranga, (Strewn Ashes) in India! She designs my headers.

Sylvia

Lindsay said...

It's so lovely isn't it. I well remember my visit there back in 1974 - hardly any tourists either!

hamilton said...

What a sad story and especially so since his son did not even bury his father in the wonderful memorial with his beloved wife.

JM said...

@Hamilton: He did! After arresting his own father, it was the least he could do! :-)

DeeBee L. said...

A beautiful setting for a beautiful love, i agree!

tapirgal said...

I like that last one especially - an unusual angle and beautiful lighting. This is quite a tomb. They did not fade away.

Filip Demuinck said...

Great pictures, a place that I would like to visit once.

Greetings,
Filip

Siddhartha Joshi said...

All the views are amazing...love them all!

Carolina Tavares said...

Uma história de amor e dor. Excelente contribuição. Parabéns!

Sondra said...

Gee how many kids did he think she could safely deliver...
I didnt know this so it was wonderful to know the STORY of the Taj Mahal!!

Ann said...

Wonderful first shot, so much better than the second "classic" view.

Oakland Daily Photo said...

Apparently being the favorite wife of the Shah had its downside. Fourteen children? And she died at what age? Still, the building itself is perfection. One cannot help but admire it. Would like to visit in person one day.

Gemma Wiseman said...

I did not know about the house arrest of the Shah! Such a tragic way to end a reign! Love the tone of the scene in the last photo!

Joan Elizabeth said...

Great choice ... I have not seen one taken from the perspective of the first shot before ... it works a treat.

s.c said...

Beautiful well known taphophile tragic.

biebkriebels said...

A great place to be buried and to visit.

Julie said...

Now THAT'S a mausoleum!

I had not realised the story behind the building until now. The sepia image makes it appear to be under construction with massive tyre marks.

Thanks for this, Jose. I love the variety of contributions we all manage.

Herding Cats said...

Such a tragic history behind what is the most beautiful monument in the world.

Thanks for sharing.

Crazy Tourists said...

Places like that are really worth visiting!!

Kathy said...

The ultimate in burial monuments!

Sciarada said...

Ciao JM, beautiful pictures of a great love carved in stone!
Have a good day!

Team G Square said...

Wonderful pictures and lovely place ...

jhopes70 said...

fantastic picture

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EG Wow said...

That;s quite the amazing place!

Halcyon said...

I love your first shot. The natural framing is really nice. :)

CaT said...

pretty!
is anyone ever swimming in that "pool" ? ;) would be fun...

Cezar and Léia said...

Quite a moving story and the monuments, well, breathtaking (I try to avoid this word and the cliché, but really...).
God bless you!
Cezar

NixBlog said...

Lovely shots! As you say quite a coincidence we both posted about the same subject almost simultaneously...

Fabien said...

Un site que j'adorerais découvrir, un jour.

Cobalt Violet said...

So beautiful and moving. Wonderful photos ... got to the last and teared up.

Arija said...

I am so glad you took the last shot and that Aurangzeb finally had the grace to bury Shah Jahan where his heart already was.