(Last Updated on : 20/07/2013)
India, the land of unity in diversity, boasts about its lavish monuments that are actually regarded as its cultural heritage. Monuments are defined as the symbols of the rich cultural and traditional heritages of the country. Indian monuments of different regions depict the historical events and tell the story of the associated domains concerning that region. Monuments of North India comprise some of the excellent and rare art. North Indian region includes states like Delhi, Uttar Pradesh, Punjab, Haryana, Himachal Pradesh and Jammu & Kashmir
. Border of Pakistan lies in the west of this region and there are the foothills of Himalaya and Nepal in its east. Taj Mahal
, Agra Fort, Qutub Minar, Jahaz Mahal, Sheesh Mahal
, India Gate
, Moti Masjid, Jama Masjid
are few of the names of the popular monuments of North India. These national heritages attract a huge number of people throughout the world.
Types of Monuments in Northern India
The monuments of northern India are of different types and they exhibit the various styles and blends of Indian ancient architecture and architectural cultures. The heritage sites of India can be divided into various categories like historical monuments, religious monuments, archaeological monuments and it can also be classified according to different states of northern region of India. The main characteristic of the north Indian monuments are more popular for their intricate arts and stylish architectural patterns.
Historical Monuments of North India:
India was conquered by various rulers at different eras and that is what gets reflected through the historical monuments. The rich past of India can be thoroughly explored through these monuments. There are historical monuments in every part of northern region of India and most of them are prominent nationally. They hold special significance as they reflect the charm of the past. Like for instance, Monuments of Prithviraj Chauhan
, Red Fort, Humayun's Tomb, Taj Mahal, Hazratbal mosque, Khanqah of Shah Hamadan, Shankaracharya Temple
, Makhdoom Sahib, and the list is endless. The historical monuments of this particular region are aptly described as the authentic evidences of the rich past and heritage of India. Each and every succeeding generation of the country have left a mark and that can be witnessed through these monuments. Because of the continuous Muslim occupation after Muhammad Shahab-ud-Din defeated Prithviraj Chauhan, the development of the monuments reflected an imperial style and pattern of Islamic architecture. The phase between 1193 and 1320 that is known as the early phase of the Islamic architecture is featured by the adaptation and adoption of the Hindu styles, patterns and materials. One such notable example is the Tomb of Iltutmish
Moreover, in the initial stages of the development of the popular monuments local red sandstone were used and marble dressings were used limitedly. But these patterns changed later on and plastered and marble settings were used. On some high platforms, mosques were raised. Under the Tughlaq dynasty, huge numbers of tombs were raised in several parts of northern India and especially in and around Delhi. Interestingly, other than tombs, no public buildings, mosques or palaces were built at that era. The tombs built in this period clearly reflects the outcome of various building conventions that comprises two-three storey tomb, octagonal shape surrounded by arched verandah. The tombs were crowned by huge domes. The period of the Mughal rule laid the foundation of the extreme development of the Islam art and architecture. The cultural achievements that took place during that era were totally dependent on the royal patronage of the five great Mughal emperors - Babur
and Shah Jahan
. In fact, it is believed that the Mughal kings were actually the patrons behind the development of the splendid monuments of north India. Each and every historical monument including the forts, tombs, victory pillars and the magnificent palaces has some legend associated with them and it is one of the main reasons that fascinate the people from different parts of the world.
Religious Monuments of North India:
India, specifically its northern region is not only rich with lavish historical monuments but it also comprises several religious monuments. The various religious monuments of the northern India are very significant as they portray the diverse cultures of this country and its secularity. Religion has always remained as the prevalent issue of concern throughout Indian civilization. And the prominent religions have left behind their footprints. So, the religious monuments of northern India are a great way of surveying the mixed culture and diversity of Indian culture. Indian kings of the ancient era constructed numerous places of worship with respect to their religions. Excellent art work and sculpture can be seen in the temples and other religious monuments. Jama Masjid, Golden Temple
, etc. are some of the examples of Indian religious monuments. The best known religious monuments of northern part of India showcase the wonderful creation and artistic imagination of the craftsmen of that era.
Indian Monuments in North Indian States
Delhi one of the most ancient and historic cities of the world is of great historical importance that have witnessed the passage of mighty empires and powerful kingdoms since time immemorial. This city has risen despite repeatedly being sacked by rapacious invaders several times for dominating the history of Hindustan. Each succeeding generation has left its mark. There have been countless monuments in this city like Red Fort
, Qutub Minar, India Gate
, Jama Masjid
, Lotus temple, Jantar Mantar
, Humayun's Tomb
A wholly different provincial form of Islamic architecture developed in Jammu and Kashmir. It projected a distinctive style constructed entirely with local materials, principally wood and usually deodar. The log bridges across the Jhelum River in Srinagar
are built on simple cantilever principle with layers of logs placed transversely in alternate courses. In Kashmir the typical buildings constructed with woods are the mosque and the tomb. Mosque of Shah Hamadan in Srinagar, Mosque of Akhun Mulla Shah, Fort of Hari Parbat, etc. are some of the popular monuments of this state that exhibit typical Mughal features with the common use of grey limestone. Amritsar, in the state of Punjab, is described as the holy city of the Sikhs that was founded by Ram Das in the year 1579, the fourth Sikh Guru. Golden Temple, Saragarhi Memorial, etc. are some of its popular heritages.
The most notable monument of Uttar Pradesh
is Taj Mahal
located in Agra. It is one of the 'Seven Wonders of the World' and a pride of India. Some more heritages of this popular state of North India are Chota Imambada, Rumi Darwaza and Shah Najaf Imambada at Lucknow
, Buland Darwaza and Agra fort at Agra. The popular monuments of Haryana
comprise the tomb of Ibrahim Lodi in Panipat, the fort of Kalsia Raja, the Jal Mahal, tombs of Shah Quli Khan, the Star monument Bhiwani in the Bhiwani complex and Feroz Shah's Palace to list a few. Next is the state of Himachal Pradesh
which too includes a number of famous monuments like the Rang Mahal of Chamba, Maharaja Palace of Chail, Gurkha forts, Lord Elgin's Memorial, Guru Ghantal monastery, Dhankar monastery and several others.
North India gladly boasts about the two very popular UNESCO World Heritage sites that are Taj Mahal and Agra
. The monuments of northern India narrate the royalty, tales of superiority, cultural significance of the rich past of the country.