(Last Updated on : 01/03/2014)
Huqqa is a triumph of design in the arena of Mughal Art. Huqqa was found in a variety of colours. The nuances of colour were surprisingly subtle: several shades of blue, from pale lilac to deep royal blue; several shades of green, yellow and white; and a unique sherry-like tan on the wings of the birds and angels. Huqqa is found in silver as well as gold. Even bidri huqqas are very common. The silver gilt huqqa dates back to the seventeenth century. Huqqas are ovoid shaped, spherical shaped and are found in a lot other shapes. It is said that the chillam of the huqqas during the Mughal period are complex in nature. Various motifs of different animals and birds are used in the chillam as well as in the huqqa.
It has been said that huqqas were a taste of the noble men. Moreover the designs of the huqqas were to a large extent influenced by the west. The huqqas which were found in the Mughal period consisted of a round base, a chillam and cover (sarpush), an intermediate ring and a mouthpiece. The entire outer surface was covered with translucent green and blue enamel set with diamonds and rubies, and the interior is of silver but heavily gilt; the flashy effect of diamonds on dark blue differed profoundly.
Meenakari in huqqa is also well known. The meenakari work in huqqa comes in various hues and different animal motifs are used in them. The various types of Meenakari huqqa that are found are silver-gilt enamelled wash basin type huqqa, robustly proportioned silver huqqa with melon like segments. The pointed petals of the blossoms indicate a late seventeenth-century Deccani origin. A second round silver gilt huqqa has the delicate curves and exquisite decor of the early eighteenth century. Its blossom-strewn surface brings to mind painted cottons, while the unusually warm tones of white, yellow and green are the colours of imperial Mughal tile work. The round huqqas of the Mughal period resembled the silver pandans to a large extent.
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