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Agra. Chini-ka-Rauza. Octagonal tower on the north-west side of the building from the roof of the Rauza looking up the river

Agra. Chini-ka-Rauza. Octagonal tower on the north-west side of the building from the roof of the Rauza looking up the river

Photographer: Smith, Edmund William

Medium: Photographic print

Date: 1893

Shelfmark: Photo 1007/2(589)

Item number: 589

Length: 24.4

Width: 19.8

Scale: Centimetres

Genre: Photograph

Photograph of the octagonal tower on the north-west side of the Chini-ka-Rauza at Agra in Uttar Pradesh, taken by Edmund William Smith in 1893-4, from the Archaeological Survey of India. The Chini ka Rauz, or Tiled tomb, is believed to be the mausoleum of Afzal Khan, a minister of the Mughal Emperor Shah Jahan (r.1628-58) who died in 1638. Built on a square plan, it has a bulbous central dome and a mosaic fa├žade decorated with elaborate floral patterns composed of enamelled tile fragments. This view, of the pavilion on the riverbank is from the roof of the Rauza looking up the river.

Smith wrote in Moghul Colour Decoration of Agra, 1901, "The Chini-ka-Rauza, or the tomb covered with "china" (enamelled tiles), stands in what was a large garden, but is now a field. The garden was enclosed on the north, south and east sides by walls, but was open on the river front. Being a mausoleum, it is built facing north and south as all such in India are...At the north-west corner of the enclosure, commanding a fine view of the river, is a picturesque tower (Plate IV) [this image] crowned by a cupola, which, like the kiosks around Akbar's tomb at Sikandra, was originally coated on the outside with enamelled tiles."

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