General view from the south-east of the Diwan-i-Khas, Fatehpur Sikri
Photographer: Smith, Edmund William
Medium: Photographic print
Photograph of the Diwan-i-Khas at Fatehpur Sikri, from the Archaeological Survey of India Collections, taken by Edmund William Smith in 1893. The palace city of Fatehpur Sikri was built by the Mughal Emperor Akbar (r.1556-1605) from 1571 to 1585. The entire complex is built of locally quarried red sandstone, known as Sikri sandstone. The Diwan-i-Khas, or Hall of Private Audience, is a plain square building with four chhatris on the roof and an unusual interior. In the centre there is a large carved pillar whose serpentine brackets support a circular platform which is connected to each corner of the building by four stone walkways. Akbar probably sat in the centre of the platform to conduct his private audiences.