Interior of Palace, Delhi, Punjab [sic. Diwan-i Khas or Hall of Private Audience, Red Fort, Delhi]
Photographer: Bourne, Samuel
Medium: Photographic print
This print shows an interior view of the Diwan-i Khas, or Hall of Private Audience, in the Red Fort at Delhi. The fort was built by the Mughal emperor Shah Jahan (r. 1628-1657) as part of his new city of Shahjahanabad located on the banks of the river Jumna. The Diwan-i Khas was reserved for private viewings with the emperor and was the venue for meetings with courtiers, members of government and foreign dignitaries and ambassadors. The pillars are faced in dressed white marble inlaid with coloured gemstones in stylised floral motifs. The top of the arches are cusped in a style typical of the period. The famous Peacock Throne, made of gold and gemstones, once stood at the centre of the hall. An inscription written in gold over the top of two outer arches reads: "If there is a Paradise on the face of this earth, It is this, Oh, it is this, Oh, it is this."