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The Taj, Agra, left hand.

The Taj, Agra, left hand.

Photographer: Tytler, Robert and Harriet

Medium: Photographic print

Date: 1858

Shelfmark: Photo 53/(8)

Item number: 538

Genre: Photograph

Part of a portfolio of photographs taken in 1858 by Major Robert Christopher Tytler and his wife, Harriet, in the aftermath of the Uprising of 1857. The Taj Mahal was built by the Emperor Shah Jahan for his favourite wife Arjumand Banu Begum upon her death in 1631. Constructed of India’s finest marble, quarried at Makrana near Jodhpur, it took 12 years to build involving 20,000 craftsmen from all over Asia. The pietra-dura was done with thousands of precious and semi-precious stones imported from distant lands. The domed white marble mausoleum stands on a plinth with tapering minarets on each corner. This is a view of one of the four minarets. They frame the tomb and highlight the perfect symmetry of the complex. Each minaret is 40 m high and is crowned by an octagonal chhatri.

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