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Mughal Agra: A Riverfront Garden City

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Chapter Summary

The contribution of the Mughals to the &t;Islamic city&t; is as yet not sufficiently understood, the attention of scholars having been focused on Shah Jahan's Shahjahanabad laid out from 1639 onwards in the area of Delhi, the old capital of the sultans. It is suggested here that Agra, the first capital of the Mughal empire, represented the most original urban planning achievement of the Mughals, in a consistently developed scheme, which has the riverfront garden as a modular unit. Babur, and this is well known, informs us in his autobiography about his attempts to introduce the Persian Timurid garden tradition of his native Central Asia into Hindustan. Mughal nobles, or &t;rankholders&t; (mansabdars), were subjected to significant limits in their rights to own property and bequeath it to their heirs. Also includes discussions on &t;Utilitarian Complex&t;, &t;Bagh-i Jahanara or Zahra Bagh&t;, &t;Tomb of I'timad al-Dawla&t; and &t;Chhatri of Jaswant Singh&t;.

Keywords: Bagh-i Jahanara; Chhatri of Jaswant Singh; Mughals; riverfront garden; Shah Jahan; Utilitarian Complex



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