Saturday, April 19, 2014

Q for Qutub Minar

Qutab Minar is a soaring, 73 m-high tower of victory, built in 1193 by Qutab-ud-din Aibak immediately after the defeat of Delhi's last Hindu kingdom. Qutbu'd-Din Aibak laid the foundation of Minar in AD 1199 for the use of the mu'azzin (crier) to give calls for prayer and raised the first storey, to which were added three more storeys by his successor and son-in-law, Shamsu'd-Din Iltutmish (AD 1211-36). The tower has five distinct storeys, each marked by a projecting balcony and tapers from a 15 m diameter at the base to just 2.5 m at the top. The first three storeys are made of red sandstone; the fourth and fifth storeys are of marble and sandstone. At the foot of the tower is the Quwwat-ul-Islam Mosque, the first mosque to be built in India.
Standing tall--Qutub Minar
The first time I visited the Qutub Minar was two decades back. For the ongoing blogging challenge, I decided to write on Qutub Minar for the letter Q. So two weeks back, I especially visited the monument so that I can relive my memories and also take some pictures. So here are some pictures of the monument.

A view
The history
Engraved verses
The surrounding ruins

Ashoka Pillar
A 7 m-high iron pillar stands in the courtyard of the mosque. It is the Ashoka Pillar. The pillar bears an inscription which states that it was erected as a flagstaff in honor of the Hindu god, Vishnu, and in the memory of the Gupta King Chandragupta II (375-413). It is said that if you can encircle it with your hands while standing with your back to it your wish will be fulfilled.Made up of 98% wrought iron of impure quality, it is 23 feet, 8 inches high and has a diameter of 16 inches. It has attracted the attention of archaeologists and metallurgists as it has withstood corrosion for the last 1600 years despite harsh weather. 

Then there is the unfinished Alai Minar. It was an ambitious project and its story is given in the picture below.
 

That's me against the backdrop of the ambitious Alai Minar
I am taking part in the Blogging From A to Z Challenge [April 2014].

For information about the Qutub Minar:

10 comments:

  1. What a fabulous place. These are great pictures.

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  2. This blogpost is a treat for a history junkie like me :)

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  3. Took me back to my school days, where I had learnt about the magnificent Qutub Minar. :)

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    1. Yes, it is like practicals of our history classes.

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  4. The maintenance of the Qutub Minar and the ruins is commendable..The red bricks against the greenery is soothing to the eyes...

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  5. lovely pics Nats! :) As for the monument, I am always amazed by the architecture, design & building structure of these ancient manually-made monuments :)

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    1. Thanks Madhu! Yes they are amazing. Just imagine people carrying all those materials and building the place.

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Loved that you dropped by. It would lovely to know how you feel about this post too :)