Posts Tagged ‘Archaeological Survey of India (ASI)’

Shore Temple, Mahabalipuram (Mamallapuram)

October 13, 2021 2 comments

Shore Temple

Mahabalipuram (Mamallapuram)

Also see: FAM Trip of Tamil Nadu

55 km south of Chennai lies the ancient port town of Mahabalipuram (now Mamallapuram) known for its towering pagodas, gigantic rock-cut caves, intricate bass relief panels and massive monolithic structures (Also see: Pancha Rathas).

Shore Temple, Mahabalipuram (Mamallapuram), view from west side

Shore Temple, Mahabalipuram (Mamallapuram), view from west side

The structures date back to the 600 – 700 CE and were constructed by the Pallava dynasty. Mahabalipuram offers a interesting mix of history along with golden sand beaches washed by the thundering waves of the Bay of Bengal.

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Sisupalgrah, remains of an ancient citadel near Bhubaneswar

June 12, 2018 5 comments


Remains of an ancient citadel near Bhubaneswar

Comparable to Athens, its contemporary, at its prime – archeologists who have worked on Sisupalgarh believe it was the most organised urban centres of ancient India.

Krutika Haraniya, Sishupalgarh: The Lost City, Live History India

Sisupalgarh is a excavated fortified citadel on the south eastern edge of Bhubaneswar. Several archaeological excavations have confirmed that the fortified settlement was continuously inhabited  from the 5th century BCE to the 4th century CE.

Sishupal Garh 1

The pillars of Sisupalgarh, Bhubaneswar, Odisha

Whats sets Sisupalgarh apart from the other ancient cities of India, or perhaps in the world, is its town planning. Intelligent traffic management, pedestrian-friendly pathways, grand gateways with guard houses, wide roads and a vast open space were some of the key features of the ancient citadel.

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Purana Qila, The 6th City of Delhi

May 3, 2018 4 comments

Purana Qila

The 6th City of Delhi

Delhi has remained the pivot of north India over a thousand years. The stretch of land bounded by the Aravalli Hills and the Yamuna River enjoyed a strategic advantage linking the north – western mountains to the to the fertile flood plains of the Ganges.

Purana Qila Sher Mandal 2

Sher Mandal (Left) Dominates the Purana Qila complex, Delhi

The earliest literary references identify the city with the mythical Indraprastha, the grand capital of the Pandavas, the heroes of the ancient epic Mahabharata. Interestingly in 1911 when the Purana Qila (literally meaning the Old Fort) was being cleared of squatters, officials stumbled upon a village called Indrapat within the fort complex, was it the legendary capital of the Pandavas?

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Barber’s Tomb ~ Humayun’s Tomb Complex, Delhi

September 19, 2012 4 comments

Barber’s Tomb (Nai – Ka – Gumbad)

Humayun’s Tomb Complex, Delhi

Kings and queens have their magnificent tombs so does their brothers, sisters and cousins. Tombs of favorite ministers and even dogs are also not uncommon. But a tomb of Emperor’s favorite barber is something rarely heard of. Humayun the second of great Mughal ruler honored his favorite barber with a beautiful tomb, located next to his very own magnificent mausoleum.

Barber's Tomb (Nai - ka - Gumbad), Humayun's Tomb Complex, Delhi

Barber’s Tomb (Nai – ka – Gumbad), Humayun’s Tomb Complex, Delhi

Located towards the south – east of the Humayun’s Tomb stands a slender, elegant domed structure commonly known as the Nai – Ka – Gumbad, literally meaning the Barber’s tomb. Although several historical structures surrounds the famous Humayun’s Tomb. The Barber’s Tomb happens to be the only structure standing inside the large square (char – bagh), which houses the magnificent Humayun’s Tomb at the very centre.

Its proximity to the main tomb and the fact that it is the only other structure within the main tomb complex suggests its importance, however there are no inscriptions suggesting as to who is interred therein, the name Barbers tomb is the local name of the structure, hence still in use.

A board put up by the Archaeological Survey of India (ASI) reads “Folklore lore refers to the building as Barber’s Tomb. The red sand stone faced, tilted canopies, minarets and sandstone screens give the tomb its striking character. The tomb has within it the ornamental cenotaphs of one male and one female. The water channels around the tomb were added between 1905 and 1909.”

No one knows who are buried inside this picturesque tomb of red and grey sand stone. Popular myth is that the tomb is dedicated to Mughal emperor Humayun’s royal barber & was commissioned by emperor Akbar.

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