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Franz Josef Glacier
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Taj Mahal

Taj Mahal – “the pearl of India”, “the eighth wonder of the world”, one of the most beautiful buildings in the world

The Taj Mahal is the “pearl of India”, the “eighth wonder of the world”, one of the most beautiful buildings in the world. Built by order of Shah Jahan, the Mughal Emperor, it has been the main symbol of lost love for more than three hundred years.

Shah Jahan was very fond of his wife. Mumtaz Mahal eclipsed all the wives and concubines of the ruler of the Empire, she became not only a beloved woman, but also a friend and assistant to the Emperor. For seventeen years, she followed her husband everywhere, accompanied him on military campaigns, during one of which she died without surviving the birth of her fourteenth child. Heartbroken Shah Jahan ordered to build a mausoleum for his beloved, which the world has not seen yet. A year after the death of Mumtaz Mahal, in 1632, grandiose construction began in Agra, then the capital of the Empire.

It lasted 22 years. about 20,000 workers worked on the construction of the resting place of the Emperor’s beloved wife, and masters from Persia, the Middle East, and Central Asia were invited. Legend has it that after the construction was completed, Shah Jahan ordered the sculptors and architects to be stripped of their hands so that they could never build such a beautiful building again, as well as their eyes so that they could not see anything more beautiful than the monument they erected in Agri. Whether this is true or not, the mausoleum was built as a result, and it is still one of the most magnificent and beautiful structures in the world.

The Taj Mahal combines features of Persian, Indian and Islamic architectural styles, becoming the best example of Mughal architecture. The five-domed building is 74 meters high, with four minarets at the corners, surrounded by a beautiful garden with fountains and a swimming pool. The walls of the mausoleum are made of translucent marble, which was brought for construction for 300 km. the Taj Mahal Marble has a unique feature: during the day it looks white, at dawn – pink, and on a moonlit night – silver. At first, the marble walls were decorated with a variety of precious stones-turquoise, agate, malachite, carnelian, and the door to the mausoleum, symbolizing the entrance to Paradise, were decorated with the finest silver lace (later the doors were stolen, like many stones, and today the entrance to the temple of love is a door made of copper). In the heart of the mausoleum are two false tombs (real crypts – under the floor), stone flowers carpet the walls.

The Taj Mahal is part of a huge complex – an irrigation canal, a garden, a mosque, a number of other Palace buildings, four swimming pools – everything here is in full accordance with the axial symmetry, the center of which is the mausoleum. The symmetry is broken only by the tomb of Shah Jahan himself, who was buried here according to his will next to his beloved Mumtaz Mahal.

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