DMPQ- Trace the evolution of architecture during Delhi sultanate period.

. With the arrival of Turks during the thirteenth century came a new technique of architecture- the architectural styles of Persia, Arabia and Central Asia. The engineering features of these buildings were the domes, arches and minarets. The palaces, mosques and tombs built by the rulers had these features which were blended with the features of the indigenous architecture and a new synthesis in architecture was achieved. This happened because the Turkish rulers of Delhi utilized the services of the local Indian craftsmen who were very skillful and had already constructed beautiful buildings. In the buildings that came up we find the simplicity of the Islamic structure as well as the detailed sculptures and designs they made on their own indigenious structures. A middle path was followed in all their designs in the architecture of this period.

The earliest building of this period is Quwwatul Islam Mosque at Delhi and the Qutub Minar. The latter is a tower, whose height is 70 metres. It is a tapering tower that has five stories. There are beautiful engravings of calligraphy both in the mosque and on the tower. Many other buildings were later constructed by the Sultans. Ala-ud-din Khalji enlarged the Quwat-ul-Islam mosque and built a gateway to the enclosure of the mosque. This gateway is called the Alahi Darwaja and is one of the most beautiful architectural designs even today. Decorative elements were used to make the building outstanding in its beauty. He also built the Hauz Khas in Delhi which was a hydraulic structure.

The tomb of Mohammad Tughlaq, Firoz Tughlaq and the forts of Tughlaqabad are some examples. Though their buildings were not beautiful but had very strong walls, massive as well as impressive. During the Afghan rule the tombs of Ibrahim Lodi at Delhi and Shershah’s tomb at Sasaram were built. The architecture of this period also shows how indigenous styles were adopted and utilised by the builders. During these years, the Turks were still in the process of settling down. The rulers were threatened by the Mongols, who made sudden invasions from the north. This is why the buildings of this period are strong, sturdy and practical.

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