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Charminar

Geography | 8-14 yrs | Interactive
  • Charminar , is one of the most magnificent structures located on the east bank of the River Musi , in the city of Hyderabad which is  in the state of Andhra Pradesh , India . It is similar in its significance to the Taj Mahal in Agra. The Charminar, is  a mosque and one of the most recognized structures in India .
  • It was built in the year 1591, by the 5th ruler of the Qutb Shahi Dynasty, Emperor Muhammad Quli Qutb Shah.
  • The city of Hyderabad was constructed along with the monument in the year 1591. The construction of the monument was completed in the year 1592.
  • Charminar in English means ‘Four Towers.’
  • Muhammad Shah shifted his capital from Golconda to the city we now call Hyderabad. This monument is believed to have been the very first structure built in the city.
  • There are various stories behind the construction of this monument.
  • Some are of the belief that it was built by Qutb Shah for his wife Bhagimathi.
  • Another legend has it that the Charminar, which is situated in the centre of the city, is believed to have been built to commemorate the eradication of plague, a disease  which had spread in the city and was actually the cause of widespread death and sorrow.
  • Qutb Shah had prayed for the end of the disease and had vowed in his prayers that he would build a mosque at the very place that he had prayed. The monument got its name from the four minarets which are said to honour the four caliphs of Islam.
  • This landmark monument was constructed to serve as a Mosque and a Madraasa.
  • The layout of the plan was done by Mir Momin Astarabadi , who was the prime minister of Qutb Shah.
  • The entire city of Hyderabad was designed around this beautiful monument.
  • Granite, limestone, pulverised marble and mortar were used in the construction of this monument and it is symbolic of typical Islamic architecture.
  • There is an unknown underground tunnel that Qutb Shah has said to have made as an escape route, which connected the Golconda Fort to the Charminar.
  • The structure is square with four grand imposing arches that open into the four streets, in four different directions.
  • There are four minarets that are crowned by bulbous domes, adorning the minarets. These minarets are built on the main structure, unlike the minarets of the Taj Mahal.
  • There are about 149 winding steps to reach the upper floor of the minarets, from where a person can get a breath taking view of the city of Hyderabad.
  • It is a four storied structure, with the mosque occupying the top floor of the monument at the western end facing Mecca, which is the holy city of the Muslims.
  • The mosque within the monument is the oldest in the city of Hyderabad and looks magnificent and spectacular when illuminated at night.

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