The Badshahi Mosque or Emperor’s Mosque was constructed in 1673 by the Mughal Emperor Aurangzeb in Lahore, Pakistan. It is one of the city’s well renowned landmarks and an important tourist attraction typifing the beauty and grandeur of the Mughal era.
Having the capacity of accommodating over 55,000 people, Badshahi is Pakistan’s second largest mosque, after the Faisal Mosque in Islamabad.
History of Badshahi Masjid Lahore Pakistan
The construction of the mosque took about two years, from May 1671 to April 1673. The mosque is situated opposite the Lahore Fort, featuring its importance in the Mughal Empire. In conjunction within the sculpture of the mosque, a new gate was constructed at the fort, named Alamgiri Gate after the name of Emperor. From 1852 onwards, intermittent repairs were held out under the administration of the Badshahi Mosque Authority. Comprehensive repairs were carried out from 1939 to 1960 which costs about 4.8 million rupees; this brought the mosque to its original form and condition. In 2000, the repair work of marble inlay in the main vault was repaired; recently a small museum has also been added to the mosque complex, which contains relics of Muhammad, his cousin, and his daughter, Hazrat Fatima Zahra.
What to See at Badshahi Masjid Lahore Pakistan
Like the character of its founder, the mosque is bold, vast and impressive in its appearance. For a long time the mosque has been considered as the largest mosque in the world. The interior has rich embellishment in stucco tracery (Manbatkari) and panelling with a fresco touch, all in bold relief, as well as marble inlay. The exterior is decorated with stone carving as well as marble inlay on red sandstone, especially of loti form motifs in bold relief. The skyline is furnished by beautiful ornamental merlons inlaid with marble lining adding grace to the perimeter of the mosque.
The walls were built with small kiln-burnt bricks laid in kankar, lime mortar (a kind of hydraulic lime) but have a veneer of red sandstone. The steps leading to the prayer chamber and its plinth are in variegated marble.
Out of the seven compartments, three double domes finished in marble have superb curvature, whilst the rest have curvilinear domes with a central rib in their interior and flat roof above.
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