Akbar's tomb is the tomb of the Mughal emperor Akbar This tomb is an important Mughal architectural masterpiece. It was built in 1605–1613 by his son Jahangir and is situated in 119 acres of grounds in Sikandra, a sub of Agra, Uttar Pradesh, India.
Akbar planned the tomb and selected a suitable site for it. After his death, Akbar's son Jahangir completed the construction in 1605–1613.
During the reign of Aurangzeb, Jats rose in rebellion under the leadership of Raja Ram Jat. Mughal prestige suffered a blow when Jats ransacked Akbar's tomb, plundering and looting the gold, jewels, silver and carpets. According to one account, even Akbar's grave was opened and his bones burned.
As Viceroy of India, George Curzon directed extensive repairs and restoration of Akbar's mausoleum, which were completed in 1905. Curzon discussed restoration of the mausoleum and other historical buildings in Agra in connection with the passage of the Ancient Monuments Preservation Act in 1904, when he described the project as "an offering of reverence to the past and a gift of recovered beauty to the future". This preservation project may have discouraged veneration of the mausoleum by pilgrims and people living nearby.
It is located at Sikandra, in the suburbs of Agra, on the Mathura road (NH2), 8 km west-northwest of the city center. About 1 km away from the tomb, lies Mariam's Tomb, the tomb of Mariam-uz-Zamani, wife of the Mughal Emperor Akbar and the mother of Jahangir.
The south gate is the largest, with four white marble chhatri-topped minarets which are similar to (and pre-date) those of the Taj Mahal, and is the normal point of entry to the tomb. The tomb itself is surrounded by a walled enclosure 105 m square. The tomb building is a four-tiered pyramid, surmounted by a marble pavilion containing the false tomb. The true tomb, as in other mausoleums, is in the basement. The buildings are constructed mainly from a deep red sandstone, enriched with features in white marble. Decorated inlaid panels of these materials and a black slate adorn the tomb and the main gatehouse. Panel designs are geometric, floral and calligraphic, and prefigure the more complex and subtle designs later incorporated in Itmad-ud-Daulah's Tomb.
Circumferential Gallery around the cenotaph
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- Catherine Blanshard Asher, Catherine Ella Blanshard Asher, 1992, "Architecture of Mughal India - Part 1", Cambridge university Press, Volume 4, Page 108.
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