Itimad-ud-daulah's Tomb

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Itimad-ud-daula's Tomb, Agra Overview

Often referred to as the "Baby Taj Mahal", the tomb of Itimad-ud-daulah is a Mughal mausoleum and often regarded as a copy of the Taj Mahal. This is theĀ first tomb in India made entirely of marble. It is the tomb of Mir Gheyas Beg (later known as Itimad-ud-daulah), who was a minister in the court of Shah Jahan. Visiting Itimad-ud-daulah's Tomb is like taking a step back in time into Agra's history.

The tomb of Itimad-ud-daulah marks the transition from the first phase of the Mughal architecture to the second. This was the first structure to make use of pietra dura and the first to be built on the banks of the Yamuna River. It basically consists of Indo-Islamic architecture, with the use of arched entrances and octagonal shaped towers. If you take a bird's eye of Itimad-ud-daulah Tomb, it looks like a jewel box set in a garden. This magnificent mausoleum, built on the banks of Yamuna, was to inspire the construction of one of the wonders of the world "Taj Mahal" in the later years.

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Mirza Gheyas Beg, who later came to be known as Itimad-ud-daula, was a poor merchant and lived in Persia. He shifted to India in the hope of changing his fortune. While on the way, he was attacked by robbers and was left penniless. At the same time, his pregnant wife gave birth to a baby girl. They did not have enough money to feed her, so they thought of abandoning her, but on the way, they found a caravan. They joined it and reached the court of Mughal Emperor Akbar, where Gheyas became a courtier. The baby girl changed their fate, hence they named her Mehrunnisa, who later became the wife of Emperor Jahangir. The history remembers her by the name of Noor Jahan. She commissioned the construction of Itimad-ud-daulah's Tomb, as a tribute to her father.

The entrance to the tomb is made of red sandstone. After entering the gateway, you reach a beautiful garden, in the center of which lies the majestical white structure. It has four minarets standing out from the main tomb. Inside the monument, the cenotaphs of Itimad-ud-daula and his wife are set side by side. The walls are adorned with stunning paintings and stucco. These paintings are embellished with semi-precious stones carved in the form of trees and wine bottles.

Security is very tight and food and drinks (other than water) are not allowed. Check out the full rules before visiting this place as guards can be really strict.

Itimad-ud-daulah Tomb is located 4 km from Agra Fort and 2 km from Ram Bagh. It is situated on the road going from Agra Fort to the Ram Bagh. The best way to reach the fort is by taking an auto rickshaw from the Auto stand near Agra Fort.

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