monuments

The Ruins of Gour

This book comprises 18 drawings of various prominent structures that once made up the ancient citadel of Gaur, as well as a topographical map of the expanse of its ruins as found in the late 18th and early 19th centuries. Gaur, also known as Gauda, Lakshmanavati, Lakhnauti and Jannatabad, served as the seat of many… Read more »

East Gate of Fort, Gaur,

This gate is said to have been built in 1655 by Shah Shuja, and was noted by photographer John Henry Ravenshaw as being relatively more modern in architectural style than the rest of Gaur. The city itself was long deserted by then, its decline rooted in the sacking of Gaur by Sher Shah in 1539.… Read more »

Qadam Rasul Mosque, Gaur

Built by Sultan Nusrat Shah in 1513 to house a stone representation of the footprint of the Prophet Mohammed, the Qadam Rasul Mosque is a one-domed square building located within the fort enclosure of Gaur. The relic, believed to have been originally brought by a saint from Arabia, was housed in Pandua before being brought… Read more »

Tantipara Mosque, Gaur

Tantipara, which means weavers quarters, is said to have been locally known as a mosque for Gaur’s weavers, a community essential to the city’s economy because of its location in a muslin-producing area. A brick building of uniform red and ornamented walls, the mosque is considered to have been erected in 1480. This photograph was… Read more »

Firoz Minar, Gaur

Firoz Minar is a five-storey-high structure estimated to have been built in Gaur during the late 15th century by Saifuddin Firuz Shah, the most revered of the Habshi rulers of Bengal. Much like the Qutub Minar, to which it is often compared, the structure was built to be a victory tower. Firuz Shah, known as… Read more »

Dakhil Gate. South View, Gaur

Built of small red bricks and with traces of extravagant ornamentation, the structure in this photograph was once the principal entrance gate to the Fort of Gaur from the north. Estimated to have been constructed in the early 15th century, the gateway is also known as Salami Darwaza, likely because salutes were fired from adjacent… Read more »

Entrance To Eklakhi Mosque, Gaur

Presumably named Ekhlakhi because it is said to have cost one lakh rupees, this mausoleum in Gaur bears three tombs — considered to be those of Jalaluddin Muhammad Shah, his wife and his son. Shah was the son of Raja Ganesha, a Hindu ruler of Bengal who came to power in 1415, marking the end… Read more »

Lattan or Painted Mosque, Gaur

The Lattan Masjid or Painted Mosque of Gaur, pictured here, was once covered entirely with enameled brickwork in colours of green, yellow, blue and white. It is considered to have been built by Sultan Yusuf Shah, among the last of the Ilyas Shah rulers of Bengal in 1475, as per an inscription found in the… Read more »

Section of Bais Gaji Wall, Gaur

Named Baiz gazi possibly because it measured 22 Bengali gaz (yards) in height, these are the remains of the old palace enclosure located within the Fort of Gaur. The wall is said to have measured 700 yards in length from north to south and 230-300 yard in breadth, encircling the royal residence. The ancient city… Read more »

Kotwali Gate, Gaur

The ancient city of Gaur, also known as Gauda, Lakshmanavati, Lakhnauti and Jannatabad, served as the seat of many powerful dynasties over time – the Buddhist Pala kings from the 8th century onwards, the Hindu Sena kings from the 12th century on, eventually falling into the hands of the Delhi Sultanate in 1204. It thrived… Read more »

Corridor Of Golden Mosque, Gaur

The ancient city of Gaur, also known as Gauda, Lakshmanavati, Lakhnauti and Jannatabad, served as the seat of many powerful dynasties over time – the Buddhist Pala kings from the 8th century onwards, the Hindu Sena kings from the 12th century on, eventually falling into the hands of the Delhi Sultanate in 1204. It thrived… Read more »

The Delhi You’ve Never Seen

See the city as it once appeared from the vantage point of these vanished, obscured or simply forgotten sights—resurrected from the Sarmaya archives.