The Love Story and Myths Behind Taj Mahal

The Love Story and Myths Behind Taj Mahal

In the 17th century, Indian emperor Shah Jahan lost his beloved wife in childbirth. Her last wish: he should never marry again and he should prove his love by building a great mausoleum for her. This is why the impressive Taj Mahal was built.

taj mahal

Photo Source: rajivawijesinha.wordpress.com

The wife of the emperor, Mumtaz Mahal died only minutes after giving birth to the couple’s 14th child, a daughter. The emperor, who loved her so deeply, was struck by the death of his wife and mourned her for two months. His appearance was changed from wealthy and imposing, to pure and simple.

taj mahal

Shah Jahan and Mumtaz Mahal; Photo Source: rajivawijesinha.wordpress.com

Because of her beauty and her great kindness, as Mumtaz Mahal helped many women in distress, everyone loved her. And most of all, her husband. To him, she was a great wife and an excellent mother to their children. Mumtaz Mahal used to accompany the emperor in all his military campaigns, bringing their three daughters and four sons along. In fact, all of their sons were born during military campaigns.

After her death, Shah Jahan was inconsolable and did not leave his room for two months. He came out a very sad man and finally fulfilled his wife’s dream and built the magnificent Taj Mahal in Agra, India, on the banks of Jumna river. He gave his best for the mausoleum to be the most impressive, as he wanted the entire world to admire it and learn about his great love to his queen.

 taj mahal

The tombs of Shaj Jahan and Mumtaz Mahal; Photo Source: flickr

For the construction of the Taj Mahal, the emperor spent a lot of money that could have been better used for the benefit of the people, but he planned to build another mausoleum for himself. Angry on these expenses, his son Aurangzeb imprisoned him in a room with a view to the Taj Mahal. At Shah Jahan’s death, he was laid to rest in the Taj Mahal, next to his beloved wife.

Myths about Taj Mahal

The first myth, or story, is that while mourning his wife for two months, the emperor Shah Jahan’s hair has gone white in just one night because of his deep sadness.

Another myth says that the construction is sinking. The fact known is that, only 4 years after its completion, cracks were discovered in the walls of the building, and that it was tilting towards the river.

A more dramatic myth says that after having built the mausoleum, the emperor got his architects’ and sculptors’ hands cut off, so that they could never build something as beautiful and magnificent as the Taj Mahal. He even had their eyes pulled out, so that they could never see something more beautiful and grandiose.

taj mahal

Photo Source: travel.descopera.ro

The Taj Mahal is indeed the proof of a great love and a very romantic gesture. What do you think about this wonder of the word and its symbolism?

Sources:

Remi Koene
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