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LAHORE FORT

LAHORE FORT The Lahore Fort is the most elaborate structure to be built by the Mughul emperors of India It was not conceived as one building erected for one purpose It evolved instead over time as a mini-city on the outskirts of Lahore, the capital of Mughul Punjab Four Mughul emperors were to contribute to the development of the fort The site for the fort was selected by Akbar the Great in the mid16th century He chose the left bank of the Ravi River that flowed through Lahore to construct a series of buildings to be located with the walls of a fort The fort was meant to provide residences for the emperor and the members of his court, places for holding audiences to the emperor’s courtiers and to the public, places of worship, palaces for the women in the harem, and quarters for the soldiers Akbar laid the foundation stone of the fort, but it was his son, Jahangir, who had a special fondness for the city of Lahore and who undertook the first phase of the fort’s constructionAkbar’s grandson and Jahangir’s son, Emperor Shah Jehan, however, brought to the fort his genius for building and his flair for magnificence Shah Jehan’s most important contribution to the cluster of buildings located within the periphery of the fort is the Diwan-iKhas, or the hall of private audience, and the Sheesh Mahal, or the Mirror Palace



The Mirror Palace has a marble dado, carved marble screens, and the mosaic is made of tiny convex mirrors of many colors set in arabesques West of the Sheesh Mahal stands the Naulakha Pavilion, or the pavilion of 900,000, so named because its walls are studded with 900,000 precious stones The main gate to the fort faces the Badshahi Mosque Aurangzeb, the last great Mughul emperor of India, put the final touches to the fort as it now stands

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