Photographer's Note

View of the Hazoori Bagh Baradari and the Badshahi Mosque from the Alamgiri gateway of the Lahore fort. The bulbous domes of the grand Badshahi Mosque are hidden behind its impressive entrance.

Hazoori Bagh is a small enclosure between the Alamgiri Gate of the Lahore Fort and eastern gate of the Badshahi Mosque. This garden was built by Maharajah Ranjit Singh in 1813 to celebrate the capture of the famous Koh-i-Noor Diamond from Shah Shujah of Afghanistan. The Serai Alamgiri formerly stood here. The garden was planned and built under the supervision of Faqir Azizuddin. After its completion, it is said, Maharajah Ranjit Singh, at the suggestion of Jamadar Khushhal Singh, ordered that marble be removed from various mausoleums of Lahore to construct a baradari (pavilion) here.

Inspired by the Jamia Mosque of Delhi and Agra, which predate it, the Badshahi Mosque is even more massive than they are. Unlike these mosques, it has only a single main entrance. The entire structure is made of brick dressed with red limestone, with white marble domes and ornamentation. The mosque forms a 558 Sq. ft structure, elevated on a platform. Its main eastern entry is approached by twenty-two circular steps, the top one being 79'-3" and the lower one more than 20' long. The steps are paved with a beautiful variegated stone from Kabul known as abri.

Above the arched entrance are many small turrets of red sandstone and marble. A tablet of white marble on the outer face of this entrance has the following inscription (besides the Kalima): "The mosque of Abu Zafar Mohiuddin Muhammad Alamgir, the Ghazi King, completed under the superintendence of the humblest servant of the household, Fidai Khan Koka, in 1084 AH". The inscription shows that the mosque was built in 1674 AD by Fidai Khan Koka.

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Additional Photos by Raza Noor (razanoor) Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 138 W: 0 N: 172] (466)
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