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Friday, 4 June 2010

The Jewel Of India

The Taj Mahal is a majestic mausoleum located in Agra, India. It is considered the most beautiful monument in the world built by the Mughals, the Muslim rulers of India, and for good reason.There is no solid proof to corroborate the following myth, but it still makes an interesting “tale”. Back in 1632, Shah Jahan, an emperor in northern India, decided to build the Taj Mahal in memory of his beloved wife, Mumtaz Mahal. It is believed that Ustad Isa, a Persian, was chosen to design the mausoleum. It took more than 20 years and the labor of 20.000 workmen to complete the Taj Mahal. The building began around 1632, and was completed around 1653. Shah Jahan was greatly pleased with the large graceful building of pure white marble. According to myths, Shah Jahan thought so highly of the mausoleum that he took steps to see that no building would ever equal its beauty. It is said that Shah Jahan had the architect hands cut of so that he could never again create anything as beautiful as the Taj Mahal.
The Taj Mahal, which contains the tombs of Shah Jahan and his beloved wife Mumtaz Mahal, stands on a large white marble terrace. The mausoleum, with its gleaming white domes and slender minarets, stands at the end of a long reflecting pool. Beautiful gardens with shrubs and dark green cypress trees surround the building. There is no question that the Taj Mahal is quite a place. This extravagant monument of love is one of the most visited and most photographed places in the world. The Taj Mahal attracts from 2 to 4 million visitors annually, with more than 200.000 from overseas. Those that have been there regard the Taj Mahal as literally breathtaking, being the most beautiful, astonishing and inspiring sights that they have had the privilege of seeing, and if anyone has the opportunity to see it, it’s a definite must!

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