Monument dedicated to emperor's wife

As many as 28 different varieties of semi-precious and precious stones were used to adorn the Taj Mahal, in Agra, Uttar Pradesh
As many as 28 different varieties of semi-precious and precious stones were used to adorn the Taj Mahal, in Agra, Uttar PradeshPHOTO: AGENCE FRANCE-PRESSE

Built by: Shah Jahan, who ruled for 30 years, from 1628 to 1658.

Dedicated to: Mumtaz Mahal, Shah Jahan's beloved third wife, who died in childbirth.

Building Type: Islamic tomb

Architecture: Mughal (combination of Persian, Islamic and Indian styles). As many as 28 different varieties of semi-precious and precious stones were used to adorn the monument.

Commissioned: 1631

Completed: 1653

Construction period: 22 years

Labour used: 20,000 workers. More than 1,000 elephants were drafted to transport materials.

Size: Spread over 17ha

Location: On the banks of river Yamuna in Agra, Uttar Pradesh.

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Sunday Times on October 22, 2017, with the headline 'Monument dedicated to emperor's wife'. Print Edition | Subscribe