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Art and Architectural in Medieval India

The coming of the Turks inaugurated a new era in the history of Indian architecture, the Turks brought with them architectural ideas developed in Persia, Arabia and Central Asia. They came into contact with the traditions that had already been developed in India. The interaction of these two traditions resulted in a new synthesis of architectural styles. The rulers of the Sultanate were great patrons of architecture and under them the process of synthesis started. It continued with many regional variations in the different kingdoms. During the Mughal period the flowering of this synthesis took place and some of the greatest monuments of India were built. Based on the interaction of the two traditions a unique Indian style of architecture was developed in this period.

Main features of Islamic architecture

The Mosque consisted of a large rectangular open courtyard surrounded by arcades on all four sides. The mehrab which faces Mecca indicates the direction to the prayer. The call to the worship was made from a tall tower or minaret. In some mosques there were many minerats. Another characteristic feature was the arch in the gateway and other places. The dome was another prominent feature of the mosque and the mausoleum. The chief decorative element was sculpturing the building with geometrical designs and lettering in calligraphic style. Some of these features were new to Indian architecture. The ancient Indian buildings were decorated with beautiful carving and sculpture while the Muslim buildings were marked by simplicity and lack of adornment. When the new buildings began to be erected the two styles were gradually synthesized into a new and unique style.