Baker & Taylor Looks at the motives behind the creation of the Taj Mahal, and discusses its design, with close-up photographs of the floral inlays that decorate the interior
Built between 1632 and 1643 by the Mughal emperor Shah Jahan in honor of his deceased wife Mumtaz Mahal, the Taj Mahal is unquestionably the most renowned mausoleum in the world. Now this legendary monument to love can be seen as no visitor to the site has ever viewed it. On the pages of this exquisitely illustrated volume, the Taj Mahal is revealed detail by detail. Starting inside the mausoleum, a sequence of closeups show the semiprecious stones, inlaid in white marble, that form the interior's Koranic calligraphy and floral patterns. The next sequence of images presents the octogonal plan of the structure, emphasizing both its perfect symmetry and its subtle variations. The final sequence is devoted to the decorative patterns carved in the walls of the mosque and entrance gate. In addition, four lavish fold-out photographs show the entire Taj Mahal complex from different perspectives.
In their informative texts, authors Amina Okada and M.C. Joshi provide historical and architectural analyses of the Taj Mahal. Quotations from the Koran and from the journals of travelers as diverse as Jean-Bapiste Tavernier, Pierre Loti, and Aldous Huxley complete a breathtaking tribute.