The Qutb Minar (named after Qutb-ud-din-Aibak – the first Sultan of Delhi and founder of the Mamluk Dynasty of India) is part symbol of Islamic victory over the “infidels” in India and part minaret to the attached Might of Islam Mosque. Construction started in 1199 and it consists of five stories, the first three built by Qutb and the fourth by his son-in-law Iltutmish. The fifth storey was added at the same time as the tower was being repaired after being damaged by lightning in 1368.
Whilst the Qutb Minar itself clearly draws much of its architectural inspiration from the Muslim world, the Might of Islam Mosque (the earliest surviving in India) is very much a fusion of both Indian and Islamic styles. For me, it’s this clash of cultures and architectural traditions that makes the Qutb Minar complex one of the most fascinating historic monuments that we saw in India. This was helped, in no small way, by the rapidly fading light bathing everything in a sumptuous golden glow and casting dramatic shadows across the stone work……perfect conditions for photography:
© Mark Simms Photography (2014)