Jahangir’s Tomb, Asif Khan, and Akbari Sarai, Lahore

The tomb of 4th Mughal Emperor, Noor-ud-Din Muhammad Jahangir (1569-1627 A.D) stands in the middle of an enormous garden on the right bank of River Ravi at Shahdara  town on the north- western outskirts of Lahore. Jahangir died at Rajauri on his way to Kashmir and according to his will; his dead body was brought to Lahore and buried in a beautiful garden called, Dilkusha, owned by his favorite and celebrated queen Noor Jahan. The monument took ten years in building and cost Rs.10 lakhs. The contemporary court accounts credit Shahjahan, son of Jahangir, with the construction of his father’s tomb; it is more likely to have been the result of Noor Jahan’s vision.

Present Condition (Exterior & Interior): - The monuments, its garden and its surroundings are in good presentable condition. A lot of work has been done and also is being done for the restoration and stabilization of the monument and upkeep of garden.  

Decorative motives/ important features: - The garden and the tomb are enclosed by a high brick wall with an imposing gateway on the western side linking Akbari serai. The entire garden is divided into four main parterres and further sub divided into sixteen equal squares by brick paved walkways with water channels. Each intersection is marked by an alternate octagonal and square cistern.  The division of garden is an attempt to follow the setting of a Chahar Bagh Rauza (paradisal garden mausoleum). The tomb is a single-storey square building, measuring 267 feet on each side and standing on a high platform. The most striking feature of the building is its arcaded verandah of the inner sanctuary, which runs in front of the series of rooms and four vaulted bays lead to the central burial chamber. The burial chamber contains the marble tomb stone of the Emperor marking the grave underneath. The sarcophagus and the platform are convolutedly inlaid with semi- precious and precious stones depicting floral pattern and ninety- nine attributes of Allah. The bay leading to the grave is profusely ornamented with fresco paintings on the ceiling and side walls at dado level, are bedecked with tile mosaic work. Designs finished with cut pieces of various stones such as Snag-e- Badal, Sang-e Abri and black and white marble on the floor making the overall aesthetic impact more enchanting. Hardly any part is left unembellished. The inner sanctuary is screened by a panel of fine marble beehive fretwork. Four octagonal minarets on each corner of the square structure are built. Each minaret is raised in four stages and crowned with cupola. The three stages in the middle are decorated with horizontally laid zigzag design by inlaying white, yellow, and black marble. Each stage is defined by railing supported with marble bracket. The entrance gate from Akbari Serai is double storey building, the exterior of which is decorated with inlaid geometric and floral designs registered in red sandstone panels. The half of the dome of the arched entrance bears honeycombed pendentives flanked by panels representing summit and bouquet of flowers. see images