Lahore Fort

Location: 

Category: 
World Heritage Site
Protected Under: 
Antiquities Act, 1975

Early history of the Fort is shrouded in mystery and nothing definite is known about it. Traditionally it is stated that the Fort was built as early as the city itself and its foundation is attributed to mythic Loh a son of the hero of Ramayana of Legendry age (1200-800 B.C).

The authentic mention of the Fort is found in connection with Muhammad Son's invasion of Lahore in 1180 A.D and was rebuilt by Emperor Balban in 1267 A.D. In the present shape, it was built by Akbar third Mughal Emperor in 1566 A.D. who removed its mud construction, used burnt brick masonry and enlarged it as well.

To determaine its origin, excavations were carried out in the Fort by the Department of Archaeology, in the open lawn in front of Diwan-i-Am in 1959. A trench measuring 180 by 60 feet  laid and the digging executed down to a depth of 50 feet reaching to the virgine soil.  As a result twenty stratified cultural layers were encountered from top to bottom formed four distinct periods, British and Sikh, Mughal , Pre-Mughal and the pre-Muslim.

Lahore fort is the only place in Pakistan which represents the different phases in the development of Mughal architecture. It achieved prominence during the reign of Emperor Akbar. Afterwards his successors, Jahangir, Shah Jahan and Aurangzeb added numerous new buildings.

The Fort is situated in the north west corner of the city. It is irregular in plan being about 500 yards east to west by some 400 yards north to south. It is girdled round by a fortification wall constructed in small brunt brick having considerable strength. At intervals the wall has bastions and holes for musketry.

The important buildings of the fort are Dault Khana-e-Khas-o-Am, Sleepimng Chamber of Emperor Jahangir, Shish Mahal, Diwan-e-Am, Diwan-e-Khas, Moti Masjid, Alamgiri Gate, etc.