Jama Masjid In Agra
Jama Masjid at Fatehpur Sikri, near Agra is also known as the Jami Masjid. The mosque is one of the largest in India. The Jama Masjid is exquisitely decorated with inscriptions, inlaid geometric designs and colored tiles. The building is symmetrically proportioned and has an austere beauty, befitting its religious purpose.
History of Jama Masjid(jami Masjid)
It was constructed in 1571 A.D. during the reign of the Mughal Emperor Akbar the Great. The mosque is built at a height due to its exalted purpose and has a large courtyard where the faithful can gather to pray. To the right of the mosque is the Jammat Khana hall and then the Zenana Rauza, or the tomb of the women of the royal household.
Architecture of Jama Masjid
Jama Masjid is India's largest mosque and can hold 25,000 worshipers at one time. Wide red sandstone steps lead to entrances on the North, South and East sides of the mosque. The tower is made up of five distinct storeys, each marked by a projecting balcony. Beautiful calligraphy adorns its adjacent edifices. The first three storeys of the tower are made of red sandstone, the fourth is made of marble, while the fifth is made of sandstone again. The main entrance is through the 54-meter-high Buland Darwaza, the Gate of Victory, constructed to commemorate Akbar's victory in Gujarat. This impressive gateway is reached by an equally impressive flight of steps. Inside is the massive courtyard dominated by two red and white striped sandstone minarets which cap the main prayer hall on the west side (facing Mecca). On Fridays and other holy days the courtyard is filled with devotees who come in for 'Namaaz'.
Attractions near by Jama Masid
The lattice screen tomb of Islam Khan, one of the nobles buried here, is also worth seeing. The focus of the Sufi shrine or 'dargah' is the relatively small but exquisite tomb of Sheikh Salim Chisti, much of which was originally crafted in red stone and only later faced in marble. The lattice screens are the most intricate and beautiful in the world, with serpentine brackets supporting the eaves. To the left of the Jami Masjid is the Stone-Cutter's Mosque, the oldest place of worship at Fateh Pur Sikri. The main entrance is through Buland Darwaza, though it is advisable to enter through the eastern entrance known as the Badshahi Darwaza, as emperor Akbar used to enter through this door from his Khwabgah for daily prayers.
Buland Darwaza and Badshahi Darwaza
A grand gateway known as the Buland Darwaza leads you to the Jama Masjid. This gateway, which stands 40 meters high, was constructed to commemorate Akbar's victory in the Kandesh military campaign. There is another magnificent gate known as the Badshahi Darwaza, which also has a beauty and grandeur of its own. One of the most important tourist attractions in Agra, a visit to the Jama Masjid would really be a worthwhile experience.
More about Jama Masjid:
Timings: It is open on all days from 7.00 a.m - 600 p.m (Summer/ 8:30 a.m - 5:00 p.m (Winter)
Best time to visit: From October to till March
How to reach: Agra airport (7kms), buses from Agra Fort and Idgah bus stand or local buses, taxis etc.
Location: Hing ki Mandi, Mantola, Agra, Uttar Pradesh
Significance: Largest Mosque in India.