Qutb Shahi Tombs

Qutub Shahi Tombs

Qutb Shahi Tombs

Human life is beautiful; it gives joys, sorrows, friends, foes, lessons, memories, and at the end of it, the soul departs, leaving the body defunct. Keeping aside the preachings of people who define body as a medium for the soul, the human race has valued the defunct bodies as a memorabilia of the soul that once lived within and was a part of mutual co-existence that was the result of genetic or sociological ties. Since the beginning of time, the bodies have been buried or preserved according to a standard procedure defined by the religion or creed the dead belonged to in their life. Some of the graveyards were made in the form of tombs that have now gained the stature of a historical monument. One prominent name in this list includes the Qutb Shahi Tombs of Hyderabad.

Where's Qutb Shahi Tombs located?

AddressQutub Shahi Tombs, Hyderabad, Telangana 500008, India

Built near the Golkonda fort in Hyderabad, the headquarters of the rulers of Qutb Shah Dynasty, the Qutb Shahi Tombs are equally famous and attractive as the fort is. The tombs are at the Ibrahim Bagh, another historical site that was made centuries later after the tombs were built. The various tombs are a remembrance of the ancient times and are now a part of the national heritage.

The famous Qutb Shahi Tombs are close to the Golkonda fort, another historical monument of that period. You can easily reach here through local transportation methods and private taxis.

Hyderabad is a metropolitan city with easy access by rail, road, and air transport to all the major centers of India.

Open hours

Monday – Friday:10:00 AM -6:00 PM
Saturday:10:00 AM -6:00 PM
Sunday:10:00 AM -6:00 PM
Public Holidays:10:00 AM -6:00 PM

History

The first tomb was made by and for Sultan Quli Qutub ul Mulk according to the custom that the tomb was to be build by the ruler while he was alive. Built in a unique style that comprise Persian, Pashtun, and Hindu architectural forms, the various sections of each tomb have been carefully designed to give it a royal touch and an exquisite feel for the visitors.

Structure

With an outer covering of green and blue tiles, the tombs stand on a platform at an elevation from the floor, and the stone coffin bears inscriptions and sculptures upon it at every tomb. With a dome, each tomb is built on a square base and though time has managed to disfigure some parts of the tombs, the key structure is still intact.

Surrounded by a beautiful garden and stonework carved with intense precision, the tombs were considered more than just a ground where the bodies would be buried. Inside the tombs, copies of Quran were kept for the visitors. There were carpets and chandeliers at the tombs, along with velvet canopies placed on silver poles. The tombs with golden spires signify the presence of sultan body in the tomb, whereas the tombs without the golden spire contain bodies of other members of the royal family.

With time, the tombs started losing the significance and laid there discarded until the nineteenth century when Sir Salar Jung III noticed the degrading condition of the tombs and ordered restoration in order to maintain the site for the generations to come. The garden and compound wall were built to enhance the beauty and safety of the tombs.

What to Do

Each and every tomb is unique in itself. Therefore, the visitors should not discard other tombs after looking at their first during the visit. The dimensions and appearance of each tomb differ owing to the fact that they were custom made by the ruler for himself and that adds to the beauty of the tomb.

The first tomb of Sultan Quli Qutub ul Malik is built at a height of 30 meters. The chamber is ten meters long on each side and is in an octagonal form. The circular dome above appears like a crown and is a motif to establish the identity of the royal blood that is buried down inside. With three graves in the chamber and twenty-one on the terrace, this is a magnificent example of the ancient architecture styles. The main tomb is inscribed with the words “Bade Malik” that translates to the “Great Master”, synonymous with the position held by the ruler. This tomb was built in 1543 A.D.

The tomb of Sultan Quli Qutub’s son Jamsheed in near to the Sultan’s tomb. This tomb is distinguished by the absence of shining black basalt, which was a key element in the construction of tombs during that period. Another distinguishing feature of this tomb is that it rises in two stories, a factor that is missing in other tombs. There is no inscription of any kind in this tomb, and so is the case with the tomb of Subhan, son of Jamsheed Quli Qutub Shah.

The tomb built by Sultan Ibrahim Quli Qutub Shah in 1580 was larger as compared to the tomb of Sultan Quli’s tomb. The southern wall of this tomb was once adorned by enameled tiles that are still visible. All the stone coffins of this tomb carry inscriptions made by three famous calligraphists of that period. With two graves in the main chamber and an additional sixteen at the terrace, this tomb stands gracefully apart from other tombs.

The burial chamber of Sultan Muhammad Quli Qutub Shah, built in 1602 A.D., depicts the mastery of architects and the creative inputs of the Sultan himself. Standing atop on a terrace four meter above from the ground, the chamber is approximately sixty five meter square in area. You have to go through the stairs to look at the tomb that is in a vault beneath the terrace, and is inscribed with Persian and Naskh scripts.

The burial chamber of Muhammad Qutub Shah, the sixth ruler of the Qutub Shah Dynasty was built in 1826 A.D., and became the last tomb to be built by the rulers of the dynasty. The seventh ruler, Abul Hasan Qutub Shah, was unable to build a tomb for himself, as he was held captive and took his last breath as a prisoner, within the four walls of the fortress he was kept at.

Apart from the rulers, some of the members of the royal family were lucky enough to have tombs built in their names. One amongst them was Fatima Sultan, sister of Muhammad Qutub Shah. Within her tomb, there are several graves.

A family like bond existed between the hakims (physicians) and the royal family. This bond became the foundation for laying tombs for two very closely associated physicians Nizamuddin Ahmed Gilani and Abdul Jabbar Gilani. A twin-tomb was built in 1651 for both the physicians.

Another lucky pair in whose name tombs were built were two favorite courtesans of Sultan Abdullah Shah, Premamati and Taramati, bodies of whom were buried close to the tomb of Sultan Abdullah Shah.

Neknam Khan, commander-in-chief of Abdullah’s army, had a tomb built in his name two years after he died.

The dargah of Hazrat Hussain Shah Wali, the mosque of Hayat Bakshi Begum, and the mortuary where dead bodies were washed before burial surround the tomb on different sides. These structures are again a specimen of the brilliant structures visualized and created during the period when royalty was the way of life.

Your trip to the famous Qutb Shahi Tombs of Hyderabad is incomplete without tasting the local cuisines and visiting other historical landmarks that are not far from the Tombs. Do remember to plan everything in advance so that when the time comes, you are able to enjoy a hassle free journey.

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