Monday 19 November 2018. Susan Rollin on ‘Mughals and Rajputs: Courts and Palaces of India’

Special Interest Day Synopsis


Lectures 1 & 2 – The Mughal empire and its predecessors: Islam in India

From the end of the 12C northern India was governed by a succession of Islamic dynasties whose rulers had invaded the subcontinent over the Hindu Kush.  The last and most successful of these invaders were the Mughals, who arrived in the 16C and controlled most of northern and central India until the advent of the British Raj.  In these two lectures we look briefly at the legacy of India’s first Islamic rulers and then take a tour of the splendid art and architecture of the four capital cities of the Mughal empire, Delhi, Agra, Fatehpur Sikri and Lahore. In particular we focus on the magnificent royal courts of the first six emperors of the Mughal dynasty, often known as ‘the Great Mughals’, whose creative building culminated in that most ethereal of monuments, the Taj Mahal, created by Shah Jahan in memory of his beloved Queen.


Lecture 3 – Palaces and Princes of Rajasthan

A look at the art and architecture of the Rajputs, Hindu rulers of north-western India who belonged to the warrior caste.  From the 16C the powerful Rajput princes were subject to the Mughals and for their services to the empire they were well rewarded with titles, privileges and land. With their ample wealth the Rajput maharajas built majestic fort-palaces in their state capitals and sponsored artists and craftsmen who created distinctive styles of art. In this lecture we visit some of the finest royal residences and glimpse life and ceremony at the glittering Rajput courts.

Details of the day

The day will start at 10:00 and end at approximately 15:00

Cost is £35 and includes coffee and a buffet lunch

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Members from other societies are welcome subject to the usual proviso that in the event that the day is oversubscribed, Romsey members take precedence.

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