The wondrous truth of the Palace of Lights!
The city of Nawabs is known for its rich and enticing culture and heritage that stands in the form of various archaic structures in the old city today. These monuments are a testimony of the history and civilisation of the Mughals, who ruled over the Province of Awadh. One such distinct structure is Lucknow's Chota Imambara, popularly known as the Imambara Hussainabad Mubarak.
The Chota Imambara is located to the west of the Bada Imambara and is a sight to behold, specially when its crystal lamps light up. Read further to know 7 interesting facts about the Lucknow's glittering pride, the Chota Imambara-
The Chota Imambara in Lucknow was built by the third Nawab of Awadh, Muhammad Ali Shah as a congregation hall for the province's Shia Muslims, especially during Muhorram- the first month of the Islamic calendar. This structure is about 183 year old and houses the graves of Nawab Ali Shah and his mother.
This wondrous structure is known for its five arching doorways- emphasising on the importance of the Panjetan or Pentagon- the significant religious leader of Islam- the Holy 5 namely Prophet Muhammad, Hazrat Ali, Hazrat Fatima, Hazrat Hassan and Hazrat Hussain. The doorways are also detailed in verses from the holy Quran which are written in calligraphic Arabic script.
The striking white marble of this historical monument has been constructed in Indo-Islamic and Persian structural and architectural designs. The ornate turrets, gilded domes, minarets, large courtyards, lush gardens and a leading pond make this ancient wonder a popular structure that marks the beauty and genius of the Mughal architecture.
Palace of Lights
The interiors of Chota Imambara are magical and narrate the tale of magnificence and glory of Awadh. The indoors have been designed to have two halls called the Azakhana and Shehnasheen. The beautiful green and white foyer of Azakhana is decorated with lights and chandeliers which are lit during special occasions. These lights are reason why the Europeans call the Chota Imambara of Lucknow the Palace of Lights.
These chandeliers of the Azakhana are of two types- The floor lamps and the hanging chandeliers. These crystal- light decorations are said to be imported from all the way from Belgium.
Taj Mahal Tombs
The Chota Imambara houses two replicas of the Taj Mahal in Agra. These replicas stand as the mausoleums of Princess Zinat, daughter of Nawab Muhammad Ali Shah and her husband.
Right opposite the Chota Imambara stands the Satkhnda which literally translates to 7 floors. Despite the name, the structure has only 4 stories and stands as an incomplete tower for its construction was stopped after the death of Nawab Muhammad Ali Shah. This watch tower was being built for lunar observations in the 19th Century and was supposed to be a structure similar to the similar to Delhi's Qutb Minar or the Leaning Tower of Pisa.
To know more such quirky and historical facts about Lucknow's historical wonders, follow Knocksense Lucknow on Instagram!