Mehrangarh Fort in Jodhpur, India.It is on a steep 400 feet high hill, It is a combination of beauty and strength, It is about 550 years old, It is protected by 17 feet thick and 68 feet high walls, Finally, It is Mehrangarh, one of the largest forts in India. It is situated in Jodhpur, Rajasthan, India.
History Of Mehrangarh
In 1458, Rao Jodha (1438-1488), one of Rainmal's 24 sons became the fifteenth Rathore ruler. After one year of his accession, Jodha was suggested to move his capital to a safer place because one thousand years old Mandore fort was no longer considered to be strong and safe. This need for a safer place for Jodha gave India one of her largest forts, Mehrangarh.
The foundation of this fort was laid on May 12, 1459 by Jodha on a rocky hill which is 9 Km. south to Mandore. This hill was known as Bhaurcheeria, the mountain of birds. Its lone human occupant at the time was a hermit called Cheeria Nathji, the lord of birds. In order to create this fort, Cheeria Nathji was forced to leave his cave and the disturbed hermit left his place cursing Rao Jodha. His curse was "Jodha! May your citadel ever suffer a scarcity of water!". To avoid the consequences of this curse, Jodha try to appease the god by building a house and a temple in the fort very near the cave the hermit used for meditation.
Jodha then took the extreme step to ensure the new site proved propitious; he buried a man alive in the foundations. The man was Rajiya Bambi (Meghwal) and he was promised that in return his family would forever more be looked after by the Rathores.
Places in Fort
The Mehrangarh fort encloses many places, which are known for their intricate carvings and sprawling courtyards.
The Chamunda MataJi Temple
The Chamunda Mataji was Rao Jodha's favorite goddess, he brought her idol from the old capital of Mandore in 1460 and installed her in Mehrangarh. She remains the Maharaja's and the Royal Family's Isht Devi or adopted goddess and is worshipped by most of Jodhpur's citizens as well. Crowds throng Mehrangarh during the Dussehra celebrations.
Moti Mahal - The Pearl Palace
Built by Raja Sur Singh (1595-1619) the Moti Mahal is the largest of the Mehrangarh Museum's period rooms. Sur Singh's Moti Mahal has five alcoves leading onto hidden balconies; it is believed they were built for his five queens to listen in on court proceeding.
Sheesh Mahal - The Hall Of Mirrors
It is a fine example of a typical Rajput Sheesh Mahal. The mirror-work includes large, regular pieces, rather than an intricate mosaic of tiny fragments; another thing is the superimposition over the mirror-work of brightly painted religious figures made in plaster.]
Phool Mahal - The Palace Of Flowers
The Phool Mahal was created by Maharaja Abhaya Singh (1724-1749). The grandest of Mehrangarh's period rooms the Phool Mahal was in all likely hood a private and exclusive chamber of pleasure; dancing girls once swooned in exhaustion here under a ceiling rich in gold filigree.
Takhat Vilas - Maharaja Takhat Singh's Chamber
Built and lived in by Maharaja Takhat Singh (1843-1873), Jodhpur's last ruler to reside in the Mehrangarh Fort, Takhat Vilas is an interesting blend of styles, most traditional, but some, like the glass balls on the ceiling, testifying to the modern age which arrived with the British.
Galleries In Mehrangarh Museum
The howdahs were a kind of two-compartment wooden seat (mostly covered with gold and silver embossed sheets), which was fastened on to the elephant back. The front compartment with more leg space and raised protective metal sheet was meant for kings or royalty and rear smaller ones for a reliable bodyguard disguised flywhisk attendant.
Palanquins were a popular means of travel and circumambabulate for the ladies of the nobility upto the second quarter of the 20th century. They were also used by male nobility and royals on special occasions.
Daulat Khana - Treasures Of Mehrangarh Museum
This gallery displays one of the most important and best preserved collection of fine and applied arts of the Mughal period of Indian history, during which the Rathore rulers of jodhpur maintained close links with the Mughal emperors.
This Gallery displays a rare collection of Armour from every period in Jodhpur. On display are sword hilts in jade, silver, rhine horn, ivory, shields studded with rubies, emeralds and pearls, guns with gold and silver work on barrels. The gallery also has on display personal swords of many an emperor, among them are outstanding historical piece like the Khanda of Rao Jodha, weighing over 7 pounds, the sword of Akbar the Great and The sword of Timur the Lame.
This Gallery displays colours of Marwar-Jodhpur, the finest example of Marwar paintings.
The Turban Gallery
The Turban Gallery in the Mehrangarh Museum seeks to preserve, document and display the many, many different types of turbans once prevalent in Rajasthan ; every community, region and, indeed, festival has it's own head-gear and this diversity, the colors of the desert, is wonderfully brought out in this welcome addition to the museum.
The Folk Musical Instruments Gallery
There are a number of different types and kinds of folk musical instruments, some particular to a group or community, and some to a region.