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Monday Flashback 20 – Rumi Darwaza, Lucknow

RUMI DARWAZA – “A SYMBOL OF LUCKNOW’S TRYST WITH DESTINY” and a Unique Sustainable Structure in the City of Nawabs.

Rumi Darwaza was built by the fourth Nawab of Lucknow, Nawab Asaf-ud-Daula in 1784-86 and is believed to be similar to an old gate in Istanbul called Bab-iHümayun, and so is also sometimes referred to as Turkish Gate.

The 60 feet high gate is known for its architectural beauty, built for a noble cause. In 1748 North India, particularly Awadh, was facing the scarcity of food and employment and survival of most of the population was at stake. To help people overcome this Nawab Asaf-ud-Daula decided to build the Bara Imambara along with Rumi Darwaza for employment generation. Over the next two years, these illustrious buildings were constructed and is now there for everyone to see. This building symbolizes labor of love i.e. was constructed for pleasure and for no reward.

The architectural style of the Rumi Darwaza is completely in sync with the Nawabi architecture of Lucknow. The material used for the Darwaza is bricks coated with lime. The detailing on the Darwaza is more embellished thereby making it mesmerizing to see.

It is a huge sumptuous structure, marked by an eight faceted chhatri (umbrella) in its uppermost part that can be accessed by the staircase. In earlier times it was used to mark the entrance to the Old Lucknow City.

The most breathtaking about  Rumi Darwaza is lantern kept at the top that would light up the structure at night making it look thrillingly beautiful. Water sprinklers that rush out of the sides of the arch are in form of beautifully carved flower buds thus making it look like a passage to heaven. The beautifully carved flowers and designs speak volumes about the unique architectural style and eye for detail. The Rumi Darwaza is truly a grandeur and must visit if you are traveling to Lucknow.

The word “Rumi”  was derived from the modern day Rome that used to be Istanbul, the capital city of Eastern Roman Empire.

The Rumi Darwaza has become the existing symbol of Lucknow, depicting the royal Nawabi Culture, whether it’s tourism promotion or simply building a brand for the city.




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