Fatehpur Sikri near Agra 3/3

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Donald Pugh

Fatehpur Sikri (Hindi: फतेहपूर सिकरी, Urdu: پھتیہپُور سِکری) was the political capital of India's Mughal Empire under Akbar's reign, from 1571 until 1585, when it was abandoned, ostensibly due to lack of water. History and significance Fatehpur Sikri shared its imperial duties as a capital city with Agra, where a bulk of the arsenal, treasure hoards, and other reserves were kept at its Red Fort for security. During a crisis, the court, harem, and treasury could be removed to Agra, only 26 miles away, less than a day's march. Innovations in land revenue, coinage, military organisation, and provincial administration emerged during the Fatehpur Sikri years. Diwan-i-Khas Hall of Private AudienceIt is regarded as emperor Akbar's crowning architectural legacy. Indeed, its numerous palaces, halls, and masjids satisfy his creative and aesthetic impulses, typical of Mughals. Fatehpur Sikri is a World Heritage Site. Some contemporary Indian architects, notably B. V. Doshi, have cited it as an important source of inspiration. Architect or layperson, this city generally captures the imagination and wonder of all who experience its urban spaces and see its buildings. [edit] Design The layout of the city shows a conscious attempt to produce rich spatial effects by the organisation of built forms around open spaces in interesting ways. Of particular note is the way in which shifts in axes occur as one moves along the city and the location of squares in important places with buildings forming a backdrop or envelope. Unlike other important Mughal cities (such as Shahjahanabad, which has a very formal planning), Fatehpur Sikri has aspects of informality and improvisation. Indeed, the newly constructed city bore a similarity to the movable imperial encampment also designed by Akbar.«