Tombs built across the globe have unique stories. While many continue to stand tall, some have become a victim of natural or man-made disasters. These funerary structures replicate different traditions, cultures, and rituals of places and their people. Every society and civilization had its ideas of the afterlife, which, to an extent, is reflected in the architecture of these tombs, mausoleums, or crypts. Here’s a list of some famous tombs from around the world –
Taj Mahal, Agra
India’s marble marvel, the Taj Mahal, is one of the world’s well-preserved and finest works of Mughal architecture. Rabindranath Tagore described this white beauty of Agra as “a teardrop on the cheek of time”. Taj Mahal was built by Shah Jahan in memory of his beloved wife Mumtaz Mahal between 1631 and 1648
Humayun’s Tomb, Delhi
Mughal Emperor Humayun’s tomb was built in the 1570s and was the first garden tomb in India. It is one of the major tourist attractions in Delhi. The tomb is also called the ‘dormitory of the Mughals’ because over 150 Mughal family members are buried in the cells.
Tutankhamun’s tomb near Luxor, Egypt
On November 4, 1922, a team headed by Egyptologist Howard Carter excavated the tomb of Tutankhamun also known as the ‘Tomb of King Tut’ in the Valley of the Kings, in Egypt. He was an Egyptian pharaoh who ruled from 1333 BCE until he died in 1323 BCE. The king is believed to have died at the age of 19 and was mummified as per the traditions and buried in a tomb filled with artwork, jewellery, and treasures. The tomb of King Tut gave the world a glimpse of the traditions and grandeur of the Ancient Egyptians with which they sent their dead into the afterlife.
Shah-i-Zinda means the living king, is one of the most famous mausoleums located in Samarkand, Uzbekistan. It is believed that Qutham ibn Abbas, a cousin of the Prophet Muhammad, is buried here. The site attracts tourists in large numbers, round the year.
The Great Pyramids of Giza, Egypt
The Great Pyramids of Giza, are monumental tombs that are relics of Egypt’s old era and were constructed some 4,500 years ago. The pharaohs believed that they would become gods in the afterlife and hence they erected temples and pyramid tombs for themselves. They filled the tombs with everything needed to guide the rules into the afterlife. Other, smaller pyramids located nearby are pyramids for Pharaoh Khufu’s wives and tombs for nobles.