Monumental icon

The Qutb Minar as seen from the main entrance to the complex.

Balconies with mini alcoves separate the different storeys of the Qutb Minar. The first storey has alternate circular and angular flutings, the second has circular flutings and the third has angular flutings.

The madrasa complex that Alauddin Khalji built.

The Masid-i jami. The Qutb mosque has erroneously been called the Quwwat-ul-Islam, or the "Might of Islam".

The interior chamber of Iltumish's tomb. One can see the squinch arches, pendentives and the marble mihrab (niche on the qibla wall) and cenotaph.

Imam Zamin's grave.

Vertical bands of Arabic calligraphy and leafy arabesques on the screen Qutbuddin Aibak constructed.

The courtyard of the Qutb mosque. The screen Qutbuddin Aibak erected around 1199 is on the left and the portion Iltutmish added lies on the right. In the centre is the Iron Pillar, which has not rusted or corroded in over 1,600 years.

The inscription on the Iron Pillar.

The Qutb mosque as seen from the south.

The incomplete Alai Minar. Alauddin Khalji had planned it to be twice as big as the Qutb Minar, but it was abondoned following his death.

One of the calligraphic bands on the Qutb Minar.

Statues that once adorned temples.

Kirti mukha, a common decorative motif on the reused pillars of the Qutb mosque.

A carved pillar in the eastern cloister of the Qutb mosque.

The Alai Darwaza. It was the first building in India to employ wholly Islamic architectural principles of construction in terms of symmetry and ornamentation.

A horseshoe arch in the Darwaza with beautifully carved lotus buds on its underside.

The tomb of Imam Zamim where the dome rises from an octagonal drum decorated with a double row of kanguras (battlement motifs) and marble panelling above the chajja (eaves).

Smith's Folly, the cupola that once rested on the top of the Qutb Minar and was pulled down on the orders of Lord Hardinge.

1 / 0
The Qutb Minar as seen from the main entrance to the complex.
Sign in to Unlock member-only benefits!
  • Bookmark stories to read later.
  • Comment on stories to start conversations.
  • Subscribe to our newsletters.
  • Get notified about discounts and offers to our products.
Sign in


Comments have to be in English, and in full sentences. They cannot be abusive or personal. Please abide to our community guidelines for posting your comment