(i) The Mughal period witnessed a significant and widespread development in cultural activity.
(ii) It was evident in the sphere of art and architecture, painting, music and literature.
(iii) The Mughals brought Turko-lranian culture into India and the Indian traditions were blended Turko-lranian culture.
(i) The Mughals were fond of laying gardens with running water. Some of the Mughal Gardens are:
(a) Nishat Bagh in Kashmir
(b) the Shalimar Bagh at Lahore
(c) the Pinjore garden in the Punjab
(ii) During the reign of Sher Shah, the mausoleum at Sasaram in Bihar and the Purana Qila near Delhi were built.
(iii) Large scale construction of buildings started with the dawn of Akbar
(a) He built many forts and the most famous one was the Agra Fort. It was built in red sandstone.
(b) His other forts are at Lahore and Allahabad.
(iv) Shah Jahan built the famous Red Fort at Delhi with its Rang Mahal, Diwan-i-Am and Diwan-i-Khas
(v) Akbar also built a palacecum-fort complex at Fatehpur Sikri (City of Victory).
(a) Many buildings in Guajarati and Bengali styles are also found in this complex
(b) Guajarati style buildings were probably built for his Rajput wives.
(c) The most magnificent building in it is the Jama Masjid and the gateway to it called Buland Darwaza or the Lofty Gate,
(d) The height of the gateway is 176 feet. It was built to commemorate Akbar's victory over Gujarat.
(e) Other important buildings at Fatehpur Sikri are Jodha Bai's palace and Panch Mahal with five storeys.
(vi) During Akbar's reign, the Humayun's tomb was built at Delhi and it had a massive dome of marble.
(vii) It may be considered the precursor of the Taj Mahal.
(viii) Akbar's tomb at Sikandara near Agra was completed by Jahangir.
(ix) Nur Jahan built the tomb of ltimaddaulah(her father) at Agra.
(a) It was constructed wholly of white marble with floral designs made of semiprecious stones on the walls. (Pietra dura)
(b) This method became more popular during the reign of Shah Jahan.
(x) Taj Mahal
(a) The Pietra Dura method was used on a large scale in the Taj Mahal,
(b) Taj Mahal is considered as jewel of the builder's art.
(c) It contains all the architectural forms developed by the Mughals.
(d) The chief glory of the Taj is the massive dome and the four slender minarets o The decorations are kept to the minimum.
(xi) The Moti Masjid at Agra was built entirely in white marble. The Jama Masjid at Delhi was built in red stone.
(xii) Many features of Mughal tradition can be seen in the Golden Temple at Amritsar.
(i) The foundation for the Mughal painting was laid by Humayun while staying in Persia.
(ii) He brought with him two painters - Mir Sayyid AN and Abdal Samad to India.
(a) commissioned the illustrations of several literary and religious texts.
(b) He invited a large number of painters from different parts of the country to his court.
(c) Both Hindus and Muslims joined in this work.
(d) Baswan, Miskina and Daswant attained great positions as Akabar's court as artists.
(e) Illustrations of Persian versions of Mahabharata and Ramayana were produced in miniature form.
(f) Art Studio established by Akbar. Historical works such as Akbar Nama also remained the main themes of Mughal paintings
(iv) Mughal paintings reached its climax during the reign of Jahangir.
(a) He employed a number of painters like Abul Hasan, Bishan Das, Madhu, Anant, Manohar, Govardhan and Ustad Mansur.
(b) European influence entered.
LANGUAGE AND LITERATURE
(i) Persian language became widespread in the Mughal Empire by the time of Akbar's reign
(a) Many historical works were written during this period.
(b) They include Ain-i-Akbari and Akabar Nama authored by Abul Fazl.
(c) The leading poet of that period was his brother Abul Faizi.
(d) The translation of Mahabharata into the Persian language was done under his supervision.
(e) Utbi and Naziri were the two-other leading Persian poets
(ii) Jahangir's autobiography, Tuzuk-i-Jahangiri was famous for its style
(a) He also patronized many scholars like Ghiyas Beg, Naqib Khan and Niamatullah
(iii) Shah Jahan also patronized many writers and historians
(a) like Abdul Hamid Lahori, author of Padshah
(b) Nama and Inayat Khan who wrote Shah Jahan Nama.
(iv) His son Dara Shikoh translated the Bhagavat Gita and Upanishads into the Persian language
(v) Regional languages such as Bengali, Oriya, Rajasthani and Guajarati had also developed during this period.
(vi) Many devotional works including the Ramayana and Mahabharata were translated into regional languages.
(vii) The most influential Hindi poet was Tulsidas, who wrote the Hindi version of the Ramayana, the Ramcharitmanas.
(i) Akbar patronized Tansen of Gwalior.
(ii) Tansen composed many ragas.
(iii) Jahangir and Shah Jahan were also fond of music.
(iv) Aurangzeb banned singing from his court but was fond of musical instruments.
(a) Aurangzeb was himself a Veena player
(b) Largest number of books on Music were written during his regime.
(v) Later, Muhammad Shah gave boost to music in the 18th century.
(i) Sikh movement in Punjab started.
(ii) Akbar was impressed by the teachings of gurus and he paid visit to them at Amritsar.
(iii) Minor or Personal Clashes began with Jehangir imprisoning guru Arjun Dev for helping rebel prince khusrau, later they conflicted during making of Jallandhar city near river Beas.
(iv) However, there was no environment for confrontation on the basis of religion during the 17th century.
(v) Maharshtra dharma in Maharashtra new movement came up.
(vi) Dara shikoh got Gita translated with help of the Brahmins of Kasi.
(vii) A saint Dadu preached nipakh path mostly around Rajasthan.
(viii) The sentiments of Orthodox Hinduism preached by Raghunandan of Bengal
(ix) Ram das in Maharashtra preached the philosophy of activism & he was also the political guru of Shivaji
(x) Amongst the muslims, the trend of tauhid (pantheistic mysticism) continued with Sufis supporting it. And small sections of orthodox ulema reacted against it.
(xi) The most popular orthodox preacher was the follower of Naqshbandi school of Sufis-Shaikh Ahmed Sirhindi.