Overview of the Mughal Gardens Catalogue
The twelve Mughal gardens from the fifteenth to the seventeenth centuries selected for this catalogue were all located along the Grand Trunk Road. It traversed the Indian subcontinent, from modern-day Bangladesh to Pakistan, and, running through the Indo-Gangetic plain, was a region favorable for garden life. This sample, ranging from hunting grounds to tombs, is of court-commissioned gardens that found their way into chronicles. Most useful to the contributors are the memoirs of the late sixteenth-century Mughal emperor Jahangir (Tūzuk-i-Jahāngīrī), which provides detailed architectural information of some of the imperial gardens (e.g., the tank complex of Hiran Minar, Sheikhupura). It would greatly benefit the researcher to read each of the catalog entries in tandem with the rich and complex garden histories of the Mughal dynasty that the original contributors offer below, beginning with the legacy of Babur, the first Mughal ruler who transported the Iranian garden and landscape tradition to the subcontinent.
This catalogue is limited to gardens commissioned by the Mughal court and located on the Grand Trunk Road. It should therefore be kept in mind that this only takes a limited view of Mughal garden culture. The full list of gardens is listed below, or you can search by various criteria here.