is the capital and largest city of the southern Indian state of Andhra Pradesh. At an average altitude of 542 metres (1,778 ft), much of Hyderabad is situated on hilly terrain around
. The supervision of a poet, architect and an aesthete has led to the formation of the building of a city, beauty, balance and symmetry. What leads you to a romance with the city of Hyderabad, is the love story of a young prince and a village belle that laid the foundation of the city. Hyderabad is the city of Nizams known for its bead and pearl work done dexterously.
History of Hyderabad
Hyderabad was historically known as a pearl and diamond trading centre, and it continues to be known as the City of Pearls. Hyderabad was modeled after Isfaan in Iran and was built under the supervision of the prime minister Mir Momin, a poet, architect and an aesthete. The construction of the city was completed in 1592. It has a grid plan of two broad intersecting streets with the Charminar as a kind of triumphal arch at the center. The French traveler, Tavernier in 1652, compared Hyderabad to Orleans 'well built and opened out' and in 1672, Abbe Carr was much impressed by the city as the trade center of the countries in the East.
Legend Behind the City
One popular theory suggests that Muhammad Quli Qutb Shah, the founder of the city, named it "Bhaganagar" or "Bhāgnagar" after Bhagmati, a local nautch (dancing) girl with whom he had fallen in love. She converted to Islam and adopted the title Hyder Mahal
. The city was renamed Hyderabad
in her honour. The city was called Bhagnagar (the city of fortune) to appease his beloved, Bhagmati. Later on it was renamed as Hyderabad. When he ascended the throne, Muhammad Quli built the Charminar at the site of the village.
Places to see in Hyderabad
The Charminar :
Has four wide roads radiating in the four cardinal directions. The structure is square, each side measuring 100 feet, with a central pointed high arch at the center. The whole edifice contains numerous small decorative arches arranged both vertically and horizontally. The projected canopy, ornamental brackets and decoration in stucco plaster add graceful elegance to the structure. The upper courtyard was used as a school and for prayers at the mosque. The minarets, their domed finials, rise to 180 feet from the ground.
The Mecca Masjid
The Galleries Of Charminar :
There are two galleries in it, one over another, and all over a terrace that serves for a roof, bordered with a stone balcony. In its heyday, the Charminar market had some 14,000 shops, a unique conglomeration of a grand oriental bazaar. The whole market around the Charminar is crowded with shops of glass bangles in rainbow colors - Red, blue, green, yellow, orange, mauve and pink-and many more.
The Mecca Masjid :
Near the Charminar stands the Mecca Masjid
, whose construction started by Muhammad Qutb Shah in 1617 and completed by Quranzeb in 1693. It is a grand edifice with a huge courtyard, which can accommodate nearly ten thousand men at prayer. The other two mosques--the Jami Masjid and the Toli Masjid-are small and modest structures in the city. The Falakuma palace, the Chowmukha palace, the Regency Mansion, built in 1803, the Husain Sagar Lake, Naubat Pahad, a hilltop crowned by the Birla temple, Osman Sagar and Himayat Sagar, the Nehru Zoological Park the Salar Jung museum are some other tourist places.