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•The beginnings of Indian architecture are more properly to be dated to the advent of
Buddhism in India.
•In the reign of Ashoka (c. 270-232), the construction of Buddhist monasteries and
stupas took place – the first architectural works of India. Buddhist architecture was
predominant for several centuries.
The Great Mosque of Djenné is a large banco that is
considered by many architects to be one of the greatest
achievements. it is one of the most famous landmarks in
Africa. Along with the “Old Town Of Djenné" it was
designated a World Heritage Site by UNESCO in 1988.
•By the eighth century, with the consolidation of Hindu
kingdoms, the southern Hindu school of architecture was
beginning to flourish.
• Notable achievements of the Pallavas - rock-cut temples
of Mahabalipuram and the temples of Kanchipuram.
•In north India, meanwhile, architecture was to be a more
contentious matter. The period from 1000-1300 was a time
when Hindu architecture flourished throughout India.
North Africa saw the rise of Islamic architecture, including famous structures as the Great Mosque
of Kairouan or the Cairo Citadel.
Well-known structures employing the use of monoliths (a large single upright block of stone,
especially one shaped into or
serving as a pillar or monument)
include tombs such
as the “Tomb Of the False Door"
and the tombs of Kaleb and
Gebre Mesquel in Axum.
• West Africa: locals lived in domed-
shaped dwellings in the king's section
of the city ( Kumbi Saleh); section which
possessed 12 beautiful mosques.
• Central Africa: Mostly dependent on
Island architecture , as this part is largely in
between the waters ; 1. Zimbabwean style
2. Transvaal Free State style have been very prominent at
The weakness of Muslim dynasties in the north enabled Rajput kings to assert their
independence; the results of this Hindu revival are to be seen in Chittor, and
elsewhere in Rajasthan where massive forts dot the landscape. In north India,
meanwhile, architecture was to be a more contentious matter. The fabled temple at
Somnath, renowned for its purported riches, is said to have been destroyed by the
Muslim invader Mahmud of Ghazni, and after the attainment of Indian independence,
the restoration of this temple became a matter of national pride for more ardent
defenders of the faith.
The Mughal emperors of India, most particularly Humayun, Akbar, Jahangir, and Shah
Jahan, were heavily invested in monumental architecture and spent lavishly on the
construction of mosques, mausoleums, forts, palaces, and other buildings. The
principal sites of Mughal Architecture.-
Now a part of Old Delhi, Its most famous buildings include
the Jama Masjid, one of the largest mosques in the world, and
the Red Fort (Lal Qila), which over the last four hundred
years has become uniquely emblematic of state power. Akbar
likewise built a new capital at Fatehpur Sikri, a few miles
The Islamic conquest of North Africa saw Islamic Architecture develop in the region,
including such famous structures as the great Mosque of Kairouan or the Cairo Citadel.
Ghana-The Great Mosque of Djenne
Benin-Walls of Benin City
Yoruba- Sungbo's Eredo
Kitara and Bunyoro- earthworks
near the Katonga River
Nubia (Christian and Islamic)-
• Meroitic Pyramids
•The city of Kerma
•The Western Deffufa
•Temple of Debod
Kongo- The capital
of the Kingdom of Kongo
In Southern Africa one finds ancient and widespread
traditions of building in stone. Two broad categories of these
tradition have been noted: 1. Zimbabwean style 2. Transvaal
Free State style.
Shona-The conical tower inside the Great Enclosure in Great
Zimbabwe, a medieval city built by a prosperous culture
Sotho-Tswana-Terraced hill, entrance
way of Khami, capital of the Torwa State
During the early modern period, the absorption of new diverse influences
such as Baroque, Arab, Turkish and Gujarati Indian style began with the
arrival of Portuguese Jesuit missionaries in the 16th and 17th centuries.
Portuguese soldiers had initially come in the mid-16th century as allies to
aid Ethiopia in its fight against Adal, and later Jesuits came hoping to convert
Castles were built especially beginning with the reign of Sarsa Dengel around
the Lake Tana region, and subsequent Emperors maintained the tradition,
eventually resulting in the creation of the Fasil Ghebbi (royal enclosure of
castles) in the newly founded capital (1635), Gondar. Emperor Susenyos
(r.1606-1632) converted to Catholicism in 1622 and attempted to make it the
state religion, declaring it as such from 1624 until his abdication; during this
time, he employed Arab, Gujarati (brought by the Jesuits), and Jesuit masons
and their styles, as well as local masons, some of whom were Beta Israel.
During the British Raj many new buildings were erected. There are
several important architectural structures of the colonial period. The
most noteworthy architectural phenomenon in the first half of the 20th
Century in India was the building of Imperial Delhi, a masterpiece by Sir
Edward Lutyen. Built in high renaissance architecture, it had a typical
feel of early 19th Century Europe. Important erected structures-
•Gateway of India
The French colonized a fishing village (Pondicherry) in Tamil Nadu and
transformed it into a flourishing port-town. The town was built on the French
grid pattern and features neat sectors and perpendicular streets and divided into
two sectors, French Quarter (Ville Blanche) and the Indian quarter (Ville Noire).
French styled villas were styled with long compounds and stately walls, lined
houses with verandas, large French doors and grills. Infrastructure such as banks,
police station and Pondicherry International Port still hold the French presence.