May 12, 2010

Lalbagh Fort - Dhaka 1875

View of the south gate to Lalbagh Fort

Lalbagh Fort, south entrance, south view

Lalbagh Fort, south entrance, north view

Photograph taken in the 1870s by an unknown photographer of the Lal Bagh Fort in Dhaka, now the capital of Bangladesh. Prince Muhammad Azam, the son of the Mughal Emperor Aurangzeb, began building the Fort in about 1677 but it was never completed. One of the principal attractions in the Old City of Dhaka, it has three storeys and the complex contains many buildings including the tomb of Pari Bibi or 'Fairy Lady', the wife of a Mughal governor of Bengal, and a huge mosque. The area has a hot, damp tropical climate and is flooded periodically by waters from the Bay of Bengal as well as from the yearly moonsoon. By the 19th century many of the once-elegant Mughal buildings in the city were left in ruins by the action of both the climate and the resultant wildly luxuriant overgrowth of trees and vegetation which lent them a picturesque look and made them popular subjects for artists and photographers.