DR Ambedkar IAS Academy

Humayun’s Tomb: In the Memory of an Emperor

Humayun’s Tomb in Delhi is the first-of-its-kind opulent mausoleum built in India and also the first garden-tomb in the country. Also known as Maqbara-e-Humayun, this splendid 16th-century monument looks less like a tomb and more like a luxurious palace. It is among the best-preserved heritage monuments in Delhi that embody Mughal architectural grandeur. If you are planning a trip and booking your hotels in Delhi, make sure to include this grand edifice in your itinerary.

Want to know more about this final refuge of Emperor Humayun? Here’s everything you should know about Humayun’s Tomb in Delhi, including its architecture, history, entry details, and even lesser-known facts.

 Humayun’s Tomb Information:

LocationMathura Road, Nizamuddin East
Timings6:00 am to 6:00 pm; every day
StatusUNESCO World Heritage Site 
Entry Fee₹ 30 for Indians; ₹ 500 for foreigners
Still CameraFree 
Video Camera₹ 25
Nearest Metro StationJawaharlal Nehru Stadium 
Also Known asMaqbara-i-Humayun
Commissioned byBegum Bega aka Haji Begum, Humayun’s first wife
Year of Establishment1565 to 1572
ArchitectMirak Mirza Ghiyas and his son Sayyid Muhammad
Architectural StyleMughal Style 
Cost of Construction1.5 million rupees
Dimensions47 metres (height) x 91 metres (width)
Material UsedRed sandstone and white marble (for dome)

Humayun’s Tomb: History

This fine mausoleum was built near River Yamuna by Emperor Humayun’s first wife Begum Bega aka Haji Begum to immortalize the memory of her husband. Though the Emperor died in 1556, it wasn’t until 1565 that the construction for the monument began. After seven years of construction, the tomb and the surrounding Charbagh Garden were completed in 1572. Given the grandeur of the memorial, it’s no surprise that the construction cost came to 1.5 million rupees, which was completely borne by Begum Bega.

Over the centuries, Humayun’s Tomb witnessed much neglect and decline. In the 18th-century, the beautiful gardens surrounding the monument gave way to vegetable gardens. After the colonial rulers took over Delhi, the Charbagh Garden was overlaid with an English-style garden in 1860. However, in the early part of the 20th-century, the tomb complex was restored with the original gardens at the order of Lord Curzon, the then Viceroy of India.

The monument also played a major role in the modern history of India. At the time of the country’s partition in 1947, Humayun’s Tomb along with the Purana Qila served as refugee camps for those migrating to Pakistan. For almost five years the camps were held at this site, causing much damage to the main structure and the gardens. Later, when the monument came under the control of the Archaeological Survey of India, it was once again restored to its original glory.