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Emperor Humayun's Garden Tomb

Wall Mosque

Fountains

One characteristic of an Islamic paradise garden is the presence of moving water.1 Fountains are a landscape design element that make water move. According to the Qur'an, there are two fountains in paradise, Tasneem and Salasbil.2 In Surah 83, the Qur'an says that those who are close to Allah will drink from Tasneem, a fountain in a garden paradise,3 and in another description of paradise in Surah 76, a ginger wine mixture flows from a fountain called Salasbil. 4

"In the centre of each side [of the garden] are square tanks that contain fountains, originally fed by terracotta pipes bringing water from tanks or wells located outside the immediate garden enclosure."5

The fountains' pools are wide enough to obstruct the main paths while approaching the tomb. As a result of this obstacle, one is more likely to notice and hear the delicately moving water of the fountain while the path moves around the pool and returns to the axis of approach. These fountains have the same stylized lotus form as the guldastas on the tomb's facades.


1. J.L. Wescoat Jr., "The Islamic Garden: Issues for Landscape Research," Environmental Design: Journal of the Islamic Environmental Design Research Centre 1, (1986): 16.

2. J.L. Wescoat Jr., "Waterworks and Landscape Design in the Mahtab Bagh," in The Moonlight Garden: New Discoveries at the Taj Mahal, ed. Elizabeth B. Moynihan (Washington, D.C.: Arthur M. Sackler Gallery; Seattle: University of Washington Press, 2000), 71.

3. Qur'an 83:18-29.

4. Qur'an 76:16-17.

5. Ratish Nanda, "The Area of Humayun's Tomb," in Heritage of the Mughal World, ed. Philip Jodidio (Munich: Prestel, 2015), 169.

Illustrations

Fountain at Humayun's Garden Tomb
A Fountain with a Lotus Shape
South Fountain
While approaching the tomb from the South Gate, a pool and chadar appear before reaching the fountain, making for a beautiful scene.
The Hammam
There are four fountains at Humayun's Garden Tomb, one at each cardinal direction and aligned with the tomb.

Additional Information

A formal bibliography is posted on the outline page.
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