Ustad Ahmad Lahauri

Ustad Ahmad Lahauri

Ahmad Lahori
Born Badakhshan, Afghanistan
Buildings Taj Mahal

Ustad Ahmad Lahauri (Persian: استاد احمد لاهوری‎) was an architect and possibly a candidate for chief architect of the Taj Mahal; built between 1632 and 1648. He has been described as an architect in the court of Shah Jahan[1] from Afghanistan.[2][3]

Early life

He was a Persian-speaking Afghan from modern-day Badakhshan Province of Afghanistan.[4] The assertion is based on a claim made in writings by Lahauri's son Lutfullah Muhandis.[5][6][7]


Shah Jahan's court histories emphasise his personal involvement in the construction and it is true that, more than any other Mughal emperor, he showed the greatest interest in building, holding daily meetings with his architects and supervisors. The court chronicler Lahouri, writes that Shah Jahan would make "appropriate alterations to whatever the skilful architects designed after many thoughts, and asked competent questions."[3]

In writings by Lahauri's son Lutfullah Muhandis, two architects are mentioned by name; Ustad Ahmad Lahauri[5][7] and Mir Abd-ul Karim.[6] Ustad Ahmad Lahauri had laid the foundations of the Red Fort at Delhi (built between 1638 and 1648). Mir Abd-ul Karim had been the favourite architect of the previous emperor Jahangir and is mentioned as a supervisor,[h] together with Makramat Khan,[6] for the construction of the Taj Mahal.[8]

See also