fbpx

Originality? The Baby Taj

What moves those of genius, what inspires their work is not new ideas, but their obsession with the idea that what has already been said is still not enough. So said French Romantic painter, Eugene Delacroix a couple of centuries ago.  I wonder if there is any such thing as original thought left to be had or has everything already been said and just keeps on being said in a different way? Millions of variations on so few themes? I had thought that the Taj Mahal was an original, a one of a kind, but apparently it is based on the baby Taj down the road in Agra. What a disappointment that was. An irrational one, admittedly, as whether or not the Taj is original doesn’t make a blind bit of difference to my world – but it did upset me.

Baby Taj

Baby Taj

The tomb of I’timād-ud-Daulah is admittedly much smaller but nonetheless just as grand as the Taj Mahal it is said to have inspired. If anything, the rundown feel  adds to its charm. The tourists are noticeably absent. There was only a handful of people there besides myself. Even my guide decided to give it a miss, saying that I could just pop in on my way back to Greater Noida. I nearly gave it a miss, too. We had actually driven past it and were on the road home when I had second thoughts and doubled back. I didn’t want to regret not seeing it and am I glad I did.

Baby Taj

Baby Taj

Its faded glory is just as appealing as the grandeur of the Taj. The marble is the same as is the use of inlay and while a little restoration would do wonders for it, I found myself more engaged with its ruin that I might have been with its potential splendour. Given how impressed I was with the restored tombs in Hyderabad, that was a little surprising. Perhaps it’s that it seems to hold secrets, a treasure of stories that had I had the time to sit and listen it would happily have divulged. Or perhaps it’s that it’s comfortable being the poor cousin, happy with who it is. Or perhaps the whole India thing is getting to me and I’m putting too much effort into humanising these mausoleums. No matter. If you’re in Agra, don’t miss out.

Baby Taj

Baby Taj

Share:

Never miss a post

Sign up here to get an email whenever I post something new.

More Posts

Zalaszabar, Hungary, again

First-time visitors are easy. For them, everything is new. Repeat visitors are a tad more problematic. Don’t get me wrong. It’s great to see different

Szent György hegy, Hungary

The name Szent György hegy loses its magic in translation. The mundane St George’s hill doesn’t do justice to the beauty of the basalt homeland

Truth from the Cockpit

I miss travelling. I miss planes. And airports. And even RyanAir’s annoying we’re-ahead-of-schedule-but-only-because-we-buffered-the-timetable bugle call. Worse still, it’s taking me longer and longer to conjure

Dining with Pigeons in Southwestern Hungary

Unlike in Irish, the names of Hungarian villages and towns and cities don’t always translate into English. On the odd occasion that they do, they

6 Responses

  1. On my visits to India I have often found the ‘unrestored’ and ‘unvisited’ buildings the most interesting……mind you this is often the case with European buildings! The only downside to this in India is you sometimes have to share your visit with at best monkeys and bats and at worst………snakes!
    I do remember being dissapointed at the Taj Mahal…….perhaps because we all know it so well……….the baby Taj was a joy.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

%d bloggers like this: