Though the Muslims had accomplished the conquest of Sindh India ) in 712 yet India did not feel the impact of the Muslim cultural ideas until the beginning of the eleventh century when the repeated raids of Sultan Mahmud of Ghazna compelled her to take notice of the new force. He died in 1030 and he had appointed his representatives in the places he had conquered, especially in the Punjab and other parts. Many important monuments for the immediate requirements were constructed which unfortunately no longer exist.1 But the style of architecture created by the Ghaznavid dynasty was based on the prototypes of the Tulunid monuments of Egypt2 and those of the Abbassids at Samarra, as we have its specimens. I discovered an inscription from the Kãch mosque in Ahmadabad dated 445 H., A. D. 1053, 3 which shows that the mosque was built just twenty four years after the death of Mahmud of Ghazna, but the information afterwards inscribed on it shows that th6 inscription was taken from the very foundations of the present mosque when it was being erected during the early days of the Gujarat Muslim kings. Ahmadabad is not very far away from Somnath, the main centre of the raids of Mahmud. It is indeed remarkable that after about four centuries, the Muslim kingdom of Gujarat was established on the same spot. In short, it is evident that these Muslims already possessed a highly developed architecture because they were of Persian, Turkish and Afghan blood. There is no doubt that they were endowed with a natural instinct for the art of building, although in the beginning they were much influenced by Sasanian and Byzantine motifs,3 because Islamic art was not created by a nation like many western artistic movements, but by a religion which was, and is even today, the faith of many nations in many parts of the world. ....4
- 1. Kitab AdabuH-Harab wď sh-Shuja'at of Fakhr-i-Mudabbir, (extract) published in the suppl. Oriental College Magazine, Lahore 1938, pp. 38, 55. 8 Fergusson, History of Indian and Eastern Architecture London, 1910 Vol. II, p. >93.
- 2. Chaghtai, M. A., An Exhibition of Impressions of Inscriptions , Lahoré. 1936, p. 3.
- 3. Sir John Marshall, Monuments of Muslim India (Cambridge History of India ). Vol. HI, p. 571.
- 4. Text of the extension leoture delivered at the Bhandarkar Oriental Research Institute, Poona, on 20th February 1941. It was illustrated with forty slides.