The Taj Mahal is perhaps the most beautiful and wondrous buildings still standing ( sorry Hanging Gardens of Babylon). The structure was built for Mogul Emperor Shah Jahan. The Mughal Empire flourished during his reign. When his favorite wife, Mumtaz Mahal, died the emperor had the Taj Mahal made. He order construction to begin in 1631 and the last brick would be laid in 1654. That's twenty-two years. That is dedication. Modern architects wouldn't be able to withstand such a long project (that's a challenge architects). The main architect is believed to be Ustad Isa of Persia. Europeans claimed at the time that european artist Geronimo Veroneo. Confusion arose as "Isa" loosely translates to Christ in Arabic. This led to europeans to think that a christian made the structure. The europeans, primarily the english, would spread some lies about the Mogul empire. This included that Shah Jahan had the hands of the builders cut off so that they couldn't make another building of this magnitude. This is an outright lie as the Shah Jahan had many charitable efforts carried out during his reign and the lagistics of chopping of the hands of over 22,000 laborers seems outrageous. All in all, the Taj Mahal is a bold statement about the diligence and the power of man. We have the power to build wonders like this, then we can move mountains and get an A in organic chemistry.
Official website for the Taj Majal
Biography of Shah Jahan
Historian Ebba Koch's analysis of the Taj Mahal
India's Prime Minister saying that the building needs to be torn down