SOAS University of London

Department of the History of Art and Archaeology, School of Arts

Articulating the Sacred in Early Modern Islam: The emergence of cultic architecture in the Bijapur Sultanate

Mark Brand (Cambridge University)

Date: 25 February 2009Time: 5:00 PM

Finishes: 25 February 2009Time: 7:00 PM

Venue: Brunei Gallery Room: B104

Type of Event: Seminar

The ruling dynasties of the early modern Islamic World were most clearly characterised by their principal unorthodox cults, none more so than those in India. Given the importance of these cults, there has been surprisingly limited study of the development of the ritual and architecture associated with them. Bijapur was one of two major sultanates to survive in the Deccan region of Southern India until the area's conquest by the Mughal Empire in 1686-7. The 'Adil Shah rulers of Bijapur patronised a rapid succession of principal cults, whose practices were drawn from the various Islamic and Indic traditions common in the kingdom. These practices revolved around ritual settings whose iconographic, structural and topographic programmes became increasingly clearly articulated. The unusually varied range of Bijapur's principal cults and explicit nature of their ritual settings provide a rich insight into the evolution of cultic architecture in early modern Islamic and Indo-Islamicate kingdoms.

Organiser: Dr Crispin Branfoot and Dr Elizabeth Moore

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