You are on page 1of 16

do Sarcenic Architecture


ndo-Saracenic architecture represents a synthesis of Islamic designs and Indian

aterials developed by British architects in India during the late nineteenth and ea
entieth centuries.

drew elements from native Indo-Islamic and Indian architecture, and combined
with the Gothic revival and Neo-Classical styles favoured in Victorian Britain.

urkish and mughal conquest in india brought in islamic style of architecture and
sucessfuly incorporated with already existing hindu temple architecture.

he prevailing style in india is of trabeate style involving pillars, beams and lintels
dvancement of mughal rule has brought in arches, domes, minarets, open pavili

ocal influences also contributed to development of islamic architecture such as

development of chajja, motifs, corbel brackets which were from Gujarat school an
bengal school.

amic architecture flourished for more than 400 years under mughal rule.

cline and Revival

amic architecture were at peak when mughal ruled india from early 14 th century
ughal style was conceived by akbar. This 'Akbari' Style was an amalgam of earli
murid, Persian and indigenous Indian styles.

is style was further consolidated by shah jahan under whom some significant str
uch as taj mahal, forts of agra, akbar tomb, city of fathepur sikri.

ecline started to happen when aurangazed came to rule who has no soft spot for
nd architecture and most of time was spent on battles and annexion of territories

vival of style-

hen the British came to India, the European classical style (incorporating Greek a
man Features such as columns, triangular pediments) was followed for the public
er buildings during their earlier period of colonial rule to reflect their self image a
ders of power and status.

ORE 1857- European classical style (incorporating Greek and Roman Features su
olumns, triangular pediments) employed for the public buildings: image as the
ers of power and status and to distance themselves from the natives.

ever things changed after great revolt 1857 when east india company was aboli
came under direct rule under british crown.

usher new era of architecture style keeping some traditional elements of British
hitecture of homeland, they added elements of Indian architecture to continue w
ian traditions.

ult of following such style allowed British sought to incorporate their view of Indi
t into their own building, and so represent Britains Raj as legitimately Indian.

Map showing the locations of cities

having Indo Saracenic style buildings
in India

St.George Cathedral, Chennai

St.Paul Cathedral, Kolkatta.

Secretariat building of fort St.George

Indo Sarcenic Architecture :

ndo-Saracenic architecture represents a synthesis of Islamic designs and Indian

terials developed by British architects in India during the late nineteenth and ear
ntieth centuries.

he hybrid, combined diverse architectural elements of Hindu and Mughal with cus
hes, domes, spires, tracery, minarets and stained glass, in a wonderful,almost p

hief proponents of this style of architecture were these: Robert Fellowes Chisholm
Henry Irwin and Gilbert Scott.

ructures built in Indo-Saracenic style in India and in certain nearby countries wer
redominately grand public edifices, such as clock towers and courthouses. Likew
vic as well as municipal and governmental colleges along with town halls.

Municipal Corporation of Mumbai

Ripon Building, Chennai

Taj Mahal
Mahal Palace
Palace Hotel,Mumbai

Victoria Memorial,Kolkatta

hitectural Characteristics of Indo Sarcenic Buildings

on (Bulbous) Domes

erhanging Eaves

nted Arches, Cusped Arches, or Scalloped Arches

lted Roofs

med Kiosks

ny Miniature Domes, or Domed Chatris

wers or Minarets

rem Windows

en Pavillions

rced Open Arcading

hitectural Characteristics of Indo Sarcenic Buildings


Onion dome

High Court Complex, Chennai

Pointed Arches
Harem Window
Open Balcony
Minature Domes


Minature Domes
Eaves or Chajja
Madras Vetinary College

Scalloped Arches

Senate House, Madras University

e senate house madras is the work of british architect robert chishlom.

e design of this building were choosen through an open competition announced by the
madras government in 1864. completed by 1879 at a cost of rs 289,000.

e senate house was to serve as the examination hall and offices of the madras university.

e Senate House is situated on the southern side of the Chepauk Campus of the Madras Uni

e building was used for meetings of the senate, syndicate and academic departments of the
niversity. Its main hall was used for convocations for over a century.

comprises of large two floor high central hall, 16m high, measuring approx. 50m by 15m, a
as a capacity to seat 1600 people.

ough laid out as a simple rectangle, a strong variation in form is achieved on the sensitive
e four towers on simple square projections that fall behind each of the side entrance porche

e building essentially consists of a cellar hall, a ground floor hall called as Great Hall with a
ling, Northern and Southern wings and main entry porches.



Double height Verandah

Senate House, Plan

The gigantic central hall were supported by massive side walls on east and west . The walls
and south essentially consist of birck pillars 2mx 1.5m. They are build with brick and lime

The central hallis flanked on the East and West by wide corridors supported by six massive
xquisitively chiseled stone pillars on either side. The capitals of all the pillars are carved
th Hindu deities, human and animal figures and geometric designs.

Below the central hall is the 2.69m deep Cellar Hall below the ground level. It is provided w
massive end and intermediate walls of brick masonry.

The roof is further supported by main and secondary timber beams with additional brick pi

Chiseled stone colums

Arch shaped doors and windows

e north wing has two floorsand is provided with partition walls to accommodate office room
d toilets. The staircase is provided on the northern wing of the Great hall. The stairs provid
o both cellar and first floor.

Onion dome

Central Hall

Longitudinal Section

South Elevation

Onion Dome

Chatris or Kiosks
Scalopped Arches
Projecting Eaves

Rose Window
Open Balcony
Tudor Arch


etween the brick walls of north and south are provided with finished doors and windows in
hapes of arches. The big circular windows are decorated with stained glass.

he floor of the hall consists of timber planks.

he building on the four corners is endowed with four attractive towers rising high with
rtistically shaped domes painted on the exterior with variegated colours.