INDIA CROSSING THE RIVER GANGES Taj mahal front view. The Taj Mahal represents the finest and most sophisticated example of Mughal architecture. Its origins lie in the moving circumstances of its commission and the culture and history of an Islamic Mughal empire's rule of large parts of India.The distraught Mughal Emperor Shah Jahan commissioned the mausoleum upon the death of his favourite wife; Mumtaz Mahal. Today it is one of the most famous and recognisable buildings in the world and while the white domed marble mausoleum is the most familiar part of the monument; the Taj Mahal is an extensive complex of buildings and gardens that extends over 22.44 Hectares and includes subsidiary tombs; waterworks infrastructure; the small town of 'Taj Ganji' and a 'moonlight garden' to the north of the river. Construction began in 1632 AD; (1041 AH); on the south bank of the River Yamuna in Agra; and was substantially complete by 1648 AD (1058 AH). The design was conceived as both an earthly replica of the house of Mumtaz in paradise and an instrument of propaganda for the emperor.