Located on the Sabarmati River, Ahmadabad was founded in 1411/814 AH by the Muslim Sultan Ahmad Shah, the ruler of Gujarat. Newly proclaimed, the ruler felt vulnerable in the capital of Anahilvada-Patan, and moved his court to Ashaval, a Hindu settlement that supported him, and which he renamed Ahmadabad, after himself.
The new capital of Gujarat developed rapidly with the palace as the nucleus, encircled by a commercial districts. The Bhadra Fort represents the footprint of the original city. The nobility settled outside the city limit, forming their individual settlements. These settlements, known as puras, were named after their respective founders with the suffix of 'ganj' attached, like Nurganj or Muradganj.
Ahmadabad became a part of the Mughal Empire in 1572/980 AH under Emperor Akbar. In 1817/1232 AH, the British took over and the East India Company made it the military and administrative center of Gujarat. No longer the capital of Gujarat in post-Independence India, Ahmadabad is still a principal city with a thriving cotton industry earning it the title of 'Textile City'. Architecturally, the city boasts some of the most interesting examples of fifteenth century Gujarati style. The Jami Masjid and the Mausoleum of Ahmad Shah are an adaptation of indigenous Hindu and Jain architecture; the Siddi Saiyad's Mosque is famous for its exquisite yellow stone latticework, the Rani Sipri's mosque is an elegant dedication to Sultan Mahmud Begara's Hindu wife.
Modern Ahmadabad is spreading west of the Sabarmati River. This portion of the city plays host to the work of two famous architects, Le Corbusier and Louis Kahn. Sanskar Kendra, Mill Owners' Association building and the private residences of Sarabhai and Shodhan were designed by Le Corbusier, while the Indian Institute of Management (IIM) by Louis Kahn is one of the top college for business studies.
Davies, Philip. The Penguin Guide to the Monuments of India - Volume 2: Islamic, Rajput, European. London: The Penguin Group, 1989.
R.N. Mehta and Rasesh Jamindar. "Urban Context." In Ahmadabad, edited by George Michell and Snehal Shah, 1. Bombay: Marg Publications, 1998.
DK Eyewitness Travel Guides: India London: Dorling Kindersley Limited, 2002.
Qutb al-Din Shah's Mosque is located near the north end of the old walled city of Ahmedabad on the road to the Delhi Gate. It is named for its patron, Qutb al-Din Ahmad Shah II, who reigned from 1451-1458/855-862 AH. An inscription plaque above the mihrab dates the building to 1449/853 AH.
The mosque is a long, rectangular structure with five large arched entrances on its east side. Flanking the central archway, which is taller than the other four, are two monumental minarets. The minarets take the form of engaged pillars and are lost above the level of the roof.
The interior of the mosque is a large prayer hall. Five large domes placed in line with the arched entries divide the space. These domes are supported by sixty pillars: five sets of twelve arranged in a square under the dome. The domed bays formed by the pillars are separated from the front, back, and side walls by a single aisle, and from one another by a single aisle. Ten smaller domes cover bays in these aisles, five on the aisle between the front wall and the domed bays, aligned with the domes and entrances, and five along the qibla wall aligned with the domes and entrances as well. Mihrabs mark the qibla under these five domed bays of the qibla wall. Extra light enters the mosque through windows on all four walls.
Burgess, James. The Muhammadan Architecture of Ahmadabad. Part I - A.D. 1412 to 1520, 44-46. Archaeological Survey of Western India, Vol. 7. London: William Griggs & Sons, 1900.
Qutbuddin Shah Masjid (Alternate transliteration)
Qutbu'l-Din Shah Masjid (Alternate transliteration)
Qutbu'd-Din Shah Masjid (Alternate transliteration)