Sheesh Gumbad

Lodhi Garden, New Delhi

View of Sheesh Gumbad on the right along with Bara Gumbad and Mosque on the left
Sheesh Gumbad or ‘Shish’ Gumbad is called so because of the ‘Sheesha’ or mirror-like appearance that is reflected by the glazed tiles of Lapiz Lazulli and Turquoise. Unfortunately, most of them have gone missing, but we still have enough evidence to reconstruct the tiles and give the tomb back it’s original and significant character by which it was identified.

Lapiz Lazulli and Turquoise tiles
It was perhaps built during Sikander Lodi’s reign i.e 1489-1517 (Source: ASI’s Cultural Notice Board). It is not known whose grave is buried below the Cenotaph that we see inside the tomb.

Unidentified graves inside the Sheesh Gumbad

Architecture of Sheesh Gumbad

Sheesh Gumbad has a square plan with arched entrances. The central arched openings are made by Bracket and Beam method. The Western wall has Mihrab, suggesting it’s double use as a Mosque.
South-East corner of Sheesh Gumbad
The tomb is single storeyed inside but has false double facade, i.e. False doors and windows marked in the upper area of the facade, giving it an appearance of two-storeyed building. 

It is a fusion of Hindu and Islamic Architecture. The soffit of the dome is decorated with Quranic inscriptions and floral motifs. It is heavily damaged by bat excreta and must be treated immediately.
Internal Mihrab wall of Sheesh Gumbad

Internal niches on upper side of Sheesh Gumbad

Soffit of Sheesh Gumbad

Conservation Mapping of East Elevation

Conservation Mapping of East elevation of Sheesh Gumbad, Lodi Garden
Conservation Mapping suggests the following problems in the East Elevation:
•Missing finial
•Discolouration of plaster of dome; Missing plaster
•Capital of minaret missing
•Stains on parapet
•Loss of tiles in upper and lower band both
•Water stains below window opening (now closed)
•Vegetation growth

* We have Conservation Mapping of other Elevations also. Contact us @HeritageTravelogue on Facebook and Instagram or E-mail us at heritagetravelogue@gmail.com

Damage / Deterioration of Sheesh Gumbad

Pie Chart showing different types of Deterioration in Sheesh Gumbad, Lodi Garden, Delhi

Conjectural view of Eastern facade of Sheesh Gumbad

The glazed tiles are missing or broken in the Eastern and other facades

Digital reconstruction or conjectural view of Eastern Elevation, based on past evidences and present ruinous remains on site
Copyright: Ar. Mehak Ahuja (Owner of Heritage Travelogue)

The Conjectural reconstruction gives a glimpse of the glorious days of the Sheesh Gumbad and rightly justifies its name ‘Sheesh’ ! 
Ar. Mehak Ahuja in front of Sheesh Gumbad
Photo Credits: Ar. Rohit Gupta
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