Golconda Fort is a fortress and the early capital of the Qutb Shahi Dynasty in Hyderabad, Telangana. The Golconda consists of four forts spread over an 11-kilometre span with eight entrances. Golconda is famed for its diamond mines, which yielded legendary gems like the Koh-i-Noor, Blue Hope, and Daria-e-Noor.
For 62 years, the first three Qutb Shahi Sultans developed the mud fort into the present architecture, a gigantic granite stronghold stretching over 5 kilometres.
The Golconda was initially called Mankal, and Kakatiyas (South Indian Dynasty) established it in 1143. (South Indian Dynasty). It is said that a shepherd kid discovered an idol of a deity at the location when Kakatiyas were constructing the fort.
That is why it is known as Golla Konda or Shepherd’s Hill. Rani Rudrama Devi and her successor Prataparudra after that rebuilt the fort. Later, the fort fell under the Kamma Nayakas, who fought the Tughlaqi army and prevented them from conquering Warangal. It was given to the Bahamani Sultans by Kamma King Musunuri Kapaya Nayaka in 1364.
Bahamani sultans gradually surpassed Golconda in power. Finally, Sultan Quli Qutb-ul-Mulk was appointed Governor of Golconda in 1501 and built the city as the centre of authority. During this time, the Bahamani Sultanate collapsed progressively, and in 1538, Sultan Quli formed the Qutb Shahi Dynasty.
The Mughal Emperor Aurangzeb laid siege to the fort in 1687, bringing the Qutb Shahi Dynasty to an end. It had been an eight-month siege. Then, finally, he led his troops to take the Golconda fort.
Aurangzeb and his army had already defeated two Muslim kingdoms: the Nizamshahi of Ahmadnagar and the Adilshahi of Bijapur. The Mughal Army was bound to attack the Golconda Fort at some point.
It took eight months to capture the Golconda. It had pushed the Mughal Army to its breaking point on several occasions. At that time, Golconda Fort was the most impregnable fortress on the Indian subcontinent. However, Aurangzeb and the Mughals eventually entered the fort through a deceptive triumph, and the Golconda led to its eventual fall from greatness. Aurangzeb was dubbed a “mean-minded coward”.
The fort’s gardens were noted for their wonderful scent, but after over 400 years, they may have lost their aroma, but you may still discover their rich history. The Archaeological Survey of India listed Golconda Fort as an archaeological treasure on its “List of Monuments”. This fort comprises four different regiments connected by a 10-kilometre-long wall adorned with 87 semicircular bastions armed with cannons, eight entrances, and four drawbridges.
There were various royal rooms, halls, temples, mosques, stables, and other structures within the fort. The primary entrance to the fort from the east is Bala Hissar Gate. The door is framed by a pointed arch and rows of scrollwork. A peacock with elaborate tails adorns the entryway. The peacock pattern is derived from Hindu architecture, explaining the fort’s Hindu origins.
Visitors to the fort may marvel at the architectural splendour of the pavilions, entrances, gateways, fortifications, and even the stables. The entire fort complex spans 11 kilometres and illustrates the difficult labour.
The fort’s sound system is well-known. The fort’s lowest point may be felt near Fateh Darwaza or the Victory Gate. A hand clap may be heard at the Bala Hissar Pavillion, the highest point a kilometre distant, at a specific moment below the dome. In an assault, it was used as a warning message to Sultan.
A cotton-weaving business at Golconda produced vast amounts of high-quality plain or patterned garments for home and foreign markets in the 17th century. The textile was mainly built for Muslims and shipped to Persia, Java, Sumatra, and European nations.
However, Golconda was most renowned for its diamond mines. The Kollur mine was the first to be discovered in the southeast. Later, in the Krishna district, the Atkur. Both were found under the reign of Kakatiyas. At the time, they were the world’s only found diamond mines.
Golconda was known for its diamond market and diamonds extracted from several mines. The Golconda Diamonds were the name given to the diamonds. Many famous diamonds have come from Golconda, including the Koh-i-Noor, Daria-e-Noor, Hope Diamond, Noor-ul-ain, Orlov, Nizam, Jacob, and some lost jewels such as the Florentine Yellow, Akbar Shah, and Great Mogul. The Indian Permanent Delegation to UNESCO proposed the fort for nomination as a World Heritage Site.