Hidden histories, unexpected tales and fascinating trivia…
Welcome to the Storytrails Podcast.
A series that explores India through her stories; stories that history textbooks probably left out.
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Humayun was sandwiched between the ambitious Babur and the visionary Akbar. Add avaricious brothers and defiant governors into the mix, and you have a king caught in a bad place. He struggled, but managed to hold on tenaciously to his kingdom. And when he died, his son, Akbar built a tomb befitting of an emperor for him.
Humayun’s tomb stands in all its majestic glory in the heart of Delhi, ensconced in its own lush gardens, one of the earliest mausoleums to be built this way. It has inspired many later buildings, including the Taj Mahal.
Who else is buried in this tomb complex? Just how did the insides look when it was first built? And what happened to this imposing monument when the Mughals lost power?
Join us on the Storytrails podcast, and listen as Ms Swapna Liddle takes us through this glorious monument called Humayun’s tomb.
They traded in beads, sported with humped bulls and engraved their names in the wet mud of newly made pots. They used weighing units and terracotta seals, indicative of well regulated trade practices. And they lived around the year 580 BCE in the Vaigai river valley. Their story is still unfolding. The ongoing excavations at Keeladi are unearthing new and exciting information about this highly advanced civilization. The excavations throw up many questions as well.
How do archaeologists know where to dig? Does Keeladi suggest the beginning of urbanization in South India? Did this society have any links with the Indus valley civilization? Do ancient South Indian scripts have any connection with the Indus valley script?
Join us on the Storytrails podcast, and listen in as we put these questions to Dr Rajan, a noted archaeologist who led many of these excavations.
It all began when Captain John Smith went tiger hunting in the Sahyadri hills in 1819. He found no tigers that day, but he did find something that took his breath away. The Ajanta caves. Thirty caves filled with gorgeous paintings made over 2000 years ago. These ancient Buddhist paintings cast a long shadow, and have influenced many centuries of later art. What do these paintings tell us about life back then? What colours did the artists use and where did they get them from? And why were these amazing pictures painted in the middle of nowhere? In this episode, Dr Alamelu Nachiappan, a professor of Art History, helps us unravel some of these mysteries. Listen in as she takes us through the many stories of Ajanta.
There was once a mighty king and he produced an even mightier son. Between them, they took their kingdom to dizzying heights. This podcast focuses on the son of Rajaraja Chola the great – Rajendra Chola.
Who was the greatest Chola king? Listen in, as we tell you the story of a southern king who took his campaigns to the Gangetic plains, Srilanka, Maldives and South East Asia. This story takes you to Gangaikonda Cholapuram, the capital city he built a 1000 years ago, with a marvellous temple that still stands.
The mighty Brihadeeswara temple in Thanjavur is a 1000 year-old engineering marvel and one of the tallest structures of its time. It is considered Rajaraja Chola’s magnum opus. Join us on this podcast by Storytrails, as we explore the rich history and the many myths that surround this famous temple.
Is it true that this tall temple casts no shadow? How did they get the massive cupola to the very top of the tower? Is the temple entrance really cursed?
On this episode, we’re joined by the articulate Madhusudhanan Kalaiselvan, a conservation architect who specialises in Tamil literature, heritage and architectural research.
Was the Red Fort really red when it was first built? Just how long did Shah Jahan live here? What was life like for the royal ladies in the fort?
And what makes the monument so special?
Welcome to the Storytrails podcast. In this episode, we explore the Red Fort complex with Anisha Shekar Mukherjee, a conservation architect who will share her knowledge of this grand monument. Hop on as we explore the citadel of Power in India, The Red Fort in Delhi.