Mehrangarh Fort is located in Jodhpur
. At 400 feet above the city and with walls 117 feet high and 68 feet wide, the fort is a dominant feature in the area. It was built in 1459 by Rao Jodha
. It is said that an old hermit who lived on the hill where the fort was built cursed Jodha. "Jodha! May your citadel ever suffer a scarcity of water!
" he proclaimed. This prompted Jodha to build a temple to appease the Gods and please the old hermit. Jodha took another step to ensure the success of his fort: he buried a man alive
inside of the fort's foundation. There is some speculation that three other men were also buried alive in the foundation, however it seems unlikely.
In 1459 Rao Jodha Singh began construction of various rooms and palaces within the fort. Later rulers also continued construction. Rao Maldev (1532-1562) added 120 foot high battlements to the fort. The Phool Mahal was built by Maharaja Abhaya Singh (1724-1749). It is a large chamber covered with gold and other expensive decorations acquired in wars. The Jhanki Mahal was where the women used to watch official proceedings. The Sheesh Mahal is covered with "mirror art." The Moti Mahal, built by Raja Sur Singh (1595-1619) has several beautifully colored stained-glass windows.
The strength of the fort is made apparent by the fact that it has never been taken in a siege, though the walls of the fort are speckled with canon ball damage.
Today the fort and its buildings are home to the Mehrangarh museum which houses a large collection of arms, cradles, elephant howdahs, musical instruments, textiles, paintings, manuscripts and other items.