history of victoria memorial: A magnificent white marble edifice built in memory of Queen Victoria. Which is a must visit places in Kolkata. The building has become a museum with a vast collection of colonial era artefacts and paintings.
History of Victoria Memorial Hall
Queen Victoria died in the month of January 1901. Lord Curzon, then of British India, proposed a state monument, a grand white marble building, as a mark of respect for her reign as the Empress of India. The building was commissioned on January 04, 1906 by the then Prince of Wales, King George V. In addition to primarily creating a memorial to the Queen, Lord Curzon also wanted to open the hall to the public as a national gallery. Some of the personal belongings of the queen were kept in this gallery.
About For Victoria Memorial
The total cost of building the Victoria Memorial Monument was 1,05,00,000 Indian Rupees. The entire amount for the construction of this building came from the funds of Indian princes and princely states. It was his way of paying homage to the queen. A small part of the amount also came from the British government in London.
However, in 1906 the work on the ground had started. It took 15 years to complete the work on the monument since Curzon left India following an unrest and protests following the Partition of Bengal in 1905. By the time the monument was opened to the public in 1921, the capital of British India had shifted from Calcutta to Delhi. The monument was inaugurated by the Duke of Windsor, Edward VIII.
The site where the memorial was built was earlier the site of the Presidency Jail which was demolished to make way for the memorial. The prison staff and inmates were later shifted to Alipore.
Architecture of Victoria Memorial
The Victoria Memorial is one of the most famous monuments in Kolkata. Which was built in 1921 in memory of Queen Victoria’s love affair. This monument was built and designed by Sir William Emerson. The Victoria Memorial Hall is an impressive building. Which is made of white marble stones. And its design reflects the Mughal and European architectural styles.
The Victoria Memorial today is in the form of a museum. In which some rare photographs and sculptures of men and women are installed. Who have played a major role in the history of India. The Victoria Memorial continues to highlight its past, especially in relation to the history and culture of Calcutta. The museum also houses several cannons from the Battle of Plassey, as well as the Whispering Gallery in the dome and the famous Rosewood Piano with fabric.
The Victoria Memorial was a majestic building in the olden times. But at present the best and most important building and art museum in Kolkata is known. The museum also includes a Royal Gallery. In which scenes from the life of Queen Victoria have been depicted in pictures. In which to get culture from them. coronation, or her marriage to Prince Albert among others.
Built on 64 acres of land with this building measuring 338 ft x 228 ft, the Victoria Memorial is a wonderful architectural marvel. There is a beautiful landscaped garden surrounding the Victoria Memorial. Which enhances the beauty of this royal building. Some notable figures are carved above the northern porch. Which is a symbol of discretion, education and motherhood.
Inside Victoria Memorial Gallery
The sprawling museum has 25 separate and spacious galleries, the Portrait Gallery, National Leaders Gallery, Sculpture Gallery, Queens Hall Gallery, Arms and Armory Gallery, and the Calcutta Gallery, to name a few. The museum has practically 30,000 priceless artefacts including rare photographs, paintings by both western and Indian artists depicting the life of the queen.
The museum has the largest collection of ancient books by William Shakespeare, books on Kathak dance and Thumri music by Wajid Ali Shah, and also books like Rubaiyat by Omar Khayyum and The Arabian Nights.
The museum also has an illustrated manuscript of Ain-i-Akbari by the famous Persian writer, Abul-Fazl ibn Mubarak, who was the court historian of Emperor Akbar. The book is a detailed statistical account of Akbar’s reign and royal institutions.
Best Time to Visit Victoria Memorial
The best time to visit Victoria Memorial Hall is considered to be between October to March. Because the weather is good at this time. Nor does it get very hot.
Victoria Memorial Book in Ticket Timing fees & Charges
Victoria Memorial Gallery – The timings of this gallery are from 10 am to 5 pm. It opens from Tuesday to Sunday. The entry fee for Indians is Rs.20/-, while for foreigners the entry fee is Rs. 200/ is. There is no admission fee for the students of the school from class 1st to class 7th in school uniform and Army soldiers.
Gardens at Victoria Memorial – Gardens at Victoria Memorial open daily from 5:30 am to 6:30 pm. While the per person entry fee is Rs.10. While the annual fee for senior citizens above 60 years of age is Rs 1000 and for others Rs 2000.
How to Reach of Victoria Memorial
By Air: Victoria Memorial Nearest Airport: Netaji Subhash Chandra Bose International Airport. located at a distance of 22 kilometers.
By Train: Victoria Memorial Nearest Railway Station : Howrah Junction. Which is located at a distance of 10 kilometers from Victoria Memorial.
By Road: You can easily reach the Victoria Memorial Monument by road. You can take a bus, taxi or auto-rickshaw to reach Victoria. Then you can also go by metro. And the nearest metro is Rabindra Sadan Metro Station. Here again you can take a ferry. it’s a cheap option.