Aga Khan Trust for Culture excavation team unearths 16th century ‘Summer Palace’ and a buried tunnel

Aga Khan Trust for Culture excavation unearths a 'Summer Palace' and a buried tunnel
The tunnel below the garden layout near Qutb Shahi tombs connecting Golconda Fort unearthed during excavations in the city on Friday. Photo: G. Ramakrishna/TheHindu

Archaeologists excavate remnants of a 16th century ‘summer palace’ and a tunnel in the vicinity of Golconda Fort and Qutb Shahi tombs.

Peeling away the layers of hidden past, archaeologists have excavated remnants of a 16th century ‘summer palace’ and almost a kilometre-long tunnel in the vicinity of Golconda Fort and Qutb Shahi tombs here.

Under an US-sponsored project taken up in partnership with Aga Khan Trust for Culture (AKTC), the excavations have unearthed the buried vestiges of ‘summer palace’, an accommodation block meant for maintenance staff of Qutb Shahi rulers. The archaeologists working on the project have dated the excavated site back more than 400 years.

“The palace had underground chambers which perhaps were designed to maintain cool environment and thus left a reference as a summer palace,” said K.K. Muhammed, AKTC Project Archaeological Director, who is involved in the project.

Interesting pieces that were dug up at the site here include Chinese pottery, glazed pottery and ‘Martabani’ pottery which has roots in southeast nations such as Malaysia and Indonesia. “This in a way underscores the trade links with China and south-eastern nations during those times,” he said. Other finds include ‘hookahs’, the presence of which point links to Portugal.

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