Jahan played such an active role in the Taj Mahal's design that he essentially served as his own artistic director, overseeing the designers as part of his daily routine. To PBS, Historian Milo Beach explained why we still remember Jahan's name, but not the architect's: "...an architect was, in a sense, a kind of functionary. Architects and painters never achieved the kind of acclaim that placed them within the ranks of the nobility, for example. They were recognized, but they were never given an enormous amount of importance."
Because architects weren't revered in the 1600s, Jahan's vision may have erased the architect's mark on history. But there are some theories as to his identity. The chief architect may have been Ustad Ahmad Lahouri, because experts found a manuscript that credits him for designing both the Taj Mahal and the Red Fort at Delhi. Even if he was the mastermind behind the beautiful tomb, it took a team of more than 20,000 workers and 1,000 elephants to bring Jahan's romantic gesture to life. Learn more about the Taj Mahal and The Mughal Empire in the following videos.