Expressing Life

What’s In A Name? | Essays On Jodhpur

What’s in a name?‘ asks Shakespeare. 
The love of the one calling it.‘ replies a lover.

Jodhpur, formerly the capital city of Marwar Kingdom, has carried several names since it’s foundation. In 1459, Rao Jodha, the chief of the Rajput Clan ‘Rathore’, founded the city of Jodhpur, then lovingly called after its founder, Jodhana.


‘The Blue City’

The most curious question a traveller has for a local in Jodhpur is, ‘Why is it called ‘The Blue City‘?’ followed by, ‘Why are the houses in Jodhpur coloured in blue?’. 

The Follow Me To Couple in The Blue City
The Follow Me To Couple in The Blue City Picture by Murad Osmann

When Rao Jodha built the Mehrangarh Fort, the impregnable fortress of Jodhpur, the Brahmins- the priestly caste of India- that settled around the fortified old city, painted their houses in blue to identify themselves. Soon after, the other castes that settled there, followed suit and the main old city bathed in blue. 

‘The Sun City’

Suryanagari, The Sun City  |  Image Source

Another popular, and plausible theory suggests that the houses were painted in blue to reflect the scorching heat the city bears throughout the year. Thanks to global warming, even the winter afternoons can make you sweat. Suryanagari, the Land of Sun, basks in the glory of relentless UV rays irrespective of seasons.

‘The Gateway To Thar Desert’

Osian Desert Safari Camp  | Image Source

Jodhpur is geographically located at the edge of The Great Indian Desert and is hence called The Gateway To Thar. Desert Camps and Camel Safaris form great tourist attractions for travellers and the locals as well. They take you away from the chaos of the crowded city.

‘The Love for Marwar’

The locals often passionately address the land as Marwar, and themselves, Marwaris. It isn’t exactly correct as Marwar was a collective region established by Rao Jodha and Jodhpur was the capital of the princely state. 

Nevertheless, since when has nomenclature mattered in love?


‘What’s In A Name?’ | Essays On Jodhpur is the first essay in the series ‘Essays on Jodhpur‘.

If you enjoyed reading the first essay, please share your feedback in the comment section. The next essay will be up soon. Please look forward to it.

Until then, be kind to one another and don’t forget to subscribe to the EL Newsletter.

Radhika Mundra

Radhika Mundra is an aspiring writer, a lifestyle blogger and an intense storyteller.

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