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A group of temples at Rajghat at Benares

A group of temples at Rajghat at Benares

Artist: Sita Ram (fl. c.1810-1822)

Medium: Watercolour

Date: 1814

Shelfmark: Add.Or.4717

Item number: 4717

Length: 317

Width: 475

Scale: Millimetres

Genre: Drawing

Watercolour of temples near Rajghat in Varanasi from 'Views by Seeta Ram from Patna to Benares Vol. II' produced for Lord Moira, afterwards the Marquess of Hastings, by Sita Ram between 1814-15. Marquess of Hastings, the Governor-General of Bengal and the Commander-in-Chief (r. 1813-23), was accompanied by artist Sita Ram (flourished c.1810-22) to illustrate his journey from Calcutta to Delhi between 1814-15.

Rajghat is located on the eastern end of the Ganges river near the Dufferin Bridge crossing. Beyond the ghat there is a plateau which is believed to be the original location of the city centre. Hindus regard the Ganges as amrita, the elixir of life, which brings purity to the living and salvation to the dead. This idealised view shows a group of temples at Rajghat, at the junction of the river Barna with the Ganges, where principally the Adi Keshava and Sangamesvara temples are located. Inscribed below: 'Temple of Bissennauth. at Benares on the confluence of the great Ganges and meeleh' ['scil.' nullah] 'leading to Secrole.'

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