'Kuddum Russool at Gour, where they show the print of their prophets foot in a piece of while marble'.
Artist: Moffat, James (1775-1815)
Medium: Aquatint with etching, coloured
Coloured aquatint with etching of the Qadam Rasul Mosque at Gaur, from 'Views at Gaur', six aquatints by James Moffat after Henry Creighton, published by Moffat in Calcutta 1808.
Gaur was an ancient capital of the rulers of Bengal. It came to prominence under the Buddhist Palas from the 8th century, and then prospered under the Hindu Senas from the 12th century. It fell to the Delhi Sultanate in the 13th century and later served as the capital for the independent Sultans of Bengal from the mid-14th century till the 16th century, except for an interval between 1354 to 1442 when neighbouring Pandua was made capital. Gaur was relinquished to ruin and decay by
the end of the 16th century. As a provincial centre of Islamic culture,
Gaur has the remnants of many monuments. Part of the 15th century fort remains along with its much ruined gateways or 'darwazaha'. The Qadam Rasul Mosque was built by Sultan Nusrat Shah (1519-32) in 1531 and, according to legend, contains a representation of the Prophet's footprints on a small pedestal in black stone. The building consists of a square hall flanked by a verandah on three sides. On the eastern side the verandah has three arched openings resting on short octagonal piers. At the exterior corners there are octagonal towers decorated with stylized motifs and capped by pinnacles. The verandah is covered by barrell vaults while the central hall is domed. The exterior decoration consists of a row of recessed panels.