Tombs and Fort, Golconda
Artist: Taylor, Philip Meadows (1808-1876)
Medium: Pencil and ink on paper
Pen-and-ink drawing by Philip Meadows Taylor (1808-1876) of the Tombs and Fort at Golconda in Andhra Pradesh, dated circa 1830. The image is inscribed on the front in ink: 'Tombs & Fort. Golconda. N.78'. Taylor mentions Golconda a number of times in his memoir, 'The Story of My Life'. In 1831, when in charge of his regiment, the fort was the site of a personal achievement for him. During an increasingly complicated dispute between the Nizam of Hyderabad and his brother, the Prince, Taylor peacefully oversaw the removal by the former of some of his valuables from the Golconda treasury. Taylor returned to Hyderabad in 1841. He writes, "The weather was delicious, and we had some pleasant parties to Golconda, where we entertained our friends. Although the country is bare of trees, the locality of the King's Tombs presents many picturesque features. The noble mausoleums themselves, the grim old fort and its massive walls, the city of Hyderabad in the distance, and several large lakes or tanks sparkling in the sun, contribute to form one of the most striking views in the Deccan." Taylor spent a large part of his career in India in the service of the Nizam, in the role of soldier, adminstrator, Superintendant of Bazaars and Assistant Superintendant of Police for the southwestern districts of Hyderabad. The fort at Golconda dates back to the thirteenth century with its construction under the Kakatiya dynasty. It was seized by the Muslim Bahmani dynasty in 1364 and from 1507 served as the capital of the Qutb Shahi sultnate until the fort was seized and sacked in 1687 by the Mughal emperor Aurangzeb.