Precipitous banks at Yé-nan-gyoung
Artist: Grant, Colesworthy (1813-1880)
Medium: Watercolour with pen and ink
Watercolour in pen and ink of a view of the banks at Yenangyaung from 'A Series of Views in Burmah taken during Major Phayre’s Mission to the Court of Ava in 1855' by Colesworthy Grant dated 16 August 1855. This album is made up of 106 landscapes and portraits of Burmese and Europeans documenting the British embassy to the Burmese King, Mindon Min (r.1853-1878).
The mission took place after the Second Anglo-Burmese War in 1852 and the annexation by the British of the Burmese province of Pegu. It was despatched by the Governor-General of India Lord Dalhousie on the instructions of the East India Company, to attempt to persuade King Mindon to sign a treaty formally acknowledging the extension of British rule over the province. The mission started out from Rangoon and travelled up the Irrawaddy (Ayeyarwady) River to the royal capital at Amarapura. Grant was the official artist on the mission. In recognition of his skill, he was presented with a gold cup and ruby ring by the Burmese King.
This view was described by Grant as follows: 'This spot, the precipitous and rugged banks of which look over the river towards the Arracan Hills, was, for its singular features - its riven cliffs of sandstone and clay, selected for delineation as characteristic of the sea-coast like boldness of the banks, and the wild, broken, arid and barren nature of the whole country about this most remarkable place.'