Moung Tooh. Tara-thoo-gyee, or Chief Civil Judge
Artist: Grant, Colesworthy (1813-1880)
Medium: Watercolour with pen and ink
Watercolour with pen and ink of a portrait of Moung Tooh from 'A Series of Views in Burmah taken during Major Phayre’s Mission to the Court of Ava in 1855' by Colesworthy Grant. This album consists of 106 landscapes and portraits, and documents the British embassy to the Burmese King, Mindon Min (r.1853-1878). Inscribed with the sitter's signature in Burmese script.
The mission started at Rangoon (Yangon) and travelled up the Irrawaddy (Ayeyarwady) River to the royal capital of Amarapura in central Burma, founded in 1782. It was despatched by the Governor-General of India Lord Dalhousie and headed by Arthur Phayre. Grant (1813-1880) was sent as official artist of the mission. In recognition of his skill, the Burmese King presented him with a gold cup and ruby ring. Moung Tooh was the Burmese Chief Civil Judge. Grant wrote that: 'With all the free and easy manners, the good humour and social disposition of the Burman, the portly Tarathoo-gyee seemed really to become attached to the gentlemen of the Mission, and to lament their leaving.'