View of Temple at Jajpur (Orissa)
Artist: 'Abdullah, Shaikh (fl.18181-1819)
Watercolour drawing of a temple at Jajpur in Orissa, by Shaik Abdulla after a sketch made in 1815 by John Newman, part of the MacKenzie Collection. Inscribed on front in ink: 'West View of Hanken Ishwar Temple at Jehaujpoor. March 20th, 1815. Copied by Shaik Abdulla. March 1819.'
Colin MacKenzie (1754-1821) joined the East India Company as an engineer at the age of 28 and spent the majority of his career in India. He used the salary he earned from his military career as a Captain, Major and finally a Colonel to finance his research into the history and religion of Indian and Javan culture, collecting many sketches and drawings along the way. Jajpur is a sacred pilgrimage site in Orissa that is situated on the Vaitarani River. There are numerous temples at the site, the most important being the shrine of the mother Goddess Viraja (Durga), and the shrine to Varaha, the incarnation of Lord Vishnu as a boar. This drawing depicts one of these shrines, with a stepped pyramidal roof and huts nearby.