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Two carved stones. ‘Ancient sculptures at Agnoor March 1797.’ Copies of WD1062, f.18

Two carved stones. ‘Ancient sculptures at Agnoor March 1797.’ Copies of WD1062, f.18

Artist: Anonymous

Medium: Watercolour

Date: 1800

Shelfmark: WD1065

Item number: f.12

Length: 45.6

Width: 28.3

Scale: Centimetres

Genre: Drawing

Watercolour drawing of two memorial stones in Karnataka, from an album of 56 sheets of drawings (60 folios) mainly of miscellaneous architecture and sculpture in the Deccan and S. India, dated 1793-1806 from the MacKenzie Collection. Some drawings are by MacKenzie himself, others by his draftsmen, including C. Ignatio.

India has a very ancient tradition of erection of memorial stones. These have various local names, viragals, hero-stones, being one of them. The establishment of memorial stones normally followed the death of a hero in a battle and was related to political, social, economic and religious casues. Hero-stones consist of stone upright slabs with carved panels and often inscriptions. The top stone in this drawing depict the hero in combat with the enemy. Although the hero got killed in the fight, it was customary to represent him stronger than his enemy. The other stone depicts the hero wounded by arrows.

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