The Lake, Kandy (Ceylon). 21 April 1870
Artist: Chevalier, Nicholas (1828-1902)
Medium: Pencil on paper
Pencil drawing of the Lake at Kandy in Sri Lanka by Nicholas Chevalier (1828-1902), dated 21st April 1870. The image is inscribed on the front in pencil: 'The Lake-Kandy. 21.4.70. N. Chevalier.'
Sri Lanka was a Portuguese colony from the late 16th Century until it was overruled by the Dutch; a colony which lasted until the arrival of the British in the late 18th century. The hill country capital of Kandy was the last kingdom to succumb to foreign rule, to the British in 1815. The lake, seen in this drawing, was built by the last ruler of the kingdom, Sri Wickerama Rajasinha in 1807. The island in the centre was used as the ruler's personal harem that he accessed via a barge. Kandy is also the site of the Temple of the Tooth (Dalada Maligawa), the most venerated shrine on the island which contains an important Buddhist relic held within an inner sanctuary, a tooth from Buddha himself.