'Chittur. Rajputana. India. Decr. 1878'
Artist: North, Marianne (1830-1890)
Medium: Oil on paper
Oil painting of Chittorgarh by Marianne North, dated December 1878.
Initially Marianne North (1830-1890) only painted botanical specimens and travelled around the world in search of interesting subject matter. She visited India in 1877-79 and completed over 200 paintings whilst there, painting landscape views as well. Chittaurgarh, 110 km east of Udaipur, is the location of the hilltop Chitor Fort, the site where Emperor Akbar (r. 1556-1605) attacked the Rajput rulers of Mewar in 1567. In her autobiography, 'Recollections of a happy life' of 1892, Marianne North wrote, "The Colonel's clerk accompanied me that first day and showed me the way through fine gates up to the table-land on the top of the isolated hill, which stands like a green island in the great burnt-up plain, quite covered with ruins of palaces and temples. There were two exquisite towers, covered inside and out with the richest ornamentation; and small clear lakes of limestone water, in which were huge crocodiles...The whole hill-top was surrounded by strong walls, towers, and precipices."