Mahommedan women attending the tombs of their parents, relatives, or friends, at night
Engraver: Skelton, William (1763-1848)
Engraving of Muslim women attending the tombs of their parents, relatives or friends at night by William Skelton (1763-1848) after William Hodges (1744-1797). Plate 6 of William Hodges 'Travels in India, during the years 1780, 1781, 1782, & 1783' published in London in 1793. Hodges observed this scene at Monghyr in Bihar. Monghyr had been in Muslim control from the rule of the Mughal Emperor Akbar in the late sixteenth century to 1763, when the forces of the Nawab of Bengal Mir Qasim fell to the British. Hodges remarked that 'It is a custom with the women of the family to attend these tombs of their friends, or nearest and most valued relations, after sun-set; and it is both affecting and curious to see them proceeding in groups, carrying lamps in their hands, which they place at the head of the tomb: the effect, considered in a picturesque light, is highly beautiful; with that of sentiment, it is delightful.'
'Along the side of the road are the burial places of the Mussulmans; for they, like the ancient Greeks, always bury by or near the highways...', Hodges wrote, and, continued,