View from the top of the Bore Ghaut, drawn in 1803
Artist: Westall, William (1781-1850)
Medium: Aquatint, coloured
This is plate 10 from Robert Melville Grindlay's 'Scenery, Costumes and Architecture chiefly on the Western Side of India'. Grindlay (1786-1877) was only 17 when he arrived in India in 1803. He served with the Bombay Native Infantry from 1804 to 1820 and during this period made a large collection of sketches and drawings.
The Bhor (or Bhore) Ghat is the northern part of today's Maharashtra state and is the main pass over the Western Ghats and the primary means of communication between the coast and the Deccan. Bhor was a native state of India in the Poona Political Agency, situated among the highest peaks of the Western Ghats. Grindlay quotes Lord Valentia's description of the Ghat: "Towards day I came to a turn in the road, where an opening showed me the lofty mountains I had been descending, covered with forests to nearly their summits. We had passed several rivulets; here they had joined and formed a small stream. I was now able to perceive the rich vegetation around me ... the most conspicuous was the dracontium pertusum, which perfectly covered the gigantic stem of the ficus Bengalensis with its leaves."