A view of Government House, from the eastward
Artist: Fraser, James Baillie
Medium: Aquatint, coloured
This is plate 3 from James Baillie Fraser's 'Views of Calcutta and its Environs'. Fraser (1783-1856) arrived in Calcutta in 1814 and in six years produced these animated sketches of the busy city. He devotes three views in his collection to the Government House, all of them taken along its eastern side. Government House was built by Marquess Wellesley, who had became Governor General in 1798. The architect Captain Charles Wyatt based his design on that of Kedleston Hall in Derbyshire, but with modifications dictated by the climate.
In this view, one of the gateways is shown in all its magnificence: "the main arch crowned by a lion and the side gates by sphinxes, while in front passes Lord Hastings' carriage procession, preceded by his silver-stick and mace bearers and followed by memebers of his bodyguard." Along the roof of Government House large Adjutant birds can be seen standing stiffly to attention.