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The entrance to the Elephanta Cave

The entrance to the Elephanta Cave

Artist and engraver: Daniell, Thomas (1749-1840)

Medium: Aquatint, coloured

Date: 1800

Shelfmark: X432/5(7)

Item number: plate 7

Genre: Print

Plate 7 from the fifth set of Thomas and William Daniell's 'Oriental Scenery' called 'Antiquities of India.' The famous rock-cut Hindu sanctuary on Elephanta island in the harbour of Bombay was excavated around the 6th Century. The principal shrine is entered through a hall with columns with squat tapering shafts and fluted cushion-like capitals. The most famous image is the Trimurti, an enormous triple-headed Shiva image. The left side profile express the feminine aspect of the god while the right one represents his fierce masculine aspect; the central head is introspective and serene.

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