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A Preacher Expounding The Poorans. In The Temple of Unn Poorna, Benares.

A Preacher Expounding The Poorans. In The Temple of Unn Poorna, Benares.

Artist: Prinsep, James (1799-1840)

Medium: Lithograph

Date: 1831

Shelfmark: X751/1(5)

Item number: 75115

Genre: Print

Plate 5 from the first part of James Prinsep's 'Benares Illustrated'. Prinsep (1799-1840), an antiquary and colonial administrator was assay master at the Benares Mint between 1820-30. The lithographs published in this collection were based on his original sketches of the various views of the 'holy' city of the Hindus. Of this plate he writes: '...here we have priest sitting in the corner of the temple teaching the people; not performing a stated stipendary suty, but denoting his life to the holy office...His Singhasun serves alternately as a bed, a table and a pulpit. When a sufficient congregation assembles...the Priest commences his exposition by first chanting the text in Sanskrit congregation assembles...The Priest commences his exposition by first chanting the text in Sanskrit from detached leaves of the sacred Potee, he then translates it...The architecture of the Unna Poorna Temple is a sample of the mixed style now prevalent: it was built about 60 years ago...Unna Poorna is the name of the consort of Shiva, typified as the Goddess of Plenty...'.

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