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Close view of sculpture of Matsyavatara (fish incarnation of Vishnu), Garhwa, Allahabad District

Close view of sculpture of Matsyavatara (fish incarnation of Vishnu), Garhwa, Allahabad District

Photographer: Beglar, Joseph David

Medium: Photographic print

Date: 1875

Shelfmark: Photo 1003/(656)

Item number: 1003656

Genre: Photograph

Photograph of a sculpture of the fish incarnation of Vishnu, Matsya avatara, from Gharwa, taken by Joseph David Beglar in the 1870s. At Garwa there is a pentagonal shaped compound inside which are the remains of a temple and other structures many of which are now un-identifiable. The earliest remains date to the Gupta period however the site was occupied for a number of centuries. This is attested to by the many different styles of sculpture that have been found inside the compound. This sculpture depicts the fish or Matsya which is the first of the ten incarnations of the god Vishnu. Under this aspect the god advised Manu, the patriarch of mankind, to build a ship in order to preserve himself, all seeds and animals from the primordial deluge.

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