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Duk-gye (Domgit) Jong [Drukgyel Dzong, Bhutan]

Duk-gye (Domgit) Jong [Drukgyel Dzong, Bhutan]

Photographer: White, John Claude

Medium: Photographic print

Date: 1905

Shelfmark: Photo 20/(8)

Item number: 8

Length: 23.8

Width: 28.9

Scale: Centimetres

Genre: Photograph

Photograph of Drukgyel Dzong in Bhutan taken by John Claude White in 1905. This general view from the village below, of the dzong (fortress), with snow-capped mountains as a backdrop is one of a set of photographs documenting White's mission to Bhutan to invest Ugyen Wangchuk, the Penlop (Governor) of Tongsa (Trongsa) in Central Bhutan, with the order of Knight Commander of the Indian Empire. This photograph also appears in The National Geographic Magazine (Apr 1914), with the following caption: 'The fortress of Dug-Gye Jong, magnificently situated among ideal scenery, on a spur running into and commanding the valley. It was originally built to protect this route from possible Tibetan raids'. The small village of Drukgyel is 11 kms from Paro and near it is the (now-ruined) Drukgyel Dzong, built to commemorate victory over Tibetan invaders in 1644. The strategically sited dzong guarded the point where the route from Tibet entered Bhutan via the Paro valley. Once the Tibetan invasions ceased the path became the major Tibet-Bhutan trade route. The Dzong, surrounded by the snowy peaks of the High Himalayas including the sacred Jhomolhari (Chomolhari), served as an administrative centre, until burned down in a fire in 1951 which left it in ruins with only its central tower (utse) standing.

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