No. 80. Amerapoora. Kyoung near the Aracan Pagoda.
Photographer: Tripe, Linnaeus
Medium: Photographic print
Photograph by Linnaeus Tripe, from a portfolio of 120 prints, of the kyaung or monastery near the Arakan Pagoda in Burma (Myanmar). In 1855 a British mission was sent to King Mindon Min of Burma to negotiate a settlement regarding Pegu, annexed by the British following the Second Anglo-Burmese War in 1852. Linnaeus Tripe was the official photographer accompanying this mission, his architectural and topographical views of the country are an important photographic record. Arakan (Rakhaing) was an ancient kingdom on the east coast of the Bay of Bengal which was independent till conquered by the Burmese in 1784. Tradition relates that the Mahamuni Image of Rakhaing was discovered by the people of Rakhaing in the jungle and revered as the guardian of the kingdom. The Mahamuni Pagoda, also called the Rakhaing Pagoda, is located 3 kms south of Mandalay on the way to Amarapura and was built in the late 18th century by King Bodawpaya for the image which he had snatched from Rakhaing. A century later it burned down to the ground and was rebuilt. Mahamuni is the name for the Buddha as the Great Sage. In this view the central portion of the monastery with the stone staircase leading to the first floor platform is in the foreground, and the Arakan Pagoda is to the right. Tripe wrote, 'This is the longest kyoung in this neighbourhood, its platform is about 400 feet long. It is gilded'.