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No. 110. Rangoon. South Tazoung of the [Shwe Dagon] Pagoda.

No. 110. Rangoon. South Tazoung of the [Shwe Dagon] Pagoda.

Photographer: Tripe, Linnaeus

Medium: Photographic print

Date: 1855

Shelfmark: Photo 61/1(110)

Item number: 611110

Genre: Photograph

Photograph by Linnaeus Tripe, from a portfolio of 120 prints, with a view of the south tazaung (prayer hall) of the Shwe Dagon Pagoda at Rangoon (Yangon) in Burma (Myanmar). General view of the wooden building with tiered roof, with part of the scaffolded dome of the Shwe Dagon Pagoda visible in the background. This is a poor quality photograph which appears to have suffered from camera movement during exposure. In 1855 a British mission was sent to King Mindon Min of Burma to negotiate a settlement regarding Pegu, annexed by the British after the Second Anglo-Burmese War in 1852. Linnaeus Tripe was the official photographer on this mission and his architectural and topographical views of the country form an important record. Tripe described this image, 'It is in these Tazoungs, of which there are four, that the figures of Gautama are placed; they are the chapels, in fact, for devotion'. The Shwe Dagon stupa on Singuttara Hill is Burma's most significant Buddhist monument, of great national importance. Traditional history states that it was founded in the 6th century to enshrine eight hairs from the Buddha's head. Its documented history begins from the 14th century from which time a succession of rulers rebuilt it or made improvements to it. The ascent to the stupa on its platform is by four stairways from the four cardinal points. Tazaungs on the platform are adoration halls where offerings are made and prayers are said before rows of Buddha images. Each of the cardinal tazaungs is dedicated to one of the four Buddhas of this era (kalpa or kappa). The southern tazaung is dedicated to Konagamana, the second Buddha of this era.

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