The Queen's Bath, Vijayanagara 1371
Medium: Photographic print
Photograph of the Queen's Bath at Vijayanagara, from the Archaeological Survey of India Collections taken by an unknown photographer around 1880. Vijayanagara, the City of Victory, was the most powerful Hindu kingdom in Southern India from 1336 until the defeat by the Muslim armies in 1565. It was built on the bank of the Tungabhadra River surrounded by granite hills. The ruins of this vast royal city incorporate distinct zones and are divided into two main groups, the sacred centre and the royal centre. The royal centre was the residential area of the royal household and included zones associated with the ceremonial, administrative and military functions of the rulers. Baths were very popular in the royal centre. The Queen's Bath is a water pavilion from the 15th century, situated in the zone of the royal performance. It consists of elaborate balconies projected on corbels and vaulted corridors surrounding an interior tank. The pointed arches show the influence of Islamic architecture as well as the geometric ornamentation in carved stucco.