Women's Ghat, Savant Wadi.
Medium: Photographic print
Photograph with a view of a ghat for women at Savantvadi, Maharashtra, taken by an unknown photographer in the 1870s, part of the Bellew Collection of Architectural Views. In India, a ghat is a stepped embankment by a water body, which is used for ritual ablutions, as well as for bathing and washing clothes. The former princely state of Savantvadi is in the Konkan region of Maharashtra, on the route between Panaji in Goa and Bombay. It was founded as a royal seat for its Bhonsle rulers (originally from Goa) in about 1627. The region is lush and fertile and Savantvadi is a thriving market town. It is famous as a centre of arts and crafts, particularly for the production of ganjifa (circular Indian playing cards which are handmade and painted with mythological motifs by hereditary painters called chitaris in Savantvadi).