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Bhojaki brahmin at a shrine sounding a conch. Anglo-Indian school at Delhi, circa 1835. Opaque watercolour heightened with gold on paper, an additional folio with description in Urdu, the finely written text by Muhammad Bakhsh. Folio 33.3 x 20cm; image 17.5 x 12cm
From an album commonly referred to as of 'castes and occupations' with paintings the resulting from a hybrid of Mughal court painting traditions with some of those from European traditions, such as vibrant colour and precise detail with shading and prespective. These were further combined by the artist's sensitivity in capturing individual character traits at a standard of skill comparable to some produced for Col. James Skinner in 1825, and it is thought the artist here may have been influenced by that particular Skinner album. Beneath the image in an English hand is written 'Bhojaki', which is the title of a caste of brahmins which became degraded by the orthodoxy so who may perform certain temple services only but not ritual ceremonies.
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Images and text © Peter Blohm