www.IndianMiniaturePaintings.co.uk - Indian miniature painting: Vitthalnathji, also known as Shri Gusainji, (1516-1586) reads Valahaba scriptures whilst using japamala (rosary bag), Mount Govardhan in the distance. Kishangarh, circa 1830

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The description in English of the painting on this webpage is definitive. Any translation using Google translate is a guide only - its accuracy cannot be guaranteed and it is used at your own risk.

Vitthalnathji, also known as Shri Gusainji, (1516-1586) reads Valahaba scriptures whilst using japamala (rosary bag), Mount Govardhan in the distance. Kishangarh, circa 1830. Opaque watercolour with gold on wasli. 18.2 x 11.5cm

That this portrays a senior figure of the Vallabha Samparadeya is evident from his trappings of worldly wealth which the sect embraces in favour of orthodox ascetism. Vitthalnathji was the second son of Pushtimarg's founder Vallabhacharya who became acaharya following the early death of first son Gopinath. He wears what appears to be a necklace with two strands of rubies and also one of pearls with an emerald. Also reflecting his wealth and status are the fine embroidered gomukh (a ritual bag used as a cover for the ritual counting of japamala - rosary beads), richly patterned carpet, the golden ritual vessels and book rest. He reads a manuscript relating to Vallabha doctrine, its uppermost page with text that translates "salutations to Gopijanvallabha (Krishna)". In the distance is shown Mount Govardhan with at the summit the temple built there for Shri Nathji before the Mughal Emperor Akbar's iconoclastic tendencies forced the image's removal to what subsequently became Nathdwara.

With thanks to the kindness of Tarun Pant of translating the script of the manuscript shown in the painting.

Inventory LC000071

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Above: gilt detail and adjoining burnished surface reflecting light

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