www.IndianMiniaturePaintings.co.uk - Folio from a dispersed Ramayana: In battle with Ravana's army Lashmana is wounded. Marwar, circa 1780. Watercolour with gold and silver (tin) on wasli. 19 x 32.3 cm

www.indianminiaturepaintings.co.uk

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

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Folio from a dispersed Ramayana: In battle with Ravana's army Lashmana is wounded. Marwar, circa 1780. Watercolour with gold and silver (tin) on wasli.19 x 32.3 cm

In the upper left border (as we view) is 'Lanka Kand 69' a.k.a. Yuddha Kand(a) chapter 69 although the narrative action in the picture appears to refer to more than just this chapter. The inscription to the upper border refers to Rama's grief, the wounding and falling to the ground of Lashmana, and the multitude of Ravana's arrows. The bottom line refers to Rama's request for Hanuman and Sugreeva to protect Lakshmana after which Rama continues to fight. Line 2 and the inscription in the border to our right refers to the onslaught causing Ravana's fear and retreat after which Rama, before Sugreeva and others from the monkey army, continues grieving. It seems that the chariots in two of the picture’s frames are that of Indrajit before and after their destruction - although here it is Ravana who occupies the frame in the upper register. It is commonly assumed that painters of Indian miniature were au fait with all aspects of e.g. the Ramayana's narrative when actually often the painter being lower caste, illiterate and uneducated was not, meaning that. Add to this that the scribes themselves writing inscriptions might also not be familiar with all aspects of a narrative and it becomes easier to understand how inscriptions and image can be at odds with canonical texts.

With thanks to the kindness of Manish Patel for translating the inscriptions and annotating an image featured further down this page

Ref: 000946

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                                                                                                       Hover cursor over image to zoom (also shows gilt and silver/tin detail reflecting light)

 

 

Images and text © Peter Blohm