5 October 1999
Gate of the Tomb of the Emperor Akbar at Secundra, near Agra (Abbey 420 no.10; Archer I, pl.9)
Gate leading to a Musjed, Chunar Ghur (Abbey 420 no.25; Archer I, pl.24)
hand-coloured aquatints, November 1795, January 1797, [the first watermarked 'J Whatman', the second watermarked 'J Whatman 1794'], on thick paper, the first on thin paper trimmed to plate mark, laid down on larger sheet of thick paper & mounted on larger sheet of thin paper, small stain to upper plate margin, unobtrusive light soiling to second plate affecting image
P.532 x 710; 535 x 723mm.
25 January 1789: "Left Agra abt. 6 o.C. & arrived at our Ground at Secundra ...abt. 8 o.C..Un.[cle] employed the Whole Day drawing the Gates leading to the Tomb of Akbar."
The mausoleum had been erected by Akbar's son, Jahangir, and was completed in 1613.
13-16 November 1789: Thomas Daniell commented: "The effect of this gate, at a distance, is grand ...and its ornaments, though numerous, ...form the happiest union of beauty and grandeur." William Hodges, who had already published a print of this 17th century mosque gate, was impressed by the similarity of contemporary expressions of Gothic and Indian art: "In this all the minor ornaments are the same...so that a person would almost be led to think that artists had arrived from the same school to the same place, to erect similar buildings at the extremity of India and of Europe". (2)
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small stain/mark - in sky of second plate
small stain in upper plate margin of first plate
could add note about Hodges - who'd already published a print of the gate (second print) - see lot 18 '98 sale
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