The Tanjore Durbar, 1840

Company artist

The Tanjore Durbar, 1840
2 4 c m
40cm
actual image size: 32cm x 16cm

The Tanjore Durbar, near Madras in February 1840.

Watercolour on European paper, by a Company artist, Tanjore, 1840 (c)

The Rajah Sivaji (ruled 1832-1855) sits in an ornate room surrounded by courtiers and British officials, including Lord Elphinstone, the Governor of Madras and eight officers of his bodyguard. A durbar was a traditional feudal gathering that dated back to Moghul times. It was resurrected by the East India Company and later the Raj as a way of building alliances and reinforcing the loyalty of Indian states to their new overlord.

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