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Album page - Rites and Festivals of Muslims and the main Hindu Castes
  • Rites and Festivals of Muslims and the main Hindu Castes
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Rites and Festivals of Muslims and the main Hindu Castes

  • Object:

    Album page

  • Place of origin:

    Faizabad (painted)

  • Date:

    ca. 1774 (painted)

  • Artist/Maker:


  • Materials and Techniques:

    Watercolour on paper

  • Museum number:


  • Gallery location:

    In Storage

‘Company paintings' were produced by Indian artists for Europeans living and working in the Indian subcontinent, especially British employees of the East India Company. They represent a fusion of traditional Indian artistic styles with conventions and technical features borrowed from western art. Some Company paintings were specially commissioned, while others were virtually mass-produced and could be purchased in bazaars.

This Company painting is part of an album, now known as the Gentil Album, of 58 paintings commissioned by a French infantry colonel, Jean-Baptiste-Joseph Gentil (1726-1799), who served under Shuja ud-Daula of Oudh from 1774 until 1786. The Muharram ceremony, depicted here, takes place during the period of fasting and public mourning observed during the first month of the Muslim lunar year. This commemorates the martyrdom of Hasan and Husain, grandsons of the Prophet.

Physical description

Muslim festivals: Chabrat in memory of the dead; Bakr Id in memory of the sacrifice of Isaac; the end of Ramadan, called 'Fete de la paque' (Easter) by Gentil.

Place of Origin

Faizabad (painted)


ca. 1774 (painted)



Materials and Techniques

Watercolour on paper


Length: 37 cm, Width: 53.5 cm

Descriptive line

Gentil; Manuscripts, Col J B J Gentil, Faizabad, ca. 1774. Page number 29 (Gentil numbered two successive pages '22'). Muslim festivals. The text on the back of this page relates to the next image, IS.25:31-1980.

Bibliographic References (Citation, Note/Abstract, NAL no)

Archer, Mildred. Company Paintings Indian Paintings of the British period
Victoria and Albert Museum Indian Series London: Victoria and Albert Museum, Maplin Publishing, 1992 121 p. ISBN 0944142303


Watercolour; Paper



Subjects depicted

Procession; Palanquins; Elephant


Indian Company Paintings; Paintings; Indian Company Paintings


South & South East Asia Collection

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