"OUR TENT WAS PITCHED BETWEEN TWO SMALL RILLS ON A BEAUTIFUL KNOLL": BEAUTIFUL VIEW OF THE MOUNTAIN VILLAGE OF JHAWANU FROM THE DANIELLS’ ORIENTAL SCENERY
DANIELL, Thomas and William. Jugeanor, in the Mountains of Sirinagur. London: Published as the Act directs by Thos. Daniell, May 1, 1804. Color-printed aquatint with hand-finishing on wove paper; plate size 25-1/2 by 19 inches. Matted and framed, entire item measures 34 by 28 inches. $3500.
A lovely view of the town of Jhawanu ("Jugeanor"), from Thomas and William Daniell's celebrated book Oriental Scenery, a color-printed aquatint finished by hand.
The Daniells' Oriental Scenery is considered one of the finest illustrated works on India. Thomas Daniell and his nephew William spent nine years in India making studies, sketches and drawings of the scenery, architecture, and antiquities that graced the countryside. They then devoted a further 13 years to publishing their remarkably accurate aquatints. In Britain, the impact was explosive. A cult of Indian architecture, landscaping and interior decoration arose, with the Royal Pavilion at Brighton as its centerpiece. The Daniells gave the English public their first accurate look at the exotic sub-continent. Their great achievement still lies in their ability to blend the picturesque with the real, resulting in images that capture the European taste for the sublime landscape, while still remaining faithful to their subjects. The Daniells brought the romance of the English landscape to the antiquities of India and provided England with an accurate vision of this wondrous country.
Of this plate, Thomas Daniell wrote, "Jugeanor is a small irregular place; the zemindar, or chief landholder of the neighborhood, like the village squires of other countries, is lodged more sumptuously than his inferiors; his mansion is tolerably built of stone, covered with slates, and consists of two stories, the upper one accommodating the chief and his family, the lower affording shelter to his cattle" (Archer, Early Views of India, plate 47). As the Daniells traveled through the mountains around Srinagar ("Sirinagur"), they "were surprised at the 'considerable degree of population' and 'pleasant villages.' 'Security is a principal source of happiness,' Thomas observed. 'The peaceful inhabitants of these hills not only enjoy a secure retreat from the perils of polished society, but a luxuriant vegetation supplies them with food, and also with gums and other articles of commerce, with which, but sale or barter, the procure from the distant plains such conveniences as their moderate system of life requires'" (Archer, plate 48). Consisting of 144 views, published in six parts, the work was issued in seven stages: three sets of 24 plates titled Oriental Scenery with title dates of 1795, 1797, and 1801; 12 plates titled Antiquities of India dated 1799; 24 plates titled Hindoo Excavations dated 1803; 24 plates titled Views in Hindoostan dated 1807 (this plate was published in this part); and 12 further plates of Antiquities of India published without a title page in 1808. All plates were engraved by the Daniells and all are taken from their drawings save the 24 plates of Hindoo Excavations, which are after drawings by James Wales. See Abbey, Travel 420 (plate no. 142).
Small green mark to lower margin, just touching edge of plate; minor foxing. Near-fine condition, a lovely hand-colored Daniell plate, beautifully framed.