Priests before Shri Nathji
India (Rajasthan, Kota)
Ink, gold and opaque watercolor on paper
9 x 7 in. (22.9 x 17.8 cm)
Gift of Mr. and Mrs. Michael Oliver, 1983
Not on view
The temple at Nathdvara, north of Udaipur in Rajasthan, houses an image of Krishna from Mathura, a town near the birthplace of the god. Its priests feared the extreme Muslim orthodoxy of the Mughal emperor Aurangzeb and intended to take the sculpture to Udaipur, the capital of Mewar. However, the cart bearing it got stuck in the mud at Nathdvara—a mishap that was taken as a divine sign. In this painting, an image of the deity is seen twice: once at the top center, flanked by priests, and below, in miniature form, rocked in a cradle by four holy men.