Exhibitions/ Art Object
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Hanging depicting a European conflict in South India

Date:
before 1763
Culture:
Indian, Coromandel Coast, for the British market
Medium:
Cotton (drawn and painted resist and mordant, dyed)
Dimensions:
107 × 99 in. (271.8 × 251.5 cm)
Classification:
Textiles-Painted and Dyed
Credit Line:
Purchase, Harris Brisbane Dick Fund and Louis V. Bell Fund; Larry and Ann Burns and Brett and Sara Burns Gifts, in honor of Austin B. Chinn; and Austin B. Chinn and Joseph Conforti and Douglas Jakubowski Gifts, 2014
Accession Number:
2014.88
Not on view
This multilayered tableau of a battle is the most spectacular, complex, and complete surviving example of a rare chintz history painting. The hanging may celebrate the successful 1760–61 English siege of Pondicherry, on the southeast coast of India, headquarters of the French East India Company. The English forces (under a stylized Union Jack) are shown fighting alongside allied local soldiers. Indian regiments appear to be distinguished by dress—Muslims with long gowns and bushy beards, the Hindus in skirt cloths—indicative of the complex web of regional alliances forged by the European trading companies. Two ships (upper register, center) flying a simplified version of the triple fleur-de-lis and crown, the insignia of the French East India Company flag from 1756, represent the defeated French.
Marking: A United East India Company mark appears in the lower left corner on the back of the hanging
Aux Fils du Temps (until 2007; to Ginsburg) ; [ Cora Ginsburg LLC , New York, (2007–2014)
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