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Prince of the Lotus (Kamala Ragaputra), from a Dipak Ragamala series

India, Himachal Pradesh, Basholi or Nurpur

On view at The Met Fifth Avenue in Gallery 692

This folio comes from a suite of paintings illustrating a Dipak Ragamala, pictorial renderings of the moods expressed in certain musical modes (ragas). The title of this raga, Kamala Ragaputra, can be loosely translated as “Prince of the Lotus,” and thus symbolism related to the flower is dominant. The young prince, richly attired, holds two lotus while seated on a massive maroon bloom. He has a forehead tilaka mark and, on his neck, the triple-line marking (tripundra) of a devotee of Shiva. He is framed by two arching trees, which bend willingly toward him, each displaying a different leaf variety in their patterned foliage. His style of headdress resembles traditional caps worn in Himachal Pradesh. The title of the raga is written on the upper border in the local Takri script.

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