Sunday, 8 April 2018

The Death of Colonel Moorhouse, amazing oil painting (1791)- by Robert Home

1791,Bangalore.The Death of Col. Moorhouse, Internet Archive
1791.Bangalore The Death of Col. Moorhouse
  Above image:  Death of Col Moorhouse in the third Angelo-Mysore war in 1791 against Tipu Sultan at the Pettah Gate  in Bangalore (Bangaluru, Karnataka)...................

During the campaign in south India the British East India Company army was led by Charles Earl Cornwallis (31 December 1738 – 5 October 1805) against the ruler of Mysore. Cornwallis was a good administrator and military commander. The British surrender headed by Cornwallis in 1781 to a combined American and French force at the Siege of Yorktown ended significant hostilities in North America.

Kemba Gowda I, a vassal of  the Vijaynagar Empire and the founder of Bangalore (now Bengaluru),  built the Bangalore Fort  in 1537 as a mud fort. After some political changes, the fort fell into the hands of Haider Ali in 1761. Since he was very much concerned about his arch enemy, the East India company near at the door step, he strengthened the fort by building it with  hard stone to defend the enemy effectively. 

Robert Home  1752–1834) was a British oil portrait painter who travelled to the Indian subcontinent in 1791. During his travels he also painted historic scenes and landscapes.  He moved over to Awadh, now in Uttar Pradesh and worked as a painter for the ruler,  Nawab Ghazi-ud-Din Haider (1769–1827). His Select Views in Mysore, the Country of Tippoo Sultan were published in London and Madras in 1794, and in Calcutta he made 215 watercolours of Indian mammals, birds and reptiles, some of which he also worked up as oils.
Home, a student of Angelica Kauffmann, accompanied Charles Cornwallis on his campaign against Tippoo Sultan, 'The Tiger of Mysore'.When Joseph Moorhouse was killed, his brother officers invited Home to record the event with a painting 'in the size and manner of General Wolfe', a reference to Benjamin West's 'Death of Wolfe'. Home's sketches of some of these officers and men are preserved in the Victoria and Albert Museum. The unique feature about this oil painting is Home meticulously brought out the details of soldiers in uniform, their weapons, their mood etc including those of the flank companies of the 36th Foot right on the battle field.A strenuous job for a painter who had to risk his life. This and other paintings in Victoria & Albert Museum, London have drawn the attention of numerous art lovers world over. Home, fianally moved over to Kanpur where he died in 1834.
Famous English oil painter Robert Home./

"The 225th anniversary of a significant landmark in the history of Bengaluru passed largely unnoticed on Sunday. On February 7, 1791, British troops under the command of Lord Cornwallis captured the city right under the nose of Tipu Sultan. The riches of the city wiped out the word ‘penury’ from the dictionary of the troops, British writers of the time note. It was downhill for Tipu and the other local rulers of India from then on and the beginning of the upward swing for the British".




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