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The Balla Hissar and City of Caubul, from the Upper Part of the Citadel.

Atkinson, James (1780-1852).

Tinted lithograph with fine later hand-colour. Wide margins. Approx. 360 x 520mm. (14 x 20ins). 1842.

From Sketches in Afghaunistan. The Balla Hissar is a walled section of the city of Caubul with only two gates, both closed at night.The garden on the right, occupied by the British Envoy was formerly the residence of Dost Mahommed Khan. Behind is the Harem Serai, residence of Shah Shahee. To the left of the Shah's residence lies the Musjid Shahee or Royal Mosque founded in the time of the Moghul Emperor Alumgeer.James Atkinson was a doctor, journalist and artist during the Afghan Campaign. In 1833 he became surgeon to the 55th Native Infantry, serving in Kabul between 1838 and 1841. He received drawing lessons from the artist George Chinnery before travelling in Afghanistan, then a little-known country. Watercolour drawings were made 'on the spot' by him as he travelled through Afghanistan and subsequently lithographs based on them were made by Charles and Louis Haghe. They were published in London in 1842. 16 of the original drawings for Sketches in Afghaunistan are in the India Office Library.
Abbey Travel 508 no. 21. J.R. Abbey, Travel in Aquatint and Lithography 1770-1860 from the library of J.R. Abbey: a bibliographical catalogue. London 1957.

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