THE HOUR OF SEPARATION
Folio from an illustrated manuscript of Amarushataka
This is one of the many paintings illustrating a hundred verses of the poet Amaru. They are written in Sanskrit and are known as the Amarushataka. Amaru composed these lyrics sometime during the late 7th or early 8th Century CE. These verses depict the expressions of love under various circumstances like quarrels, separation, reconciliation, and the reunion of lovers. The picturisation of the sentiments expressed in the lyrics is vivid and charming. The figures are set against a dark background of red, black or green. Black is used effectively, sometimes for the sky and sometimes for the architectural space to provide a background to the human figures.
The harsh monotony of the dark colours is occasionally relieved by a few stars or chirpy white birds and sometimes by the foliage in front. This painting depicts the moment of separation between the hero and the heroine. The hero declares his mission of going to far-away lands, leaving her to face the agony of parting and the uncertainty of the future. The hero, dressed in the attire of a warrior, is armed with a large shield, sword and a long lance. He consoles the heroine with a gesture of the right hand. The heroine’s gesture indicates her reluctant acceptance of the situation. Both stand in a garden pavilion, decorated with turrets, domes and arches typical of the Malwa style. This is one of the early Malwa sets of illustrations to the Amarushataka.
Indian Miniature Paintings
Manuscript Musical Instrument
Indian Miniature painting
Full page: 16 x 22 cms Painting : 14.5 x 15.6 cms