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William Hodges is thought to have painted this view of the ruined mosque at Raj Mahal in the mid 1780s for Warren Hastings, then Governor General of Bengal. It was exhibited at the Royal Academy in 1787, a year before the commencement of Hastings' impeachment trial. The two men had first met in Calcutta in early 1781, not long after Hodges had arrived in India. Hastings became one of Hodges' most important patrons, providing him with a salary from the East India Company, to which he himself contributed, and purchasing many of his paintings, prints and drawings.
In 2004 this painting went on loan to the exhibition 'William Hodges 1744–1797: The Art of Exploration', first held at the National Maritime Museum, Greenwich. The exhibition subsequently toured to the Yale Center for British Art, New Haven, and Auckland Art Gallery.
oil on canvas
H 105.5 x W 128 cm
purchased from Morton Morris, 1987