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Archive for June, 2013

Armenian Churches of West Bengal

June 26, 2013 4 comments

Armenian Churches of West Bengal

A compilation of Armenian Churches in West Bengal

Also see my blog posts on Armenians of Calcutta (Kolkata)

The Armenians have been connected with India as traders from the days of antiquity. They came to this country by the overland route, through Persia, Afghanistan and Tibet and werewell established in all the commercial centers long before the advent of any European traders. However, the Armenian community prospered and developed during the 16th right up to the 18th century.

Armenian community sought to reestablish their socio-cultural identity and not just restrict themselves to be a vibrant commercial community. This was one of the reasons that urged them to build churches in their settlements and invite priests. The Church was considered as the centre of all community activities.

In India, wherever they build settlements, they constructed churches. Today, all over India, one can find many beautiful Armenian churches, chapels and historical monuments standing as mute witnesses or silent sentinels of a once-flourishing Armenian settlement. Presently West Bengal alone houses four Armenian Churches in Calcutta (Kolkata) and surrounding areas.

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Dihar ~ Ruined Twin Temples

June 19, 2013 1 comment

Dihar ~ Ruined Twin Temples

Near Bishnupur, Bankura, West Bengal

Also see: Beyond Bishnupur ~ Brick and Stone Temples

Saileswar and Sareswar Temples, Dihar (near Bishnupur), Bankura

Saileswar and Sareswar Temples, Dihar (near Bishnupur), Bankura

Located 8 km from Bishnupur, on the Bishnupur – Sonamukhi highway, the village of Dihar houses two ruined but majestic temples. Both the temples are dedicated to Lord Shiva and are known as Sareswar and Saileswar. A Nandi Bull guards the entrance of Sareswar Temple.

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Chinese Breakfast, Old Chinatown (Tiretta Bazar), Calcutta (Kolkata)

June 12, 2013 63 comments

Chinese Breakfast

Old Chinatown (Tiretta Bazar), Calcutta (Kolkata)

Also see: My blog post on Calcutta (Kolkata) Chinatown

Chinese Breakfast, Old Chinatown (Tiretta Bazar), Calcutta (Kolkata)

Chinese Breakfast, Old Chinatown (Tiretta Bazar), Calcutta (Kolkata)

Its early Sunday morning and sun is yet to come out, but the stoves are already fired up and the morning silence is broken by the sound of the knife hitting the chopping plate.

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The Glorious Dead Cenotaph, Calcutta (Kolkata)

June 5, 2013 1 comment

The Glorious Dead Cenotaph

Maidan, Calcutta (Kolkata)

Also see: World War I (WWI) Memorials in Calcutta (Kolkata)

Glourious Dead Cenotaph, Calcutta (Kolkata)

Glorious Dead Cenotaph, Calcutta (Kolkata)

Cenotaph literally means an empty tomb or monument erected in honour of a person or group of people whose remains are elsewhere.

Located on the Northern end of the Calcutta (Kolkata) Maidan the Glorious Dead Cenotaph is the most well known of the WWI Memorials of Calcutta (Kolkata). It is popularly but wrongly known as the “Memorial of Unknown Soldiers.”

Designed by architect Herbert William Palliser, the sandstone built memorial loosely resembles the Cenotaph of Whitehall, London.

Built in 1924 the  Glorious Dead Cenotaph commemorates those Calcutta British and Anglo Indians who gave their lives for King and Country between 1914 and 1918. The Eastern side of the cenotaph bears the inscription “Glorious Dead” on the lower portion.

The top portion of the Southern and Northern side contains strange inscription of MCMXIV and MCMXVIII respectively. But this are actually not random alphabets but Roman numerals representing 1914 and 1918, the beginning and end of the Great War. (M = 1000, C = 100, X = 10, V = 5,  I = 1).

Strangely the memorial contains no plaques with the names of those fallen and probably because of this the memorial is commonly known as the memorial of unknown soldiers.

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