Elephant of Rewa
I've had this elephant in mind since a long time ago. It's so richly embroidered and adorned. It's absolutely dazzling. It took me some time to decide, it's a very complex piece and I needed to think thoroughly about the design. I finally did. So here is the Golden Elephant, as they called him. I think it's one of my best :)
(Click on the images to enlarge)
... 'Rewa was especially gorgeous.There we saw vivid emerald-green banners and elephants with gold trappings. To describe in detail the costumes and trappings of the various animals would be wearisome, and would not convey a true impression. You can only imagine all the most brilliant colours you have ever seen, and then understand that these were twice as brilliant and in motion in a clear atmosphere under a burning sun — colours that you could not look at in any country save India, for they would blind you. Rewa seemed to be the last word in gorgeousness. One had seen elephants smothered in gold, and horses caparisoned in vivid colours; but here they had gone as far as they could go in gorgeous colour and richness of detail. For example, there would be an elephant with the driver and the bearers all in gold, and in different qualities of gold — all gold. My poor little palette compared with this sparkle in sunlight was almost pathetic.'...
Maharaja Venkat Raman Ramanuj Prasad Singh Ju Deo succeeded his father Maharaja Raghuraj Singh Ju Deo in 1880. A keen scholars who patronised the arts, literature and education, Venkat Raman Singh earned the distinction of being a model ruler.
Following in his father's footsteps, he also supported the British, particularly during the Great War. Although the ruler of a comparatively small state, his contributions to the war effort were enormous, including the famous "Solanki Squadron" of the Army Flying Corps. During his reign, the town boasted a high school, a "model jail" and two hospitals: -the Victoria hospital and the Zenana hospital.
He died in 1918, a victim of the world-wide influenza epidemic, leaving his throne to his fifteen year old son. Upon India's independence, Rewa merged with the Union of India and became part of Vindhya Pradesh, which was formed by the merger of the former princely states of Bagelkhand and Bundelkhand.
Other Rewa sets