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Notes on the Geography of Peninsular India: Ellora (Hindu): Photo 4

world pictures Peninsular India: Ellora (Hindu)

Perhaps the most exuberant admirer in past centuries was John B. Seely, who billed himself as a captain in the Bombay native infantry and a former military secretary to the vice-president of the supreme government: "I at once rushed into the wonders and glories of these immortal works; but it is totally impossible to describe the feelings of admiration and awe excited in the mind upon first beholding these stupendous excavations...." Seeley speaks of "Keylas the Proud, wonderfully towering in hoary majesty--a mighty fabric of rock, surpassed by no relic of antiquity in the known world." He continues: "To build the Pantheon... is a task of science and labour; but we understand how it is done...but to conceive for a moment a body of men... attacking a solid mountain... and excavating, by the slow process of the chisel, a temple like the one I have faintly described... appears beyond belief...." It's a good thing Seeley didn't bump into Fergusson. (The Wonders of Elora; or, the Narrative of a Journey to the Temples and Dwellings Excavated Out of a Mountain of Granite, and Extending Upwards of a Mile and a Quarter, at Elora, in the East Indies, by the Route of Poona, Ahmed-Nuggur, and Toka, Returning by Dowlutabad and Aurungabad; with some General Observations on the People and Country, 1825, p. 125.)

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