Only in Museum #16

In the old days of kings and queens, there was an interesting thing for transporting people from one place to the other, without wheels. It was a palanquin. It’s called paalaki in Hindi. The English word is taken from the Portuguese palanquim which itself comes from Sanskrit palyanka ‘bed, couch’, called palanki in some dialects. Palanquins were carried by strong men – the palanquin bearers – by putting the poles attached to the sedan, on their shoulders, usually four of them.

Traditionally I know the enclosed ones, usually for women. But may be men also used the enclosed ones. One tradition was to bring the bride to the groom’s home after marriage in a palanquin, which is mentioned even today in traditional Indian wedding songs.

I found this beautiful palanquin from the 19th century in the Mehrangarh Fort museum. It is with European influence, as per the information written there. So this would’ve also been a good example for the lens-artists “East meets West” photo challenge by Amy! For me, the striking feature were these graceful peacocks on either side of the chair.

An Open Palanquin with Peacocks on its sides

I’ll show you an enclosed one too, the way I know palanquins.

A beautiful traditional Indian Palanquin

Also for John’s Cellpic Sunday.

Would be great if you would join the “Only in Museum” series by posting something you found catching your eye in one of your visits to the museum. Then create a pingback to this post by including the link to my post in yours. You can also give the link to your post in the comments section below. Also, tagging the post with “Only in Museum” and “OiM” would help all readers find these posts easily.


10 replies to “Only in Museum #16

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