Scene upon the Terrace of the Great Dagon Pagoda


This watercolor by Lieutenant Joseph Moore of Her Majesty’s 89th Regiment, British Army, depicts the scene upon the terrace of the Great Dagon Pagoda (Shwedagon Pagoda), in Rangoon, Burma. It was one of a series of pictures drawn by Moore that were subsequently published in London in 1825–26 as aquatint plates under the title Eighteen Views Taken at and near Rangoon. The prints depict various scenes from the First Anglo–Burmese War (1824–26), which the British fought to halt Burmese expansionism and incursions into British India. Rangoon was captured in May 1824. According to the published description which accompanied the plates, the bronze bell cast in 1779 weighed 23.1 metric tons, was about 3.4 meters in diameter, and was suspended about 0.46 meters off the ground. The great stupa in the distance surrounded by many small pagodas contained several colossal gilt sculptures of the deity Guadma. The watercolor is from the Anne S.K. Brown Military Collection at the Brown University Library.

Last updated: January 8, 2018