Tuesday, 7 March 2017

Wat Bo: East wall, middle register

10-East wall, middle register                                                                              

This register must be read from right to left.

Fig.1.E.-To spy on what was happening in Rama’s camp, Ravana took the disguise of an ascetic, depicted sitting near a building amongst rocks behind a building, in order to deceive Rama. Rama, with Laksmana, Vibhishana, Sugriva and Hanuman, is shown kneeling in front of the false teacher/ascetic. The latter started to narrate the story that Sita was the wife of Ravana, happier with him than she could be with Rama. Rama replied that Sita was Lakshmi, faithful to her husband no matter what happened. Ravana then warned Rama that Vibhishana was the brother of a demon and that he will betray him; then he flew away.
NOTE: Rama and Laksmana sit with their hands held in a position of respect, but Vibhisana is shown with his hands in agitation, and the monkeys hold their hands at their sides.

Fig.2.E - Rama decided to send Angada to Lanka with a message for Ravana asking him to free Sita. The decision-making meeting takes place under a large, yellowish canopy in Rama’s camp, showing Angada taking off in the sky at the top (mural damaged by water infiltration).

Fig.3.E. – When Angada met Ravana, he raised himself to the same height as Ravana by coiling his long tail to form a seat,(as can be seen on the panel center). At the end of their discussion, Angada used his foot to remove Ravana’s crown, before flying into the air, killing Ravana’s guards (top left) before returning to Rama.
Fig.4.E. - After this, to protect himself, Ravana ordered the opening of the magic parasol of Lanka, bringing on total obscurity. Rama sends Sugriva to destroy it (Fig. 108 E). On the panel, we can see Sugriva wrecking the parasol, creating panic and Ravana falling to the ground supporting two women.

Fig.4b. – Panoramic view of the last two events.

Fig.5. E. – On this blurred picture, one may see Ravana, humiliated by these defeats, sitting in a pavilion of his palace. He ordered his brother Kumbhakarna goes to attack Rama on a chariot pulled by reacheasei, with a royal umbrella (White background), preceded by his army of yaks leaving for the battlefront (upper part). Vibhisana asked Rama to spare Kumbhakarna from death since he was the honest brother of the Ravana.

Fig.6.E,(brown background)-  Vibhisana went talking to Kumbhakarna trying to dissuade him from fighting on behalf of Ravana. Surprisingly Kumbhakarna said that if Rama could solve a riddle, he would withdraw for the fight.  Presented with the riddle, Rama remained silent. 

Fig.7. E.- The right part panel of this picture (brown  background) we see the continuation of the previous Fig.6.E..
The central part of the panel (gold background) displays Angada sitting on his rolled-up tail in front of Kumbbhakarna on his war chariot .He pretended that Rama had resolved his riddle but that he, Angada, wanted personally verify if the answers were correctly understood, and their meaning. Since Kumbhakarna knew they could not solve the riddle, he gave Angada the answers and continued to fight.

The left side of the panoramic shows the events described in the picture that follows.

Fig.8.E. (blue background) - After this, Rama sent Sugriva to lead an army to fight Kumbhakarna. Kumbhakarna tricked Sugriva by challenging him to a trial of strength (uprooting and lifting large trees), and then, when Sugriva was exhausted, captured him. The painted panel shows four scenes : (1) top right, Sugriva uprooting a tree, having been tricked by Kumbhakarna to do so with the intent to weaken him; (2) below right, the tired Sugriva holding the tree on his shoulder; (3) bottom left, being attacked and grabbed by Kumbhakarna; (4) top left, Hanuman, aided by Angada, attacking Kumphakarna to free Sugriva.

Fig.9.E. – Panoramic view of the left portion of the eastern wall

End of the narrative of the Eastern wall, middle register. The story continues on the lower register of the Eastern wall.

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