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This painting shows the mausoleum of the sixteenth-century Afghan ruler Sher Shah, at Sasaram, within British-ruled Bihar in northern India. 

Daniell’s views of India offered a kind of armchair tourism to his British audience. A contemporary complimented Daniell on ‘increasing our enjoyment by bringing scenes to our fireside, too distant to visit, and too singular to be imagined’. But if such views pandered to the taste for the ‘exotic’, we might also note that Daniell’s images represented the richness and sophistication of the Indian cultural heritage that later, racist views denied.

September 2004