Digital Ramayana

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This May, the great Indian epic Ramayana is going digital, thanks to the British Library. The library’s Mewar manuscript of the text was commissioned by Rana Jagat Singh I of Mewar in 1649 and contains over 400 paintings. Considered one of the finest of all surviving illustrated copies, it will be on view as a whole for the first time in two centuries, as the British Library currently holds around 80 per cent of the manuscript and the rest is held mainly by the CSMVS Museum, Mumbai. The project is a part of the British Library’s effort to develop resources for the study and understanding of the UK and India’s ‘shared history and culture’. ‘The Library’s South Asian collections are the richest and most extensive outside the Subcontinent. It is increasingly important to share and widen access to them in new and different ways. We hope that the digitization of this unique text on this digital platform will allow people to study and enjoy this great treasure as never before,’ said Roy Keating, chief executive of the British Library, in a press release.