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Commissioned Painting of Guru Hargobind



Gurbilas Patshahi 6 [1719] documents how Bidhi Chand commissioned two Tarkhan [carpenter] Sikhs to paint Guru Hargobind Sahib. The text below mentions how the father and son duo painted Guru Hargobind on his horse, but several very similar versions exist suggesting that the painters had made other similar portraits as well. ⁣⁣

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ਨਖ ਸਿਖ ਰੂਪ ਨਿਹਾਰਿ ਕੈ ਦਯਾਸਿੰਧੁ ਕਰਤਾਰ ।⁣⁣

ਮੂਰਤਿ ਲਿਖਿ ਮਮ ਦੀਜੀਏ ਕੀਜੈ ਪਰਉਪਕਾਰੁ ।੪੮੪।⁣⁣

[Bidhi Chand said to the Sikh painters] "Look at the Ocean of Compassion, the Creator [Guru Hargobind] carefully from head to toe, and then draw their form, do this great task and give it to me."⁣⁣

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ਦੇਖ ਪ੍ਰਭੂ ਮਨਿ ਹਰਖ ਕੈ ਨਖ ਸਿਖ ਰੂਪ ਸੁਧਾਰ । ⁣⁣

ਹੈ ਨੀਰਜ ਜਸ ਤਸ ਲਿਖੀ ਮੂਰਤਿ ਅਪਰ ਅਪਾਰ ।੫੦੦।⁣⁣

Looking at the full portrait painting the Guru was greatly pleased, the Guru and his horse looked so gorgeous, like a lotus flower, it's beauty was indescribable! ⁣⁣

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ਭਗਤ ਸਿੰਘ ਜਾਨੋ ਨਿਰਧਾਰ । ਬਿਧੀ ਚੰਦ ਕੀ ਅੰਸ ਉਦਾਰ ।⁣⁣

ਮੂਰਤਿ ਅਬ ਤਕ ਤਿਹ ਢਿਗ ਅਹੈ । ਕਰਿ ਦਰਸ਼ਨੁ ਮਨ ਬਾਂਛਤ ਲਹੈ ।੫੦੪।⁣⁣

Bhagat Singh, the author, says with confidence that this painting can even today be found, held by the descendants of the famed Bidhi Chand, one can see it as one pleases. ⁣⁣

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ਗੁਰਬਿਲਾਸ ਪਾਤਸ਼ਾਹੀ 6, ਅਧਿਆਇ 20 (1719) ⁣⁣

Gurbilas Patshahi 6, Chapter 20 (1719)

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