Saturday, January 26, 2008

Corinthian Capital of Goa


This is the entrance of the Palazzo del Lorenzo in Rome. Fluted columns with Corinthianized columns rise to support a Greek style trabeate roof with a dome at the centre.

Oops! It's actually the TB Cunha Memorial at the Azad Maidan in Panjim, the capital city of Goa. It was built by the Portuguese and originally housed the statue of their great adventurer, Afonso de Albuquerque. Today it holds the remains of Dr.Tristao de Braganza Cunha, a great Goan intellectual and crusader for freedom.

The columns were brought in from a demolished Dominican church in Old Goa. The old capital then called Cidade de Goa lay in ruins and the new capital Nova Goa, today called Panjim or Panaji was being built. The Conde de Linhares bridge connecting Ribandar and Panjim must have seen a lot of granite columns, capitals and beams being transported in those days of change. The Azad Maidan was called Largo de Sete Janelas in the Portuguese era.

A Post-Liberation Martyrs Memorial stands next to the TB Cunha memorial. It is a modern concrete structure with granite cladding and reaches to the sky higher than its Neo-Roman neighbour.
Right next door across the street, the Navelkar Trade Center designed by Arch. Ashok Akerkar was clearly inspired by the Neo-Roman style of the Azad Maidan monument. With its Doric capitals and Greek temple facade at the apex, it tries hard to pay respect to the Classical style, but the merchants of Venice busy in their shops wouldn't care less.

Here's a picture of the crowds surging at a meeting at Azad Maidan during the Konkani language agitation days in 1986. Photo by Lui Godinho from Goa-world website.



Loved the pictures!
I've just come back from Goa.
As a matter of fact, I have a blog about Goa (but not only) too....


Amita said...

Fascinating! Thanks, Jose.