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Cochin Maharajah At Onam Celebrations – Old Postcard 1948

This old 1948 photo postcard shows the Maharaja of Cochin at the annual Onam Celebrations. Athachamayam a precursor to the 10 day grand Kerala Onam Festival.  That is when the Maharaja also participates to start off this festival. A sight to behold was that of the Maharajah Parikshith Thampuran of Cochin Royal Family seated on a huge palanquin.

The palanquin was placed on a specially made open-top car, see the postcard. Tripunithura a small satellite town of Ernakulam or Kochi traditionally hosts the Athachamayam. A cultural extravaganza of float procession, traditional Kerala dances like the ever captivating puli kali or tiger dance, theyyam, chendamelam with its fast-beating drums guaranteed to sway the watcher.

The Maharaja was carried to a temple 12 km away, he would offer special prayers before he returned to his Hill palace in Tripunithura. The Athachamayam still continues in Tripunithura even today. The Maharaja’s present lineage officiates the festival although without the pomp and ceremony as before. See my post- 1974 News Photo Cochin Fishing NetsRead more on- Athachamayam.

Did you know- that celebration of Onam is by all religions in Kerala denoting inclusiveness. 

From the collection- Raja Ravi Varma’s “Birth of Shakuntala” Oleograph 1894., General Post Office Building In Chennai – Old Photograph 1890.,  Vintage Postcard Toddy Wallahs Madras., Rioting In Southern India – Old print 1921

The images are of the actual items from my collection. And Not a photocopy, pirated, reproduced, or stock photos or taken from other sources.