Muhurram Procession, Calcutta, c1912

Muharam-withTaziaকলকাতার রাস্তায় মহরম মিছিল, তাজিয়া, c১৯১২

This is a view of Muhurram procession through a crowded Calcutta street with tazieh theatre performance in the background. Tazieh drama re-enacts heroic tales of love and sacrifice. Muharram is the first of the four sacred months of the Islamic lunar calendar. It is held to be the most sacred of all the months, excluding Ramadan. The tenth day of Muharram is the Day of Ashura. The event marks the anniversary of the Battle of Karbala by arranging ‘majalis’ (gatherings) to commemorate Imam Hussain’s sacrifice. One form of mourning is the theatrical re-enactment of the Battle of Karbala. In Iran this is called taziya or taziyeh. Theatrical groups that specialize in taziya are called taziya groups. In Calcutta, the two Muslim ceremonies, Eid ul-Fitr, and Muharram are being observed with pomp and grandeur through centuries.
The photograph may have been taken in 1912 by some unidentified British civil servant in Calcutta

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