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Maps, views and documents from 19 wars

John Cleeve Pleydell (1736-1816)

Tirunomalai, 1760

Trenomaly, Surrender’d Feb: 1760 1760 or later

Pencil, black and red ink, watercolour and grey wash on paper | Scale: 1:5,000 approx. | RCIN 733004

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A plan of Trenomaly (Tiruvannamalai), which surrendered to the British, commanded by Captain Stephen Smith on 25 February 1760. Seven Years War (1756-63): Third Carnatic War (1757-63). Oriented with north to top (cardinal points). 

The ‘Great Mountain of Trenomaly’, referred to in the text, is 2,669 feet high. 

The attribution to Pleydell is made on stylistic grounds. This is one of fourteen manuscript plans in the collection by Pleydell of fortifications and/or actions during the Third Carnatic War (1757-63), which was part of the Seven Years War. They were all placed, in Cumberland's original collection, in Volume IV/70/1-14. Their current RCIN numbers are 732125, 732126, 733001-3, 733005-8, 733016.a, 733020, 733027, 733028. It is not known when they were drawn but it must have been sometime before Cumberland's death in 1765. The source material for this set of plans is unknown, however, it would have been uncommon for a British surveyor or draughtsman to have used a scale of toises and it is possible that this map has been copied from a French plan. There is no evidence to suggest that Pleydell ever went to India and, in 1760, he was serving in Germany.

  • John Cleeve Pleydell (1736-1816) (draughtsman)

  • Watermark: Fleur-de-lys in crowned shield, a ‘4’ suspending the letters L V G below; countermark: IV

    Mark, stamped: 900

    Condition: no fold lines; vertical creases, centre. Verso: induced discolouration

  • Scale: 1:5,000 approx. Scale bar: [38 mm =] 100 Toises.

    27.8 x 33.3 cm (neatline)

    27.8 x 47.2 cm (image)

    33.3 x 50.6 cm (sheet)

  • Manuscript title:

    Trenomaly, Surrender’d Feb: 1760. [bottom centre, below border]

    Additional text:

    [left, down left side of map in plain rectangular panel, a key, A-C, to the mountain and fort of Tirunomalai, together with a brief assessment of the location and military events since 1752.]


    George III heading: Trenomaly 25 Feb. 1760.

    Other annotations: (Recto) [bottom right, ink:] IV/70/N:o 6. (Verso) [top left, black pencil:] XVI/[?]; [along right edge, black pencil, erased: illegible words].

    George III catalogue entry:

    Trenomaly A drawn Plan of Trenomaly taken by the English under the command of Captain Stephen Smith on the of Feb.y 1760.

  • From the collection of military and naval maps and prints of Prince William Augustus, Duke of Cumberland (1721-65), third son of George II; subsequently acquired by George III (1738-1820)

  • Subject(s)

    Tiruvannamalai, Tamil Nādu, India (12°13'35"N 79°04'28"E)

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