On December 1, the 175-year-old Orunodoy magazine will be presented at an exhibition for the first time in Assam history in the majestic Mahabahu Brahamputra Heritage Center by the Nanda Talukdar Foundation.
“The exhibition will be there for 3 months from December 1, 2021 to February 28, 2022 and I wish all Assamese to see this historical piece and this pride of Assamese heritage,” said the secretary of the Nanda Talukdar Foundation, Mrinal Talukdar.
The Nanda Talukdar Foundation and GMDA jointly organized this exhibition, which happens to be the first Orunodoy exhibition in the world.
Besides this single surviving copy in Assam, a few are kept in the British Museum in London, the University Library in Oxford, the University Library in Oxford Cambridge and the National Library in Kolkatta.
“This is the first time the people of Assam will be able to see the physical copy of Orunodoy,” Talukdar said.
Christian missionaries published the magazine in 1846 and continued until 1882, heralding the golden age of the Assamese language.
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The missionaries brought the printing press from the United States with Assamese fonts and got no support from the English administration.
Oliver T Cuttar was editor-in-chief for the first five years, then Dr Nathan Brown took over writing.
The first year subscription was 577, of which 249 were natives.
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Later it rose to 800 but it was closed in 1882.
The exhibition will be opened in a ceremony by Asomiya Praidin editor-in-chief Jayanta Barua.
Nanda Talukdar Foundation:
From its humble beginnings making the public the personal library of famous late writer Nanda Talukdar in 1996, the Nanda Talukdar Foundation (NTF) has come a long way over the past 25 years to become a name to be reckoned with in Assam, in particular in the field of publication, research in contemporary social history, social auditing, media advocacy and intervention in the field.
The Nanda Talukdar Foundation has now become a focal point of pioneering contemporary social history, advocacy as well as intervention and its field of activity has expanded both horizontally and vertically first in Assam, then slowly to other parts of northeast India.
“For Assamese literature, the library of the Nanda Talukdar Foundation is considered one of the last frontiers. No research on Assamese literature over the past five decades has been carried out without the help of the Foundation, ”the Foundation said in a statement.
“The Foundation is the treasure house of Assamese literature from the early 19th century to the 20th century, where scientifically documents, journals and books are preserved by digitization as well as by the conventional method,” he added.