Eden Gardens, Kolkata

The Eden Garden is the oxygen of the polluted city of Kolkata. In colonial era, Eden Garden acts as the esplanade for the Britons. Eden Gardens came into existence when the Governor General Lord Auckland desired to build a circus and a garden for local amusement.

A pleasure ground with an oblong tank in center was laid out in Eden Gardens generally resorted to for riding. Eden Garden was initially named Auckland Circus Gardens. The adjacent Eden Gardens Stadium is the largest cricket stadium in India and the second largest in the world by its seating capacity.

The name ‘Eden Gardens’ is derived from ‘The Bible’. In the chapter of Genesis from The Holy Bible, ‘God’s Garden’ was named ‘Eden’ which He made for his mortal children Adam and Eve. The garden was paradise on earth. The name has got inspiration by this biblical concept; the Eden Gardens was named after Emily Eden and Fanny Eden, sisters of the erstwhile Governor-General, Lord Auckland in the year 1864.

The Eden Gardens complex sprawls over a verdant emerald green land of 50 acres including the cricket stadium, indoor stadium, garden, lake and a Burmese Pagoda. The Burmese Pagoda is positioned just adjacent to the lake which was brought to Kolkata from Burma after the British victory in the Burmese war of 1884.

This Burmese Pagoda of Eden Gardens has a remarkable modern colonial history. The Buddhist Pagoda was built in the year 1852 in Prome (presently in Bago, Burma, now called Myanmar) by Ma Kin, wife of Moung Honon (Governor of Prome). Within the Pagoda there was an image of Gautama Buddha with its forehead set with precious stones. This Pagoda belongs to the class of buildings called Tazoungs or Thein Tazoungs, used by Buddhist Priests for worship.

The Eden Gardens complex is situated along the banks of the Hoogly River. Near the Eden Gardens, there is the Netaji Indoor Stadium, the huge indoor stadium of Kolkata, which was also a part of the Eden Gardens complex.

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