Sir Chaloner Alabaster's uniform as 'British Consul-General in China' Circa 1885
Lot 491
Sir Chaloner Alabaster's uniform as 'British Consul-General in China' Circa 1885
Sold for £9,600 (US$ 14,914) inc. premium

Lot Details
Sir Chaloner Alabaster's uniform as 'British Consul-General in China'
Circa 1885
Comprising jacket, trousers, with elaborate silver and gold thread details and applied trim, feather-trimmed hat and sword belt, together with their wrought-iron carrying case, inscribed Chaloner Alabaster Esq; sold with four pamphlets published by Sir Chaloner Alabaster, dated circa 1870-1880, entitled Occasional Papers on Chinese Philosophy by Chaloner Alabaster, nos V, VI and VII, and a translation of The Chinese Law of Inheritance. (9).

Footnotes

  • Provenance: the collection of Sir Chaloner Alabaster, K.C.M.G., British Consul General in China in the late 19th century, and thence by descent.

    The following has been taken from the obituary of Sir Chaloner Alabaster (1838-1898), published in the North-China Herald, 11 July 1898, p.51:

    'Chaloner Alabaster was educated at King's College, London, and matriculated at London University in 1852 ... . He was appointed a student interpreter in China in 1855, being attached to the Superintendency of Trade at Hong Kong. He was present at the first bombardment of Canton, and was attached to Admiral Sir M Seymour until the capture of Canton, for which service he received the China medal with Canton clasp. When it was determined to send the bloodthirsty Commissioner Yeh in exile to Calcutta, Alabaster was chosen to accompany him, and remained with the prisoner until the latter's death. Much of Alabaster's peculiar and recondite knowledge of Chinese philosophy was gained from his conversations with Yeh during his captivity. On his return to China he was first attached to Sir Frederick Bruce's mission, and was successively interpreter at Canton, Amoy, and Swatow, having plenty of experience of fighting against piratical villages while he was attached to the Swatow Consulate. He was appointed interpreter at Shanghai in 1861, and accompanied the Ever Victorious Army under Gordon and his predecessors in several of its engagements with the rebels. In August 1862 he was lent to the Chinese Government to assist in the reorganisation of the Sungkiang force. He was one of the organisers of the Mixed Court here, and is called in the Foreign Office List 'Joint Magistrate', this being obviously the position that the so-called 'Assessor' should always take. He was successively in charge of the Consulates at Chefoo, Swatow, Shanghai, Ningpo, Amoy, Ichang, and Hankow. In 1885 he was acting Consul-General at Shanghai, and was then transferred to Canton, where he was made Consul ­General. In the distribution of Birthday Honours in 1892 he was made a K.C.M.G., and in November 1892 he retired on a pension after more than thirty-seven years' invaluable service. ....'

    His elder brother was a member of the China Consular Service from 1856 and his son became Attorney General in Hong Kong.
Auction information

This auction is now finished. If you are interested in consigning in future auctions, please contact the specialist department. If you have queries about lots purchased in this auction, please contact customer services.

Buyers' Obligations

ALL BIDDERS MUST AGREE THAT THEY HAVE READ AND UNDERSTOOD BONHAMS' CONDITIONS OF SALE AND AGREE TO BE BOUND BY THEM, AND AGREE TO PAY THE BUYER'S PREMIUM AND ANY OTHER CHARGES MENTIONED IN THE NOTICE TO BIDDERS. THIS AFFECTS THE BIDDERS LEGAL RIGHTS.

If you have any complaints or questions about the Conditions of Sale, please contact your nearest customer services team.

Buyers' Premium and Charges

For all Sales categories excluding Wine, Coins & Medals and Motor Cars and Motorcycles:

Buyer's Premium Rates
25% on the first £50,000 of the Hammer Price
20% from £50,001 to £1,000,000 the Hammer Price
12% from £1,000,001 of the Hammer Price

VAT at the current rate of 20% will be added to the Buyer's Premium and charges excluding Artists Resale Right.

Payment Notices

Payment in advance: by cash, check with banker's card, credit card, bank draft or traveler's cheque.

Payment at collection: by credit or debit card.

Credit card charges: a surcharge of 2% is applicable when using Mastercard, Visa and overseas debit cards.

Shipping Notices

For information and estimates on domestic and international shipping as well as export licenses please contact Bonhams Shipping Department.

Contacts
  1. Christine Mitchell
    Auction Administration - Chinese Works of Art
    Bonhams
    Work
    101 New Bond Street
    London, United Kingdom W1S 1SR
    Work +44 20 7468 8248
    FaxFax: +44 20 7468 5840
  2. Asaph Hyman
    Specialist - Chinese Works of Art
    Bonhams
    Work
    101 New Bond Street
    London, United Kingdom W1S 1SR
    Work +44 20 7468 5888
    FaxFax: +44 20 7468 5840
Similar Items