NEPAL A remarkable photographic archive of approximately 1500 images
Lot 349
NEPAL A remarkable photographic archive of approximately 1500 images, [c.1870-c.1960]
Sold for £3,750 (US$ 6,303) inc. premium
Lot Details
A remarkable photographic archive of approximately 1500 images, largely comprising portraits (some hand-painted) of members of the ruling Rana dynasty from Jung Bahadur to Mohan Shamsher Jang Bahadur (but principally from Bir Shamsher Jang Bahadur until 1951 when Mohan Shamsher Jang Bahadur went into self-imposed exile), and also including views of Kathmandu, military and state occasions, weddings involving members of the dynasty at home and in India, the visit of a Nepalese delegation to Great Britain and France, the visit of George V and Queen Mary; and a small number of images relating to Indian politics in the 1950s and a group of 13 recording the factory of the Lily Biscuit Co of Calcutta, albumen and gelatin silver prints, some later captions in German, images various sizes but typically 300 x 240mm., [c.1870-c.1960]


  • This extraordinary collection focuses on the Rana dynasty, and if not compiled by a member of the family, then by someone very close to it. Very few of the images are inscribed in English but when they are, they express terms of the closest affection, including love to a brother etc. In addition to the portraits (which also include King Tribhuvan and his family), there are the substantial remains of a number of photograph albums and loose images which chronicle events in Nepali history from before World War I up to about 1960. One portrait is on the late nineteenth-century card of Poornaman Sing of Nepal, photographer to 'Gahendra Shumshere Jung Rana Bahadoor', describing himself as Photographer and Oil Painter.
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