2001.35.396.40.5 (Album Print black & white)
Evan Yorke Nepean
Evan Yorke Nepean
September 7th 1936
Lhasa > Trapshi
90 x 58 mm
Loaned August 2002
British Diplomatic Mission to Lhasa 1936-37
Notes on print/mount - 'Brig. Gen. Neame VC. Richardson (British Trade Agent Yatung)'. [MS 01/08/2006]
Research publication - Clare Harris and Tsering Shakya (eds.) 2003 'Seeing Lhasa: British Depictions of the Tibetan Capital 1936-1947' (Serindia Publications, Chicago). Page 51.
Biographical Information - From left to right Colonel Philip Neame, Hugh Richardson, the Tibetan Prime Minister (Yabshi Langdün), a monk official and Norbhu Dhondup (Tibetan advisor to the Mission) in a monastic courtyard in Lhasa. Richardson had served as British Trade Agent at Yatung but joined the 1936 Gould Mission to Lhasa and served as representative of the British Government when Gould left. Colonel Neame’s role in the 1936 Mission was to assess the military capabilities of the Tibetans. Though his report on the Tibetan army was scathing, he spent a great deal of time in Lhasa discussing potential improvements with Tibetan officials. The British also courted the attention of the Tibetan PrimeMinister (Yabshi Langdün) who was a nephew of the 13th Dalai Lama. [CH 2003]
Biographical Information - Hugh Richardson dedicated much of his career to diplomacy and scholarship in Tibet and spent a total of eight years in the country (1936-1940 and 1947-1950). In 1936 he was British Trade Agent in Gyantse and then joined the Lhasa Mission serving under Gould. In 1937 he remained in Lhasa when the rest of the Mission left. He is said to have spoken “impeccable Lhasa Tibetan with a slight Oxford accent” (Shakabpa 2001). In 1944 he was awarded the OBE for his work for the Indian Civil Service but in 1950 he began a second career as a scholar writing many books on aspects of Tibetan history and culture. When he died in Scotland in 2000, butter lamps were lit in the Jo khang in Lhasa in his honour. [CH 2003]
Other Information - Setting: This photograph was taken on September 7th 1936 when a review of Tibetan troops was held for Brigadier Neame, who had travelled to Lhasa as part of the British mission in order to give military advice to the Tibetan government. Evan Nepean, whose arrival had been delayed due to technical problems with the wireless equipment arrived in Lhasa the day prior to this event [MS 30/03/2006]
For Citation use:
The Tibet Album. "Mission staff at Military Review at Trapshi" 05 Dec. 2006. The Pitt Rivers Museum. <http://tibet.prm.ox.ac.uk/photo_2001.35.396.40.5.html>.
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