Gyantse monastery with horses in foreground

Gyantse monastery with horses in foreground

2001. (Film negative)

Image for comparison


Raw Image

Key Information


Hugh E. Richardson


Hugh Richardson

Date of Photo

1938-40 or c. 1950


Gyantse > Monastery

Accession number


Image Dimensions

55 x 55 mm

View of Gyantse monastery from the south taken from a field to the west of the town. The twenty-foot wall running along the top of the rocky spur above the monastery can clearly be seen as can the Palkhor Chode (dpal 'khor chos sde) temple and the circular Kumbum (sku 'bum) shrine towards the right of the image. There are grazing horses in the foreground.

Further Information

Photographic Process

Negative film nitrate

Date Acquired

Donated August 2001

Donated by

The executors of the estate of Hugh E. Richardson


Hugh E. Richardson

Manual Catalogues -

Manual Catalogues - Notes on negative album (outer case) - (on front) 'Kodak NEGATIVE FILE' in red and yellow lettering and a white label with 'Z.' in black ink'; (on reverse) 'Kangchenjunga. Gangtok Dances. RETURN of DL. Yak dancers etc. BIRDS etc.'; the letter 'A' in the top left hand corner and '8' in the right hand corner all written in white. (On spine on yellow "Subjects" label) ' GANGTOK . LHASA . PEOPLE. D.L. animals Birds; [Dates] 1936-40' written in Richardson's hand in blue ink; (below the label) the number '8' in white overwritten by the letter 'A' in pencil. Notes on negative album - (on cover) '8, Kangchenjunga. Gangtok Dances. RETURN of DL 1939. Yak dancers. Lhamo. Officials Tests. BIRDS...'. (On the spine) "KODAK NEGATIVE FILE 2 1/4 X 2 1/4 IN. (6 X 6 CM.) in embossed gold lettering; the letter "A" in white in Richardson's hand. Notes on negative index inside the negative album under 'Subject' - 'Gompa'. [KC 11/2/2006]

Other Information - Dates

Other Information - Dates: The contact print for this image is one of a group of sixteen images that were all developed as a batch as they share the number '601' printed in red ink. The back of 2001. in this batch says ‘Nyethang 1950’, but many of the image negatives have been included in a negative album labelled ‘1936-40’. Richardson seems to have acquired his Reflex Korelle camera with which he could take 6x6 negatives in 1938 [MS 22/12/2005]

Manual Catalogues -

Manual Catalogues - '13,14,15,16. Lhasa city from east.' (Typewritten list of contents in the album by Richardson. At the top of the page 'Book 8 - Z' is handwritten. The heading for this list is, 'Album in case, marked 'Z' on case. The list of contents in album should be ignored. Following is the proper list.') [KC 10/2/2006]

Other Information - Background: Richardson mentions this site in High Peaks, Pure Earth , London: Serindia Publications, 1998, p. 325, " ... the thriving town of Gyantse (Rgyal-rtse) (1936-50), well-placed for trade with both Shigatse (Gzhis-ka-rtse) and Lhasa and on the route to India. It is rich in art and architecture of the fifteenth century created by the Gtsang prince,Rab-brtan kun-bzang 'phags-pa. He enlarged and embellished the temple founded by his father near the rdzong which crowns the summit of the great rock overhanging the town. But his greatest achievements were the enlargement or virtual reconstruction of the Dpal-'khor Chos-sde temple and the building of the magnificent Sku-'bum mchod-rten (1936-50). The former is the heart of a community of monastic college residences spread over an extensive hillside enclosed by a fortified wall. Although the Sa-skya-pa scholl originally predominated, all other religious schools were represented here."

Other Information - Location: F Spencer Chapman describes a view of the monastery at Gyantse in
Lhasa: The Holy City, 1938, London: Chatto and Windus, "At the other end of town, on the southern slopes of a rocky amphitheatre, are the various buildings of the Parkor Choide monastery, surrounded by a twenty-foot wall which runs along the top of the rocky spur. The dzong and the monastery, from the summits of the only two eminences of the plain, completely dominate the low white-walled houses of the town, which lie on either side of a rocky saddle connecting them." (p. 49) [KC 11/2/2006]

For Citation use:
The Tibet Album. "Gyantse monastery with horses in foreground" 05 Dec. 2006. The Pitt Rivers Museum. <>.

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