The bronze bell at Dra Yerpa

The bronze bell at Dra Yerpa

2001. (Film negative)

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Key Information


Hugh E. Richardson


Hugh Richardson

Date of Photo

1937 or 1948 or 1950


Lhasa Area > Dra Yerpa

Accession number


Image Dimensions

55 X 57 mm

The large bronze bell at Yerpa (Dra Yer-pa) situated in a small stone building at the foot of the hill. There appear to be prayer flags tied to the rope by which the bell is hung in its belfry.

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

This Image also appears in another collection


Manual Catalogues -

Manual Catalogues - Notes on front of negative album in Richardson's hand in white: '2' 'Ramagang, 'Ushang, Tshurphu rgyal, Misc pillars'. On the reverse of negative album written in blue ink on white labels in Richardson's hand: 'Hu zhang, Pa blon chen, Pha bong ka, Nyenchen thang lho, Rva sgreng, Khro 'brug, etc. etc.' [KC 10/3/2006]

Manual Catalogues -

Manual Catalogues - Notes on negative index - Folio. 47. 'Bell at Yerpa'.

Manual Catalogues -

Manual Catalogues - Richardson Hand List: Album no. 2, [no.] 29. 'Inscribed bell at Yer-pa. 9th century. JRAS 1954. Oct p.166'. [KC 22/3/2006]

Other Information - Location: Richardson describes the site in High Peaks, Pure Earth , London, Serindia Publications, 1998, "Four miles east of Lhasa itself stands the little monastery of Ri-skya , and beyond it the foundation of Brag Yer-pa (1937, 1948, 1950), lying at the head of a unexpectantly green an pleasant valley about twelve miles norht-east of Lhasa. The sheer cliff face is honeycombed with caves to which monks from the city came for meditation. It is a place of ancient sanctity and has been inhabited reputedly since the time of Srong-brtsan Sgam-po, whose cave with his image and those of his wives is high up on the cliff, reached only by a ladder. ... Near the foot of the hill in a small stone building was a large bronze bell in the T'ang style bearing in early north Indian characters the Buddhist formula ye dharma hetuprabhava etc and another sloka in Tibetan." (pp 305-6)

Other Information - Dates

Other Information - Dates: Hugh Richardson's interest in photographing inscription pillars and historical sites seems to have been particularly accute during the period 1948-50, although he states in A Corpus of Early Tibetan Inscriptions [Hertford: Stephen Austin and Sons, 1985, p.72] that he visited this site two miles out of Lhasa on many occasions [MS 16/12/2005]

Other Information - Related Image: 2001.

For Citation use:
The Tibet Album. "The bronze bell at Dra Yerpa" 05 Dec. 2006. The Pitt Rivers Museum. <>.

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