Author Archives: Robert Bickers

Dancing in Peking on St Patrick’s day

The blog plays catch-up, as it is Oxford University’s Professor of Art History, Craig Clunas, who spotted that we have a St Patrick’s day photograph (Ph04-092), and has tweeted it via his ever-interesting twitter-feed @CraigClunas. This is a spring picnic — … Continue reading

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Still feverish

A recent trip to Shanghai reminds me how popular the rediscovery of historic photographs of China remains. Here in one shop on Fuzhou lu, Shanghai’s bookstore street, is a good stash of Lao Zhaopian magazine, which sparked off the ‘Lao … Continue reading

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Lucky Eights: 8888 photographs now online

The project just posted its 8,888th photograph. 8 is an auspicious number in Chinese culture because of its closeness in sound to the word for wealth/fortune across a number of dialects. Companies compete for telephone numbers with multiple eights, and … Continue reading

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Peking Picnics

A figure who looms large in Sino-British diplomatic relations in the late 1920s — literally because he was well over six foot tall, and hefty with it — was Sir Miles Wedderburn Lampson, later 1st Baron Killearn. Uncle Miles is … Continue reading

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Who took the photographs?

Our collections are generally identified with a single individual, in most cases the woman or man who lived and worked in China, and who provides the current owner’s family link to China. In some cases we can certainly state with … Continue reading

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Magical pagodas

A guest blog from Dr Tehyun Ma: This rather magical photo, taken by postal official Oliver Hulme around the turn of the century, is one of my favourites. Looking at the structure, which was probably in the vicinity of Hebei, … Continue reading

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Introducing two new photographers

The ‘Historical Photographs of China’ team was very pleased to be invited by the Arts & Humanities Research Council to contribute a set of images to its recently launched Online Gallery. We decided to use the opportunity to showcase a … Continue reading

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D is for …. Duke

The Duke of Connaught, to be precise: Prince Arthur, Queen Victoria’s seventh child (and third son). Connaught served as Commander in Chief of the British Army in Bengal in 1886-90. As was increasingly common in the later nineteenth century, he … Continue reading

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On display in Chongqing

The project sometimes takes legs, and on 14 June at Chongqing Tiandi, British Deputy Consul-General Benedict Mann opened a new exhibition of project photographs, ‘Picturing China 1870-1950: Photographs from British Collections’, “1870—1950:英国收藏的中国影像”. This collaboration with the communications team in Chongqing, … Continue reading

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E is for … ebay (and eouch)

For a change this post is about photographs that have been lost. A recent sale on Ebay of some materials found during a house clearance in southwestern England, left traces online of what seems to be a historically interesting voyage … Continue reading

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