Collection online

print / label / advertisement

  • Object type

  • Museum number

    2008,3020.89

  • Description

    Chromolithograph pictorial label used for the advertisement and sale of bales of cloth and individual fabric lengths; printed on paper. Queen Victoria is depicted seated between two standing Indian attendants - she holds a baby, presumably a grand-child, or great grand-child, wrapped in christening robes. The two attendants are probably Sheikh Chidda and Ghulam Mustafa. The Queen-Empress is shown wearing a crown and lace veil rather than a bonnet, thus suggesting that the photograph from which this image was made, dates to the period of the Diamond Jubilee (1897) rather than the Golden Jubilee ten years earlier, when she could not be persuaded to wear a crown. For Queen Victoria's munshi and, passim, her other Indian attendants, see Basu, Shrabani. 'Victoria and Abdul. The True Story of the Queen's Closest Confidant'. The History Press, Stroud, 2010. Note, especially, pl.22.

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  • Date

    • 1897-1901
  • Production place

  • Findspot

  • Materials

  • Technique

  • Dimensions

    • Height: 13.7 centimetres
    • Width: 10.3 centimetres
  • Inscriptions

      • Inscription Type

        lettering
      • Inscription Position

        upper border
      • Inscription Language

        English
      • Inscription Content

        Ewing & Co.
      • Inscription Type

        lettering
      • Inscription Position

        lower border of printed space
      • Inscription Language

        English
      • Inscription Content

        Engaged for Calcutta & Bombay
        Registered copyright by permission of W. & D. Downey, London.
      • Inscription Type

        lettering
      • Inscription Position

        lower border
      • Inscription Type

        lettering
      • Inscription Script

        Bengali
      • Inscription Position

        left border
      • Inscription Language

        Bengali
      • Inscription Type

        lettering
      • Inscription Script

        Bengali
      • Inscription Position

        right border
      • Inscription Language

        Bengali
  • Curator's comments

    This collection of ephemeral sales and advertising chromolithograph labels (2008,3020.1-112) were designed in India, printed in Britain, and then returned to India to be attached to cloth for their subsequent sale in the bazaars. Several of the labels record the location of the mills in Britain and their associated outlets in India, and the majority of the labels depict the gods and goddesses of Hinduism, the Sikh gurus, or scenes from the epics (such as the Ramayana, Mahabharata, etc). Inscriptions can be found on the printed surface of many of the labels, and the script used depended on where the cloth was to be sold in India. While collections of Indian textiles made for both the home and export market are relatively common, British mill-made cloth exported back to India and the labels that would have accompanied them (usually destroyed after the unpacking or sale of the textiles) are rare.

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  • Location

    Not on display

  • Associated names

  • Acquisition name

  • Acquisition date

    2008

  • Acquisition notes

    The collection reflects various regions of India, but was acquired in Rajasthan.

  • Department

    Asia

  • Registration number

    2008,3020.89


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Object reference number: RFI38405

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