S&SWM PR papers L1038


Ansd Aug 28/94

Chalbury Rectory | Wimborne | Aug 23. 1894

Dear General Pitt Rivers

I am sorry for the delay in sending you a short descriptive label for the hat & bonnets I brought from the West & East Coasts of India & now forward them, hoping they will be sufficient for the purpose.

I also send you an ax head, given me by Mr Rivett Carnac from somewhere near Ghazipur as well as two curious tokens taken by him from a Buddhist tope which he opened. He has now come to England for food & is at 40 Green St, Park Lane & could give you a few further specimens of the kind if you liked. The Rivett Carnac's collection of Indian Peasant women's jewellery is now on view at the Imperial Institute. Mr Senior greatly enjoyed his day at Rushmore & said that its beauties & interests far surpassed the high expectations he had. I return to Town on the 31st.

Yours very sincerely
M.F. Billington

These objects are Add.9455vol3_p1012 /4-6 (the hat and bonnets). The axe head is Add.9455vol3_p1012 /3. The tokens are Add.9455vol3_p1012 /1-2. A tope is ‘An ancient structure, in the form of a dome or tumulus of masonry, for the preservation of relics or in commemoration of some fact; numerous specimens, usually of Buddhist or Jain origin, exist in India and south-eastern Asia.’ [OED] This is John Henry Rivett-Carnac. Mary Billington was a very early English journalist, she seems to have had very friendly and casual relationship with Pitt-Rivers given their disparity in age and rank for the time. Note that the promised labels are not enclosed now.




Dear Gen: Pitt Rivers

Please make any selection you like for enlargement from the accompanying photos of Nepal & its people - you can have ever so many more if you like. I observe that the bills for Aug 26th are out, & so we must keep that date for the papers.

My eldest brother can go to Gaunts & represent the family!

Yours very sincerely
M.F. Billington

Any details you wd like to know about the photos I will gladly supply. Those coloured in wash are among the selection illustrating my article in the September Pearsons Magazine





Dear Gen Pitt Rivers

Please mount & treat the photographs exactly as you think best. If you wd like any more of my collection I shall be most pleased to send them, I will bring over your brass lamp, & one of the other examples of the rare old hewari work to show if you like. I think you will be able to get a good map of Nepal from Stanfords 32 Cockspurs St W., but there is also an excellent one [insert] on a small scale [end insert] in the Times atlas, & your draughtsman possibly could make an enlargement in bold line from that? And, if you liked to send me that before, I could trace onto it in colour the route one follows to enter the country. The Sisagushi pass is 5,300 & the Chandragiri 6,900 Ht elevation.

I hear that a great friend of mine is going in for the Chief Command of the London Fire Brigade - Would it be asking you too much one day in the course of a week or so, to submit a few words concerning him & his qualifications to Sir John Lubbock, as, the more known about him, the better his chance I think.

Lady Glyn told me yesterday they hoped to get your band on the 26th, so I suppose now the 27th is definitely my fixture

Yours very Truly
M.F. Billington

These photos are not listed in the catalogue of the second collection, they were presumably taken by Mary Billington on her 1895 travels in India. The lamp is not listed in the catalogue of the second collection.

Transcribed for Rethinking Pitt-Rivers project by AP June/ August 2011

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