Norbhu, Trimon and Tsarong at lunch, Dekyi Lingka

Norbhu, Trimon and Tsarong at lunch, Dekyi Lingka

1998.131.412 (Print black & white)

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Raw Image




With tracing paper


Photographer's handlist

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Key Information


Frederick Spencer Chapman


Frederick Spencer Chapman

Date of Photo

September 28th 1936

Named Person

Norbhu Dhondup, Tsarong Dzasa, Trimon Shappe


Lhasa > Dekyi Lingka

Accession number


Image Dimensions

114 x 167

The Mission entertaining visitors. From left to right: Rai Bahadur Norbhu Dhondup, Trimon Shappe (now ex-Shappe) and Tsarong. On this occasion the Mission was hosting a lunch for the highest ranking Tibetan officials, and Gould also held discussions with the Cabinet

Further Information

Photographic Process

Print gelatin silver

Date Acquired

Donated 1994

Donated by

Faith Spencer Chapman


British Diplomatic Mission to Lhasa 1936-37

Photo also owned by

Frederick Spencer Chapman

Previous Catologue Number

CU.20 [view film roll]

Previous Pitt Rivers Museum Number


Other Information

Notes on print/mount - The reference 'C-U-20' has been written on the back of the print in pencil. The print back is covered with crop and reproduction instructions, apparently layered on the print at different times. The caption "We entertain visitors - Norbhu, Trimon, Tsarong" has been written along the bottom edge of the print back. A piece of thin paper has been stuck onto the back and folded over the front, which provided a means for transferring cropping information from back to front. The caption has been repeated, in capital letters, on the front [MS 24/03/2006]

Manual Catalogues -

Manual Catalogues - Caption in Chapman's hand-written list of negatives made whilst on the Mission to Lhasa, 1936-7 [See PRM Manuscripts Collection]: 'Norbu, Trimon, Tsarong, on balcony'; PRM Manuscripts Collection: ‘List of Tibetan Prints and Negatives’ - Book 3: ‘27/4 - Norbhu Dsaza (our interpreter) Trimun Shape and Tsarong Dsaza’ [MS 24/03/2006]

Research publication - Clare Harris and Tsering Shakya (eds.), 'Seeing Lhasa: British Depictions of the Tibetan Capital 1936-1947', Chicago: Serindia Publications, 2003, p. 93.

Other Information - Related Images

Other Information - Related Images: Images prefixed with 'CU' comprise a group of negatives containing images of gentians, lammergeyers, and vultures, Hugh Richardson and cairns, Gyamberi [‘Holy Hill’], Norbhu, Trimon, Tsarong, Ringang, Gould, Tendong, 'chang girls'. They seem to have been taken on September 27th - 28th 1936, with this image having been taken on September 28th [MS 24/03/2006]

Other Information - Setting

Other Information - Setting: From left to right: Rai Bahadur Norbhu Dhondhup, Trimon Shappe and Dasang Damdul Tsarong having a drink at the Dekyi Lingka. Norbhu was chief diplomatic assistant to the British Mission in Lhasa and Tsarong, the aristocratic friend of the Gould Mission and host of fine parties. Spencer Chapman describes Trimon thus: “Trimon, a ex-shappe, came to call. He is grey-haired and looks old and worried. He has just married a new and attractive wife, in whose Lhasa house he now lives; but soon he returns to Gyantse to occupy some estates he has gained possession of after a long and expensive lawsuit. They say that when he wanted to retire from his duties as a Cabinet minister his resignation was refused by the Dalai Lama, so he took off all his clothes and, feigning madness, ran naked through the streets of Lhasa. He is anything but insane now, though he seems saturnine and disillusioned.” (1938:87) Tsarong and Trimon were both former shappe (cabinet ministers in the Tibetan Government) but still seemed to have a great deal of influence in political affairs. [CH 2003]

Other Information - Description: Mission Diary entry for September 28th 1936 - "We gave a lunch party to the officials of Cabinet rank. They were the three Shapes, Trimon shape (retired), Tsarong Dzasa, the Chikyap Khempo (head of all the monk officials) and the Yapshi Kung (a relation of a former Dalai Lama). Ringang also came as interpreter. // Before lunch Mr Gould met the Kashag for a brief but profitable business talk. // Our Tibetan guests are easy to entertain and appear to enjoy being entertained. There is never any hurry to break up the party. This one lasted until 5 p.m." ['Lhasa Mission, 1936: Diary of Events', Part VII p.1, written by Richardson] [MS 24/03/2006]

For Citation use:
The Tibet Album. "Norbhu, Trimon and Tsarong at lunch, Dekyi Lingka" 05 Dec. 2006. The Pitt Rivers Museum. <>.

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