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Furniture in British India 1750-1830

The focus of this thesis is the manufacture and consumption of furniture in British India in the second half of the eighteenth and the eill"ly nineteenth centuries. Working from sources which include furniture and pictures as well as contemporary written material, which ranges from diaries and memoirs to accounts and estate inventories, furniture is examined in the broader context of British trade and settlement in the Subcontinent. The tllesis explores tlle ownership and use of furniture among Europeans in India, primarily in tlle Bengal and Madras Presidencies, with emphasis placed on understanding elements of European domestic life such as interior decoration and shopping. AngloIndian interiors are examined, as are the factors which influenced their appearance. In an attempt to reconstruct the furniture market in early colonial India, the iliesis addresses tlle various sources of furniture and studies the acquisition and availability of botll imported and local manufactures. The iliesis also interprets the consumption of Western-style fumiture and decorative articles among Indians as an effect of the growing European influence. AltllOugh addressing a number of centres of cabinet-making, tlle thesis does not examine tlle technical or stylistic aspects of Anglo-Indi~U1 fumiture in dCpUl, but inslead creates illl understanding of Anglo-Indiilll furniture by examining issues such as technology transfer, workshop organization, tlle use of pattems, and the availability of materials.
Date January 1995
CreatorsJaffer, Amin
PublisherRoyal College of Art
Source SetsEthos UK
Detected LanguageEnglish
TypeElectronic Thesis or Dissertation

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