Canton, Kwangtung (Guangdong) province, China: street gamblers. Photograph by John Thomson, 1869.
- Thomson, J. (John), 1837-1921
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About this work
Five men, three squatting on a mat gambling, two standing, one with a long plait. Strings of cash and other paraphernalia on the mat. Taken in a make-shift studio with a draped sheet as a backdrop behind the men
In the late 19th century gambling was popular throughout southern China. Government legislation aimed at banning it did not contain the problem; on the contrary it forced gamblers to go underground, and the result was an increase in corruption and crime. Gambling was not confined to gambling houses, for it also took place in clubs and private homes. For the poor labouring class, the streets were a common venue for it
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Location Status AccessClosed stores By appointment Manual request