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China: a young woman standing in a rock garden, Beijing. Photograph by John Thomson, 1869.

  • Thomson, J. (John), 1837-1921
  • Pictures

Selected images from this work

About this work


A woman standing in a rocky garden. The same as Thomson's negative number 712, probably one half of a stereo pair. During his visit to Beijing, Thomson was befriended by a rich local gentleman, a certain Mr Yang. Like many of his wealthy contemporaries, Yang aspired to things foreign. He became particularly interested in collecting photographic equipment. His curiosity and genuine kindness allowed Thomson to enter his home and obtain a glimpse of the domestic life, especially of women, of a Chinese family. Here a young woman stands in a rocky garden. Like most women of well-off families, she lived a life of seclusion, knowing little or nothing of the world beyond the walls of what can be seen to be a beautiful courtyard house



Physical description

1 photograph : glass photonegative, wet collodion


Manchu lady


This is one of a collection of original glass negatives made by John Thomson. The negatives, made between 1868 and 1872, were purchased from Thomson by Sir Henry Wellcome in 1921

Lettering note

Bears Thomson's negative number: "712a"

References note

China through the lens of John Thomson, 1868-1872, Beijing: Beijing World Art Museum, 2009, p. 33 (reproduced)


Wellcome Library no. 19678i


  • English


Where to find it

  • LocationStatusAccess
    Closed stores
    By appointmentManual request


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