DELHI DURBAR OF 1911. The King Emperor and His Dominions. Souvenir of the Coronation Durbar of H.I.M. George V, Delhi, December, 1911. London, Burroughs Wellcome and Co., 1911.
8vo. Original blue cloth, decorated and lettered in gilt, all edges gilt, red and gold patterned endpapers; pp. 392, highly illustrated in the text including a few colour images; a fine copy of a rare work produced to a very high standard.
First edition. The volume is dedicated to the Durbar and the state, her rulers, princes, Native states and civil servants and their activities in India up to page 171. The rest of the volume contains articles on the activities of the medical and parmaceutical compmpany, who published the splendid and beautiful work. 'In 1880, Silas Burroughs and Henry Wellcome, two pharmaceutical salesmen from America, started a new company in London called Burroughs, Wellcome & Co [. They used mass production and proactive marketing to sell remedies and medicines throughout the UK and territories colonised by the British, building the company’s reputation on scientific rigour' (Wellcome Trust website). 'Durbar is a Persian term that was adopted in India to refer to a ruler's court. It could also be used to refer to a feudal state council or to a ceremonial gathering. The term was used during the British Raj for special royal occasions. Three imperial Durbars were held in Delhi: the first, held in 1877, marked the proclamation of Queen Victoria as Queen Empress of India; the second, held in 1902-03, marked the coronation of King Edward VII. The last, held on 12 December 1911, marked the coronation of King George V as 'King-Emperor' of India, and was the only Durbar that the ruler attended in person. The 1911 Durbar was "the most spectacular ceremony in the history of the British empire" (ODNB); it cost over £1 million to mount, and was over a year in preparation. Over 200,000 people attended the events taking place in Delhi's Coronation Park, which were captured in print, photography and the relatively new technology of film. As well as providing a clear sign of Britain's commitment to maintaining its grip on India, the Durbar was also used for particular political purposes. King George announced the reversal of the unpopular 1905 decision that had partitioned Bengal. He also declared Delhi the new capital and laid its foundation-stone (soon after moved when New Delhi was re-sited). The Durbar was followed by a shooting expedition in Nepal and a visit to Calcutta (Kolkatta), the former capital of British India. The royal party returned home the following year, reaching Portsmouth on 5 February 1912' (National Library of Scotland, on an Durbar album).- A printed slip at the beginning of the volume records the deaths of the Nizam of Hayderabad and the Maharaja of Kuch Behar.
COPAC locates copies in the British Library Wellcome, in Cambridge, the National Library of Scotland and at Trinity, Dublin. - No trace of the title on the market of in book aution records.