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East India Company at Home, 1757-1857

In the century between 1757 and 1857, The East India Company brought both sizeable affluence and fresh perspective back home to Britain from the Indian subcontinent. During this period, the Company shifted its activities and increasingly employed civil servants, army officers, surveyors, and doctors, many of whom returned to Britain with newly acquired wealth, tastes, and identities. This new volume moves beyond conventional academic narratives by drawing on wider research, exploring how the empire in Asia shaped British country houses, thus contributing to the ongoing conversation on imperial culture and its British legacies. 

500 pages | 99 illustrations | 6.14 x 9.21 | © 2018

Free digital open access editions are available to download from UCL Press.

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"an impressive process of distillation Margot Finn and Kate Smith have put together a coherent survey of the material traces of old India hands – the lucky ones who survived to be repatriated and to make their mark anew in Britain – compiled from a refreshing variety of perspectives"

Journal of the History of Collections

Table of Contents

Margot Finn and Kate Smith

Section 1 The social life of things

1. Prize possession: the ‘silver coffer’ of Tipu Sultan and
the Fraser family
Sarah Longair and Cam Sharp Jones

2. Chinese wallpaper: from Canton to country house
Helen Clifford

3. Production, purchase, dispossession, recirculation:
Anglo-Indian ivory furniture in the British country house
Kate Smith

4. ‘A jaghire without a crime’: the East India Company and
the Indian Ocean material world at Osterley, 1700–1800
Yuthika Sharma and Pauline Davies

Section 2 Objects, houses, homes and the construction
of identities

5. Manly objects? Gendering armorial porcelain wares
Kate Smith

6. Fanny Parkes (1794–1875): female collecting and
curiosity in India and Britain
Joanna Goldsworthy
7. Refashioning house, home and family: Montreal Park,
Kent and Touch House, Stirlingshire
Margot Finn and Kate Smith

3 The Home Counties: clusters and connections

8. Warfield Park, Berkshire: longing, belonging and
the British country house
Kate Smith

9. Englefield House, Berkshire: processes, practices and
the making of a Company house
Kate Smith

10. Swallowfield Park, Berkshire: from royalist bastion to
empire home
Margot Finn

11. Valentines, the Raymonds and Company material culture
Georgina Green

12. Growing up in a Company town: the East India
Company presence in South Hertfordshire
Chris Jeppesen

Section 4 On the borders: region, nation, globe

13. A fairy palace in Devon: Redcliffe Towers, built by
Colonel Robert Smith (1787–1873), Bengal Engineers
Diane James

14. Partly after the Chinese manner: ‘Chinese’ staircases
in north-west Wales
Rachael Barnwell

15. The intimate trade of Alexander Hall: salmon and
slaves in Scotland and Sumatra, c.1745–1765
Ellen Filor

16. Connecting Britain and India: General Patrick
Duff and Madeira
Alistair Mutch

Section 5 Company families and identities:
writing history today

17. The career of William Gamul Farmer (1746–1797)
in India, 1763–1795
Penelope Farmer

18. The Melvill family and India
David Williams

19. The Indian seal of Sir Francis Sykes: a tale of two families
Sir John Sykes

Margot Finn and Kate Smith "

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