Journal Article

Lord Elgin's <i>firman</i>

Dyfri Williams

in Journal of the History of Collections

Volume 21, issue 1, pages 49-76
Published in print May 2009 | ISSN: 0954-6650
Published online January 2009 | e-ISSN: 1477-8564 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/jhc/fhn033
Lord Elgin's firman

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This article examines one of the most crucial documents associated with the history of the collection of antiquities; the Ottoman firman granted in July 1801 to Lord Elgin in respect of the activities of his team of artists, architectural draftsmen and moulders on the Acropolis of Athens. The text of the preserved Italian translation is examined and the status of the lost original Ottoman Turkish document assessed. The process of and the background to the granting of the firman are also documented as far as possible. In addition, the manner in which the firman was first applied in Athens is examined, in particular the roles of the Revd Philip Hunt and the accompanying Ottoman official, Raschid Aga (the Mubàshir).

Journal Article.  18493 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Exhibition Catalogues and Specific Collections ; History of Art ; Social and Cultural History

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