Peking Summer Palace Embroidery

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Reference WMO202965

Address:

All Saints Church

Church Road

Dewlish, Dorset

England

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Type: Non freestanding
Location: Internal
Setting: Inside a building - public/private
Description: Tapestry/Needlepoint
Materials:
  • Other Fabric
Lettering: Inscribed on a plaque
Conflicts:
  • China (19C and 20C)
About the memorial: In the second Opium War against China in 1860-1, General (later Field Marshal) John Michel, who is buried in the churchyard here, superintended the capture, looting and burning of the Summer Palace in Peking in revenge for the treatment of British prisoners by the Chinese. The original of this embroidery was brought back by him to Dewlish House. This is a copy made by the general's grand-daughter Katharine and presented to the church in 1965. The whereabouts of the original is not known. Is it a proper war memorial? It stands as a memorial of a particularly unpleasant instance of British imperialism and a reminder of the origins of present day Chinese suspicion of our country. 1861 is not long ago in the Chinese scheme of things. It hangs on the north wall of the nave, towards the west end of the church.
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