Identified as “Old Dutch Fortification, Point De Galle,” this image a has been kindly supplied by the National Library of Australia. It is a late 19th century picture — before the new entrance was punched through the frontal ramparts and before a clock tower was built to honour Dr Anthonisz.
Whately’s water-colour painting (12.9 x 17.7 cm) of Point de Galle, dated 31 July 1874 has also been provided by the National Library of Australia.
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Images from a Professional: Juliet Coombe
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Juliet Coombe, in Daily News, 1 December 2017,where the title runs “Fragments of the past”
“New things you can replace. Old things are irreplaceable.” Such is the mentality that has underpinned the empire that is now the Historical Mansion, right through from the inventor of the museum, Hussain senior, who has passed the museum onto his eldest son Kamal who now runs it, along with the arcade, gem making workshop in the central courtyard and the fabulous antiques gallery with filigree jewellery that is hundreds of years old. Newness is not important to Kamal, he simply wants to preserve what his father collected so that future generations can understand and appreciate the lives that were lived without electricity hence the notches in the walls for candles and if you wanted water you had to draw it from the central courtyard well.
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Ravi Velloor’s article in THUPPAHI drew a private comment from Stephen Labrooy in Sri Lanka which is food for thought in itself, but carries particular value because it comes from Sri Lankan Burgher of some seniority who has travelled abroad and presently serves as President of the Dutch Burgher Union. I have queries on several points and raised just two hurriedly (see below); but the “memorandum” has useful ethnographic information, while running several inter-related arguments. Hence its airing here.
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Juliet Coombe, in Daily News, 29 September 2017, where the title is “The Rich Heritage of Galle Fort”
Juliet Coombe takes a look at this very special UNESCO World Heritage Site and its magnificent rampart walls and fascinating back streets.
Enter the old fortress built out of breathing corals as the main black tunnel gate by the cricket grounds opens up into a gash of bellowing air, with distended creepers riding pillion on giant Banyan trees hobnobbing with an ancient merchant caste. A strange choreography can always be detected here, with the musical call to prayer emanating from the mosque or the temple’s sound system merging with the toots of ice cream vendors’ bicycle horns and other hot and spicy snacks and pickle vendors plying the sonorities of their trade as the Indian Ocean thunders and whooshes by, barfing on the black rocks its named aft. Continue reading
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