Courtesy of a private collector | Licence: All Rights Reserved
Courtesy of a private collector | Licence: All Rights Reserved

The Pasig


[January - February 1850]



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From the Collection


The Pasig is a fine large stream running into the sea through Manilla. In the middle of the day, as most of the Americans and English were busy, I generally took a "banca" with two men, and rowed up the river, well protected by the awning, as in a gondola at Venice. I always started on these excursions with the intention of sketching a good deal; but the heat of the weather made me excessively indolent, and I lay in the banca admiring everything and doing nothing.
This is a page from a unique leather-bound volume of Robert Elwes’ travelogue 'A Sketcher's Tour Round the World', first published 1854, (see page 307 for corresponding passage).
The book contains the printed text of the manuscript but remarkably, the monochrome wash illustrations are hand painted by Elwes. The book bears a handwritten inscription ‘Mary F Elwes from her affect. husband Robert Elwes Jan 25 1878’, dated after Robert Elwes became ill at Congham, his Norfolk home. On 28th January 1878 , their youngest daughter Violet noted in her diary: “Papa much worse”. Less than three months later, Robert Elwes died on 17th April aged 58.

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Courtesy of a private collector

From the Watercolour World


The Pasig River, Manilla, Philippines