< Last Photo   << Last Chapter                Notes on the Geography of Places: Malaysia: Kuching: Colonial Government Buildings         Next Chapter >>   Next Photo > 

Notes on the Geography of Malaysia: Kuching: Colonial Government Buildings: Photo 8

world pictures Malaysia: Kuching: Colonial Government Buildings

Charles Brooke, for whom the monument was built, was the model of a martinet, absolute and absolutely rigid. His wife Margaret described him as "the most punctual man alive," but a better description comes from Sylvia Brooke, his daughter-in-law and the wife of Vyner Brooke. Sylvia was a daughter of Reginald Brett--Lord Esher, poet, musician, statesman, soldier, aristocrat among aristocrats--a man, Sylvia wrote, who turned down invitations to be Under-Secretary for the Colonies, Under-Secretary for War, Governor of Cape Colony, Secretary of State for War, and Viceroy of India. He did serve as royal trustee to the British Museum, governor of the Imperial College of Science, and Governor of Windsor Castle. "Nobody," she wrote, "who was not SOMEBODY meant a thing to my father." Sylvia's own childhood, though intensely lonely, could not have been more privileged, with Prince Edward among her playmates.

Come her wedding to Vyner Brooke, Charles Brooke, the White Rajah himself, came to Orchard Lea, which was close to Windsor Castle and was the summer home of Sylvia's family. She writes, "Among the throng of guests was Vyner's father, the old Rajah, who had been dragged unwillingly to the marriage of his son, didn't know who his host was, loathed the whole affair, and only wanted to leave as soon as possible. He turned to the first man he saw, and said, 'How the hell can I get out of this damned house?' The man happened to be my father, who was so astonished that he meekly showed him the door." From a distance, it's hard not to like the old buzzard. (Sylvia, who enjoyed her quasi-royal status, wrote a lot; the quotations above come from her Queen of the Head Hunters, 1970.)

View: tiny * small * medium * big * biggest Photo Size

Back to Malaysia: Kuching: Colonial Government Buildings chapter

Short link for this page: http://www.greatmirror.com?justpic=28161

* Argentina * Australia * Austria * Bangladesh * Belgium * Botswana * Brazil * Burma / Myanmar * Cambodia (Angkor) * Canada (B.C.) * China * The Czech Republic * Egypt * Fiji * France * Germany * Ghana * Greece * Guyana * Hungary * India: Themes * Northern India * Peninsular India * Indonesia * Israel * Italy * Japan * Jerusalem * Jordan * Kenya * Laos * Kosovo * Malawi * Malaysia * Mauritius * Mexico * Micronesia (Pohnpei) * Morocco * Mozambique * Namibia * The Netherlands * New Zealand * Nigeria * Norway * Oman * Pakistan * Peru * The Philippines * Poland * Portugal * Romania (Transylvania) * Senegal * Singapore * South Africa * South Korea * Spain * Sri Lanka * Sudan * Syria (Aleppo) * Tanzania * Thailand * Trinidad * Turkey (Istanbul) * Uganda * The U.A.E. (Dubai) * The United Kingdom * The Eastern United States * The Western United States * Oklahoma * Uruguay * Uzbekistan * Vietnam * The West Bank * Yemen * Zambia * Zimbabwe *
go back to previous picture go to next chapter go to next picture go to previous chapter page