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30 January 2020‘Eliza Cliffe, Elizabeth Barrett and the terrible lost portrait’
27 February 2020The Silk Road and the Arts of China
26 March 2020A Carpet Ride to Khiva
30 April 2020Shimmering splendor: silk in south east Asia’
28 May 2020‘Papers from Peking: Chinese wallpapers’
25 June 2020Portraits of the Maharanis
30 July 2020The Queen of Instruments: the lute within Old Master paintings

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‘Eliza Cliffe, Elizabeth Barrett and the terrible lost portrait’ Irving Finkel Thursday 30 January 2020

A newly discovered and extraordinary early 19th century manuscript diary, written in code and surviving by a miracle, throws light on the friendship between Elizabeth Barrett, later Browning, and a neighbouring lady of similar age, who bravely painted her portrait. Diaries on both sides survive and we can listen in to our hearts content.

Irving Finkel, a British philologist and Assyriologist, is currently Assistant Keeper of Ancient Mesopotamian script, languages and cultures in the Department of the Middle East at the British Museum, where he specializes in cuneiform inscriptions on clay tablets from ancient Mesopotamia. He also studies the history of board games, one of his breakthrough works is the determination of the rules of the Royal Game of Ur.  He also founded the great diary project, which preserves the diaries of ordinary people. A side-line is writing children’s fiction.