The Empire Strikes Back

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This is a wonderful automata from the Victoria and Albert Museum, showing how passive those pesky colonials could be.

It is Tipo the tiger, an automata owned by Tipu Sultan who died after a battle with the East India Company in Seringapatom, India in 1799. They brought it to Britain, to their museum and it is now in the Victoria and Albert Museum.

The tiger has a hand cranked organ which, instead of playing music, is said to make the sounds of the British soldier being eaten. Nice.

I have been told by someone who knows such things that this is based on a frieze on the acropolis. Which makes it even more likely it was built in Europe.

4 thoughts on “The Empire Strikes Back

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