[Sir George Everest (1790-1866), Surveyor-General of India.] Glass figurine of the god Vishnu, given by him on his retirement to his kinswoman Mrs Mary Legh of High Legh, Cheshire. With contemporary manuscript note.
5cm. etched clear cut-glass figurine of the god Vishnu, for domestic worship. Wrapped in a 4 x 8.5 cm packet, made from a folded piece of 10.5 x 18.5 cm Whatman paper, with 'Penates' written on it in a Victorian hand (presumably that of Eleanor Avena Blackburne, see below). Both figurine and packet are in very good condition. On the inside of the unfolded packet, in the same hand: 'Penates from Nepaul | Mrs Legh of High Legh gave it to me who received 3 from Capt Everest on his return from thence'. 'Capt Everest' is Sir George Everest (1790-1866), Surveyor-General of India, after whom Mount Everest is named, who had retired and returned to England in 1843. 'Mrs Legh of High Legh' is Mary (1785-1856), daughter of John Blackburne (1754-1833) of Hale Hall, MP, and widow of George John Legh (1768-1832), LL.D., High Sheriff of Cheshire, 1805, who had served in the Cheshire Militia with Sir George Everest's uncle John Cole Everest (1746-1821), also a resident of High Legh. (As the note refers to 'Mrs Legh' rather than 'the late Mrs Legh' it is likely that it dates from before her death in 1856.) The item was part of a large collection of material relating to the Blackburne family of Orford Hall and Hale Hall, offered for auction in 2012. Mrs Legh's brother John Ireland Blackburne (1783-1874), was MP for Warrington, and a similar packet from the same collection carries a note in the same hand as that on the present packet, the context strongly suggesting that the notes on both packets are by John Ireland Blackburne's daughter Eleanor Avena Blackburne. The other packet, containing 'a relic from the Ocean Monarch', is offered separately.