In 1927 the Musicians’ Union was active on several fronts to support members’ interests. It resisted reductions in pay following the General Strike and fought against harsh conditions of service when, for example, some cinema owners insisted their orchestras play seven days a week. However, to achieve its aims, the Union needed sufficient income to employ officials and organise members; but those very members resisted moves to raise the subscription.
This image and the next one show the delicate work undertaken by the conservator. While the colours have remained astonishingly brilliant, the paper has deteriorated.
Podcasts and videos showcasing AHRC-funded research.
In the early 1st century BC, Parthia’s territory expanded to the River Euphrates. Parthian and Roman envoys met to establish this landmark as the boundary between the two superpowers. At this first meeting, the Roman magistrate reportedly seized the seat of honour, humiliating his Parthian counterpart as the inferior ambassador. In 53 BC, Parthia finally demonstrated its strength by crushing the Roman army at Carrhae. 30,000 soldiers were killed or captured, and several legionary standards were lost to the Parthians.
Alexandra Magub - School of Oriental and African Studies and The British Museum
The competition that civilian musicians faced from military bands in public parks and seaside resorts increased in the summer months. A year later, in the summer of 1929, however, this would seem a less menacing challenge than the rush by many exhibitors to install pre-recorded sound in their cinemas.
By the time of his death in 1895, leading black abolitionist and former slave Frederick Douglass was the most photographed American of the 19th century, rather than Abraham Lincoln, Walt Whitman or General Custer (as scholars have previously claimed).
Films, feature articles, podcasts and image galleries that showcase research from across our funded themes and programmes.
The archer on Parthian coins not only represented the military might of the Parthians, but also their Iranian character. Trousers were considered effeminate clothing in the Roman world; however the folds of material (shown on the coins as horizontal lines) prevented saddle chaffing. These mounted archers were a chilling reminder of Rome’s defeat at Carrhae: the Roman historian Justin recounts how the cavalrymen would gallop in retreat, only to turn in the saddle and fire fatal shots from their bows.
© Trustees of the British Museum
In cinemas, the Panatrope was a two-turntable gramophone with amplified output which allowed operators to play a pre-recorded soundtrack for silent films. Like the more satisfactory systems that reproduced sound recorded on film (represented here by the American salesman, frame right), it threatened the livelihoods of musicians who accompanied films in cinemas. A related article attacked the technology being introduced in Britain and claimed that "the public cannot live on 'canned' music all the time any more than on canned pork."
Auburn Avenue at Piedmont Avenue (African American neighbourhood), Atlanta, Georgia, 1975; destroyed in 2007, Douglass with Martin Luther King, Jr., Malcolm X and W.E.B. Du Bois, likely based on a cabinet card photograph by Matthew Brady taken in Washington D.C. in 1876; CC BY-NC-ND.