Wednesday, 15 July 2009

The Maldives Comes to Manchester

A great night in the Punjab Restaurant in Manchester's Curry Mile. Our first visit to this particular restaurant, and we liked it very much.

A lot of talk. A lot of laughter. A lot of photographs.

Virtually the whole of the local Maldivian community was there.

It was a privilege for us to meet such an interesting and friendly group of people, and I think we learned far more about the Maldives than we did on our three visits there as tourists. I also learned a little about the movement of the currents in the Indian Ocean and the South Atlantic!

Whether they learned anything about St. Helena from me is I think a moot point!

Our particular thanks to the amazing Aisha for having organised the event.

Maldivia - an Update

I have now gone over my original sources for the comment I made about the origins of the term Maldivia. I am afraid I have to admit an error. I think that the mention of the word "slaves" in the context of Maldivians was almost certainly my mistake. I suspect that the Maldivians were classified as "free blacks". My apologies for this, and for any upset it may have caused. I have added a comment to the original blog.

The source of my comments was Janisch's book on the St Helena records

now available online. I wish I had given the reference in my original blog. These records are well worth perusing for anyone who wishes to learn more about St Helena's history. The introduction is very apt:

Probably there are no Records of other British settlements more interesting or saddening than those which are to be found in these pages. Amongst the many incidents of the early days of the Island's history, herein recapitulated, several will be found to be highly ludicrous and entertaining, while some are revolting in the extreme.

The bits on Maldivia I found there are as follows:

March 17.—Capt. Polly of the Drake at the distance of 150 leagues from land took up a Boat with ten Blacks of the Maldive Islands who were drove out to Sea and near perishing—three died on board, 5 Men, 1 woman and 1 boy landed here.
[Note.—The Maldivia Gardens, then a Government Plantation, derived their name from the employment of these men therein.]

22nd March 1742 —Major Thomas Lambert arrived and proclaimed Governor.
6th April—The property called " The Maldives" turned into a Hospital.


Melanied'Anjou said...

Cheers, John!
Very interesting blog of yours, one of few I find worthy to look after by the way:P lol
And now, something maybe beyond the subject, but if you could just give me a clue: ever heard of Dorothy Carrington?:/ Was she really that accomplished and trustworthy historian? She is said to have written the best book about Napoleons childhood ever, have some reasons to doubt it.. i simply get this feeling that she's not very objective after all..
keep going with your blog and good luck!

John Tyrrell said...

Thanks very much for your comment. Have looked at your blog - very different from mine!

Haven't read her book but will get round to it sometime - hopefully. This review may be worth checking out.


Alif Laam Gaaf said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Alif Laam Gaaf said...

I felt to say just a simple thank you, after reading about your findings from Aishath Ali Naaz's blog about some Maldivians that we never heard of.