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The gifts come to Britain

A watercolour depicting a view of HMS Serapis entering the Solent  on 11 May 1876 on its return from the Prince of Wales's Indian tour. Signed and dated: WE Atkins 76.In October 1875, Albert Edward, the eldest son of Queen Victoria, embarked on

The Prince of Wales entering the Solent on his return from India, on board HMS Serapis, 11 May 1876 ©

The Prince recognised that the gifts he received were of exceptional quality and design, and felt they should be shared with a wider audience. Even before he left India on 13 March 1876, the Prince considered ways that this might be made possible. During the long voyage home, he decided that the gifts should be exhibited at the Indian Museum at South Kensington (now part of the Victoria and Albert Museum). The museum had been founded specifically to make works of art available to all and to inspire British designers and manufacturers.