Drawing of the interior of a Finnish house

Drawing of the interior of a Finnish house
Accession number: 
Pitt Rivers Museum, University of Oxford

Drawing in pencil by Arthur Evans of the interior of a Finnish cottage, showing a stone fireplace and oven projecting into the room.

Artist: Arthur John Evans
Date of drawing: 24 August 1873
Continent: Europe
Geographical area: Northern Europe
Country: Finland
Region/Place: Lapland; Kitinen river; Niemela
Cultural group: European Finnish
Format: Drawing (mounted on card)
Size: 74 x 103 mm; 174 x 245 mm (with mount)
Acquisition: Joan Evans. Donated August 1941


Primary documentation: ‘[p.588] Dr. JOAN EVANS, from the property of the late SIR ARTHUR EVANS, Youlbury, Boars Hill, Oxford. [List of items follows]’; ‘[p.590] 15 original pencil sketches of types & scenery, chiefly round ENARE, LAPPMARK, FINLAND. Made on journey in 1873. Mounted’: Pitt Rivers Museum accession records (Donations X, 1937–1941), pp.588, 590. Annotations on mount: ‘Stone fireplace & oven built out into middle of the room - Ducks skin hung from beam -/ Inside of Finnish Cottage called Niemella./ On the Kittinen river. Kemi Lappmark - Finland’ (written on mount in brown ink).

Research notes: It has been established by Philip Grover that this drawing was made by Arthur Evans on 24 August 1873, when his travelling party was at Niemela on the Kitinen river. Evans wrote in his journal of the voyage to Finnish Lapland: ‘This evening we have landed by this little farm house where they have hospitably taken us in for the night - it is some way beyond the last place marked on my map & this side of the Fells, & the people support themselves mainly by salmon fishing for which they have innumerable nets & queer spears[.] Our host is wonderfully kind & so intelligent as to be able to put down new names & rivers in my map which professes to be from the Government survey - the little shed we are stopping at rejoices in a name almost Italian in its harmoniousness - pronounced Niemélla [Niemela] the room where I write this is delightfully primitive - There is a great fire place built out of unhewn stone which projects into the room - so rough to make that it looks like part of a ruin - before it lies a most amiable bushy tailed dog - in a cradle near a girl is rocking a baby to sleep [-] in the other corner is a home made loom where is a half made piece of red & black cloth, across the room are various beams from which hang various articles of apparel & some ducks[’] wings - part of the fire place is an oven in which a rye cake may be seen’ (entry dated 24 August 1873): Ashmolean Museum of Art and Archaeology, Sir Arthur Evans Archive, B/2/1, Box 1, Notebook 2, pp.6–7. For more information on Arthur Evans’ voyage to Finnish Lapland in 1873, see Joan Evans, Time and Chance: The Story of Arthur Evans and His Forebears (London, 1943), pp.172–176; Ann Brown, Before Knossos...: Arthur Evans’s Travels in the Balkans and Crete (Oxford, 1993), pp.14–16, 90; and Tony Lurcock, No Particular Hurry: British Travellers in Finland, 1830-1917 (London, 2013), pp.123–134, 250.