Johanninpoika Marataja

Johanninpoika Marataja
Accession number: 
Pitt Rivers Museum, University of Oxford

View of forest trees near Lake Inari, with a Saami man (named Johanninpoika Marataja), a local guide hired by Arthur Evans’ travelling party, sitting in the foreground.

Photographer: Arthur John Evans
Date of photograph: 1 September 1873
Continent: Europe
Geographical area: Northern Europe
Country: Finland
Region/Place: Lapland; near Lake Inari
Cultural group: European Saami
Named person(s): Johanninpoika Marataja
Format: Black and white print (mounted on card)
Size: 74 x 101 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] 13 photographs mounted on cards. Types & scenery in Lappland. Finland, Sweden. Taken on journey in 1873’: Pitt Rivers Museum accession records (Donations X, 1937–1941), pp.588, 590. Annotations on mount: ‘Midday halting place near lake Enare. Lat. 69 [degrees]/ In foreground -/ Our Lapp guide Johanninpoika Marataja’ (written on mount in brown ink).

Research notes: It has been established by Philip Grover that this photograph was taken by Arthur Evans on 1 September 1873, when his  party was travelling from Suolajarvi to Lake Inari. Evans wrote in his journal of the voyage to Finnish Lapland: ‘At our noonday halt got the G. I. [“grand irreclaimable savage”, a nickname which Evans used in writing of the party’s Saami guide Johanninpoika Marataja] to sit for his likeness - his general rig is not very unlike a Wallach[’]s - leather belt, coarse sack cloth tunic but with a high collar of divers[e] colours [...] & which is the distinguishing feature of the Lapp tunic - his legs closely swathed in the same ragged sacking - dull bands wound about above the boot which is like the Finnish saba, but only up to the ankle - From his belt hangs a very long knife in leather sheath, & he lights his pipe with a flint of peculiar shape, & a bit of the roughest steel with a perforation in the middle by which to attach it to a thong of leather - both which I have succeeded in getting from him for a consideration[.] On his head a dull subconical cap’ (entry dated 1 September 1873): Ashmolean Museum of Art and Archaeology, Sir Arthur Evans Archive, B/2/1, Box 1, Notebook 2, pp.59–60. 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.