Paul Frecker
Fine Photographs


Lepcha people of Sikkim, northeast India, c. 1869

An unmounted albumen print showing a group of Lepcha or Rong people of Sikkim in northeast India.

The Lepcha are the aboriginal inhabitants of present day Sikkim, a landlocked Indian state nestled in the Himalayas between Nepal and Bhutan. Many Lepcha are also found in western and southwestern Bhutan, eastern Nepal, and even the hills of West Bengal. They are also known as the Rong, Rongke or Rongpa. Their origins are obscure but since they speak a Tibeto-Burman language, some anthropologists suggest they originally migrated from Tibet.

Photographer unidentified but possibly taken around 1869 by an anonymous photographer for inclusion in the Frith Series of photographs of the region and its people. Alternatively, the photograph might have been taken by John Doyle of Darjeeling. 

Condition: the print presents a few, very small imperfections but is otherwise in excellent condition, with very good tonal range.

Dimensions: the print measures 7.9” by 6.4” (20 cm by 16.3 cm).


price:  £200
code: cat020
Lepcha, Lepchas, Rong, Sikkim, India, Himalayas, Frith Series, John Doyle Darjeeling, John Doyle, Darjeeling