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General Gordon

Major General Charles George Gordon. 1833-85 British soldier and administrator. A "maverick" and all-round Victorian hero as "Chinese Gordon" in life and "Gordon of Khartoum" in death.

The connection belongs to Individual People connections.

Connected Sites

  • Harar: Working for the Egyptian Khedive who had annexed the Emirate as part of his intended "African Empire" he visited Harar in 1878 and dismissed the governor. Wrote to Richard Burton "I wish you could undertake the Government of Zeyla, Hara, and Berberah, and free me of the bother. Why cannot you get two years' leave from F.O., then write (saying it is my suggestion) to H.H., and offer it? I could give, say, ?5,000 a year from London to your Government."
  • Old City of Jerusalem: Visited Palestine for a year in 1882-3. The authenticity of the "Church of the Holy Sepulchre" as the traditional location of the burial and resurrection of Christ was being questioned by a number of scholars and Gordon concluded that a tomb outside the Walls (and outside the inscribed site) was the true tomb. The place became known as "Gordon's Calvary" and "The Garden Tomb". It remains a place of pilgrimage as an altrnative to the Church of the Holy Sepulchre particuarly among Protestants. Link
  • Summer Palace: Was present, as a 27 year old captain in 1860 at the destruction of the Old Summer Palace "We went out, and, after pillaging it, burned the whole place, destroying in a vandal-like manner most valuable property which [could] not be replaced for four millions. We got upward of ?48 apiece prize money...I have done well. The [local] people are very civil, but I think the grandees hate us, as they must after what we did the Palace. You can scarcely imagine the beauty and magnificence of the places we burnt. It made one?s heart sore to burn them; in fact, these places were so large, and we were so pressed for time, that we could not plunder them carefully. Quantities of gold ornaments were burnt, considered as brass. It was wretchedly demoralising work for an army."
  • VallĂ©e de Mai: Visited in 1881and developed a theory that it was the Garden of Eden Link

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