At the same time he directed and supervised the proper treatment and illustration of hundreds of specimens of ancient textiles. This arduous work was greatly assisted by the convenient accommodation and other facilities which Sir FREDERIC KENYON, Director of the British Museum, with the ready assent of its Trustees, kindly put at our disposal. For this generous help I may be allowed to express here my deep sense of gratitude.
Assistance If the many extremely delicate and fragile objects recovered from the desert sands and ruined sites
received at of the most arid parts of Asia survive in future the effect of wholly different climatic conditions, it will British
Museum. be largely due to the special treatment it was possible to secure at the British Museum. Through the same ready co-operation it became possible during the summer of 1925 to arrange a temporary exhibition of representative specimens of antiques in the Ceramic Gallery of the British Museum. In its arrangement as well as in other tasks Mr. Andrews and myself received very useful assistance from Miss J. JOSHUA. For all the advantages thus enjoyed during our work at the British Museum my very grateful acknowledgements are due to the Keepers and Deputy Keepers of the Departments directly concerned, Dr. L. D. BARNETT, Mr. LAURENCE BINYON, Mr. O. M.DALTON, Dr. L. GILES, Mr. R. L. HOBSON, as well as to Dr. ALEXANDER SCOTT, in charge of the British Museum Laboratory.
Completion During the period of my deputation to England, which extended to the autumn of 1925, I was
of Report. able to complete my manuscript of Chapters I—XXIV dealing with the explorations on Chinese soil and to begin delivering it to the press. After my return to India a fortunate opportunity arose of carrying a fruitful archaeological tour into Upper Swat and the adjacent tribal territory, once the scene of Alexander's memorable Frontier campaign and hitherto inaccessible for research.13 This tour and certain urgent tasks imposed by its results prevented my finishing the remaining six chapters until towards the close of 1926.
Work on It would have been impossible for me to make these volumes a comprehensive record of the
Chinese antiquarian and kindred results of my expedition but for the manifold and very effective help I
and in- received from fellow-scholars and others. Among the written remains brought to light in the
scriptions. course of my journey, the Chinese documents and inscriptions were those most likely to yield information bearing on archaeological and historical points. In respect of these Chinese records I suffered the loss of a hoped-for collaborator of unequalled eminence by the death of my lamented friend M. EDOUARD CHAVANNES. On my passage through Paris in May 1916 the greatest of Western Sinologues of our times had very kindly promised his help towards the publication of the Chinese materials brought back from my third journey. But his death in the spring of 1918 frustrated the hope of seeing them soon made available for research in a companion volume to his Documents Chinois, to which my Serindia had owed so much.
Collabora- Deprived of this hope I had reason to feel very grateful to M. HENRI MASPERO, his pupil and
tion of M. successor in the chair of the from Collège de France, who on his return rom the Far East in I 21 kindly
g 9 Y
undertook the study and eventual publication of those materials. To him I am indebted for the translation of four of the sepulchral inscriptions from the cemetery of Astana, comprised in Appendix A and provided with valuable notes throwing light also on the pre-T`ang chronology of Turf-dn. In addition, M. Maspero has very kindly placed at my disposal preliminary abstract translations, with notes, of most of the Chinese documents on wood and paper recovered from ruins of the ancient Han Limes of Turfan and other sites. The antiquarian information gleaned from them has so far as possible been utilized by me in Chapters X—XII, XVIII, XIX. For this help I wish to record here my sincere thanks, coupled with the hope that these interesting materials may before long be made fully accessible by M. Maspero in a proposed separate publication.
13 Cf. Serindia, i. pp. 2 sqq. [See now my paper, ' Alexander's Campaigns on the Indian North-West Frontier',