The Netherlands Institute for the Near East

Nederlands Instituut voor het Nabije Oosten  -  Institut néerlandais du Proche-Orient

Frank Scholten legacy

The Scholten photographic collection comprises a large number of original photographs that Frank Scholten took on his travels through the Middle East in 1920-1923.

Photo 227 from La Palestine illustrée, vol. 1: "His fairest festal garments."

NINO holds the legacy of Frank Scholten (1881-1942), author of the two volume publication La Palestine illustrée (1929, subsequent editions in English, German, and Dutch). The volumes, “including references to passages illustrated in the Bible, the Talmud and the Koran”, were richly illustrated with photographs made by Scholten.

The Scholten Collection consists mainly of the many photographs taken by Scholten, an avid amateur photographer, on his travels in Europe and the Middle East. From his large number of photos from the Levant he selected images for his publication. He did not live to complete his plan to produce further volumes of La Palestine illustrée, and the majority of his photos were never published. In cooperation with the Printroom of Leiden University, research into the magnitude and nature of the photographic collection has started, as a first step towards finding means and ways to make it accessible. A few highlights from the Scholten photographic collection are presented here. The collection itself is at this moment not accessible for consultation.

In addition to the photographic materials, the Scholten legacy included his books, which were incorporated into the NINO library. Upon his death a foundation was established to advance research into Palestinian and Syrian antiquities. The Frank Scholten Foundation currently supports the acquisition of publications in this field by the NINO library.