Theos Bernard photographing Chomolhari (Jomolhari)

Tibet in the 1930s: Theos Bernard's Legacy at UC Berkeley

Theos Bernard photographing Chomolhari (Jomolhari)

Chomolhari, a Himalayan peak rising nearly 9,000 feet, straddles the border of Tibet and Bhutan. It is believed by Tibetan Buddhists to be sacred to Chomo (Jomo), a goddess who protects the land, people, and Buddhist faith of both countries. 

In the foreground, Theos Bernard is being photographed while photographing, probably by his Tibetan assistant, Gegen Dorje Tharchin. Tharchin, who went to Lhasa ahead of Bernard to petition on his behalf for permission to enter the city, took many of the photographs of Lhasa, in case Bernard would be denied entry. All of the photographs in this photo essay are believed to have been shot by either Tharchin or Bernard.