Please click links (shown under I through IX below) for short preview films at British Pathe. The quality of the films is excellent. Once you are at the British pathe website go to advanced search and use specific keywords to narrow the results for other films of the previous and present Aga Khan. The movies may be viewed in full screen mode (but is of inferior quality).
Please also see our recommended CD set at bottom of page, which includes a recording of a speech made by the late Aga Khan in 1931. The set can be purchased from the British Library website.
Other readings in this special series on Aga Khan III:
I. Aga Khan’s Platinum Jubilee in Cairo
Various shots of guests seated awaiting arrival of Aga Khan (aka Sir Mahomed Shah). The Aga Khan, Begum (his wife) and Prince Ali arriving and seated in gilt chairs. Followers watching. The Aga Khan receiving a gift from his followers. The Aga Khan shaking hands with followers. Ivory gift on table. A scroll. Date on original record is 24/02/1955.
II. Preparations for the “Weighing In” of Aga Khan
Against his weight in diamonds in Bombay, India. Still of drawing of the elaborate scales. Good shot of the Begum Khan with her husband, the Aga Khan. We see them looking at the diagram and examining the diamonds.
III. The Aga Khan in Glasgow
At the Empire Exhibition we see the Aga Khan, Sir Mahomed Shah, laying a stone on behalf of the people of India in the Garden of Good Neighbours. On the forecourt of the Ceylon Pavilion, the Aga Khan has some tea, then is accompanied to his car by his entourage.
IV. Ismailis Prepare for Aga Khan’s Diamond Jubilee, Bombay, India.
Various shots of the members of the executive committee of the Aga Khan Legion assemble at Aga Khan’s residence in Bombay to discuss the celebration of Aga Khan’s Diamond Jubilee. Men are seated in a long semicircle. Aga Khan seated amongst men, looking on. Aga Khan and wife Begum rise from their seats and walk to garden, followed by others – item abruptly ends.
V. Aga Khan speaks to Pathe Gazette on India.
Various shots of Aga Khan talking on future of India at Ritz Hotel. He expresses his feelings about the proposals on Indian reform. He seems to be pleased with the fact that versatile lifestyles of peoples of India were accounted for and accommodated in the proposal. He also sounds hopeful and optimistic.
VI. Aga Khan’s Platinum Jubilee 1954
Crowd (several shots). Girl with sunglasses. crowd from around the world. Aga Khan arriving. Aga Khan walking up to dais (several shots). Aga Khan seated on scales waving to crowd. Dignitaries arriving, and crowd. Aga Khan seated on scales. Aga Khan leaving dais. Various shots Aga Khan walking to and entering car. Aga Khan leaving. Platinum Jubilee Arch.
VII. Aga Khan’s Platinum Jubilee, Karachi
Guests arriving. Top of Jubilee Arch. Aly Khan, his son, arriving and being greeted. Aly Khan talking to another man. Aga Khan arriving with his wife Begum in car. Aga Khan’s car driving through dense crowds. Car driving between crowds. Three Indian women. Elevated: Begum greeting officials. Aga Khan wearing ceremonial hat. ‘Long Live Aga Khan’ – sign. Aga Khan on revolving stage. Aga Khan sitting down. Crowd applauding. Aga Khan waving from revolving stage. Platinum being placed on scale. Platinum on pan, Aga Khan waving from weighing platform. Crowd applauding. Aga Khan on stage. Aga Khan is ceremonially weighed against platinum
VIII. Library compilation story following the death of Aga Khan.
Aga Khan, hereditary leader of Ismail Muslim sect, surrounded by crowds, shaking hands with several people. Sign ‘Long Live Aga Khan’. Various shots of the celebration of 70th anniversary of his leadership in Karachi, Pakistan. Several shots of mass of the Moslems praying in front of Mosque. Several shots of Aga Khan on revolving weighing platform being weighed during one of his jubilee celebrations.
IX. Aga Khan Laid to Rest in Aswan
Egyptian statue. The Begum Aga Khan, widow of Aga Khan, and his grandson Karim, Aga Khan IV, son of Aly Khan, walking towards away from plane arriving at Aswan for funeral of Aga Khan – both wearing pith helmets owing to the heat. The Begum Aga Khan and son Karim. Sign in Egyptian and English “Assuan”. The Aga Khan’s villa. Aga Khan’s sons Ali Khan, and Sadruddin and grandson Karim. Ali Khan and Sadruddin taking off their shoes before entering. The tomb where Aga Khan will be buried. Egyptian writing on head of tomb. Interior, funeral rites being held, coffin in background.Women seated with praying beads. Praying beads in woman’s hand.The Begum shrouded in white, looking very sad and overcome with heat, sitting alongside Aga Khan’s coffin.
Simerg recommends: Voices of History compiled by the British Library Sound Archive. This is a two volume CD which includes a superb recording of “My Message to the World of Islam” by Aga Khan III recorded in 1931 (#13, in Volume 2). Times online described this set as ‘…awesome, an aural tapestry of the voices of great figures speaking so uncannily directly to us that time seems to vanish and we are in their presence.‘
Here is a direct link to the relevant page in the British Library’s Online Shop, which also gives a full track listing for the set:
Note: UK residents may be able to listen to the recording at the museum’s website.
Special Series on Aga Khan III