'Piscine probatoire - Bethesda', 1857.
© National Media Museum / Science & Society Picture Library
A photograph of the Pool of Bethesda, Jerusalem, taken by Robertson, Beato and Co. The Pool of Bethesda was where, according to the Bible, Jesus healed a man who had been lame for thirty-eight years. Felice Beato, a Venetian by birth, initially worked as a photographer in England. Around 1854 he began working with his brother-in-law James Robertson, based in Constantinople (Istanbul). Some photographs are signed 'Robertson, Beato and Co'. It is possible the 'and Co' refers to Felice's brother Antonio Beato. Robertson and Beato photographed the Crimean War in 1855 and the Indian Mutiny (1857-1858). Beato left the partnership with Robertson in 1860 to photograph the Opium War in China.