Nikhil Sen


Arthur Probsthain's Bookshop
41 Great Russell Street
London, WC1B 3PE
United Kingdom
51° 31' 4.6776" N, 0° 7' 36.6672" W

Nikhil Sen was a friend of Mulk Raj Anand and moved in the same circles in London in the 1920s. Little is known about Sen; however, Anand mentions him extensively in Conversations in Bloomsbury (1981).

It appears that Sen was already in London when Anand arrived in 1925. Like Anand, Sen was a student at University College, London. He was also a poet and an art lover. According to Anand, Sen studied in the British Museum Reading Rooms and the two often lunched together in University College lower refectory, the Museum Tavern or at Poggiolis in Charlotte Street. Sen's girlfriend was Edna Thompson, who was a student of literature; other fellow students included Mr. Topa and Parkash Pandit. Sen apparently worked at Arthur Probsthain’s Oriental Bookshop in Russell Street, and found work for Anand in Jacob Schwartz’s Ulysses Bookshop.  

Furthermore, Sen already knew several members of the 'Bloomsbury Group' when Anand arrived in Britain. Indeed, it was Sen who introduced Anand to Bonamy Dobree, Gwenda Zeidmann, Jacob Schwartz, Harold Monro, Edith Sitwell, Laurence Binyon and Leonard Woolf. Together they met T. S. Eliot, Aldous Huxley and D. H. Lawrence, and they would go to the British Museum with Laurence Binyon. Like Anand, Sen was frustrated by the orientalist views of some members of the Bloomsbury Group and would often argue with Eliot and Lawrence.


Mulk Raj Anand (fellow student), Laurence Binyon, Bonamy Dobree, T. S. Eliot, Aldous Huxley, C. E. M. Joad (Assistant Professor, Birkbeck College), D. H. Lawrence, Harold Monro, Parkash Pandit (fellow student), Jacob Schwartz (Probsthain’s Oriental Bookshop), Edith Sitwell, Edna Thompson (girlfriend and fellow student), Mr. Topa (fellow student), Leonard Woolf, Gwenda Zeidmann.

Secondary works: 

Mulk Raj Anand, Conversations in Bloomsbury (London: Wildwood House, 1981)