Tip Htila

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Princess Tip Htila, photographed by J. G. Scott

Sao Nang Tip Htila[pronunciation?] was a Princess of Shan State, sister of the 52nd Saopha (ruling prince) of the Shan state of Kengtung, and also of the 53rd Saopha, Kawng Kiao Intaleng. Along with Kawng Kiao Intaleng she attended the Delhi Durbar in 1903, in celebration of the coronation of King Edward VII and Queen Alexandra. She was a shrewd and powerful businesswoman, involved in sales of elephants and motor cars, and later in teak extraction and road-building.

Tip Htila divorced her first husband, who was ruler of the Shan State of Kenghkam, and outlived her second husband. According to Maurice Collis, who met her in her old age, "in her day she must have been rash, magnificent, as bold as a lion". She was indeed very energetic in her youth, which sometimes got her into trouble with her father.[1]