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"Conquest of Baghdad by Timur", Folio from a Zafarnama (Book of Victories)

Author:
Sharaf al-din 'Ali Yazdi (1424–54)
Artist:
Painting by Unknown
Calligrapher:
Ya'qub ibn Hasan, known as Siraj al-Husaini
Object Name:
Folio from an illustrated manuscript
Date:
A.H. 839/A.D. 1435–36
Geography:
Iran, Shiraz
Culture:
Islamic
Medium:
Ink, opaque watercolor, and gold on paper
Dimensions:
11 3/8 x 8in. (28.9 x 20.3cm)
Classification:
Codices
Credit Line:
Rogers Fund, 1955
Accession Number:
55.121.17
On view at The Met Fifth Avenue in Gallery 455
This folio once illustrated a manuscript of the Zafarnama, a biography of the ruler Timur commissioned by his grandson Ibrahim Sultan. The text glorifies Timur’s many victories on the battlefield, including his 1401 siege of Baghdad, depicted here. The distinctively spare yet highly animated angular compositions are characteristic of manuscript painting produced in Shiraz in this period.
Jack S. Rofe, Scotland (until 1929; his sale, Sotheby's, London, December 12, 1929, no. 1531); [ Hagop Kevorkian, New York, by at least 1953]; [ Kevorkian Foundation, New York, until 1955; sold to MMA]
Grube, Ernst J. "from Collections in the United States and Canada." In Muslim Miniature Paintings from the XIII to XIX Century. Venice: N. Pozza, 1962. no. 32, pp. 44-45, ill. fig. 32 (b/w).

Bowie, Theodore Robert, and T. Brend. East-West in Art. Patterns of Aesthetic and Cultural Relationships. Bloomington, Indiana: Indiana University Press, 1966.

Swietochowski, Marie, and Richard Ettinghausen. "Islamic Painting." Metropolitan Museum of Art Bulletin vol. 36, no. 2 (Autumn 1978). p. 16, ill. p. 16 (b/w).

"Ibrahim-Sultan's Illustrated Zafarnameh." Islamic Art: An Annual Dedicated to the Art and Culture of the Muslim World (1991). p. 190, ill. fig. 21 (b/w).

Roxburgh, David J., ed. Turks: Journey of a Thousand Years, 600–1600. London, New York: Royal Academy of Arts, 2005. no. 171, p. 219, ill. fig. 171 (color).

Ekhtiar, Maryam, Sheila R. Canby, Navina Haidar, and Priscilla P. Soucek, ed. Masterpieces from the Department of Islamic Art in The Metropolitan Museum of Art. 1st ed. ed. New York: The Metropolitan Museum of Art, 2011. no. 124B, pp. 171, 184-185, ill. p. 185 (color).



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