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"Funeral Procession", Folio 35r from a Mantiq al-tair (Language of the Birds)

Calligrapher:
Sultan 'Ali al-Mashhadi (active late 15th–early 16th century)
Author:
Farid al-Din `Attar (ca. 1142–1220)
Object Name:
Folio from an illustrated manuscript
Date:
dated A.H. 892/ A.D. 1487
Geography:
present-day Afghanistan, Herat
Culture:
Islamic
Medium:
Opaque watercolor, silver, and gold on paper
Dimensions:
Painting: H. 9 3/4 in. (24.8 cm) W. 5 1/2 in. (14 cm) Page: H. 13 in. (33 cm) W. 8 1/2 in. (21.6 cm) Mat: H. 19 1/4 in. (48.9 cm) W. 14 1/4 in. (36.2 cm)
Classification:
Codices
Credit Line:
Fletcher Fund, 1963
Accession Number:
63.210.35
On view at The Met Fifth Avenue in Gallery 455
This illustration is associated with a story related by the hoopoe as a response to a bird who complains about his fear of death. In the story, a son grieves the death of his father in front of his coffin and a sufi soothes him, explaining that his father had experienced much pain and that no one can avoid death. Here, the painter depicts the incident as occurring in front of a cemetery gate. The scene behind the gate is replete with motifs that are irrelevant to the story itself. The viewer at the court may have enjoyed deciphering them.
Inscription: Inscription in Persian in nasta‘liq script
Attar, Manṭiq al-Ṭayr منطق الطیر story سوگواري پسري در مرگ پدر (a boy's mourning after the death of his father).

(Farīd al-Dīn ‘Aṭṭār, Manṭiq al-Ṭayr, ed. Sayyid Ṣādiq Guharīn, Bungāh Tarjama va Nashr-i Kitāb publication, Tehran, 1342/1959, p.131).

A.Ghouchani

Marking: Upper right & lower left; seal of Shah Abbas upper right.
Shah Abbas I, Isfahan, Iran (ca. 1600–1608; presented to Ardebil Shrine); Ardebil Shrine, Iran (ca. 1608–sack of Ardebil, 1826); M. Farid Parbanta(until 1963; sale, Sotheby's, London,December 9, 1963, no. 111, to MMA)
Robinson, Basil William. "Drawings of the Masters." In Persian Drawings from the 14th through the 19th century. Boston and Toronto: Shorewood Publishers Inc., 1965. p. 55, ill. pl. 23 (b/w).

Grube, Ernst J. "The Early School of Herat and its Impact on Islamic Painting of the Later 15th, the 16th and 17th Centuries." In The Classical Style in Islamic Painting. Venice: Edizioni Oriens, 1968. ill. pl. 34 (b/w).

The Metropolitan Museum of Art. Masterpieces of Fifty Centuries: the Metropolitan Museum of Art. New York: E. P. Dutton & Co., 1970. no. 157, p. 180, ill. (b/w).

Swietochowski, Marie. "The historical background and illustrative character of the Metropolitan Museum's Mantiq al-Tayr of 1483." In Islamic Art in The Metropolitan Museum of Art, edited by Richard Ettinghausen. New York: The Metropolitan Museum of Art, 1972. p. 54, ill. fig. 20 (b/w).

Ettinghausen, Richard. "Islamic Art." Metropolitan Museum of Art Bulletin vol. 33, no. 1 (Spring 1975). ill. p. 25 (color).

Welch, Stuart Cary. The Islamic World. vol. 11. New York: The Metropolitan Museum of Art, 1987. pp. 90-91, ill. fig. 69 (color).

Lentz, Thomas W., and Glenn D. Lowry. "Persian Art and Culture in the Fifteenth Century." In Timur and the Princely Vision. Los Angeles: Los Angeles County Museum of Art, 1989. p. 298, ill. fig. 100 (b/w).

Canby, Sheila R. "The Drawings and Paintings of Riza-Yi Abbasi of Isfahan." In The Rebellious Reformer of Isfahan . London: Azimuth Editions, 1996. p. 234, ill. fig. 29 (b/w).

Grabar, Oleg. Mostly Miniatures: An introduction to Persian painting. Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press, 2000. p. 135, ill. fig. 71 (color).

Sims, Eleanor, B. Marshak, and Ernst J. Grube. "Persian Painting and its Sources." In Peerless Images. New Haven and London: Yale University Press, 2002. no. 60, pp. 144-45, ill. p. 145 (color).

Barry, Mike, and Stuart Cary Welch. "et l'Enigme de Behzad de Herat (1465–1535)." In L'Art Figuratif en Islam Medieval. Paris: Flammarion, 2004. pp. 318-319, ill. p. 319 (color).

Kia, Chad. "Is the Bearded Man Drowning? Picturing the Figurative in a Late-Fifteenth-Century Painting from Herat." Muqarnas vol. 23 (2006). pp. 85-105, ill. fig. 2 (color), folio 35r.

Lewisohn, Leonard, and Christopher Shackle, ed. "the art of spiritual flight." In Attar and the Persian Sufi Tradition. London; New York: The Institute of Ismaili Studies, 2006. p. 164, ill. pl. 10 (color).

Kamada, Yumiko. "An Illustrated Manuscript of Mantiq al-Tayr in the Metropolitan Museum of Art." Orient vol. XLV (2010). pp. 136-137, 166, 173, ill. fig. 2.

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. 127B, pp. 171, 188-190, ill. p. 189 (color).



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