"The Marriage of Sudaba and Kai Kavus", Folio 130r from the Shahnama (Book of Kings) of Shah Tahmasp
Abu'l Qasim Firdausi (935–1020)
Painting attributed to Mir Musavvir (active 1525–60)
Painting attributed to Qasim ibn 'Ali (active ca. 1525–60)
Folio from an illustrated manuscript
Made in Iran, Tabriz
Opaque watercolor, ink, silver, and gold on paper
Painting: H. 11 1/16 x W. 7 1/4 in. (H. 28.1 x W. 18.4 cm)
Entire Page: H. 18 9/16 x W. 14 9/16 in. (H. 47.1 x W. 37 cm)
Gift of Arthur A. Houghton Jr., 1970
Not on view
After defeating the king of Hamavaran, Kai Kavus demands his daughter Sudaba's hand in marriage. Her beauty astonishes him, and his advisers agree that she is a perfect match for him. They marry and begin a weeklong celebration. However, Sudaba's father then lures Kai Kavus to his palace and, after eight days of revelry, takes him and his men prisoner.
Shah Tahmasp, Iran (until 1568; gifted to Selim II); Sultan Selim II, Istanbul (from 1568); Sultan Selim III, Istanbul (by 1800); Baron Edmond de Rothschild, Paris (by 1903–d. 1934); his son, Baron Maurice de Rothschild, Paris and Pregny, near Geneva (by 1955–d. 1957); [ Stiebel Ltd., New York, until 1959; sold to Houghton]; Arthur A. Houghton Jr., New York (1959–70; gifted to MMA)
Los Angeles. Los Angeles County Museum of Art. "Gifts of the Sultan: The Arts of Giving at the Islamic Courts," June 5, 2011–September 5, 2011, no. 146.
Houston. Museum of Fine Arts, Houston. "Gifts of the Sultan: The Arts of Giving at the Islamic Courts," October 23, 2011–January 15, 2012, no. 146.
Welch, Stuart Cary. A King's Book of Kings: the Shah-nameh of Shah Tahmasp. New York: The Metropolitan Museum of Art, 1972. p. 192.
Dickson, Martin, and Stuart Cary Welch. The Houghton Shahnameh. Vol. vols. I & II. Cambridge, Mass. and London, England: Harvard University Press, 1981. vol. II, ill. pl. 94 (b/w).
Canby, Sheila R. "The Persian Book of Kings." In The Shahnama of Shah Tahmasp. Madrid, 2011. p. 114, ill. (color), folio 130r.
Komaroff Linda, ed. "The Arts of Giving at the Islamic Courts." In Gifts of the Sultan. Los Angeles; New Haven and London: Los Angeles County Museum of Art, 2011. no. 146, pp. 154, 260, ill. fig. 138 (color).
Canby, Sheila R. The Shahnama of Shah Tahmasp: The Persian Book of Kings. New York: The Metropolitan Museum of Art, 2014. pp. 156, 332, ill. fol. 130r, full-page color ill. p. 156; detail p. 332.