"Sufarai's Victory over the Haital", Folio 595v from the Shahnama (Book of Kings) of Shah Tahmasp
Abu'l Qasim Firdausi (935–1020)
Painting attributed to Bashdan Qara (active ca. 1525–35)
Folio from an illustrated manuscript
Made in Iran, Tabriz
Opaque watercolor, ink, silver, and gold on paper
Painting: H. 6 7/16 x W. 8 1/8 in. (H. 16.3 x W. 20.6 cm)
Entire Page: H. 18 5/8 x W. 12 1/2 in. (H. 47.3 x W. 31.8 cm)
Gift of Arthur A. Houghton Jr., 1970
Not on view
Following the death of Shah Piruz at the hands of the Haital Turks and their leader, Khushnavaz, the shah's young son Prince Balash accedes to the throne under the regency of the paladin Sufaray, who raises an army to avenge the death of Piruz. They march into Transoxiana and waste no time entering the fray against the Turks. When the Turks realize they have lost the battle, they turn and are pursued by Sufaray.
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)
New York. The Metropolitan Museum of Art. "The Bright Side of Battle: Symbol and Ceremony in Islamic Arms and Armor," January 17, 1985–September 1, 1985, no catalogue.
Mohl, Jules, ed. Le Livre des Rois. Vol. I. Paris, 1876. pp. 82-92.
Welch, Stuart Cary. A King's Book of Kings: the Shah-nameh of Shah Tahmasp. New York: The Metropolitan Museum of Art, 1972. p. 196.
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. 236 (b/w).
Canby, Sheila R. "The Persian Book of Kings." In The Shahnama of Shah Tahmasp. Madrid, 2011. p. 256, ill. (color).
Canby, Sheila R. The Shahnama of Shah Tahmasp: The Persian Book of Kings. New York: The Metropolitan Museum of Art, 2014. pp. 298, 329, 332, ill. fol. 595v, full-page color ill. p. 298; detail pp. 329, 332.