"The Combat of Rustam and Puladvand", Folio from a Shahnama (Book of Kings)
Abu'l Qasim Firdausi (935–1020)
Folio from an illustrated manuscript
Attributed to Iran, probably Isfahan
Ink, opaque watercolor, gold, and silver on paper
Page: 8 1/16 x 5 5/16 in. (20.5 x 13.5 cm)
Painting: 1 5/8 x 4 1/8 in. (4.2 x 10.4 cm)
Bequest of Monroe C. Gutman, 1974
Not on view
Generally, Shahnama illustrations of the single combat between the Iranian hero Rustam and the numerous div-like allies of the Turanians, who were prodigiously strong, show the final wrestling match when the victor is about to dash his enemy to the ground. Here, instead, the earlier episode of the horse fight between the two characters is depicted. The most unusual aspect of the present miniature is the strange flail-like weapon, presumably of Central Asian origin, dominating the center of the composition.
Ph. Walter Schulz, Leipzig, Germany (by 1914); Professor O. Moll, Düsseldorf, Germany ; Monroe C. Gutman, New York (by 1929–d. 1974; bequeathed to MMA)
New York. The Metropolitan Museum of Art. "Illustrated Poetry and Epic Images: Persian Painting of the 1330s and 1340s," February 1, 1994–May 1, 1994, no. 22.
Masuya, Tomoko. "The Condition of the Metropolitan Museum of Art's Small Shahnama and the Reconstruction of its Text." In Poetry and Epic Images, edited by Marie Lukens Swietochowski, and Stefano Carboni. New York, 1994. pp. 129-145.
Swietochowski, Marie, Stefano Carboni, Tomoko Masuya, and Alexander H. Morton. Illustrated Poetry and Epic Images:Persian Painting of the 1330s and 1340s. New York: The Metropolitan Museum of Art, 1994. no. 22, pp. 98-99, ill. pl. 22 (b/w).