"Caesar Gives his Daughter Katayun to Gushtasp", Folio from a Shahnama (Book of Kings) of Firdausi
Abu'l Qasim Firdausi (935–1020)
Folio from an illustrated manuscript
Iran, probably Isfahan
Ink, opaque watercolor, gold, and silver on paper
Painting: H. 1 15/16 in. (4.9 cm)
W. 4 3/16 in. (10.6 cm)
Page: H. 8 1/16 in. (20.5 cm)
W. 5 5/16 in. (13.5 cm)
Mat: H. 19 1/4 in. (48.9 cm)
W. 14 1/4 in. (36.2 cm)
Bequest of Monroe C. Gutman, 1974
Not on view
In the court of Rum (the Roman Empire) it was customary for a princess to select her husband from among the assembled nobles. Katayun chose Gushtasp, whom she had seen in a dream. Her father Caesar was dismayed, not realizing that Gushtasp was actually a Persian prince since he was traveling incognito. At the right a wise counselor, identifiable by his turban, reassures Caesar but the scene is dominated by the charmingly posed princess telling her happy news to a lady-in-waiting as a doorkeeper eavesdrops.
Ph. Walter Schulz, Leipzig, Germany (by 1914); Professor O. Moll, Düsseldorf, Germany ; Monroe C. Gutman, New York (by 1929–d. 1974; bequeathed to MMA)
Swietochowski, Marie, Stefano Carboni, Tomoko Masuya, and Alexander H. Morton. "Persian Painting of the 1330s and 1340s." In Illustrated Poetry and Epic Images. New York: The Metropolitan Museum of Art, 1994. no. 28, pp. 104-105, ill. pl. 28 (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. 125, p. 214, ill. (color).