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"Isfandiyar's Fifth Course: He Slays the Simurgh", Folio from a Shahnama (Book of Kings)

Author:
Abu'l Qasim Firdausi (935–1020)
Object Name:
Folio from an illustrated manuscript
Date:
ca. 1330–40
Geography:
Iran, probably Isfahan
Culture:
Islamic
Medium:
Ink, opaque watercolor, gold, and silver on paper
Dimensions:
Page: 7 13/16 x 5 3/8 in. (19.8 x 13.6 cm) Painting: 1 7/8 x 4 1/8 in. (4.8 x 10.4 cm)
Classification:
Codices
Credit Line:
Bequest of Monroe C. Gutman, 1974
Accession Number:
1974.290.28
Not on view
The Simurgh in this miniature is not the benevolent guardian of the family of Zal and Rustam, but is based on the tradition of the Rukh - a creature of great strength and ferocity. This Simurgh is not yet fully patterned on the Chinese phoenix of some thirty-five years earlier, which comes from a more sophisticated cultural center, but is far more graceful than the rooster/parrot type of Simurgh found elsewhere in the present manuscript.
Ph. Walter Schulz, Leipzig, Germany (by 1914); Professor O. Moll, Düsseldorf, Germany ; Monroe C. Gutman, New York (by 1929–d. 1974; bequeathed to MMA)
"Masterpieces from The Metropolitan Museum of Art New York." In The Arts of Islam. Berlin, 1981. no. 119, pp. 282-283, ill. p. 283 (b/w).

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. 34, pp. 112-113, ill. p. 112 (color).



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