Art/ Collection/ Art Object
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"Iskandar in the Presence of the Brahmins", Folio from a Shahnama (Book of Kings) of Firdausi

Author:
Abu'l Qasim Firdausi (935–1020)
Object Name:
Folio from an illustrated manuscript
Date:
ca. 1330–40
Geography:
Attributed to Iran, probably Isfahan
Medium:
Ink, opaque watercolor, gold, and silver on paper
Dimensions:
Page: 8 1/16 x 4 7/8 in. (20.5 x 12.4 cm) Painting: 1 7/8 x 4 5/16 in. (4.8 x 11 cm)
Classification:
Codices
Credit Line:
Bequest of Monroe C. Gutman, 1974
Accession Number:
1974.290.32
Not on view
Iskandar (Alexander the Great) traveled to the land of the Brahmins to learn their philosophy. He found them content in their quest for wisdom and knowledge, which are more enduring goals than crown, conquest, and treasure. Here, the Brahims are shown in the simplest of robes and with the curving-leaf headgear traditionally depicted in miniatures on such otherworldly beings as nymphs, fairies, and angels.
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. 38.

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. 38, p. 116, ill. (b/w).



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