Art/ Collection/ Art Object
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Page of Calligraphy

Calligrapher:
Sultan Muhammad Nur (ca. 1472–ca. 1536)
Object Name:
Non-illustrated album leaf
Date:
early 16th century
Geography:
Attributed to Iran
Medium:
Ink, opaque watercolor, and gold on paper
Classification:
Codices
Credit Line:
Purchase, Mr. and Mrs. Jerome A. Straka Gift, 1982
Accession Number:
1982.120.4
On view at The Met Fifth Avenue in Gallery 454
Poetry, calligraphic exercises, and headings have been pasted onto both sides of this folio. The text, which was written in several different hands, includes nasta’liq, ta’liq shikasta, muhaqqaq, and thuluth scripts. A poem written diagonally by the calligrapher Sultan Muhammad Nur uses religious imagery to describe the beauty of the beloved, and the large writing to the left of the poem is a calligraphic exercise in which the letter shin is repeated several times.
Inscription: In Persian?, on recto (verify):
"Whosoever sees the Sura-i Fateha of your face
Recites: 'Say, God is one!' and blows with sincerity
Khidr said: 'God made a fine plant spout', and passed by
The moment he saw the greenery around your lip.
'May God increase your beauty!' How can one say that?
For there is no possibility of increase in your beauty."

(Trans. Annemarie Schimmel, February 1986)
Philip Hofer, Cambridge, MA (until 1982; sold to MMA)
New York. The Metropolitan Museum of Art. "Sultan Ali of Mashhad, Master of Nasta'liq," January 19, 2001–May 27, 2001, no catalogue.

Schimmel, Annemarie. "Islamic Calligraphy." Metropolitan Museum of Art Bulletin, n.s., vol. 50, no. 1 (Summer 1992). pp. 42, 44, ill. fig. 53 (color).



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