"Rescue of Bizhan by Piran", Folio from a Shahnama (Book of Kings) of Firdausi
Abu'l Qasim Firdausi (935–1020)
Folio from an illustrated manuscript
India, Deccan, Bijapur
Ink, opaque watercolor, and gold on paper
Page: 7 7/8 x 4 3/4 in. (20 x 12.1cm)
Painting: 5 3/16 x 2 3/4 in. (13.2 x 7cm)
Gift of Wendy Findlay, 1983
Not on view
During the reign of Kai Khusrau of Iran, a youth named Bizhan fell in love with Manizha, a daughter of Kai Khusrau’s rival Afrasiyab of Turan. Upon learning that he was secretly living with Manizha, Afrasiyab sentenced Bizhan to death by hanging. The vizier Piran argued to spare Bizhan’s life, and instead, Bizhan was imprisoned in a pit sealed with a boulder.
Wendy Findlay, New York (by 1980–83; gifted to MMA)
Haidar, Navina, and Marika Sardar. "Opulence and Fantasy." In Sultans of Deccan India 1500–1700. New York: The Metropolitan Museum of Art, 2015. no. 36, p. 107, ill. pl. 36 (color).