The spare setting, limited palette, and figural style assign this painting to the late Mughal center of Murshidabad. The portrait may represent Mir Jafar Khan, nawab of Bengal, who infamously abandoned Shuja' al-Daula at the Battle of Plassey in 1757 and was rewarded by the British with the throne of Bengal. He later displeased his masters in Calcutta and was dethroned in favor of his son-in-law, Mir Qasim, only to be reinstated later, in yet another turn of fortune.
Dr. Gifford, British Museum (bequeathed to Bristol Baptish College); Bristol Baptist College, England (until 1960s); Private Collection, England (1960's–2007; sale, Bonhams, London, October 25, 2007,no. 415, to Galloway); [ Francesca Galloway, London, 2007–8; sold to MMA]
"October 25, 2007." In Indian and Islamic Art. London: Bonhams, London, 2007.
Galloway, Francesca. "March 18–27, 2008." In Paintings from the Royal Court of India. New York, 2008. no. 18, pp. 48-49.