Nobleman on a Terrace
Illustrated single work
Ink, opaque watercolor, silver, and gold on paper
34 x 21.3 cm
Purchase, Patti Cadby Birch and Stephenson Family Foundation Gifts, 2008
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.
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