(click image to zoom-in)
|Miniatures, Gouache, 23.7x13.7 cm|
|Origin: Iran, 1431-1431, Timurid Dynasty|
This is one of the 9 miniatures illustrating the poem Haft Paikar in the Hermitage's famous Persian manuscript of the Khamsa, an anthology of five poems by the 12th-century poet Nizami, who lived on the territory of present-day Azerbaijan. In 1431 this manuscript of the Khamsawas copied out in Herat by the calligrapher Mahmud for Sultan Shahrukh , son of the legendary Tamerlaine .
The poem relates how Bahram Gur, Shah of Iran, married the daughters of the padishahs of seven lands. A fortress, Khavarnak, was built specially, with pavilions for each of the princesses. The colour of each of the pavilions accorded with a particular day of the week and with the planets protecting that day. Bahram Gur visited each of the seven pavilions in turn, where each of the princesses told him a magical story of love, symbolizing the passing of man's spirit through seven stages on the mystical path to God. Each tale ends with praise of the relative colour.
The lines of text set into this miniature tell how "hundreds of thousands of painters, architects and wise men came to see the best of palaces". One of the cupolas of Khavarnak changed colour thrice over the day and "he who saw could not restrain his excitement and placed his foot upon the step". Coloured cupolas fill the greater part of the miniature, with a group of idlers standing to bottom right, two of them pointing at the fortress while a third puts his finger to his mouth in amazement. Others discuss the magnificent new fortress with excitement.
|Album: The Khamsa by Nizami|
|Source of entry: First Branch of the State Hermitage Museum, 1924|
Full text of "Notes and queries"
All stryving to admire, protest, comend, Wch now by imputation black as hell ...... who constructed for Nu'mdn, an Arab prince, the palace of Khavarnak, ...
Unless otherwise noted, images this web site may be used for any purpose without prior permission.
Any material in the public domain found on this web site is not protected by copyright.
We make no representations or warranties with respect to ownership of copyrights in the images, and do not represent others who may claim to be authors or owners of copyright of any of the images, and make no warranties as to the quality of the images.
We shall not be responsible for any loss or expenses resulting from the use of the images, and you release and hold us harmless from all liability arising from such use.
We do not sell art prints, framed posters or reproductions. Ads are shown only to compensate the hosting expenses.