Folio from a Khusraw u Shirin by Nizami (d.1209); recto: illustration: The sculptor Farhad brought before Shirin; verso: text
- Detached manuscript folio
- Calligrapher: Ali ibn Hasan al-Sultani
- Historical period(s)
- Jalayirid period, ca. 1400
- Ink, opaque watercolor and gold on paper
- 27.3 x 16.5 cm
- Credit Line
- Freer Gallery of Art
- Accession Number
- Detached folio from the Khusraw u Shirin by Nizami; text: Persian in black nasta'liq script; heading in gold; recto: illustration: The sculptor Farhad brought before Shirin; verso: text, 4 columns, 23 lines; one of a group of 7 detached folios (F1931-37) from the manuscript (F1931.29) and the book binding (F 1931.30); accessioned separately.
Binding: The painting and the text are set in gold, green, and blue rulings on gold-sprinkled paper.
- In 1370, the Turco-Mongol warlord Timur (also known as Tamerlane in the West) conquered much of present-day Iraq, Iran, and Central Asia and established the Timurid dynasty. His descendants may have lacked Timur's military prowess, but they were among the most active patrons of architecture and the arts of the book, which reached unprecedented levels of sophistication during the fifteenth century.
Nizami's Khamsa (Quintet), one of Iran's literary masterpieces, was particularly favored during the Timurid period. This folio is from the second poem, known as Khusraw and Shirin and is devoted to the romance between the last Sasanian king, Khusraw II (reigned 590628), known as Parviz (the Victorious), and Shirin, the beautiful and independent-minded Armenian princess. It depicts the first encounter between Shirin and the third central character of Nizami's text, the sculptor Farhad, who also falls desperately in love with the Armenian princess. Intimate in scale, the painting's meticulously rendered, stagelike interior and jewel-like palette are characteristic of early Timurid aesthetic refinement.
Hagop Kevorkian (1872-1962), New York to 1931 
Freer Gallery of Art, purchased from Hagop Kevorkian, New York in 1931 
 Object file, undated folder sheet note. See also Freer Gallery of Art Purchase List file, Collections Management Office.
 See note 1.
- On View Location
- Currently not on view
- Collection(s) Area
- Arts of the Islamic World
- Web Resource(s)
- Google Cultural Institute
- Rights Statement
- Copyright with museum