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Afrasiyab's Night Attack

Year after year Iran and its eastern neighbor Turan battle for supremacy over the region. Afrasiyab, Iran's formidable enemy, organizes a night attack against the Persian forces as revenge for Iran's invasion of Turan. When the Persians fall asleep after an evening of drinking and merry-making, Afrasiyab's men descend on them "like a black cloud." Most of the soldiers, sleeping under a tent, are surprised in the night attack and killed.

detail from Afrasiyab's Night Attack

Detail, Afrasiyab's Night Attack . View full »


The Freer|Sackler is currently closed for renovations, updates, and gallery reinstallation. The popular exhibition Turquoise Mountain: Artists Transforming Afghanistan is still on view in the International Gallery. (Enter through the Ripley Center.) Please join us for our weekend-long reopening celebration on October 14 and 15, 2017.