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Fragment of Silk Taffeta with “Rose and Nightingale” Motif

December 31, 1699
Cleveland Art
Art and Calligraphy
Aurangzeb 1658–1707

Fragment of Silk Taffeta with “Rose and Nightingale” Motif



Fragment of Silk Taffeta with “Rose and Nightingale” Motif 1700s Iran, Safavid period (1501–1722) Silk and metallic thread: taffeta, brocaded Overall: 38.1 x 40.6 cm (15 x 16 in.); Mounted: 48.3 x 50.8 cm (19 x 20 in.) Gift of Mrs. Fred R. White 1943.91 DESCRIPTION A luxurious textile like this would have been used for courtly robes or coats in Safavid Iran. The bird-and-flower motif is known as gul-u-bulbul in Persian, meaning “rose and nightingale.” The motif references the poetic image of a nightingale plaintively singing to an indifferent rose as a metaphor for unrequited human love as well as the soul’s desire for mystical union with the divine. EXHIBITION HISTORY Arts of Iran (Islamic art rotation). The Cleveland Museum of Art, Cleveland, OH (organizer) (October 30, 2018-October 28, 2019).

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Ismail Mazari

average rating is null out of 5

Very good information.


The Mughal Images immediately took a much greater interest in realistic portraiture than was typical of Persian miniatures. Animals and plants were the main subject of many miniatures for albums and were more realistically depicted. To upload your images click here.

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