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Persian Quatrains (Rubayi) and Calligraphic Exercises (recto); Persian Verse (khamriyya) (verso)

December 31, 1508
Art and Calligraphy
Ulugh Beg II 1507–1526




Persian Quatrains (Rubayi) and Calligraphic Exercises (recto); Persian Verse (khamriyya) (verso) c. 1509-50 Part of a set. See all set records Sultan Muhammad Khandan (Iranian, died after 1550) Afghanistan, Herat, Safavid period (1501-1722) Ink, gold, and opaque watercolor on paper Gift of Mrs. Mehmed A. Simsar in memory of Dr. Mehmed A. Simsar 1983.1115 DESCRIPTION This page contains two quatrains—poems made up of four lines. The diagonally written text in the center of the page is a poem addressed to a ruler, expressing hope for his success and the downfall of his enemies. The second poem is split between the horizontal panels at the top and bottom of the page. This quatrain praises the beauty of the writer’s beloved, saying that “her moonlike face can steal away a hundred besotted hearts.” At the right are calligraphic exercises displaying letters of the alphabet and the virtuoso skill of the calligrapher Sultan Muhammad Khandan, who signed the page in the triangle at the lower left of the inner text block. INSCRIPTION [Persian quatrain] INSCRIPTION TRANSLATION To the chain of her tresses, O Lord!/ Fetter not one with a besotted heart!/ For in a trice, deploying her beauty,/ Her moonlike face can steal away a hundred besotted hearts. INSCRIPTION [Persian quatrain] INSCRIPTION TRANSLATION The hope is for your enemies to suffer a reversal of fortune;/ And both worlds (here and hereafter) to fall into your grasp./ Under your shadow you harbor compassion, so it is a marvel to behold:/ A shade lightening the world. INSCRIPTION Al-faqīr Sulṭān Muḥammad Khandān INSCRIPTION TRANSLATION The poor (one) Sulṭān Muḥammad Khandān INSCRIPTION [Persian khamriyya] INSCRIPTION TRANSLATION We are the ones who are perpetually intoxicated/ In our gatherings there is naught save wine and the cup.

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Ismail Mazari

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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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