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Three Trees of India", Folio from a Baburnama (Autobiography of Babur)

December 31, 1674
The Met Museum
Animals and Plants
Aurangzeb 1658–1707

Three Trees of India", Folio from a Baburnama (Autobiography of Babur)



Three Trees of India", Folio from a Baburnama (Autobiography of Babur) late 16th century The Baburnama, one of the most important texts of the Mughal period, provides insight into the literary, intellectual, and cultural world of Babur (1483–1530), founder of the Mughal empire. The Baburnama is especially celebrated for its observations of India's natural world, an aspect of the text most pleasingly captured in the subject matter here. The page depicts three trees: one on the recto (jackfruit) and two on the verso (monkey jack and lote). Interspersed among the images are texts in nasta'liq Persian script describing the trees and their fruits. During the reign of Babur's grandson Akbar (1556–1605), four imperial copies of the Baburnama were created, each illustrated by leading artists of the royal atelier. This folio comes from the earliest of these copies, the 1589 manuscript, which was likely a model for the later versions. It is thought originally to have contained 191 illustrations, many of which were dispersed in 1913, with a substantial portion remaining in the Victoria and Albert Museum, London. The collaboration between two or more artists, as seen here, was typical of early Mughal workshop practice. Geography: Country of Origin India Medium: Ink, opaque watercolor, and gold on paper Dimensions: H. 9 13/16 in.(25 cm) W. 5 1/8 in. (13 cm) Classification: Codices Credit Line: Purchase, Louis E. and Theresa S. Seley Purchase Fund for Islamic Art, Anonymous Gift, in honor of Amy Poster, and Friends of Islamic Art Gifts, 2013 Accession Number: 2013.576 Provenance Emperor Akbar, India (from ca. 1589); William K. Ehrenfeld, San Francisco, CA (in 1985); [ Francesca Galloway, London, by 2008–13; cat., 2008, no. 1; sold to MMA] References Ehnbom, Daniel. Indian Miniatures: the Ehrenfeld Collection. New York: Hudson Hills Press, 1985. no. 7, pp 34-35, pp 34-35, cat. no. 7. Stronge, Susan. Painting for the Mughal Emperor: the Art of the Book 1560-1660. London: V & A Museum, 2002. pp. 86–91. API Access The Met Collection API is where all makers, creators, researchers, and dreamers can now connect to the most up-to-date data and images for more than 470,000 artworks in The Met collection. As part of The Met’s Open Access program, the data is available for unrestricted commercial and noncommercial use without permission or fee. Timeline of Art History Timelines South Asia, 1400-1600 A.D. MetPublications "Recent Acquisitions, A Selection: 2012–2014" The Metropolitan Museum of Art Bulletin, v. 72, no. 2 (Fall, 2014)

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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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