Painting of Khusraw in Battle; Shirin Looks for Khusraw from Nizami’s "Khusraw va Shirin"


This painting depicting a battle scene between two armies was inserted into a manuscript of the second book of Nizami Ganjavi’s Khamsah (Quintet), Khusraw va Shirin (Shirin and Khusraw). In this book, the adventures and battles of the Persian king Khusraw are described, as is his love for the Armenian princess Shirin. The painting does not appear to match the text, which is about Shirin’s search for Khusraw. Probably inserted during the 20th century, the painting depicts soldiers on horseback attacking their fleeing enemies with drawn swords. One soldier holds an orange war banner as well. The text on the verso describes raftan Shirin bi-talab-i Khusraw (Shirin's search for Khusraw), which is also written in red ink in the chapter heading on the right of the third line of text. The verses are written in black nastaʻliq script in four columns, divided by three gutters marked off by gold-painted vertical lines. The text panel is framed by lines of several colors. The original text, executed in black nastaʻliq script in four columns, may date from as early as the 16th century, although it also may be a modern reproduction.

Last updated: September 30, 2016