The Lover’s Lament


This calligraphic fragment includes a lover’s lament about his beloved’s indifference. The verses read: “My body is exhausted from sorrow, what will I do? / The fire is in my burning heart, what will I do? / Because of (her), who brands my deplorable heart / (She) is a garden and spring for others, what will I do?” The verses are executed in black nastaʻliq script on a beige paper decorated with bird and leaf designs painted in gold. The main text panel is bordered by a number of other verses in both diagonal and vertical registers forming a frame. The entire composition is pasted to a larger sheet of paper decorated with a pounced vegetal motif in green and backed by cardboard. The fragment is neither dated nor signed. However, it may have been produced in Iran during the 16th or 17th century.

Last updated: September 30, 2016