© President and Fellows of Harvard College
Identification and Creation
Object Number
1960.117.336
People
Unknown Artist
Title
Birds and Lotus (painting, recto, text, verso), folio 336 from a manuscript of the Divan (Collection of Works) of Anvari
Classification
Manuscripts
Work Type
manuscript folio
Date
1588
Places
Creation Place: South Asia, Pakistan, Punjab, Lahore
Period
Mughal period
Culture
Indian
Physical Descriptions
Medium
Ink, opaque watercolor, and gold on paper
Dimensions
folio: 13.8 x 7.6 cm (5 7/16 x 3 in.)
Provenance
Louis J. Cartier collection. John Goelet, New York, NY, (by 1960), gift; to Fogg Art Museum, 1960.
Acquisition and Rights
Credit Line
Harvard Art Museums/Arthur M. Sackler Museum, Gift of John Goelet, formerly in the collection of Louis J. Cartier
Accession Year
1960
Object Number
1960.117.336
Division
Asian and Mediterranean Art
Contact
am_asianmediterranean@harvard.edu
The Harvard Art Museums encourage the use of images found on this website for personal, noncommercial use, including educational and scholarly purposes. To request a higher resolution file of this image, please submit an online request.
Descriptions
Description
The recto side of the folio features two small rectangles containing green birds flanking a rectangle with text. Below is a small painting of various birds at a bank of a river that is lined with lotuses. The paintings and the rectangular text block visually break up the two columns of text. All of the text is written in Persian in black ink and in nasta’liq script. The larger painting marks the division of two types of text, Anvari’s mathnavi, a poem of rhyming distichs, and the lyric ghazals, which are a type of amatory poem or ode.
The folio belongs to an illustrated copy of the Divan of Anvari commissioned by the Mughal emperor Akbar (r. 1556-1605) in 1588 and in Lahore. The poet Anvari (1126-1189) is considered one of the greatest figures in Persian literature. His panegyric in honor of the Seljuq sultan, Ahmad Sanjar (r. 1118-1157) earned him royal favor and the patronage of two of Sanjar’s successors. Anvari’s poems were collected in a Divan, which contains eulogies, satire, panegyrics, and other forms of poetry and prose.
Publication History

Annemarie Schimmel, Terres d'Islam: Aux Sources de l'Orient Musulman, Maisonneuve et Larose (Paris, France, 1994), Pg. 159

Exhibition History

Anvari's Divan: A Pocket Book for Akbar, Fogg Art Museum, Cambridge, 02/07/1984 - 03/28/1984

32Q: 2590 South and Southeast Asia, Harvard Art Museums, Cambridge, 11/01/2014 - 05/14/2015

Subjects and Contexts

Google Art Project

Related Works

This record has been reviewed by the curatorial staff but may be incomplete. Our records are frequently revised and enhanced. For more information please contact the Division of Asian and Mediterranean Art at am_asianmediterranean@harvard.edu