- Identification and Creation
- Object Number
- You Make Sweet Life Increase (painting, verso; text, recto), folio 208 from a manuscript of the Divan (Collection of Works) of Anvari
- Work Type
- manuscript folio
- Creation Place: South Asia, Pakistan, Punjab, Lahore
- Mughal period
- Physical Descriptions
- Ink, opaque watercolor, and gold on paper
- folio: 15.4 x 14 cm (6 1/16 x 5 1/2 in.)
- 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
- Object Number
- Asian and Mediterranean Art
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- The recto side of the folio features a painting depicting an enthroned figure, identified through the accompanying text as Khwaja Mansur. He looks towards a line of attendants. In the foreground, an attendant hands out favors to beggars on behalf of the king. The painting features two text blocks containing Persian text written in nasta’liq script and black ink. The text is part of a qasida (a panegyric in praise of a king or nobleman) that praises Khwaja Mansur and a description of the Mansuriyya palace and garden, as well as a praise poem for the grand vizier, Nasiruddin Tahir:
How incredible [you are], you garden and you palace of Mansur!
Perhaps you are a heaven sent by God into the world?
Even if you are not paradise – you are surely not of this world,
For this world makes life diminish,
And you make sweet life increase …
The verso side of the folio features two columns of rows of Persian text written in black ink and nasta’liq script. At the bottom of the columns is a small rectangle that also contains Persian text written in black ink and nasta’liq script.
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 and Stuart Cary Welch, Anvari's Divan: A Pocket Book for Akbar: a Divan of Auhaduddin Anvari, copied for the Mughal emperor Jalaluddin Akbar (r. 1556-1605) at Lahore in A.H. 996 A.D. 1588 now in the Fogg Art Museum of Harvard University, The Metropolitan Museum of Art (New York, NY, 1983), page 93-95/figure 6
40 Years On... Donations by John Goelet: Sculpture, Paintings and Drawings, Miniatures and Calligraphy, Tankas and Mandala, M. T. Train and Scala Books (New York, NY, 2000), page 186, 243
- 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, 11/16/2014 - 05/14/2015
- Subjects and Contexts
Google Art Project
- Related Works
This record was created from historic documentation and may not have been reviewed by a curator; it may be inaccurate or incomplete. Our records are frequently revised and enhanced. For more information please contact the Division of Asian and Mediterranean Art at firstname.lastname@example.org