THE LARGEST KNOWN MUGHAL PORTRAIT: A MAGNIFICENT LIFE-SIZE  PAINTING IN WHICH THE EMPEROR JAHANGIR (reg. 1605 - 1627), THE 'WORLD-SEIZER', LAYS CLAIM TO SPIRITUAL AND TEMPORAL POWER ON A GLOBAL STAGE Attributed to Abu'l Hasan, Nadir al-Zaman painted at Mandu and dated AH 1026/AD 1617
Lot 322
THE LARGEST KNOWN MUGHAL PORTRAIT: A MAGNIFICENT LIFE-SIZE PAINTING IN WHICH THE EMPEROR JAHANGIR (reg. 1605 - 1627), THE 'WORLD-SEIZER', LAYS CLAIM TO SPIRITUAL AND TEMPORAL POWER ON A GLOBAL STAGE Attributed to Abu'l Hasan, Nadir al-Zaman painted at Mandu and dated AH 1026/AD 1617
Sold for £1,420,000 (US$ 2,239,648) inc. premium

Lot Details
An Important Life-Size Portrait of the Mughal Emperor Jahangir holding a globe Attributed to Abu'l Hasan, dated AD 1617 An Important Life-Size Portrait of the Mughal Emperor Jahangir holding a globe Attributed to Abu'l Hasan, dated AD 1617 An Important Life-Size Portrait of the Mughal Emperor Jahangir holding a globe Attributed to Abu'l Hasan, dated AD 1617 An Important Life-Size Portrait of the Mughal Emperor Jahangir holding a globe Attributed to Abu'l Hasan, dated AD 1617 An Important Life-Size Portrait of the Mughal Emperor Jahangir holding a globe Attributed to Abu'l Hasan, dated AD 1617 An Important Life-Size Portrait of the Mughal Emperor Jahangir holding a globe Attributed to Abu'l Hasan
THE LARGEST KNOWN MUGHAL PORTRAIT: A MAGNIFICENT LIFE-SIZE PAINTING IN WHICH THE EMPEROR JAHANGIR (reg. 1605 - 1627), THE 'WORLD-SEIZER', LAYS CLAIM TO SPIRITUAL AND TEMPORAL POWER ON A GLOBAL STAGE
Attributed to Abu'l Hasan, Nadir al-Zaman painted at Mandu and dated AH 1026/AD 1617
gouache heightened with gold leaf on a fine woven cotton canvas, the Emperor shown seated on a European-style throne with relief decoration formed from raised red pigment, possibly lead, his head surrounded by a radiating nimbus and wearing an embroidered floral tunic over a patka and striped pyjama, with applied plaster jewellery, the circular pendant around the Emperor's neck set with mica, with jade and glass vessels at his side and carpet under his feet, the border with 26 cartouches of fine nasta'liq inscription, secondary and tertiary support backings replaced and areas of restoration, framed
including calligraphic border 210 x 141 cm.; the image within calligraphic border 197 x 128.5 cm.

Footnotes

  • [From top right:]
    God is Great.
    When he sees his lustrous likeness,
    It is as if the excellent king is looking at a mirror.
    (This royal distich which [is] written, was spoken
    extempore by His Majesty Jahangir Padshah)
    Virtue becomes a king more than his appearance,
    The portrait of Shah Jahangir, son of Shah Akbar Padshah.
    His visage is World-illuminating, and his virtues...
    Which other king had such a visage and virtue?
    If a hundred kings like Alexander came to the World.
    They would all prostrate themselves a hundred times at a
    glimpse of his face,
    Whoever sees his image becomes an image-worshipper,
    Whether a dervish who cultivates virtues, or a king.
    Look at the kingly virtues in his face which is
    The mirror of virtues of Akbar Padshah.
    A hundred thousand praises be upon the pen of the painter,
    Who through skill made this likeness of the justice-dispensing king.
    Just to cast their eyes on King Jahangir's face,
    The kings of Rum [Turkey] and China wait at the gate.
    In his likeness, the painter has created much magic,
    It is as if the king had scattered gems from a ruby treasure chest.
    Whoever sees his soul-nourishing appearance will say:
    It is as if the king is moving gracefully with magnificence,
    grandeur and shining majesty.
    The image of victory and triumph is made up by his name,
    Oh Lord, may the king be eternal over the seven climes.
    It was completed during the year of the victory over the
    Deccan, in Mandu, the regnal year 12, corresponding to
    the year 1026.
    May the World be filled with the light of such a World-illuminating one,
    As long as the crown of kingship is lit with the light of the Sun.
    The work of the most humble... [corresponding roundel at bottom left missing].

    BIBLIOGRAPHY

    Abul Fazl, The Ain-i-Akbari, translated by H. Blochmann and H.S. Jarrett, Bibliotheca Indica, 3 vols., Calcutta, 1873-94 (and reprinted)

    Abul Fazl, The Akbarnama, translated by H. Beveridge, Bibliotecha Indica, 3 vols., Calcutta, 1898-1910 (and reprinted)

    Akimushkin, O.F. The St. Petersburg Muraqqa', Lugano (ARCH), 1994

    Beach, M.C. The Grand Mogul, Williamstown, 1978

    Beach, M.C. The Imperial Image: paintings for the Mughal court, Washington (Freer Gallery), 1981

    Canby, S. Humayun's Garden Party. Princes of the House of Timur and Early Mughal Painting, Bombay (Marg Publications), 1994

    Cleveland, M. and Koch, E. King of the world: the Padshahnama, London, 1997

    Coomaraswamy, A.K. Catalogue of the Indian Collections in the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, Part VI, Mughal Painting, Cambridge, Mass., 1930

    Ettinghausen, R. Paintings of the Sultans and Emperors of India in American Collections, Delhi (Lalit Kala), 1961

    Ivanov, A.A., Akimushkin, O.F., Grek, T. and Giuzalian, L. (ed.), Album of Persian and Indian Miniatures (in Russian), Moscow, 1962 (and reprinted)

    Jahangir. The Tuzuk-i-Jahangiri ot Memoirs of Jahangir, translated by A. Rogers and edited by H. Beveridge, 2 vols in 1, London, 1909-1914 (and reprinted)

    Kuhnel E. and Goetz, H. Indische Buchmalereien, Berlin, 1923

    Losty, J.P. 'Abu'l Hasan', Master Artists of the Imperial Mughal Court, P. Pal ed., Bombay (Marg Publications), 1991, pp. 69-86

    Lowry, G.D. A Jeweler's Eye. Islamic Arts of the Book from the Vever Collection, Washington, 1988

    Lowry G.D. The Emperor Jahangir and the iconography of the divine in Mughal painting, Rutger's Art Review, vol. 4 1983, pp. 36-45

    Maclagan, E. The Jesuits and the Great Mogul, London, 1932

    Markel, S. (ed.) The World of Jade, Bombay (Marg), 1992

    Okada, A. Imperial Mughal Painters, Paris 1992

    Pal, P. Indian Painting. A catalogue of the Los Angeles County Museum of Art Collection, vol. I, Los Angeles, 1993

    Riazul Islam, Indo-Persian Relations, Tehran, 1970

    Roe, Sir Thomas. The Embassy of Sir Thomas Roe the the court of the Great Mogul, 1615-1619, as narrated in his journal and correspondence, edited by William Foster for the Hakluyt Society, 2 vol., London, 1899 (and reprinted)

    Skelton, R. (ed.) The Indian Heritage, London (Victoria and Albert Museum), 1982

    Skelton, R. 'Europe and India', Europa und die Kunst des Islam, 15. bis 18. Jahrhundert, 5, XXV, International Congress of Art History, Vienna, 1983, 33-42

    Skelton, R. 'Imperial Symbolism in Mughal Painting', Content and Context of Visual Arts in the Islamic World, P. Soucek (ed.), Pennsylvania, 1988 (Papers from the Ettinghausen colloquium, New York, 1980), 177-187

    Skelton, R. 'Islamic and Mughal Jades', Jade, R. Keverne (ed.), London, 1991, 272-295

    Verma, S.P. Mughal Painters and their work, Delhi, 1994

    Welch, S.C. India. Art and Culture 1300-1900, New York (Metropolitan Museum of Art), 1985
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