The image of a composite camel has a long history in Indian painting. The type in which the animal bears a peri, the winged female musician playing a harp, is well-established in the canon of Mughal painting. The choice and arrangement of the animals and male musicians to make up the camel's body closely corresponds with a seventeenth century Mughal example, now in the Catherine and Ralph Benkaim Collection; see Robert J. Del Bonta, "Reinventing Nature: Mughal Composite Animal Painting," in Flora and Fauna in Mughal Art, ed. Som Prakash Verma, Marg Publications, vol. 50, No. 3, March 1999, p. 71, fig. 2. For further discussion on composite animal painting, see ibid., "Indian Composite Paintings: A Playful Art," Orientations, January 1996, p. 31-38. The present lot, with its detailed drawing and rich use of color, is an exceptional example of this type.