Numerous portraits of the Mughal Emperor Muhammad Shah (r. 1719-48) are known. An intimate drawing attributed to Kalyan Das in the British Museum depicts him at the age of twenty, with a pronounced moustache and light stubble, in a similar fashion to the present painting (1936-1-11-011, William Darlymple and Yuthika Sharma, Princes and Painters in Mughal Delhi, 1707-1857, New York, 2012, fig.1, p.18). However the present portrait shows Muhammad Shah wearing imperial jewellery, his name framed by a golden halo and seated under a royal parasol. This iconography of the emperor enthroned is that used on many of his portraits, such as one in the Royal Colletion (Dalrymple, op.cit., fig.2a, p.19) and another from early 19th century Delhi, sold at Christie’s, London, 10 June 2015, lot 44. For a portrait of Muhammad Shah meeting Nadir Shah, see lot 311 in this sale.