• Christies auction house James Christie logo

    Sale 7571

    Art of the Islamic and Indian Worlds

    8 April 2008, London, King Street

  • Lot 225



    Price Realised  


    The majority of carnelian, some in other hardstones, coloured or clear glass, many with silver or metal mounts, the vast majority in the names of Qajar nobles and ladies
    largest 1¼in. (3.2cm.) across (106)

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    A selection of the inscriptions and their owners are as follows: Prince Bahman dated 1232 (1816-17) Bahman Mirza (1225-1301/1810-83), the fourth son of 'Abbas Mirza Na'ib al-Saltana, known as one of the most learned Qajar Princes, possessing a large library and the one responsible to have the One Thousand and One Nights translated to Persian. He held Governorship of a few provinces. The discovery of his plan to replace Muhammad Shah made him take refuge in the Russian Embassy. He later took up residence in Shushi and died there. (Bamdad, I, pp. 195-8)
    Prince Qahraman dated 1234 (AD 1818-19) Qahraman Mirza (d. 1255/1839-40), the eighth son of 'Abbas Mirza Na'ib al-Saltana, Governor of Sabzevar, Yazd and Khurasan. (Bamdad, III, p. 131)
    Prince Zill al-Sultan dated 1240 (AD 1824-5) 'Ali Khan Zill al-Sultan (1210-1271/1795-1854), 10th son of Fath'ali Shah, claimed the crown (as 'Alishah) after his father's death, was defeated, imprisoned in Ardebil, escaped to Russia, settled in Baghdad where he died. (Bamdad, II, pp. 381-4)
    Prince Farhad, 1250 (?) (AD 1834-5) Farhad Mirza (1233-1305/1817-1887), the 15th son of 'Abbas Mirza Na'ib al-Saltana, Governor of many provinces, the Na'ib al-Ayala of Tehran during the absence of Muhammad Shah and Nasir al-Din Shah from the capital, titled Mu'tamid al-Dawla in 1278 (AD 1861-2), considered as one of the four learned Qajar princes. (Bamdad, III, pp. 86-92)
    Prince Sultan Uways dated 1267 (AD 1850-51) Sultan Uways Mirza (1255-1310/1839-92) son of Farhad Mirza Mu'tamid al-Dawla, titled Ihtisham al-Dawla in 1290 (AD 1873-4), accompanied Nasir al-Din Shah to Europe, titled Mu'tamid al-Dawla after his father's death in 1305/1887, Governor of Kurdistan and Fars. (Bamdad, II, pp. 74-5)
    Prince Tahmasp dated 1267 (1850-51) Most probably that of Tahmasp Mirza Mu'yyid al-Dawla (d. 1297/1879-80), a grandson of Fath'ali Shah and the Governor of Kashan, Hamadan, Kerman, Fars and a steward to Prince Muzaffar al-Din in Tabriz. (Bamdad, II, pp. 195-200)
    Prince Hishmat al-Dawla, dated 1267 (AD 1850-51) Hamza Mirza Hishmat al-Dawla, 21st son of 'Abbas Mirza Na'ib al-Saltana. He was Governor of numerous provinces, in charge of the army, and Minister of War, was sent to Russia on the accession of Alexander II. (Bamdad, I, pp. 462-8)
    Vali'ahd (Crown Prince) 1278 (AD 1861-2) Muzaffar Mirza (1269-1324/1852-1906), son of Nasir al-Din Shah, later Muzaffar al-Din Shah (reg. 1313-24/1896-1907). He was nominated as the Crown Prince in 1278 (AD 1861-2) for which this seal was made. (Bamdad, IV, pp. 120-35).
    Prince Abu'l-Fath Mirza Salar al-Dawla dated 1301 (AD 1883-4) Abu'l-Fath Mirza Salar al-Dawla (1298-1379/1880-1959), son of Muzaffar al-Din Shah. He held the governorship of Azerbaijan, Kermanshah, Khuzistan, Lurestan and Borujerd. Revolted against his brother Muhammad 'Ali Shah and called himself king and minted coins in his own name. He was defeated and fled to Switzerland and finally Egypt, where he died. (Bamdad, I, pp. 48-50)
    Prince Muhammad Taqi Rukn al-Dawla 1305 (AD 1887-8) Muhammad Taqi Mirza (1262-1318/1845-1900), the 4th son of Muhammad Shah, Governor of Tehran, titled Rukn al-Dawla in 1283 (AD 1866-7), governor of Zanjan, Khurasan, the Superintendent of the Shrine in Mashhad and Governor of Fars. (Bamdad, III, pp. 312-19).
    Prince Shu'a' al-Saltana dated 1307 (AD 1889-90) Malik Mansur Mirza Shu'a' al-Saltana, the second son of Muzaffar al-Din Shah and the Governor of Fars (Bamdad, IV, pp. 156-8)
    Prince Zill al-Sultan dated 1313 (AD 1895-6). Mas'ud Mirza, Zill al-Sultan (1266-1336/1840-1917), son of Nasir al-Din Shah. He held the governorship of most of the southern half of the country with his capital in Isfahan with the support and protection of the British. (Bamdad, IV, pp. 78-100)
    Prince Salar al-Saltana dated 1320 (AD 1902-03). Nusrat al-Din Mirza Salar al-Saltana (b. 1299/1881-2), son of Nasir al-Din Shah, received his title Salar al-Saltana in 1300 (1882-3). He held the post of Governorship of Fars, Khurasan and Hamadan. (Bamdad, V, pp. 315-17)
    Prince Sultan 'Abd al-Majid Sadr A'zam (Prime Minister) 1322 (1904-05). Sultan 'Abd al-Majid Mirza (d. 1341/1922), grandson of Fath'ali Shah, titled 'Ayn al-Dawla in 1310 (AD 1892-3). He started his career at the court of Prince Muzaffar al-Din in Tabriz and rose to become the Prime Minister in 1322 (1904-05) for which this seal was made. He was dismissed two years later, reappointed a few more times, each time for a short period. (Bamdad, II, pp. 93-9)
    Amin al-Sultan dated 1304 (AD 1886-7)
    Amin al-Sultan dated 1314 (AD 1896-7)
    'Ali Asghar Khan, Amin al-Sultan (1275-1325/1857-1907), Prime Minister under Nasir al-Din, Muzaffar al-Din and Muhammad 'Ali Shah. (Bamdad, III, pp. 387-425).
    Nasir al-Mulk, Na'ib al-Saltana dated 1329 (AD 1911-12) Abu'l-Qasim Khan Qara-Quzlu Hamadani (1281-1346/1864-1927), studied at Oxford. After his father's death in 1305 (AD 1887-8), he was given all his father's posts and titled Nasir al-Mulk. He later held the post of Minister of Finance and the Prime Minister of Muhammad 'Ali Shah in 1325 (AD 1907), removed, imprisoned, was released through British intervention and left for Europe. He was recalled and made Na'ib al-Saltana in 1329 (AD 1911-12). This seal belongs to this particular event. (Bamdad, I, pp. 66-70).
    'Alireza-ye Qajar Na'ib al-Saltana 1327 (AD 1909-10) 'Alireza Quvanlu (1238-1328/1822-1910), the Chief of the Qajar tribe, a cousin of Nasir al-Din Shah, titled 'Azud al-Mulk in 1285 (AD 1868-9), accompanied Nasir al-Din Shah on his trips to Iraq and Europe, the Royal seal holder, Minister of Justice, the intermediary between the Shah and theologians during their uprising, made Na'ib al-Saltana in 1327 (AD 1909-10) for which this seal was made. (Bamdad, II, pp. 435-42).
    Mushir al-Saltana 1316 (AD 1898-9) Mirza Ahmad Khan Munshi-Bashi (d. 1329/1911), the Chief of Secretaries of Prince Muzaffar al-Din, titled Mushir al-Saltana in 1300 (AD 1882-3), a close associate of Muzaffar al-Din Shah and Muhammad 'Ali Shah. (Bamdad, I, pp. 100-103)
    Malijak Ghulam'ali Khan (1296-1358/1878-1939), known as Malijak, and titled 'Aziz al-Sultan, a nephew of one of Nasir al-Din Shah's ladies of the harem. He was the favourite of the king and accompanied him in most of his trips including to Europe. (Bamdad, III, pp. 20-50)
    Saham al-Dawla, 1299 (AD 1881-2) Muhammad Ibrahim Khan, titled Saham al-Dawla in 1291 (AD 1874-5), Governor of Mazandaran and Kurdestan, a Commander-in-Chief, titled Nizam al-Dawla in 1306 (AD 1888-9) (Bamdad, III, pp. 291-3)
    Sadr al-Dawla, 1306 (AD 1889-90) Husayn Khan Sadr al-Dawla is mentioned in a list of those who received a title during the first 40 years of Nasir al-Din Shah and that he was a military officer at court. (I'timad al-Saltana, al-ma'athir wa'l-athar, ed. I. Afshar, Tehran, 1363, pp. 315 and 425).
    Shuja' Nizam Most probably Shukrullah Khan Marandi known as Shuja' Nizam, the head of Qara Suran Cavalry, pro Muhammad 'Alishah and anti Constitution. He was killed by a letter bomb in 1326 (AD 1908-09) (Bamdad, II, pp. 149-51)

    Other seals of officials are of: Mu'ayyid al-Mamalik dated 1304 (AD 1886-7); I'timad-e Huzur dated 1305 (AD 1887-8); Sadr al-Dawla dated 1306 (1889-90); Muhammad Ibrahim Malik al-Tujjar (Chief of merchants) dated 1306 (AD 1888-9); 'Imad al-Mulk Vakil dated 1307 (AD 1889-90); Mushwir al-Mamalik; Ra'is al-Atibba (Chief of physicians) dated 1309 (AD 1891-2); 'Amid al-Mamalik; Intisar al-Mulk dated 1312 (AD 1894-5); I'tizad-e Lashkar dated 1314 (AD 1896-7); Husayn al-Husayni Mudir al-Ashraf dated 1320 (AD 1902-03); Ahmad Amin-e Daftar; 'Inayatullh Sa'id al-Mulk dated 1323 (AD 1905-06); Mukhbir al-Dawla 1326 (1908-09); Burhan al-Sultan dated 1329 (AD 1911-12); Amir Mansur dated 1330 (AD 1911-12); Mu'azziz al-Saltana dated 1338 (AD 1919-20); 'Aliquli Ansari dated 1344 (AD 1925-6); Asadullah Yamin Isfandiyari; Nizam al-Saltana; Darvish; Muhammad Hadi; Nurullah; Fathullah; Mintasir al-Mulk; Futuh al-Dawla; Rafi' al-Saltana; Zargham al-Sultan; Amin al-Tujjar; Mu'azzam al-Dawla; Samsam al-Saltana; Yamin al-Dawla; Sarim al-Dawla; Muhammad 'Ali; Yamin al-Saltana.

    Seals of ladies include: Farah daughter of Mu'tamin al-Saltana; Tajmah Afaq al-Dawla; Shukat al-Mulk dated 1309 (AD 1891-2); Iran al-Muluk dated 1322 (1904-05); Sarvar al-Saltana; Negar al-Saltana dated 1327 (AD 1909-10); Mehr-e Jahan (two seals) and Taj-e Mah.

    Seals of Pahlavi period are those of offices and include: The Commission for the building of the 23rd infentry of Marivan of the Imperial Army dated 1315 (AD 1936); The High Imperial House of Iran in 'Amara; The National Council of Daylaman; and A'zami High School Kermanshah dated 1314 (AD 1935).

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