AKBAR'S VICTORY OVER HEMU AT THE BATTLE OF PANIPAT
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AKBAR'S VICTORY OVER HEMU AT THE BATTLE OF PANIPAT

MUGHAL STYLE AT KISHANGARH, NORTH INDIA, EARLY 18TH CENTURY

Details
AKBAR'S VICTORY OVER HEMU AT THE BATTLE OF PANIPAT
MUGHAL STYLE AT KISHANGARH, NORTH INDIA, EARLY 18TH CENTURY
Opaque pigments heightened with gold on paper, young Akbar rides a black male elephant, he wears a purple jama and a bejewelled turban, behind him his aid spears Hemu, the hands bound, lying on the ground, trampled by Akbar's elephant, officers and soldiers around, Hemu's wives lamenting before the scene, in the background the besieged city of Panipat, laid down on pink card with yellow, black and white rules, the reverse with identification text in Persian, devanagari script and English, framed and glazed
Painting 12 3/5 x 8 ½in. (31.3 x 21.6cm.); page 15 ½ x 10 5/8in. (39.5 x 27cm.)
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Romain Pingannaud
Romain Pingannaud

Lot Essay

Although the scene depicted here is identified by later inscriptions in Persian and devanagari as Akbar's victory over Hemu, the Hindu ruler of north India, Mughal chronicles give a different account of Hemu's death. Hemu was defeated by the Mughal army at the second battle of Panipat in November 1556. As he was shot in the eye by an arrow during the battle, he was captured and brought unconscious to Akbar. He was later beheaded by Bayram Khan, one of Akbar's generals. There was no fortress in Panipat and the besieged fort appearing in the background of our painting is not part of the historical event. The women depicted by Hemu's body are probably his wives, lamenting over his death. The bilingual inscriptions on the reverse as well as the mount of the painting suggest that it was at Kishangarh. For a note on Mughal paintings at Kishangarh see Terence McInerney, Indian Painting 1525-1825, London, 1983, pp.44-45. This painting is probably a copy of a Mughal original of the first half of the 16th century executed by a Kishangarh artist in the early 18th century.

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