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A COURTIER FEEDING A GOSHAWK
A COURTIER FEEDING A GOSHAWK

MUGHAL INDIA, CIRCA 1600-1610; BORDERS FROM THE LATE SHAH JAHAN ALBUM, CIRCA 1650-1658

Details
A COURTIER FEEDING A GOSHAWK
MUGHAL INDIA, CIRCA 1600-1610; BORDERS FROM THE LATE SHAH JAHAN ALBUM, CIRCA 1650-1658
Opaque pigments and gold on paper, blue and cream borders, illuminated cream album leaf, backed on cream card
Painting 5 3/8 x 5 ¼ ins. (13.6 x 8.2 cm.); folio 14 3/8 x 9 ¾ ins. (36.5 x 24.9 cm.)
Provenance
Probably Georges Demottes, Paris 1909
Maurice and Edmund de Rothschild Collection, Paris
P & D Colnaghi & Co Ltd, London 1976
The Khosrovani-Diba Collection, sold Sotheby’s, London, 19 October 2016, lot 7
Literature
Falk 1976, p.189 and 212, no.110
Goswamy and Fischer 1987, no.73
Exhibited
The Palace Museum, Beijing 2018, pp.472-73, no.179

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Rahul Kadakia
Rahul Kadakia

Lot Essay

This elegantly dressed Mughal courtier is depicted feeding a small bird to a goshawk. Falconry, with its association to royal status, was a popular sport in Mughal courtly circles, in particular under Emperor Jahangir. Many Mughal paintings depict courtiers or noblemen holding a bird of prey including a comparable painting in the Musée Guimet, Paris (Okada, 1989, no.49, pp.34, 174-5).
The painting is mounted with borders originating from the remarkable ‘Late Shah Jahan Album,’ notable for their lavish decoration with human figures, birds, animals and flowers. The framework lattice design of this border is among the rarest; only six others of this type have been recorded (Wright, 2008, nos. 55-56 pp.115-117, nos. 55-56, 68B, pp.116-117, 405, app. 3E, p.465). For another drawing mounted with borders from this album, see lot 182 in this sale.

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