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"A Ruffian Spares the Life of a Poor Man", Folio from a Mantiq al-tair (Language of the Birds)
Folio from a Mantiq al-tair (Language of the Birds)
"Shaikh San'an and the Christian Maiden", Folio from a Mantiq al-Tair (Language of the Birds)
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This artwork is currently on display in Gallery 455
The poetic text of 'Attar’s Mantiq al‑Tair comprises a series of parables narrated by the hoopoe, who leads a gathering of birds on a difficult journey to find the mythic Simurgh. Perhaps the best‑known image from the manuscript, this folio illustrates the small, crested hoopoe bird addressing his companions before their departure. This charming painting is one of four added to the original manuscript in the early seventeenth century at the court of Shah 'Abbas (r. 1587–1629), and is signed by the painter Habiballah.
Signature: In Persian: "Signed by Habib Allah".
Shah Abbas I, Iran (until 1609; to Ardebil Shrine); Ardebil Shrine, Iran (1609–1826); Dr. M. Farid Parwanta(until 1963; sale, Sotheby's, London,December 9, 1963, lot 111; to MMA)
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