"Bahram Gur Hunting with Azada", Folio from a Shahnama (Book of Kings)

Author: Abu'l Qasim Firdausi (935–1020)

Object Name: Folio from an illustrated manuscript

Date: 1352

Geography: Attributed to Iran, Shiraz

Medium: Ink, opaque watercolor, and gold on paper

Dimensions: Painting: H. 3 3/16 in. (8.1 cm)
W. 6 in. (15.2 cm)
Page: H. 11 1/2 in. (29.2 cm)
W. 8 5/16 in. (21.1 cm)
Mat: H. 19 1/4 in. (48.9 cm)
W. 14 1/4 in. (36.2 cm)

Classification: Codices

Credit Line: Cora Timken Burnett Collection of Persian Miniatures and Other Persian Art Objects, Bequest of Cora Timken Burnett, 1956

Accession Number: 57.51.32


One of the surviving folios from this copy of the Shahnama includes a date corresponding to the year 1352, which would make it the last dated Injuid (1325–53) manuscript. The style of painting is clearly related to the copy dated 1341, the pointed mountain peaks and the red background providing the most immediate parallels. With typical Injuid naivete, the scene illustrated here compresses the story of Bahram Gur shooting the gazelle with an arrow and trampling Azada under his camel’s feet.