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Ilkhanid Illustration
Isfandiyar lassoes the Turanian hero Gurgsar
Folio from the 'Second Small Shahnama' (Book of Kings) c.1300AD
Chapter 15 - Gushtasp (120 years)


A larger image of 'Isfandiyar lassoes the Turanian hero Gurgsar', from the 'Second Small Shahnama'


Object type: painting, manuscript (detached folio)
Museum number: 1948,1211,0.22
Description: Isfandiyar battling the Turanian; painting, detached page from an illustrated manuscript of Firdawsi's Shahnama, known as the 'Second Small Shahnama'. Isfandiyar is mounted on a black horse, pulling a lassoed opponent (possibly Gurgsar) along the ground. Six men in total, five mounted on horses. Text inscribed in six narrow columns above and below image.
Ink, opaque watercolour and gold on paper.
School/style: Persian
Culture/period: Ilkhanid dynasty
Date: 1305 (circa)
Production place: Made in: Iran
Materials: paper
Technique: painted, gilded
Dimensions: Height: 17 centimetres (sheet) Width: 13.3 centimetres (sheet) Width: 13.4 centimetres (image) Height: 17 centimetres (image)

Curator's comments:
Freed from imprisonment, the Iranian prince Isfandiyar joined his father in battle against the Turanians. Although wounded with an arrow by the Turanian Gurgsar, Isfandiyar lassoed his opponent, pulled him to the ground and dragged him to captivity. The soldiers on both sides wear the same type of helmet, but the more important positions of both Isfandiyar and Gurgsar are distinguished by their coats of mail, which stand in contrast to the sectional coats of the soldiers they lead.
Source: British Museum, London



London, The British Museum
Title of Work: Shahnama (Second Small)
Manuscript: 1948-12-11-020 - 022
Accession Number: 1948-12-11-022
Chapter 15 - Gushtasp (120 years)
Scene: Isfandiyar lassoes the Turanian hero Gurgsar
English Title: Isfandiyar Lassoes the Turanian Gurgsar
Dimensions (h x w): 195 x 132 mm
Format: Irregular, random into the margins
Gregorian Date: 1300 (circa)
School: Baghdad
Source: Shahnama Project

Another folio from this Shahnama: Bahram Gur at the Home of Baraham the Jew
Back to the 'Second Small Shahnama' (Book of Kings), Ilkhanid Persia, c.1300AD



Persian Cavalrymen c.1335 in Armies of the Middle Ages, Volume 2 by Ian Heath, based on the Second Small Shahnama