Ilkhanid Illustration
Great Mongol (Demotte) Shahnama
Chapter 41 - Kisra Anushirvan (48 years). Anushirvan dictates an answer to the Khaqan's letter
Tabriz, Persia, c.1335AD


A larger image of 'Anushirvan dictates an answer to the Khaqan's letter'. Great Mongol (Demotte) Shahnama. Tabriz, Persia, c.1335AD. Ilkhanid Illustration. The Chester Beatty Library, Dublin, Per 111.7.


Anushirvan dictates a letter to the Khaqan of Chin, from the Book of Kings (Shahnama)
Object no.: Per 111.7
Object name: Folio / Bi-Folio (Codex)
Title: Anushirvan dictates a letter to the Khaqan of Chin, from the Book of Kings (Shahnama)
Production place: Tabriz
Object category: Manuscript
Collection: Persian collection
Production date: c. 1330
Dimensions: 592 mm x 400 mm (height x width)
Material: Paper, Pigment, Ink, Gold
Language: Persian
Description: Anushirvan dictates a letter to the Khaqan of Chin, folio from the Book of Kings (Shahnama). The Khaqan has proposed a peace treaty between Iran and China, and Anushirvan promptly agrees. Detached folio, ink, gold and pigments on paper, later re-mounted, Persian text with framed captions and painting (with later retouches), Tabriz, Iran, c. 1330. Dateable to the era of Ilkhanid rule in Iran, a dramatic but fragmentary manuscript known as the Great Mongol Shahnama (and also the Demotte Shahnama) is today dispersed across many international collections, including eleven folios in the Chester Beatty collection.
Source: The Chester Beatty Library, Dublin



60     Fig. 45
Nushirvan Writing to the Khaqan of China
Image: 19 x 20 cm (7½ x 7⅞ in.)
The Trustees of the Chester Beatty Library, Dublin (Per 1 1 1 .7)

Finding himself in a confrontational situation with Nushirvan and in order to avoid bloodshed, the khaqan of Chin (China) wrote to the shah proposing a peaceful alliance between their powerful kingdoms. Nushirvan, though initially surprised, recognized the wisdom in this and sent a response to the khaqan, agreeing with him.
    The painting, another of the enthronement scenes from this copy of the Shahnama, shows an interior architectural setting with Nushirvan in the center and a scribe in the right foreground writing at his dictation.1 The subject is identifed in the title above.

1. Grabar and Blair 1980, pp. 170-71 , no. 57.
Source: p.258, The Legacy of Genghis Khan Courtly Art and Culture in Western Asia 1256-1353



Dublin, The Chester Beatty Library
Title of Work: Shahnama (Great Mongol)
Manuscript: Per 111
Accession Number: Per 111.7
Chapter 41 - Kisra Anushirvan (48 years)
Scene: Anushirvan dictates an answer to the Khaqan's letter
Dimensions (h x w): 190 x 200 mm
Format: Rectangular within borders
Reconstructed Folio: 233v
Gregorian Date: 1335 (circa)
School: Tabriz
The painting is fitted in the text at the point where the Khaqan is receiving Anushirvan's letter, but the rubric and the imagery suggest that it is the majesty of the Iranian monarch on display. The picture is discussed by Grabar & Blair, p. 170 (illustr. 57), and Soudavar, pp. 140-43 (fig. 36). It was exhibited in The Legacy of Genghis Khan, at New York and Los Angeles, in 2002, and is reproduced in Komaraoff & Carboni, p. 48 (fig. 45).
Source: Shahnama Project

Previous: f. 231v: 'Nushirvan Eating Food Brought by the Sons of Mahbud'. Great Mongol (Demotte) Shahnama. Tabriz, Persia. Ilkhanid. Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, 52.20.2.
Next: f. 234v: 'Mihran Sitad asks the Khaqan to give his daughter to Anushirvan as a wife'. Great Mongol (Demotte) Shahnama. Tabriz, Persia. Ilkhanid. Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, 22.392.
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