Join Prime Video Channels Free Trial


Ilkhanid Illustration
Great Mongol (Demotte) Shahnama
Chapter 19 - Dara son of Darab (14 years).
Iskandar enthroned.

Tabriz, Persia, c.1325-1350AD


A larger image of Iskandar enthroned. Great Mongol (Demotte) Shahnama. Tabriz, Persia, c.1335. Ilkhanid Illustration. Louvre, Paris, OA 7094-6.


Fig. 51 (cat. no. 46). Iskandar Enthroned, page from the Great Mongol Shahnama (Book of Kings), Iran (probably Tabriz) 1330s. Ink, colors, and gold on paper.
Musée du Louvre, Paris (7096)
Source: p.53, The Legacy of Genghis Khan Courtly Art and Culture in Western Asia 1256-1353


46     Fig. 51
Iskandar Enthroned
Image: 29 x 20 cm (11⅜ x 7⅞ in.)
Musée du Louvre, Paris (7096)

Iskandar (Alexander the Great) was another of the popular hero-kings in the Persian epic, and according to the text was the son of the just king Darab and a princess of Rum (Byzantium). Several sections in the Shahnama are devoted to him, and interestingly, these stories are heavily represented in the Great Mongol Shahnama: twelve of the extant paintings belong to the Iskandar cycle. Many of the stories in the chapter on Iskandar recount his travels and adventures in strange and far-off lands. He ruled over Rum until he invaded Iran, defeated his half brother, and assumed power in Iran.
The painting shows a haloed Iskandar seated on his throne, Framed by the niche behind him, and flanked by numerous attendants.1 In front is a low partition. The heading above the miniature reads: “The beginning of the story,” while the subject of the miniature is identified in a panel above the throne.

1.Grabar and Blair 1980, pp. 112 -13, no. 28.
Source: p.255, The Legacy of Genghis Khan Courtly Art and Culture in Western Asia 1256-1353



Louvre, Paris
Title of Work: Shahnama (Great Mongol)
Manuscript: OA 7094-6
Accession Number: OA 7096
Chapter 20 - Iskandar (14 years)
Scene: Iskandar enthroned
Dimensions (h x w): 290 x 200 mm
Format: Rectangular within borders
Reconstructed Folio: 164r
Gregorian Date: 1335 (circa)
School: Tabriz
Iskandar (Sikandar, Alexander) ascends the throne.
Source: Shahnama Project

Previous: f. 159r: 'Darab and Rashnavad fight the Rumis'. Great Mongol (Demotte) Shahnama. Tabriz, Persia. Ilkhanid Illustration. Harvard Art Museums 1919.130.
Next: f. 165r: 'Kayd, the King of Hind, tells his dreams to his vizier, Mihran'. Great Mongol (Demotte) Shahnama. Tabriz, Persia. Ilkhanid Illustration. The Chester Beatty Library, Dublin, Per 111.5.
Back to the Great Mongol (Demotte) Shah-Nameh. Tabriz, Ilkhanid Persia.