Double page from the Gulshan-i ‘Ishq
(the rose garden of love) by the Sufi poet Nusrati
India, Hyderabad (the Deccan), circa 1710
Ink, opaque watercolour and gold on paper
MSS 640.1, MSS 640.2
The Gulshan-i ‘Ishq is an allegorical romance relating the progress of King Bikram towards enlightenment and the birth of a child to his hitherto barren queen. The paintings are of two types: those illustrating the narrative, which are bolder and larger in size, such as the despondent queen in her private apartments; and marginal vignettes, which are virtual microcosms of daily life at court, in the city and in the countryside.
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