Photo © President and Fellows of Harvard College
Identification and Creation
Object Number
Signed by Mu’in Musavvir, Persian
A Camel
Work Type
c. 1678
Creation Place: Middle East, Iran, Isfahan
Safavid period
Persistent Link
Physical Descriptions
Brown-black ink and opaque watercolor on off-white laid paper
28 x 19 cm (11 x 7 1/2 in.)
Inscriptions and Marks
  • inscription: Inscribed at upper left: “In the night of Wednesday the 28th of Shavval, 1098 [AH] these two [sic] camels designed by the late Ustad Bihzad Sultani (Mercy on him!) were drawn by Muj’in Musavvir.”
Rabineau, Collector. Stuart Cary Welch, Jr., Warner, New Hampshire (by 1965-2008), by inheritance; to Edith I. Welch, Warner, New Hampshire (2008-2011), gift; to Harvard Art Museums 2011.
Acquisition and Rights
Credit Line
Harvard Art Museums/Arthur M. Sackler Museum, The Stuart Cary Welch Collection, Gift of Edith I. Welch in memory of Stuart Cary Welch
Accession Year
Object Number
Asian and Mediterranean Art
The Harvard Art Museums encourage the use of images found on this website for personal, noncommercial use, including educational and scholarly purposes. To request a higher resolution file of this image, please submit an online request.
This fine drawing of a camel and a watchful man is executed in black ink and highlighted with pink and yellow watercolor. The camel is tied from its forefeet to a cut tree trunk. It also has a chain tied to its head which is hanging loose. The camel’s long hair and facial details are well executed although a calligraphic quality of line is felt in the depiction of its lower torso and feet. Possibly the guardian or owner of the camel is shown behind a hill looking over the camel. His face is more sketchily executed than that of the camel. The drawing is signed by the artist Mu’in Musavvir and dated to the 28th day of Shavval 1089 (13 December 1678).
Publication History

Hyacinth Rabino, Les provinces caspiennes de la Perse: Le Guilan (Paris, 1917), Vol. 32

Laurence Binyon and J. V. S. Wilkinson, Persian Miniature Painting: Including a Critical and Descriptive Catalogue of the Miniatures Exhibited at Burlington House, January-March, 1931, exh. cat., Oxford University Press (NY) and Oxford University Press (UK) (London, England, 1933)

Ernst Grube, Muslim Miniature Paintings from the XIII to XIX Century from Collections in the United States and Canada, exh. cat., Neri Pozza Editore (Venice, 1962), p 136/ fig 120

Basil William Robinson, Persian Drawings from the 14th through the 19th Century, Shorewood Publishers Inc. (New York, NY, 1965), pp.137, plate 66

Anthony Welch, Shah 'Abbas and the Arts of Isfahan, exh. cat., Asia Society Museum (New York, NY, 1973), page 109/figure 78

Arthur Upham Pope and Phyllis Ackerman, A Survey of Persian Art From Prehistoric Times to the Present, Soroush Press (Tehran, Iran, 1977), page 923

Stuart Cary Welch and Kim Masteller, From Mind, Heart, and Hand: Persian, Turkish, and Indian Drawings from the Stuart Cary Welch Collection, exh. cat., Yale University Press (New Haven, 2004), pp.72-73, no. 14

Exhibition History

Diverse are their Hues: Animals in Islamic Art, Harvard University Art Museums, Fogg Art Museum, Cambridge, 12/18/1984 - 02/09/1985

Precisely to the Point, Daggers and Drawings from Persia and India: 15th-19th century, Harvard University Art Museums, Cambridge, 05/30/1992 - 07/26/1992

Linear Graces ... and Disgraces: Part I, Drawings from the Courts of Persia, Turkey, and India, 15th-19th Centuries, Harvard University Art Museums, Cambridge, 10/15/1994 - 12/11/1994

From Mind, Heart, and Hand: Persian, Turkish, and Indian Drawings from SCWelch, Harvard University Art Museums, Fogg Art Museum, Cambridge, 03/19/2005 - 06/02/2005

This record has been reviewed by the curatorial staff but may be incomplete. Our records are frequently revised and enhanced. For more information please contact the Division of Asian and Mediterranean Art at