Identification and Creation
Object Number
Attributed to Sadiqi Beg, Persian
Falcons, Dragons and Other Creatures
Other Titles
Alternate Title: Falcon, Lion and Dragon
Work Type
late 16th century
Creation Place: Middle East, Iran, Isfahan
Safavid period
Persistent Link
Physical Descriptions
Black ink on off-white laid paper
32 x 20.5 cm (12 5/8 x 8 1/16 in.)
[F. R. Martin], Collector (by 1912). Stuart Cary Welch, Jr., Warner, New Hampshire (by 1983-2008), 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
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A falcon perched on a rock holds the center of this drawing; the raptor is flanked by two dragon heads that face rightward; at the top of the page, a lion lopes to the left; and heads, snouts, and feet from unidentified animals populate the interstitial space. The seemingly random assembly of figures on this page suggests that it was a study sheet, an observation supported by the circular squiggle below the lion’s hind legs that was made by an artist pointing the brush or adjusting the amount of ink it carried. In this drawing the artist seems to have been rehearsing compositional elements in the finely articulated, calligraphic line that became popular in Safavid Iran.
Publication History

F.R. Martin, The Miniature Painting and Painters of Persia, India and Turkey, from the 8th to the 18th century, B. Quaritch (London, England, 1912), plate 93

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 119/ fig 99

Anthony Welch, Artists for the Shah: Late Sixteenth-Century Painting at the Imperial Court of Iran, Yale University Press (New Haven, CT, 1976), fig. 27

Gauvin Alexander Bailey, "In the Manner of the Frankish Masters: A Safavid Drawing and its Flemish Inspiration", Oriental Art (Winter 1994 - Winter 1995), vol. XL, no. 4, fig. 6

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.54-55, no. 8

Exhibition History

Islamic Art: Drawings, Calligraphies and Objects, Fogg Art Museum, Cambridge, 06/29/1983 - 09/25/1983

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

A Decade of Collecting: Recent Acquisitions of Islamic and Later Indian Art, Harvard Art Museums/Arthur M. Sackler Museum, Cambridge, 06/08/2000 - 09/03/2000

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

The Tablet and the Pen: Drawings from the Islamic World, Harvard University Art Museums, Arthur M. Sackler Museum, Cambridge, 02/18/2006 - 07/23/2006

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