- Identification and Creation
- Object Number
- Story of Farangis (text, recto and verso), folio from a manuscript of the Shahnama by Firdawsi
- Work Type
- manuscript folio
- Creation Place: Middle East, Iran, Shiraz
- Safavid period
- Persistent Link
- Physical Descriptions
- Ink, opaque watercolor and gold on paper
- 37.2 x 23.9 cm (14 5/8 x 9 7/16 in.)
- [Christies, London, 17 October 1995, lot no. 79]. [Mansour Gallery, London, before 1998], sold; to Stanford and Norma Jean Calderwood, Belmont, MA (by 1998-2002), gift; to Harvard Art Museums, 2002.
- Acquisition and Rights
- Credit Line
- Harvard Art Museums/Arthur M. Sackler Museum, The Norma Jean Calderwood Collection of Islamic Art
- Accession Year
- Object Number
- Asian and Mediterranean Art
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- Estranged from his father Kay Kavus, Siyavush temporarily enjoyed the hospitality of the Turanian ruler Afrasiyab and took his daughter, Farangis, as one of his wives. Later, overcome by fear of ill-omens and the jealousy of his courtiers, Afrasiyab ordered the execution of the Iranian prince. Grabbing the young prince, Gurvi cut his throat, catching the blood in a golden dish. Siyavush met death bravely, knowing that Farangis would soon give birth to a son (Kay Khusraw)who would unite the lands of Turan and Iran under one crown.
Published Catalogue Text: In Harmony: The Norma Jean Calderwood Collection of Islamic Art , written 2013
Double page: Guruy Executes Siyavush
A. Verso: text, concerning Farangis
Folio: 37.2 × 23.9 cm (14 5/8 × 9 7/16 in.)
B. Recto: text and illustration
Folio: 37.3 × 24 cm (14 11/16 × 9 7/16 in.)
Succumbing to his own foreboding and the envy of his courtiers toward Siyavush, Afrasiyab eventually ordered the execution of the Iranian prince whom he had welcomed into his family. Happy to oblige the monarch, jealous Guruy cut the prince’s throat, catching his blood in a golden basin. Siyavush met death bravely, knowing that his wife Farangis would soon give birth to a son, Kay Khusraw, who would unite the lands of Turan and Iran under one crown.
While the text indicates that the execution took place in a wasteland outside Siyavush’s capital city, the illustration sets the scene within the confines of a palace crowded with figures, including an enthroned Afrasiyab, court officials, and Farangis, who is being seized as a captive. The illustration shows the dramatic moment when Siyavush’s blood gushes forth into the basin.
Mika M. Natif
- Publication History
Mary McWilliams, ed., In Harmony: The Norma Jean Calderwood Collection of Islamic Art, exh. cat., Harvard Art Museums (Cambridge, MA, 2013)
- Exhibition History
Closely Focused, Intensely Felt: Selections from the Norma Jean Calderwood Collection of Islamic Art, Harvard University Art Museums, Cambridge, 08/07/2004 - 01/02/2005
- Related Works
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 email@example.com