- Museum number
The raven addresses the animals; single-page painting mounted on a detached album folio. Poised near the summit of a precipitous mountain, a raven or mynad bird leans down to address an assembly of real and fantastic animals. Fish, horses, dragons, lions, tigers, and a smiling cheetah join vultures, owls, cranes, ducks, and a simurgh (phoenix) to listen to the raven's words of wisdom. Possbile illustration to the Ottoman poet Lami'i Celebi's 'Serefu'l-Insan', a morality in which the animals complain of their ill-treatment by man. No text.
Ink, opaque watercolour and gold on paper.
- Production date
- 1590-1620 (circa)
Height: 26.90 centimetres (image)
Height: 29.90 centimetres (sheet)
Width: 19.30 centimetres (image)
Width: 22.20 centimetres (sheet)
- Curator's comments
- This scene may illustrate a variant of the episode in the Anwar-i Suhayli of the crow addressing the birds to rally their support against the leader of the owls. Real animals are combined with dragons and the simurgh, or phoenix.
The overpainting of the text panel at the upper left hinders precise identification of the manuscript illustrated by this painting. The upward surge of animals and mountain is typical of later Akbari compositions.
- Not on display
- Exhibition history
2013-14 6 Dec-18 May, BM, Gallery 34, 'A Middle East menagerie: favourite works selected by curatorial assistants'
2012-13 15 Oct-3 Feb, Rome, Fondazione Roma Museo - Palazzo Sciarra, 'Akbar: The Great Emperor of India'
2008 14 Apr-5 Nov, BM, Gallery 34, 'Fantastic Creatures'
1996, 'Furusiyya' (cancelled)
1977 London, BM, Animals in Art
1976 13 Apr-11 Jul, BM, 'Paintings from the Muslim Courts of India'
- Acquisition date
- Acquisition notes
- Transferred from the Department of Oriental Manuscripts and Printed Books ((OMPB). Originally purchased from Richard Grenville, 2nd Duke of Buckingham and Chandos, through A E Evans OMPB Sons at Sotheby’s at the Stowe sale, 5-14.iii.1849/172.).
- Middle East
- Registration number