Pictorial Panel


Pictorial Panel



The red ground of the panel is embroidered in precise chain stitch with scenes from the life of the legendary Persian hero Rustam. The panel is bordered by a broad band of cartouches with verses in profuse scrolling foliage. There are two guard strips with dark backgrounds and a wide outer border with stylized butas. The panel is divided into three registers,
the first depicting a forest spirit being offered a drink by attendants. The second shows two battle scenes one of which
Rustam with his distinctive headgear of a leopard’s head is seen battling a foe. The third and last scene is of Rustam
defeating the giant white div (demon).
Pictorial carpets depicting episodes from Persian classics such as the Shahnama and the Khamsa of Nizami were said to be in vogue in the courts of Qajar rulers towards the end of the 19th century. The inscription in the cartouches
bordering the panel is a congratulatory message that is repeated on all four sides.
It reads:
Mubarak Bāshad Za sum ān sutun wā dahan azdarast
(Mubarak Bāshad) – Zamīn shash shud-oāsmān gasht hasht.
Mubarak Bāshad – Farū Shud ba māhī wā bar shud ba māh – Mubarak Bāshad

Translated as:
May it prove auspicious
In piercing that column of troops is a dragon with open mouth
May it prove auspicious
The earth became [torn into] six pieces and the sky became [torn into] eight pieces
May it prove auspicious
Downwards it went up to the bottom of the earth and upwards it went up to the moon
May it prove auspicious


Asian Art

Object Type



Woollen felt and cotton embroidered with silk thread


Qajar period




19th century CE




292 x 155 cm