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Hunting Coat

ca. 1620-1630 (made)
Artist/Maker
Place Of Origin

This splendid coat was made for a man at the Mughal court in the first half of the 17th century. It is embroidered in fine chain stitch on a white satin ground, with images of flowers, trees, peacocks, lions and deer. The area around the neck is left free of embroidery, as a separate collar or tippet, probably of fur, would have been attached. Chain-stitch embroidery of this type is associated with professional, male embroiderers of the Gujarati Mochi community, and they were employed to embroider fine hangings and garments for the Mughal court, as well as for export to the West.
read Indian embroidery Our collection of Indian textiles ranges from rare courtly pieces to archaeological fragments, to everyday garments and fabrics, dating from the 14th century to the present day. Embroidery remains one of India's most recognisable and most prized textile traditions. Discover eight of the mo...
read The arts of the Mughal Empire The great age of Mughal art lasted from about 1580 to 1650 and spanned the reigns of three emperors: Akbar, Jahangir and Shah Jahan. Hindu and Muslim artists and craftsmen from the northern regions of the Indian subcontinent worked with Iranian masters in the masculine environment of the r...
object details
Categories
Object Type
Materials and Techniques
Embroidered satin with silk
Brief Description
Man's hunting coat of embroidered satin with silk, India, ca. 1620-1630
Physical Description
Hunting coat of embroidered satin with silk in fine chain stitch in blue, yellow, green, gold and brown silk. All-over pattern of hillocks, flowering trees and plants, peacocks, storks, ducks, butterflies, insects and animals including tigers, deer and rabbits.
Dimensions
  • Height: 97cm
  • Height: 39.5in
  • Width: 36in
Style
Gallery Label
RIDING COAT This 17th-century man's coat is one of the finest surviving examples of Mughal dress. It was stitched by professional male embroiderers from Gujarat, using a needle and hook (ari). The cosmopolitan court drew its influences from across Europe and Asia. The landscape derives from Chinese imports. The life-like daffodils and poppies are taken from European prints brought to the Mughal court by missionaries and traders. Silk (satin weave) embroidered with silk Probably Gujarat, 1620-5 V&A: IS.18-1947(03/10/2015-10/01/2016)
Object history
Stitching of the kind used here was particularly associated with Gujarati craftsmen. The style of the coat and the cool palette of the colours of the design suggest Iranian influence.
Subject depicted
Summary
This splendid coat was made for a man at the Mughal court in the first half of the 17th century. It is embroidered in fine chain stitch on a white satin ground, with images of flowers, trees, peacocks, lions and deer. The area around the neck is left free of embroidery, as a separate collar or tippet, probably of fur, would have been attached. Chain-stitch embroidery of this type is associated with professional, male embroiderers of the Gujarati Mochi community, and they were employed to embroider fine hangings and garments for the Mughal court, as well as for export to the West.
Bibliographic References
  • Swallow, Deborah and John Guy eds. Arts of India: 1550-1900. text by Rosemary Crill, John Guy, Veronica Murphy, Susan Stronge and Deborah Swallow. London : V&A Publications, 1990. 240 p., ill. ISBN 1851770224, p.85, no.61.
  • The Indian Heritage. Court life and Arts under Mughal Rule London: The Victoria and Albert Museum, 1982 Number: ISBN 0 906969 26 3pp. 94-5, cat. no. 252, Veronica Murphy
  • Stronge, S. Made for Mughal Emperors. Royal Treasures from Hindustan. London and New York, 2010p. 58, pl. 36. and p. 207, pl. 168 (detail)
  • Indian embroidery / Rosemary Crill ; photography by Richard Davis. London: V&A Publications, 1999 Number: 185177310X, 1851772944 (pbk.)p.40, pl. 22.
  • Crill, Rosemary, Arts of Asia, vol. 45, no. 5, September - October 2015, "The Fabric of India" Exhibition, p.70, pl. 8.
  • The art of India and Pakistan, a commemorative catalogue of the exhibition held at the Royal Academy of Arts, London, 1947-8. Edited by Sir Leigh Ashton. London: Faber and Faber, [1950]p. 214, cat. no. 1017, pl. 66
  • Ayers, J. Oriental Art in the Victoria and Albert Museum, London 1983, ISBN 0-85667-120-7p. 71
  • Irwin, John C., Indian Art, Victoria and Albert Museum, London: H. M. Stationery Office, 1968pl. 58
  • Irwin; John, Indian Embroidery (large picture book, no. 7) London: H. M. Stationery Office, Victoria & Albert Museum, 1951pl. 1
Collection
Accession Number
IS.18-1947

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record createdDecember 15, 1999
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