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Hunting coat

Hunting coat

  • Place of origin:

    India (made)

  • Date:

    ca. 1620-1630 (made)

  • Artist/Maker:


  • Materials and Techniques:

    Embroidered satin with silk

  • Museum number:


  • Gallery location:

    In Storage

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.

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.

Place of Origin

India (made)


ca. 1620-1630 (made)



Materials and Techniques

Embroidered satin with silk


Height: 97 cm, Height: 39.5 in, Width: 36 in

Object history note

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.

Descriptive line

Man's hunting coat of embroidered satin with silk, India, ca. 1620-1630

Bibliographic References (Citation, Note/Abstract, NAL no)

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.
pp. 94-5, cat. no. 252, Veronica Murphy
The Indian Heritage. Court life and Arts under Mughal Rule London: The Victoria and Albert Museum, 1982 Number: ISBN 0 906969 26 3
p. 58, pl. 36. and p. 207, pl. 168 (detail)
Stronge, S. Made for Mughal Emperors. Royal Treasures from Hindustan. London and New York, 2010
p.40, pl. 22.
Indian embroidery / Rosemary Crill ; photography by Richard Davis. London: V&A Publications, 1999 Number: 185177310X, 1851772944 (pbk.)
Crill, Rosemary, Arts of Asia, vol. 45, no. 5, September - October 2015, "The Fabric of India" Exhibition, p.70, pl. 8.
p. 214, cat. no. 1017, pl. 66
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. 71
Ayers, J. Oriental Art in the Victoria and Albert Museum, London 1983, ISBN 0-85667-120-7
pl. 58
Irwin, John C., Indian Art, Victoria and Albert Museum, London: H. M. Stationery Office, 1968
pl. 1
Irwin; John, Indian Embroidery (large picture book, no. 7) London: H. M. Stationery Office, Victoria & Albert Museum, 1951

Labels and date


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]

Subjects depicted



Images Online; Textiles; Clothing; Embroidery


South & South East Asia Collection

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