Baqi Muhammed Khan thumbnail 1
Baqi Muhammed Khan thumbnail 2
Image of Gallery in South Kensington
On display at V&A South Kensington
South Asia, Room 41

Baqi Muhammed Khan

Painting
ca. 1590-95 (made)
Artist/Maker
Place Of Origin

In this illustration to the Akbarnama by La'l and Banwali Khord, musicians and dancers perform for the celebration of the marriage of Maham Anaga's son. Maham Anaga was the foster-mother of the emperor Akbar and was a powerful figure in the court. The painting is half of a double page composition, the related page (IS.2:9-1896) showing Maham Anaga sitting next to Akbar in the royal pavilion.
The Akbarnama (Book of Akbar) was commissioned by the emperor Akbar as the official chronicle of his reign. It was written by his court historian and biographer Abu'l Fazl between 1590 and 1596 and is thought to have been illustrated between c. 1590 and 1595 by at least forty-nine different artists from Akbar's studio. After Akbar's death in 1605, the manuscript remained in the library of his son, Jahangir (r. 1605-1627) and later Shah Jahan (r. 1628-1658). The Victoria and Albert Museum purchased it in 1896 from the widow of Major General Clarke, an official who had been the Commissioner in Oudh province between 1858 and 1862.


object details
Categories
Object Type
Materials and Techniques
Painted in opaque watercolour and gold on paper
Brief Description
Painting, Akbarnama, scene from marriage entertainment of Baqi Muhammed Khan, outline by La'l, painting by Banwali the Younger, opaque watercolour and gold on paper, Mughal, ca. 1590-95
Physical Description
Painted in opaque watercolour and gold on paper, depicting festivities at the marriage of Baqi Muhammad Khan, the eldest son of Maham Anaga, at the court of Akbar in 1561. The picture is a continuation from IS.2:9-1896 and focuses on the dancers and the musicians, who perform on drums and trumpets. The image is overlaid by a caption of Persian text (three lines) in the top left-hand corner.
Dimensions
  • Height: 32cm
  • Width: 18.9cm
Content description
Festivities at the marriage of Baqi Muhammad Khan, the eldest son of Maham Anaga, at the court of Akbar in 1561. The picture is a continuation from IS.2:9-1896 and focuses on the dancers and the musicians, who perform on drums and trumpets. The image is overlaid by a caption of Persian text (three lines) in the top left-hand corner.
Styles
Marks and Inscriptions
(Contemporary librarian's attributions in Persian, in red ink in the margin below the painting.)
Gallery Label
FESTIVITIES AT COURT Illustration to the Akbarnama Opaque watercolour and gold on paper Composition by La’l, painting by Banwali the Younger (right) and Sanwala (left) Mughal, c. 1590-95 IS.2:8-1896 (right), IS.2:9-1896 (left) In 1589, Akbar commissioned the great scholar Abu’l Fazl to write the Akbarnama, or Book of Akbar, as the official history of his reign. The incomplete manuscript to which these folios belong was the presentation copy for the emperor. This scene shows the marriage festivities of the son of Akbar’s wet-nurse, Maham Anaga, in 1561. Her powerful position at court is emphasised by the fact that she is permitted to sit in the emperor’s presence.(01/08/2017)
Object history
The Akbarnama was commissioned by the emperor Akbar as the official chronicle of his reign. This was written by Abu'l Fazl between 1590 and 1596 and is thought to have been illustrated between ca.1592 and 1594 by at least forty-nine different artists from Akbar's studio. After Akbar's death in 1605, the manuscript remained in the library of his son, Jahangir (r. 1605-1627) and later Shah Jahan (r. 1628-1658). The Victoria and Albert Museum purchased it in 1896 from Frances Clarke, the widow of Major General John Clarke, an official who had been the Commissioner in Oudh province between 1858 and 1862.



Historical significance: It is thought to be the first illustrated copy of the Akbarnama. It drew upon the expertise of some of the best royal painters of the time, many of whom receive special mention by Abu'l Fazl in the A'in-i-Akbari. The inscriptions in red ink on the bottom of the paintings name the artists.
Production
Composition by La'l; painted by Banwali the Younger.
Subjects depicted
Association
Literary ReferenceAkbarnama
Summary
In this illustration to the Akbarnama by La'l and Banwali Khord, musicians and dancers perform for the celebration of the marriage of Maham Anaga's son. Maham Anaga was the foster-mother of the emperor Akbar and was a powerful figure in the court. The painting is half of a double page composition, the related page (IS.2:9-1896) showing Maham Anaga sitting next to Akbar in the royal pavilion.

The Akbarnama (Book of Akbar) was commissioned by the emperor Akbar as the official chronicle of his reign. It was written by his court historian and biographer Abu'l Fazl between 1590 and 1596 and is thought to have been illustrated between c. 1590 and 1595 by at least forty-nine different artists from Akbar's studio. After Akbar's death in 1605, the manuscript remained in the library of his son, Jahangir (r. 1605-1627) and later Shah Jahan (r. 1628-1658). The Victoria and Albert Museum purchased it in 1896 from the widow of Major General Clarke, an official who had been the Commissioner in Oudh province between 1858 and 1862.
Associated Object
Bibliographic References
  • Sen, Geeti, Paintings from the Akbar Nama, Lustre Press Pvt Ltd, Delhi, 1984, p. 65. Michael Wheeler and Clair Battission, 'Conservation and mounting of leaves from the Akbarnama', V&A Conservation Journal July 1997 No 24, pp 14-17, and Figure 1.
  • Bor, J. and Bruguiere, P. Gloire des Princes: Louange des Dieux, Musee de la Musique, 2003.pp. 50-51, cat. no. 31
Other Number
88 - Inscription/original number
Collection
Accession Number
IS.2:8-1896

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record createdOctober 7, 1998
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