Exploring Asia at World Museum

6 February 2014 by Felicity


Miniature of a Mughal courtier

Miniature of a Mughal courtier

World Museum’s astounding collections are incredibly vast and varied. So much so, that we’re still exploring and learning more about many of them! This is definitely true of our paper-based Asia collections, as Emma Martin, Head of Ethnology and Curator of Asia Collections, explains:

“While we mainly have three-dimensional objects in the Asia collections at World Museum we are just starting to work through our paper-based Asia collections at the store right now. I wanted to share an image from a beautiful gate-fold album of Indian and Persian miniatures, which are interspersed with poems by the acclaimed 16th century poet Abu’l Fazl. The album was given to the museum by Joseph Mayer, our founding collector in 1857. He owned a number of manuscripts, mainly illuminated ones that are now shared between the Asia, Decorative Arts and Fine Arts collections.

This beautiful miniature of a Mughal courtier seems to have been cut from the painting it was originally included in and then pasted and retouched in Mayer’s album. The courtier wears a fabulous salmon pink coat over his green jama or robe in an exclusive striped silk and cotton mix fabric known as mashru. There is also a beautiful sash or patka with a delicate Mughal flower into which is tucked his ceremonial dagger.”


Find out more about the Asia collections here

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