The Siyer-i Nebi (Life of the Prophet), the manuscript to which this folio originally belonged, is a religious epic narrating the genealogy, life, and death of Muhammad, the prophet of Islam. First composed in the late 14th century, by a writer named Darir, the text was later produced in a lavishly illustrated copy under the auspices of the Ottoman Sultan Murad III in the late 16th century. The project was supervised by renowned Turkish calligrapher Lutfi Abdullah and was a major undertaking that resulted in a six-volume production accompanied by more than 800 illustrations. Volumes 1, 2, and 6 are still in the Topkapi Museum Library in Istanbul. Volumes 3 and 4 are, respectively, in the New York Public Library and the Chester Beatty Library in Dublin, Ireland. The location of volume 5 remains unknown.

Cataloguing data may change with further research.

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Illustration supervised by Lütfi Abdullah, Ottoman Turk, active 1574–1595 , Head Calligrapher
Scene of Feasting
From Sultan Murad III's Siyer-i Nebi or Life of the Prophet
c. 1594
Opaque watercolors, gold and ink on paper
Image: 11 11/16 × 7 1/8 in. (29.7 × 18.1 cm) Sheet: 14 3/4 × 9 7/8 in. (37.5 × 25.1 cm)
Credit Line

Museum purchase funded by His Highness the Aga Khan Shia Ismaili Community of Houston, The Levant Foundation, Mr. and Mrs. Akbar Ladjevardian, The Francis L. Lederer Foundation, Marathon Oil Company, Mr. and Mrs. Omar Rehmatulla, Strategic Real Estate Advisors, London, Monsour Taghdisi, His Excellency Sheikh Sultan bin Suhaim Al Thani, PricewaterhouseCoopers LLP, and the 2007 Art of the Islamic Worlds Gala

Current Location
Not on view
Accession Number
Drawings, Pastels & Watercolors

Research ongoing