Legends and Legacy

Stories of Babur’s ancestors shaped his sense of self and his destiny. These role models remained important to Babur’s descendants, for whom these folios were painted.

For princes like Babur, the Central Asian ruler Timur exemplified power and military genius. Multiple chronicles elevated his life and deeds to almost mythical status. Here, Timur, astride a white horse, appears as the dynamic hero of a dramatic and bloody battle.

Timur on the Battlefield , folio from the Gulshan album
India, Mughal dynasty, ca. 1570–1600; borders ca. 1605
Opaque watercolor, ink, and gold on paper
Lent by The Art and History Collection