Seated Youth

Artist: Abu'l Hasan (born 1588 or 1589)
Historical period(s)
Mughal dynasty, Reign of Jahangir, ca. 1600
Mughal Court
Mughal School
Opaque watercolor, ink and gold on paper
H x W: 12.4 x 7.3 cm (4 7/8 x 2 7/8 in)
Credit Line
Gift of Charles Lang Freer
Freer Gallery of Art
Accession Number
On View Location
Currently not on view


India, man, Mughal dynasty (1526 - 1858), Reign of Jahangir (1605 - 1627)

To 1907
Siegfried Bing (1838-1905), Paris, to 1907 [1]

From 1907 to 1919
Charles Lang Freer (1854-1919), purchased from Siegfried Bing in 1907 [2]

From 1920
Freer Gallery of Art, gift of Charles Lang Freer in 1920 [3]


[1] This object was at one time believed to have been purchased by Charles Lang Freer from Colonel H.B. Hanna. However, further research has revealed that it was acquired from Siegfried Bing. The purchase of this image is recorded in Charles Lang Freer's Notes on his European Trip Purchases of 1907 with the description "Bought from M. Bing - 1 Persian Painting - A man sitting on a bench reading a book - He wears a sword - upright 6 x 4)." A voucher for the purchase of this painting from M. Bing is in the Freer Gallery of Art and Arthur M. Sackler Gallery Archives (see Curatorial Remark 11, Debra Diamond, February 3, 2011, in the object record).

[2] See note 1.

[3] The original deed of Charles Lang Freer's gift was signed in 1906. The collection was received in 1920 upon the completion of the Freer Gallery.

Previous Owner(s) and Custodian(s)

Siegfried Bing (C.L. Freer source) 1838-1905
Charles Lang Freer 1854-1919


Portraits of graceful young men reading or holding flowers are frequent in Iranian painting though rare in Mughal art. This drawing of an elegant youth is by the master painter Abu'l Hasan. Known as "Nadir-al-zaman" (Wonder of the Age), Abu'l Hasan was one of the finest painters of the Mughal emperor Jahangir's atelier.

Published References
  • Dr. Esin Atil. The Brush of the Masters: Drawings from Iran and India. Exh. cat. Washington, 1978. cat. 68, p. 114.
  • Milo Cleveland Beach. Colonel Hanna's Indian Paintings. vol. 118, no. 258 London, August 1983. pp. 154-159, fig. 1.
  • Milo Cleveland Beach. The Imperial Image: Paintings for the Mughal Court., 2nd ed. Washington and Ahmedabad, India, 2012. cat. 41, p. 169, fig. 45.
  • Milo Cleveland Beach. The Imperial Image: Paintings for the Mughal Court. Exh. cat. Washington, 1981. cat. 27, pp. 198-200.
Collection Area(s)
South Asian and Himalayan Art
Web Resources
Google Cultural Institute
CC0 - Creative Commons (CC0 1.0)

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