The Imam of Baghdad brought before the Caliph on a charge of heresy from the Tarikh-i-Alfi

Artist: Basawan
Historical period(s)
Mughal dynasty, Reign of Akbar, ca. 1592 - 1594
Mughal Court
Mughal School
Opaque watercolor, ink and gold on paper
H x W (painting - verso): 40.7 × 21.5 cm (16 × 8 7/16 in)
Credit Line
Purchase — Charles Lang Freer Endowment
Freer Gallery of Art Collection
Accession Number
On View Location
Currently not on view

Manuscript folio

Caliph, Imam, India, Islam, Mughal dynasty (1526 - 1858), Qur'an, Reign of Akbar (1556 - 1605)

To 1931
Ajit Ghose, Calcutta to 1931 [1]

From 1931
Freer Gallery of Art, purchased from Ajit Ghose, Calcutta in 1931 [2]


[1] Object file, undated folder sheet note.

[2] See note 1. Also see Freer Gallery of Art Purchase List file, Collections Management Office.

Previous Owner(s) and Custodian(s)

Ajit Ghose


The Emperor Akbar commissioned the writing of the Tarikh-i-Alfi, (The History of a Thousand Years), to celebrate the year 1000 (1591-92) on the Muslim calendar. The manuscript probably contained hundreds of paintings, but only about thirty survive today.

Published References
  • Mahfuzul Haq. Discovery of a Portion of the Original Illustrated Manuscript of Tarikh-i-Alfi written for the emperor Akbar”. vol. 5, July 1931. after p. 470.
  • Ivan Stchoukine. La Peinture Indienne a l'epoque des Grands Moghols. Paris. .
  • Anis Farooqi. Art of India and Persia. New Delhi. pl. 45.
  • M.S. Dimand. Indian Miniature Paintings. Milan, n.d. p. 13, pl. 2.
  • Milo Cleveland Beach. The Imperial Image: Paintings for the Mughal Court., 2nd ed. Washington and Ahmedabad, India, 2012. cat. 11B, p. 78.
  • Milo Cleveland Beach. The Imperial Image: Paintings for the Mughal Court. Exh. cat. Washington, 1981. cat. 10b, pp. 92, 94.
  • Percy Brown. Indian Painting under the Mughals: A.D. 1550 to A.D. 1750. New York. pp. 114-8, 122.
  • Clement Huart. Les calligraphes et les miniaturistes de l'Orient musulman

    . Paris. p. 338.

Collection Area(s)
South Asian and Himalayan Art
Web Resources
Google Cultural Institute
CC0 - Creative Commons (CC0 1.0)

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