Rare copy of Shahnameh to be unveiled in Tehran

December 19, 2020 - 21:43

TEHRAN – A rare illustrated copy of Ferdowsi’s epic masterpiece Shahnameh is scheduled to be unveiled today at the UNESCO-registered Golestan Palace.

Known as “Shahnameh of Rashida”, the handwritten book is composed of 738 folios, and it bears miniatures attributed to Mohammad Yusef, a Safavid-era painter, said Afarin Emami, the director of the World Heritage site, on Saturday.

The Shahnameh (Persian: “Book of Kings”) is believed to be inscribed by the Iranian calligrapher Abd al-Rashid Deylami, who was one of the pupils of Mir Emad, she explained.

The national epic of Greater Iran is scheduled to be unveiled during an online ceremony on Sunday, December 20, when Iranians mark the longest night of the year.

Experts say the miniatures of Rashida’s Shahnameh are very similar to those of Windsor Shahnameh. So there are speculations their illustrations were made by the same painters.

Originally written for Sultan Mahmud of Ghazna and completed in 1010, the Shahnameh is a poem of nearly 60,000 verses, mainly based on the Khvatay-namak, a history of the kings of Persia in Pahlavi (Middle Persian) from mythical times down to the 7th century. Ferdowsi versified and updated the story to the downfall of the Sasanian Empire (mid-7th century), and, for nearly 1,000 years, it has remained one of the most popular works in the Persian-speaking world.



  • 2020-12-20 06:16

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