Mills College, the Asian Art Museum and SACHI present:
The Windsor Shahnama of 1648: An Illustrated Persian Manuscrip Offered to Queen Victoria by an Afghan Prince in 1839. A Lecture by Dr. Eleanor Sims.
Thursday, February 14, 2008, 7-8pm
Asian Art Museum
200 Larkin Street, San Francisco
Free after museum admission.
A literary masterpiece written by the poet Firdawsi at the turn of the eleventh century, the Shahnama (Book of Kings) chronicles the history of Iran from its mythical earliest days to the Muslim conquest. The importance of this text to Iranian culture is reflected in the thousands of copies made since its composition. A large and lavishly illustrated Shahnama volume was presented to Queen Victoria in 1839 by the Afghan prince Kamran Shah as a gesture of thanks to the British government for its support during the siege of the city of Herat. One of the most magnificent of all surviving manuscripts, the Windsor Shahnama is today considered among the finest treasures in the Royal Library at Windsor Castle. The co-author of the just released book: The Windsor Shahnama of 1648, Dr. Eleanor Sims, will discuss the artistic and cultural significance of this 17th-century Shahnama, some of the 148 paintings in it, and the rich illumination in several colors of gold on virtually all of the more than 1,500 pages of the manuscript.