Eastern Art Online, Yousef Jameel Centre for Islamic and Asian Art

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Two pigeons

  • loan
  • Description

    A pair of Imperial Pigeons is shown against a plain ground. The male bird has gold rings on its legs, suggesting that these are prized birds in imperial possession. The sport of pigeon-flying (called ishq-bazi or ‘love play’) was a favourite Mughal pastime. Over twenty thousand pigeons were kept at Akbar’s court, of which five hundred were classified as khasa or élite birds.

  • Details

    Associated place
    AsiaIndia north India (place of creation)
    c. 1650
    Mughal Period (1526 - 1858)
    Material and technique
    gouache on paper
    frame 37.2 x 269 x 2.2 cm (height x width x depth)
    painting 22.5 x 12.9 cm (height x width)
    Material index
    organicvegetal wood
    Technique index
    Object type index
    No. of items
    Credit line
    Lent by Howard Hodgkin.
    Accession no.
  • Further reading

    Oxford: Ashmolean Museum, 2nd February-22nd April 2012, Visions of Mughal India: The Collection of Howard Hodgkin, Andrew Topsfield, ed. (Oxford: Ashmolean Museum, 2012), no. 14 on p. 50, pp. 18 & 154, illus. p. 51

Past Exhibition

see (1)


    • Returned to lender

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