Painting from Nizami's Khusrau and Shirin.

Khusrau Subduing a Lion, late 15th century

Unknown artist, expand_more
Not on Viewexpand_more

Of all Persian poetry, the twelfth-century Khamsa, or Quintet, was second only to the Shah Nama in popularity. Comprised of five romances, the story of Khusrau and Shirin is drawn from the history of the ancient Sassanian kings. The poem recounts the deep love of the monarch Khusrau Paviz (590-628) for a beautiful Armenian princess, Shirin. The Persian poet, Nizami, author of the Khamsa, was keenly interested in exploring the vagaries of human character, and this page illustrates an episode in which Khusrau rescues Shirin by killing a lion with his bare fists in front of her tent.

Khusrau Subduing a Lion
Accession Number
Curator Approved

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Painting from Nizami's Khusrau and Shirin.