The Story of Moslem Art

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The Story of Moslem Art

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the stony of

mosLem

am

Outton Lifetime Library Bind in g

By

chRistine pRice

the stopy of

moslem Bv

art.

CHRISTINE PRICE

ILLUSTRATED WITH DRAWINGS

AND PHOTOGRAPHS

The story of Moslem

art

begins

thir-

teen centuries ago with a mighty shout

God

is most when Arabs great!" the battle cry of the they burst over the borders of Arabia to

of triumph: "Allahu akbar!

conquer the world.

The momentum of conquest carried them eastward to India, westward to the Atlantic coast of Africa and across the Spain, Portugal

Strait of Gibraltar into

and France. They saw Greek and Roman temples, Persian palaces and Byzantine churches glittering with gold mosaics.

They seized upon shining jewelry, metalwork and glassware, painted pottery, carved ivories and silks of fantastic design.

Now,

as

Arabs could

masters of an empire, the

command

craftsmen and

artists

the services of

from Egypt,

Syria,

Greece and Persia— countries with traditions of art going back hundreds of years.

The

conquered craftsmen, blended together under the rule of the Arabs, form what we know as Moslem, arts of these

or Islamic, art.

Christine Price, the distinguished author-illustrator of

Made

in

the Middle

Ages and Made in the Renaissance, tells the dramatic and fascinating story of the rise and decline of Moslem art with sensitivity and skill. Her own drawings and the

many photographs

fully the

illustrate beauti-

wonders that the

text describes.

net $4.79

DUTTON LIFETIME Library Binding

the stocy of moslem ARt

Also by Christine Price

MADE MADE

IN IN

THE MIDDLE AGES THE RENAISSANCE

Frontispiece:

A RULER GIVES AUDIENCE Miniature painting by Farhad for the Khavaran-Nama. Persian, 1480

(The Metropolitan

Museum

Rogers Fund, 1955)

of Art,

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r 'J

c^&.vi

* >£**

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i

*

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the stoRy of

moslem

am

By chRistine ppice Illustrated with

photographs

and with drawings by the author

new yoRk:

e. p.

6utton &

co., inc

Copyright

©

U.S.A. /

No

1964 by Christine Price part of this book

/ All rights reserved.

may be reproduced

in

Printed in the

any form without

permission in writing from the publisher, except by a reviewer to

who

wishes

quote brief passages in connection with a review written for inclusion

in a

magazine, newspaper, or broadcast. / Library of Congress catalog card

number: 64-17341

/

Published simultaneously in Canada by Clarke, Irwin

Company, Limited, Toronto and Vancouver

&

/

FIRST EDITION

no?

21

contents FOREWORD

6

The Beginnings

of

Moslem Art

10

Damascus and Syria

The Splendor

of

15

Baghdad

21

Cordoba, Capital of Al-Andalus

25

Cairo and the Fatimid Caliphs

35

Jerusalem and the Crusaders

40

The

Seljuk

Turks— Persia and Mesopotamia

48

The

Seljuk

Turks— Asia Minor

58

Egypt and Syria under the Mamluks

65

The Mongols and

73

the

Road

to

China

Granada, Last Moorish Kingdom Persia

and the House

Istanbul and the Persia

of

in

Timur

Ottoman Turks

and the Safavid Shahs

Spain

83 93 104

116

India and the Great

Mughals—

131

India and the Great

Mughals—

139

The Tulip Sultan and

the Qajar Shah

145

The Old and the New

153

ILLUSTRATION SOURCES

158

fOR6WOR6 In trying to span the centuries from the seventh to the twentieth, this book can only offer glimpses of the richness and variety

Moslem

of

wonders

art,

still

to

but

I

hope

it

be explored

will at least give

an inkling of the

in the architecture, the painting

and

many arts and crafts of the Moslem world. One or two points should perhaps be explained at the outset. To avoid confusion all dates are given according to the Western the

Moslem one, which begins with the year 622 a.d., the date of Muhammad's flight from Mecca to Medina. Where an inscription is quoted, giving the Moslem date, the calendar rather than the

Western calendar year

is

indicated in brackets.

Throughout most of the book Iran

name commonly used name,

Iran, has

been revived. In the

and

in

names

A Handbook

Dimand (The Metropolitan

New

referred to as Persia, the

until the present

Arabic, Persian and Turkish spelling used in

is

day when the ancient

difficult task of transliterating I

have been guided by the

Muhammadan Art by M. S. Museum of Art, New York, 1958), of

Western Islamic Architecture by John D. Hoag

(

Braziller,

York, 1963). Both books were indispensable references.

Above GUSHTASP AND THE BLACKSMITHS Miniature from the Andarz Persian, 11th century (See

Nama page 56)

I

am

Adams, Director suggestions.

I

for permitting

of the Cincinnati

manuscript and making valuable criticisms and

in reading the

from

Hoag and to Dr. Philip R. Art Museum, for their kindness

particularly indebted to Mr.

am also most grateful to Professor K. A. C. Creswell me to use two of his photographs, one being taken

his book, Early

Muslim Architecture,

Vol.

I

(Clarendon

Press, Oxford, 1932). I

am

grateful to the Charles E. Tuttle

Company, Rutland, Ver-

mont, for permission to reproduce an illustration from Turkish Miniature Painting by Emel Esin; and to Thames and Hudson,

London, for an

illustration

from The Seljuks

in Asia

Minor by

Tamara Talbot-Rice. The quotations on pages 94 and 95 are taken from Clavijo's Embassy to Tamerlane, 1403-1406, translated from the Spanish by Guy Le Strange ( Broadway Travellers, London, and Harper & Row, Publishers, Inc., New York, 1928). My grateful thanks are due to the following museums and libraries for permitting

of

Moslem

art

from

me

to reproduce

photographs of examples

their collections: the British

don; the Cincinnati Art

Museum,

Museum, Lon-

Cincinnati, Ohio; the

Edinburgh

The Metropolitan MuArchaeological Museum,

University Library, Edinburgh, Scotland;

seum

of Art,

New

York; the Palestine

Jerusalem; the Pierpont

Morgan

New

Library,

York; the Victoria

and Albert Museum, London; and the Worcester Art Museum, Worcester, Massachusetts. I

would

also like to

thank Miss Elizabeth Chase of the Yale

University Art Gallery; Mr. Jackson J.

Hesler, Veedersburg, Indiana;

New

W.

Bird, Tehran; Mr. Alfred

and Mr. Lawrence Majewski,

York for the use of their photographs. Finally,

grateful to all those hospitality during

Mr. and Mrs.

J.

who gave

my

W.

help,

J.

am

deeply

journey in the Near East, particularly to

Bird in Tehran; to the Rev. and Mrs. Lewis

Johnson and Dr. and Mrs. Robert Eaton P. Mulligan, the

I

encouragement and generous

American Consul

in

Meshed; and Meshed. in

to

Mr.

C. P.

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