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This item has been added to the Database within the Explore Islamic Art Collections project. Information is available in: English.

Name of Object:

Khamsa of Nizami


Dublin, Ireland

Holding Museum:

The Chester Beatty Library

About The Chester Beatty Library, Dublin

Date of Object:

Hegira 936 / AD 1529

Museum Inventory Number:

CBL Per 195

Material(s) / Technique(s):

Coloured pigments and gold on paper


29.7 x 18 cm

Period / Dynasty:





Early sixteenth-century copies of the Nizami’s Khamsa often begin, as does this manuscript, with a double-page painting depicting, on the right, the Prophet Sulayman (Solomon) and, on the left, Bilqis (the Queen of Sheeba), seated on gold thrones supported by jinn and surrounded by various worldly and other-worldly creatures. (Sulayman is said to have understood the speech of the birds.) The other paintings included here depict the Abbasid caliph Ma’mun at the hammam, the Persian prince Khusraw hunting, and the story of Iskandar (Alexander) attacked by giant birds.

Citation of this web page:

 "Khamsa of Nizami" in Explore Islamic Art Collections. Museum With No Frontiers, 2018. http://www.discoverislamicart.org/database_item.php?id=object;EPM;ir;Mus21;24;en

MWNF Working Number: IR 24


 Artistic Introduction

Islamic Dynasties / Period


On display in

MWNF Galleries

Calligraphy Manuscripts


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