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Page from a Koran, approx. 1500–1700

Page from a Koran, approx. 1500–1700

Page from a Koran, approx. 15001700. Manuscript page; colors and gold on paper.  Probably Iran. Gift of Elton L. Puffer, 2004.57.

Page from a Koran, approx. 1500–1700.

Page from a Koran, approx. 15001700. Manuscript page; colors and gold on paper.  Probably Iran. Gift of Elton L. Puffer, 2004.57.

Page from a Koran, approx. 1500–1700
Page from a Koran, approx. 1500–1700.
English

The luxurious use of gold and the elegant calligraphy seen on this Koran page are typical of works produced in Iran under the Safavid dynasty (1501–1736). While the opening and closing pages of intact Korans were often elaborately decorated, inner pages—of which this is an example—typically bore decoration only in chapter headings and in regularly placed marginal designs that marked further divisions of the text.  

This page contains near its center a decorated heading for chapter 51, “The Winds That Scatter” (Surah adh- Dhariyat), the text of which begins directly below the heading. As in all but one chapter of the Koran, here the first line begins with the invocation known as the bismillah: “In the name of God, the Merciful, the Compassionate.” Chapter 51, of which only the first four verses appear on this page, deals with the prevailing power of truth and the inevitable consequences of human actions.