The merchant hears of his wife’s unfaithfulness (above); the unfaithful wife performs penance by plucking her hair (below), from a Tuti-nama (Tales of a Parrot): First Night

The merchant hears of his wife’s unfaithfulness (above); the unfaithful wife performs penance by plucking her hair (below), from a Tuti-nama (Tales of a Parrot): First Night

c. 1560

Part of a set. See all set records

Mughal India, court of Akbar

(reigned 1556–1605)

Gum tempera, ink, and gold on paper

Painting only: 16.3 x 10.3 cm (6 7/16 x 4 1/16 in.); Overall: 20 x 13.6 cm (7 7/8 x 5 3/8 in.)

Gift of Mrs. A. Dean Perry 1962.279.10.b

Location

Did you know?

The birds in the garden have gathered in in sympathy with the parrot’s plight.

Description

In the upper register the merchant is surrounded by gossiping members of his household. Below, birds surround his unfaithful wife. The merchant’s parrot, whom the wife tried to kill, perches on the edge of a tomb to observe her act of penance. Once her penance is complete, the parrot reunites the couple, and the wife is welcomed home.

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