The Cleveland Museum of Art

Collection Online as of March 2, 2024

Yusuf and Zulaykha meeting

Yusuf and Zulaykha meeting

c. 1764
Location: not on view

Did You Know?

Joseph wears a Central Asian fur-trimmed hat and coat and holds Indian paan.


Joseph, called Yusuf in Arabic and Persian sources, had been thrown into a well by his jealous older brothers. Although his eldest brother intended to return and rescue him, Joseph was taken by a caravan and brought to Egypt to be sold as a slave. When Zulaykha saw Joseph in the market, she recognized him as the lover she had seen in her dreams since childhood and so purchased him for herself. When read as a religious allegory, Zulaykha’s passionate desire for Joseph is interpreted as the yearning of the soul to be joined with the perfect beauty of God.
  • India's Art. The Cleveland Museum of Art, Cleveland, OH (organizer) (December 2, 1949-January 22, 1950).
    Art and Stories from Mughal India. The Cleveland Museum of Art, Cleveland, OH (organizer) (July 31-October 23, 2016).
  • {{cite web|title=Yusuf and Zulaykha meeting|url=false|author=|year=c. 1764|access-date=02 March 2024|publisher=Cleveland Museum of Art}}

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