A Sassanid Oval Bowl with Enthronement Scene, 7th Century AD


A larger image of this Sassanid Oval Bowl with Enthronement Scene, Walters Art Gallery.

The enthroned king in the center of this hammered and carved bowl is flanked on the right by an attendant waving a fly whisk and on the left by a noble or princely figure holding a beaded diadem. The ends of the bowl are adorned with dancing girls, whose long scarves fly backward toward the central scene. Although associated with silver vessels made in Iran during the Sassanian dynasty (AD 224-651), the vessel's shape and decoration suggest that this object dates from the early Islamic era.
Iranian. 7th century (Sassanian-early Islamic). 8 x 26.2 x 9.5 cm.
Source: Walters Art Gallery. Accession Number 57.625

Note the boots rather than loose trousers.



The ends of the bowl.

p 50, "The three remaining silver vessels with "Sasanian" scenes of enthronement are, as will be explained below, almost certainly Islamic in date. One, from Klimova, in the Perm, has an illustration of a banqueting couch throne (Pl. I).5 The figure seated upon it wears no form of royal headdress at all. The two other vessels in the Tehran Museum (Pl. IVa)6 and in the Walters Art Gallery (Pl. V)7 show persons whose crowns resemble but do not closely imitate Sasanian royal headdresses. On the evidence of these five vessels, all of which have figures seated upright on banqueting couches, it has been assumed that this was the standard Sasanian throne type. No examination has been made of the early Sasanian rock reliefs (Pls. VI, VIIa) with enthroned kings nor of the Sasanian coins (P1. IVb), where an entirely different throne appears. It is with this first type that a discussion of the Sasanian throne must begin."
Source: Thrones and Enthronement Scenes in Sasanian Art by P. O. Harper. Plate V.



Referenced in Elsie Holmes Peck, "The Representation of Costumes in the Reliefs of Taq-i-Bustan." Artibus Asiae, Vol. 31, No. 2/3, 1969,
'An oval vessel in the Walters Gallery dated by Ghirshman to the sixth to seventh centuries A.D., depicts a figure to the left of the king wearing a garment which hangs down on the sides in points, the edge of the skirt defined by a patterned band.'



See also the Strelka dish of Khusrau I with his Court, 6th century AD, Hermitage Museum, St. Petersburg
Cup of Khusrau I, 6th century AD, Bibliothèque Nationale de France
A Sassanid (or Islamic) Bowl with Enthronement Scene, Qazvin, c.7th Century AD, Iran Bastan Museum, Tehran
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