The second reign of Humayun was very short. His son and successor was nicknamed Akbar ("the Great"). With this liberal sovereign the Mughal empire is experiencing its cultural heyday. It is estimated that approximately one hundred artists worked around 1580 to paint miniatures and illuminations for the outstanding epic books and albums of the emperor.
Akbar is a keen hunter and rider. The style of the Mughal miniature stands out from the Safavid miniature by the very realistic displaying of animals.
On October 19 in London, Sotheby's sells a gouache 16 x 23 cm on 20 x 27 cm leaf on the theme of the shoeing of a Mughal horse, lot 10 estimated £ 200K.
The animal is tall at the neck and majestic. He bears on his back a luxurious fabric. No less than three assistants take care of him. One of them holds a front leg while another one is fixing the iron shoe with golden nails. The third character who is perhaps the foreman keeps the horse quiet by holding the guide near the nostrils.
This miniature was probably executed at the time of the culmination of Akbar miniatures. An early inspection was made in the 8th reigning year of Jahangir, 1611 in our calendar.
SOLD for £ 257K including premium