Farhad’s sea journey


Farhad’s sea journey

Works of both Navoi and other poets more often they were copied into separate books, but sometimes kulliyot collections were compiled from different works.

Farhad’s sea journey

Among the miniatures of the 1520s to “Kulliyot” by Alisher Navoi, the miniature “Farhad’s sea journey” based on the poet’s epic “Farhad and Shirin” is of particular importance.

As you know, this miniature depicts the Chinese prince Farhad was madly in love with the mysterious beauty whom he saw in the reflection of a magical mirror. On the advice of the doctors, his father decided to go on a journey by sea in order to bring his son to an island, where, high up in the mountains, there is a glacier with cold healing springs. Two days into their journey a storm broke out. 

Farhad managed to get into a small boat that was instantly taken away by the hurricane, while his father stayed on the ship, which by morning made its way to the shores of China. Farhad’s boat was found by merchants who were sailing from India to Yemen, but who had lost their way because of the storm. Suddenly the merchants saw pirates in their speedboats. The experienced sailors knew that the pirates would throw shells with oil in order to burn and then rob the ship. In a state of panic Farhad remained calm. He ordered all bows and arrows to be brought and began shooting at the oil vessels. 

And only then did he stop shooting, 
when all the others were forced to flee.

It is these events that are depicted in this miniature. Translation of lines written in verse and given in descriptions of miniatures in Uzbek and English has been made from the Russian version included into O. Yastrebova’s text.

You can learn more about the topic in the book-album "Arts of the book in the 15th–17th-century Mawarannahr" (Volume XVII) in the series "Cultural Legacy of Uzbekistan in the World Collections". 

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