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Gum tempera, ink, and gold on paper
Overall: 20.3 x 14 cm (8 x 5 1/2 in.); Painting only: 9.7 x 10.2 cm (3 13/16 x 4 in.)
Gift of Mrs. A. Dean Perry 1962.279.231.b
Brahmans wear a sacred thread across their upper bodies, over the left shoulder and under the right arm.
The figure in orange is a magician addressing a seated Brahman—a member of India’s Hindu priestly class—who has come to him for help. He and the princess of Babylon have fallen in love and want to be together, but she is sequestered in the palace harem. The magician transformed the Brahman into a woman, shown at left, walking toward the palace. This is an example of continuous narration, in which two scenes are depicted in the same picture plane. The garden with flowering trees in the background evokes the setting where the Brahman and the princess met and fell in love.
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