Dr. Behrang examines the Simurgh, the mythical bird of ancient Persia

Dr. Behrang Nabavi Nejad examines the Simurgh, the mythical bird of ancient Persia, in four illustrated royal manuscripts of the Shāhnāma.
Date and time: Wednesday, Nov. 6, 2019 / 6:30-7:30 pm
Location: SFU Harbour Centre
515 West Hastings Street
Earl & Jennie Lohn Policy Room (7000)
Vancouver, BC
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The Simurgh: Representation and Meanings in Four Royal Manuscripts of the Shāhnāma
The fantastic Simurgh, the mythical bird of ancient Persia, has maintained a significant presence in Persian culture. The visual and textual references to this bird manifest a mysterious and complex symbolism shaped around this supernatural creature in Persian literary sources. Through a close examination of the representations of the fantastic bird in the illustrative program of four royal manuscripts of the Shāhnāma, Nejad argues for an ideologically charged nature for the representations of this bird in these manuscripts. She suggests that the presence of the royal, divine, and Iranian glory (farr-i īzadī, farr-i Īrānī), sought for by both rulers and individuals (in this case, the artists of the paintings discussed) in the Persian system of though, charges the representations of the Simurgh in these illustrated manuscripts of the Shāhnāma produced between the fourteenth and the seventeenth centuries.