SOAS University of London is the leading Higher Education institution in Europe specialising in the study of Asia, Africa and the Near and Middle East.

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Arts of the Book:

Persian & Indian Manuscripts


(Optional Study Trip to India in February 2021)

10 – 13 February 2020

This specialist art course reveals the court culture of the rulers of India, through the eyes of its painters. We will explore the development of painting from ancient India to the 17th century and trace the influence of Persian miniature painting and its synthesis with the pre-Islamic style of painting in India which blossomed in the Rajput courts of North India. Paintings are seen against a background of Rajput cultural values, aesthetics and in the context of their great palaces.


The course starts from the mid- 15th century with Jain and Sultanate painting. 14th and 15th century Persian painting is explored to provide a template for standards of painting brought to India by the Timurid dynasty known today as the Great Mughals in the 16th century. A brief look at the marriage of European and Indian values are seen in Company painting. This is followed by a look at the customs and patronage of the Hindu Maharajahs who lived in the romantic forts and palaces of Rajasthan.

Course Features:

  • Lectures by leading experts and curators
  • Visit to the Wallace Collection and unique access to reserve collections at the Victoria & Albert Museum


020 7898 4451