Lower margin, within plate mark: (all in italics) l.r.: R. Strange Romae delint. A.¯1767 Ore incidit. Esther coram. Afsuero Supplex. Esther a Suppliant before Ahasuerus. All on one line at l.: Ad exemplar Tabulae a Jo.. Fra.. Barbieri Guercino dicto, pictae, quae Romae, in Adibus Barberinis asservatur. All on one line at r.: From the painting of Jn¯.. Fra.. Barbieri, call'd Guercino, in the Barberini palace at Rome.
The Persian king Ahasuerus sits at right on a throne, wearing a turban with a crown, a cape with ermine around the neck and shoulders, and a gold chain around his neck. He holds a slender scepter towards a woman in elaborate dress and crown, who has fainted at left. This woman, Queen Esther, is supported by two handmaidens who each looks towards the king.
This engraving shows--in reverse--the composition of UMMA's paintinb by Guercino, "Esther Before Ahasuerus". The engraver, Sir Robert Strange traveled in Italy beginning in 1760, making prints after notable works that he saw on his trip (which ended in 1765). At the time, the Guercino painting was in the collection of the Barberini Palace in Rome.
Image of a man on horseback with two men flanking him
Ram Singh II of Kota (ruled. 1827-66) was the last great patron of Indian miniature painting. With the rise of the British Raj, most native princes adopted the Eurocentric fashion for photography and oil painting. Ram Singh, by contrast, retained his court atelier and used painting to record his often eccentric activities: one painting depicts him shooting a tiger while making love.
This colored drawing shows Ram Singh on horseback in idealized form, dwarfing two miniaturized attendants. The drawing may quote depictions of a curious episode of 1850, in which the Maharao rode a horse upon the roof of his palace. Following the performance, he held a special assembly in a room decked out exclusively in pink (guests too were asked to don pink clothing and turbans).