• The Black Buck

    The Black Buck

    THE
    BLACK BUCK

The Black Buck

India, 18th century CE

The Black Buck (Nilgai in Hindi) is an antelope recognisable by its twisted horns. The illustration shows a black and white buck standing in a green landscape with trees across the horizon. The border decoration is composed of red flowers on a white ground.

This illustration of animals became common under the emperor Jahangir (r. 1569 – 1627). Even though this painting is much later (c1740-50), it shows how this tradition continued after his reign.

This style of painting derives from the great portraits of the Mughal emperors, where they are pictured standing sideways at the centre of the composition with a landscape in the background.

The Black Buck