Jahangir's keen eye observed the intriguing correspondence between the pattern of stripes of the zebra and the tiger. The former, we are informed, "is striped exactly like the black and yellow tiger, except that this is black and white. Since some doubted that the black stripes had been painted onto its body, an inquiry was instantly ordered. After inquiry into the truth, it became certain that they (the lines) were by the Creator of the World".
Kailash Raj, perhaps India's finest living miniature artist today, captures the essence of this fascinating animal with characteristic dexterity. Not only are the stripes rendered naturalistically, detailed attention has been paid to the minutest detail including the bushy tail, erect ears and the slight shading of the mouth. Besides the features of the animal, the tether binding it to the nail on the ground is also realistically rendered. Truly a case of natural history being elevated raised to the status of art.
All quotations are from 'The Tuzuk-I-Jahangiri' or Memoirs of Jahangir, translated by Alexander Rogers and Henry Beveridge.
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