Greater Iran, Khurasan or Afghanistan
11th or 12th century AD
high-tin bronze, cast and engraved
20 x 46cm
The elephant, whose trunk ends in a human head, is richly caparisoned and bears a howdah with three figures. The elephant driver (mahout) in front and musician behind are drawn with considerable animation. The figures are surrounded by a band of quails or partridges and a broader band of running hares. At the rim and on the exterior are benedictory inscriptions in bold Kufic.
J.M. Rogers, The Arts of Islam. Masterpieces from the Khalili Collection, London 2010, cat.21, p.44–5.