The Pampered Princess
Artist/maker unknown, Indian
In this colorful scene of courtly life, a woman sits on a silver throne holding a golden goblet and smoking a huqqa (water pipe). Embellishment and ornamentation reveal this woman’s identity: her elevated position, elegantly embroidered clothes, and emerald‑like jewelry (made of the carapace of iridescent beetles) mark her as royalty. Female attendants sing and play for her, offering wine and delicacies, and one even massages her feet. While articulating her status, this painting is also about pleasure—delight in design and the beauty of adornment.