Islamic Painted Page is a huge free database of Persian, Ottoman, Arab and Mughal paintings, illuminations, decorated Qur’an pages, book bindings as well as figurative paintings in manuscripts, albums and on single pages. The Database covers examples of the painted page dating from about 700 to 1900 CE and from over 270 collections worldwide.
The database is the work of Stephen Serpell MA MSc, a graduate of Oxford who works in Ipswich, UK. The website has been made possible with support from Iran Heritage Foundation, The Islamic Manuscript Association, German Research Foundation DFG and the Centre for the Studies of Manuscript Cultures (CSMC)
Some interesting features of the Islamic Painted Page:
- Database Hints: The database provides a toggle button show/hide DB search hints, 8 hints are displayed to facilitate the search process.
- Searching: The database offers users several options to search: by picture description, by collection and accession number, by place and date, by original author and title, or within a publication.
Also on the homepage, users can click on Go to search form which is an advanced search, allowing them to use any combination of criteria.
Here is an example of a result page for search by picture description only.
- Links: The database offers links to assist finding online images, but some collections are much more fully digitized than others. Links will only work for items that have been digitized.
- Transliteration: The database offers users the option of fully-accented Library of Congress transliteration, or “Anglicised” IJMES). In many cases Arabic script versions are also included.
- Definitions: a short list of descriptions used in entries and their meanings.
- Resources: In MS Excel format, users can download collections list, authors and titles list and publications list. The database is still being expanded, so the lists will continue to grow.