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John Seyller

[Bālchand; Bālacanda]

(fl c. 1596–1640).

Indian miniature painter , brother of Payag. Balchand began his long career in the imperial Mughal atelier with figural illuminations on at least three pages (fols 17r, 33v, 60v) of the Bāharistān (‘Spring garden’) of Jamiz of 1595 (Oxford, Bodleian Lib., MS. Elliot 254). The small, repetitive figures in two lightly coloured illustrations in the Akbarnāma (‘History of Akbar’) of 1596–7 (Dublin, Chester Beatty Lib., MS. 3, fols 152v–153r; alternatively dated c. 1604) also bear the mark of youthful apprenticeship. Among the few works known from the next two decades are a single illustration ascribed to him from a dispersed Shāhnāma (‘Book of Kings’) of c. 1610 (ex-Colnaghi’s, London, 1976, no. 88ii), a border decoration in an album prepared for Jahangir between 1609 and 1618 (Berlin, Staatsbib. Preuss. Kultbes., Libr. pict. A117, fol. 13v), a portrait of the Dying ‛Inayat Khan...