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Article

Sheila S. Blair and Jonathan M. Bloom

(b. Oakland, CA, 1893; d. Shiraz, Iran, 25 Jan. 1977).

American historian of Iranian art. While studying mathematics at the University of California, Berkeley, Ackerman met and eventually married Arthur Upham Pope, with whom she had taken courses in philosophy and aesthetics. In 1926 she and Pope organized the first ever exhibition of Persian art at the Pennsylvania Museum and helped create the First International Congress of Oriental Art. In 1930 Ackerman was stricken with polio but taught herself to walk again. They were instrumental in preparing the 1931 Persian Art Exhibition at Burlington House, London, and the Second International Congress of Iranian Art and Archaeology, as well as the Third Congress in Leningrad (now St. Petersburg) in 1935 and the exhibition of Iranian art at the Iranian Institute in New York in 1940. She visited Iran for the first time in 1964, when the shah of Iran invited Pope to revive the Asia Institute; it was associated with Pahlavi University in Shiraz until ...

Article

Marianne Barrucand

[‛Alawī; Filālī]

Islamic dynasty and rulers of Morocco since 1631. Like their predecessors the Sa‛dis, the ‛Alawis are sharīfs (descendants of the Prophet Muhammad), and both dynasties are sometimes classed together as the ‘Sharifs of Morocco’. From a base in the Tafilalt region of south-east Morocco, the ‛Alawi family was able to overcome the centrifugal forces exerted by the Berber tribes who had destroyed the Sa‛di state in the first half of the 17th century. To restore political authority and territorial integrity, Mawlay Isma‛il (reg 1672–1727) added a new black slave corps to the traditional tribal army. Although royal power was weak during the 19th century and the early 20th, when the French and Spanish established protectorates, the ‛Alawis’ power was fully restored after independence from the French in 1956.

‛Alawi building activities (see Islamic art, §II, 7(v)) were concentrated in the four cities that have served as their capitals: Fez and Marrakesh at various times from ...

Article

Jonathan M. Bloom

revised by Sheila S. Blair

(b Alexandria, 1873; d Athens, 1954).

Greek patron. A Greek cotton merchant, Benaki was born at a time when the memory of the War of Independence (1821–9) inspired strong feelings of nationalism in Greeks living abroad. Benaki assembled a collection of objects—art, crafts and souvenirs—that expresses the historical continuum of Greece and pride in the Greek cultural heritage. in 1926 he moved permanently to Athens where in 1930 he founded the Benaki Museum, inaugurated the following year when Benaki presented his collections, along with what had been the Benaki family home in Athens and substantial funds for its maintenance, to the Greek government. Benaki had supervised the transformation of the house into a museum, wanting to preserve the intimate atmosphere of a family home; he continued to work towards maintaining and enriching the museum until his death. The Benaki Museum’s collections include examples of the antique and Byzantine art for which Greece is traditionally best known, as well as icons from Cyprus, Muslim art representing the Ottoman Empire, souvenirs from the war of independence and examples of national costume from all over the country. The Islamic material—principally ceramics and textiles from Egypt and the Ottoman Empire along with gold jewellery—was spread over two rooms on the first floor and one on the second....

Article

Douglas Lewis

(b Paris, March 21, 1837; d Paris, Sept 29, 1914).

French connoisseur and collector. In 1862–4 he served as secretary to his uncle, who was working on the construction of the Suez Canal, and in Cairo made notable acquisitions of Islamic art, which he later donated to the Louvre, Paris. On 29 November 1872 he purchased from the painter Charles Timbal (1821–80) 155 important early Renaissance sculptures, reliefs, small bronzes and paintings, collected by Timbal over the previous 20 years in Florence. To this nucleus Dreyfus occasionally made additions, in particular of bronzes: two sculptures that his heirs gave to the Louvre, the marble bust of Diotisalvi Neroni (c. 1465) by Mino da Fiesole and the bronze group of St Jerome with the Lion (1490s) by Bartolomeo Bellano, epitomize the principal strengths of his collection. Dreyfus’s reputation, however, rests on his achievement as a connoisseur and collector of Renaissance medals and plaquettes. Although barely two dozen bronze reliefs, and only a dozen medals, had been included in the purchase from Timbal, Dreyfus left two incomparable collections: one of almost 700 medals (one of the richest ...

Article

Article

Walter B. Denny

(b Godalming, Jan 1834; d London, Feb 19, 1919).

English collector. Godman was among the first Western private collectors of medieval Islamic ceramics. With energy, an uncanny eye and the courage to invest considerable sums, Godman collected some of the most important and beautiful examples known as well as several important inscribed and dated works. Godman’s rivals in the highly competitive and expensive market for Ottoman and Hispano-Moresque ceramics included George Salting and John Henderson (1797–1878). Godman’s interest in Islamic ceramics doubtless led him to commission Morgan, William De to make a fireplace in the ‘Persian’ style for Godman’s residence, South Lodge, at Horsham, W. Sussex. After his death, Godman’s daughters loaned generously to major exhibitions of Islamic art and continued their father’s tradition of hospitality to scholars. Many of these, notably Arthur Lane, used examples from the Godman collection to forge the fundamental scholarship on Islamic ceramics. On the death in 1982 of Miss C. E. Godman, the collection was transferred to the ...

Article

S. J. Vernoit

(Robert)

(b Stockholm, May 8, 1868; d Cairo, April 13, 1933).

Swedish diplomat, scholar, collector and dealer. In 1884 he became assistant at the ethnographical museum in Stockholm, and by 1890 he was assistant at the archaeological museum. He combined his interests in ethnography and archaeology on a visit to Siberia (1891–2), publishing his findings in L’Age du bronze au Musée de Minoussinsk. He then turned to Islamic art, travelling widely and collecting in Russia, the Caucasus, Central Asia, Egypt and Turkey. He began to acquire Islamic book paintings at Bukhara in 1894 and in the following year sold 387 oriental manuscripts to the University Library at Uppsala. In the winter of 1896 he excavated at Fustat (Old Cairo), returning with several thousand ceramic fragments. In 1897 he exhibited his collection at Stockholm. About this time he formed the opinion that manuscripts had been the chief disseminators of ornamental motifs in the Islamic world. From 1903, when he was attached to the Swedish Embassy in Istanbul as dragoman, he acquired a number of precious manuscripts and albums, and he also probably formed in these years a collection of etchings of views of Istanbul, portraits of sultans and political pictures that went to Lund University. He published ...

Article

Article

[Qājār; Kadjar]

Turkoman dynasty of rulers and patrons. They reigned in Iran from 1779 to 1924. After the fall of the Safavid family dynasty and the campaigns of Nadir Shah (d 1747), the Qajar tribe of Turkoman competed against the Zand dynasty for power in Iran. Under Agha Muhammad Khan (d 1797) the various branches of the Qajar tribe were united, and their authority expanded over the country. In 1785 Agha Muhammad took Tehran and adopted it as capital. In 1794 he captured the last Zand ruler Lutf ‛Ali (reg 1789–94) at Kirman, and the following year he was formally crowned in Tehran. With the country pacified, subsequent Qajar rulers in the 19th century, particularly Agha Muhammad’s nephew (1) Fath ‛Ali Shah and the latter’s great-grandson (2) Nasir al-Din, became important patrons of art and architecture at a time when Iran was increasingly exposed to European ideas. By the end of the 19th century, however, the country was deeply in foreign debt due to incessant warfare and royal extravagance. A demand for political liberalism arose, and in ...

Article

Jaynie Anderson

(b Dresden, Jan 7, 1847; d Lugano, Aug 25, 1937).

German art historian, collector and dealer. The son of a Lutheran clergyman, he first studied theology at Leipzig but while travelling in Italy in 1869 became interested in early Christian archaeology, in which field he determined to continue. His first publications were on the sources of Byzantine art history and the mosaics of Ravenna. In 1876 he met Giovanni Morelli, whose disciple he became. Their lengthy correspondence constitutes an important source for the early history of connoisseurship. Richter published a short biography of Leonardo in 1880, then a series of articles in the Zeitschrift für bildende Kunst and finally his edition of the Literary Works of Leonardo (1883), the work that established his reputation as a scholar. This was the first scholarly edition of Leonardo’s writings, illustrated, moreover, with a selection of mostly authentic drawings at a time when books on Leonardo were normally illustrated by his pupils’ works....

Article

S. J. Vernoit

(b Berlin, June 22, 1865; d Neubabelsberg, June 1945).

German archaeologist, art historian and collector. He travelled to the Middle East and met Carl Humann, who was excavating Pergamon and advised Sarre to study the monuments of medieval Anatolia. In 1895 he visited Phrygia, Lycaonia and Pisidia and in 1896 went on a longer journey in Asia Minor. His principal aim was to discover architectural monuments and archaeological sites; he always travelled with a trained architect and became a talented photographer. He also collected epigraphic material which he sent to such Arabists as Bernhard Moritz, Eugen Mittwoch and Max van Berchem. In the years 1897 to 1900 Sarre travelled to Iran. Objects from his collection were exhibited in Berlin (1899) and at the Exposition des arts musulmans (Paris, 1903). In 1905 he met Ernst Herzfeld, and in 1907–8 they travelled together from Istanbul via Aleppo and Baghdad to the Gulf to find an Islamic site suitable for excavation. Their choice, which Herzfeld later described as Sarre’s, fell upon ...

Article

Saudi  

[Āl Sa‛ūd]

Dynasty that has ruled most of the Arabian peninsula since 1746. The foundations of Saudi rule were laid when Muhammad ibn Sa‛ud (reg 1746–65) formed an alliance with the theologian Muhammad ibn ‛Abd al-Wahhab (d 1791), who wanted to purify Islam in Arabia. Under ‛Abd al-‛Aziz I (reg 1765–1803) Riyadh and most of the Najd region came under Saudi rule, and the Hijaz region, including Mecca and Medina, soon followed. Saudi expansion was countered when the Ottoman sultan Mahmud II (reg 1808–39) commissioned his viceroy in Egypt, Muhammad ‛Ali (reg 1805–48), to reconquer the Hijaz and Najd. After the withdrawal of Turco-Egyptian forces, Riyadh was recaptured by Turki (reg 1823–34) and became the new capital of a reduced ‘second’ Saudi state. After the death of Faysal I (reg 1834–65 with interruption), Saudi fortunes began to wane, and by 1891 the ‘second’ Saudi state had come to an end. ‛Abd al-‛Aziz II (...

Article

Milo Cleveland Beach

(b Metz, 1854; d 1942)

French jeweller and collector. Vever directed the family jewellery business, begun in Metz by his grandfather Pierre-Paul Vever (d 1853). After the capture of Metz in the Franco-Prussian War (1871), the family moved to Luxembourg and then Paris, where the Maison Vever became well established on the Rue de la Paix, winning the Grand Prix of the universal expositions in 1889 and 1900 and becoming a leader in the Art Nouveau movement. Vever gave an important group of Art Nouveau works to the Musée des Arts Décoratifs, Paris. His early interest in contemporary French painting led him to assemble a large and important group of works by Corot, Sisley, Renoir and Monet, of which he sold the majority (Paris, Gal. Georges Petit, 1897) to concentrate on Japanese and Islamic art. Vever had begun to collect Japanese prints in the 1880s and in 1892 joined the distinguished private group ...

Article

Zaydi  

Muslim dynasty that ruled in parts of the Yemen from the late 9th century ad to the 20th. The Zaydi imams traced their descent to the Prophet Muhammad and took their name from Zayd (d ad 740), the son of the fourth Shi‛ite imam. The Zaydi imamate in the Yemen was established by Yahya al-Hadi (854–911) who arrived there in 889, but his austere code of behaviour initially won little success and he was forced to leave. He returned in 896 and established his seat at Sa‛da, to the north of San‛a’. He won the allegiance of several tribes by acting as a mediator in tribal disputes, but his influence remained precarious. After his death his followers remained in the Yemen, and the Zaydi imamate continued to claim authority by divine right, although there was no strict dynastic criterion for the election of imams. Based in the north of the country, the power of the Zaydi imams varied over the centuries; occasionally it reached as far as San‛a’. The movement was forced underground by the advent of the ...