The Wallace Collection

The Wallace Collection, A Family Collection, A National Museum, An International Treasure House
Kulah Khud
  • Kulah Khud
  • Unknown Artist / Maker
  • Persia
  • early 19th century
  • Steel, iron, gold, copper alloy
  • Inscription: Ya ḵẖūd ṣaiqalī tū magar mihr anwarī/ ya kās ḥaiyāt ja dariya akhzari/ Rustam t̤ibyasan hama zar kulāh sari/ Bahram sū latan hama rā zīn afsari/ Dāra bam’arr ki sad Sikandari/ mihrab irāḥat? āz tu’st bi ṣad Sohrāb/ ḥaq rā agar ba-zīr shamshir chā maikashi/ marjān agri chā ḵẖūn-rez tu jā ḵẖanjarī. Oh helmet you are polished, you are like the bright sun,
    oh you are the cup of life from sky.
    You are a golden hat of head, pure like the character of Rustam
    You are a diadem for everybody, like Bahram who was strength
    If Dara is in the battle you will be barrier like Alexander (the Great)
    There are hundred complaints to you because Sohrāb stayed at home (?)
    Why you killed the justice?
    If you are like Mars, you are more blood-shedding than the dagger.
  • OA1438
  • Oriental Armoury
Commentary
Images & Media
Further Reading
  • Helmet (kulah khud), composed of a steel skull with an applied iron brim. The skull features, on each side, four cartouches containing Persian inscriptions in gold false-damascening, the technique which has also been employed to cover the rest of the skull’s surface with arabesques. The brim contains a band of cartouches with Persian inscriptions entwined with foliage, false-damascened in gold. The skull is surmounted by a long four-sided spike and finial base decorated with foliage and arabesques, false-damascened in gold. Two plume-holders are riveted to the middle of the skull and flank a central nasal guard. The plume-holder bases are leaf-shaped with scalloped edges, and have been ovelaid with gold arabesques. The plume tubes also show traces of gold decoration. The nasal is secured to the skull by means of a screw, and consists of a long bar extending down beyond the lower edge of the skull and terminates, at both ends, in a leaf-shaped plate with scalloped, decorative edges. The filework follows the same trefoil motif as found on the bases of the plume-holders. The terminals contain gold false-damascened arabesques, while the nasal bar bears foliate scrolls.

    The aventail is made up of butted iron links and is connected to the helmet by larger mail links. The aventail terminates into dags of varying sizes. The longer dags drape down over the shoulders and the back of the neck.

    This helmet is similar in workmanship to OA1435. With regard to type, it is similar to OA2253.