Skip Navigation

Portrait of Ahmad Shah as a Young Boy, One of 274 Vintage Photographs

Arts of the Islamic World

The young, precocious boy pictured in this photograph by Sevruguin has been tentatively identified as Malijak Aziz al-Sultan, known historically as the passive object of Nasir al-Din Shah’s desire. It has also been suggested that he could be Ahmad Shah, the last ruler of the Qajar dynasty (r. 1909–1925). No matter what the true identity of the subject, this portrait shows Sevruguin’s skill in capturing and portraying human personalities rather than stock image types.
MEDIUM Gelatin silver photograph
DATES ca. 1890 or 1900–1905
PERIOD Qajar Period
DIMENSIONS 6 1/2 x 4 9/16 in. (16.5 x 11.6 cm)  (show scale)
MARKINGS Stamp on verso, "NOTICE: / If this picture is accepted for your publication, it is for your / use only and the following credit / must be printed underneah each reproduction. / PHOTOGRAPH, UNDERWOOD & UNDERWOOD, N.Y."
INSCRIPTIONS In pencil on verso, "106999"
CREDIT LINE Purchase gift of Leona Soudavar in memory of Ahmad Soudavar
PROVENANCE Prior to 1997, provenance not yet documented; by 1997, acquired by Massoud Nader, New York, NY; 1997, purchased from Massoud Nader by the Brooklyn Museum.
Provenance FAQ
MUSEUM LOCATION This item is not on view
CAPTION Portrait of Ahmad Shah as a Young Boy, One of 274 Vintage Photographs, ca. 1890 or 1900–1905. Gelatin silver photograph, 6 1/2 x 4 9/16 in. (16.5 x 11.6 cm). Brooklyn Museum, Purchase gift of Leona Soudavar in memory of Ahmad Soudavar, 1997.3.101 (Photo: Brooklyn Museum, 1997.3.101_PS2.jpg)
IMAGE overall, 1997.3.101_PS2.jpg. Brooklyn Museum photograph, 2009
"CUR" at the beginning of an image file name means that the image was created by a curatorial staff member. These study images may be digital point-and-shoot photographs, when we don\'t yet have high-quality studio photography, or they may be scans of older negatives, slides, or photographic prints, providing historical documentation of the object.
RIGHTS STATEMENT No known copyright restrictions
This work may be in the public domain in the United States. Works created by United States and non-United States nationals published prior to 1923 are in the public domain, subject to the terms of any applicable treaty or agreement. You may download and use Brooklyn Museum images of this work. Please include caption information from this page and credit the Brooklyn Museum. If you need a high resolution file, please fill out our online application form (charges apply). The Museum does not warrant that the use of this work will not infringe on the rights of third parties, such as artists or artists' heirs holding the rights to the work. It is your responsibility to determine and satisfy copyright or other use restrictions before copying, transmitting, or making other use of protected items beyond that allowed by "fair use," as such term is understood under the United States Copyright Act. The Brooklyn Museum makes no representations or warranties with respect to the application or terms of any international agreement governing copyright protection in the United States for works created by foreign nationals. For further information about copyright, we recommend resources at the United States Library of Congress, Cornell University, Copyright and Cultural Institutions: Guidelines for U.S. Libraries, Archives, and Museums, and Copyright Watch. For more information about the Museum's rights project, including how rights types are assigned, please see our blog posts on copyright. If you have any information regarding this work and rights to it, please contact
Not every record you will find here is complete. More information is available for some works than for others, and some entries have been updated more recently. Records are frequently reviewed and revised, and we welcome any additional information you might have.