The distant European townscapes are ultimately derived from prints brought to India in the early seventeenth century, but their popularity as background elements in Mughal painting continued through the late seventeenth century and into the eighteenth (e.g. a late eighteenth-century river scene in the St. Petersburg Album, in the David Collection, inv. 10/2012; and a mid-eighteenth century example in the India Office Library, see Falk and Archer, Indian Miniatures in the India Office Library, London, 1981, p.471, no.366).
The atmospheric skyscape, heavy with clouds lit by the setting sun, is also derived from late seventeenth century painting, and continued to be a popular feature of works produced during Muhammad Shah's reign in the 1720s and 1730s (see the river scene in the David Collection mentioned above, and a portrait of Muhammad Shah on horseback in the Bodleian Library, MS. Ousely Add. 173, fol.27).
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