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Given that their cultural background celebrates and embraces colour,

Indian wife and husband design team, Falguni and Shane Peacock

have a providential surname … peacock.

For fashion, the bird’s plumage is a source of colour and print inspiration.

However, in Indian society, the peacock is held in revered status.

 

 

 

The peacock is the national bird of India and as such is a protected breed.

 

 
(image from smudgetikka.com)

 

 

Stories and tales of this magnificent bird are found in Indian mythology.

In addition, the peacock is often represented in works of Indian art.

 

Peacocks, Mughal School of Painting
 
(image from ccrtindian.gov.in)
 
 
 
 
 
Krishna and Ladies in a Garden with Peacocks, (18th C)
Hindu image, Mughal School of Painting
Can be viewed by permission at the Bodleian Library, Oxford University
(from ox.ac.uk.com)

 

 

 

When fanned, the tail plumage of the peacock is a brilliant spectacle:

lustrous greens/blues and eye-spotted, which is on full display

when a peacock courts a peahen.

The feathers on its head stands proudly, like a crown indicating royalty.

During the age of the Mughals, (16th C – 18th C), the imperial rulers of India

lavish gardens were cultivated and populated with the majestic peacock.

So elevated a symbol, that the Mughal emperor Shah Jahan,

who built the Taj Mahal (17th C) to honour the memory of his third wife,

 commissioned an ornately  bejewelled Mughal throne, appropriately styled

The Peacock Throne.

 

 

          Portrait of Shah Jahan on the Peacock Throne

Portrait of Emperor Shah Jahan on the Peacock Throne

(image from internetstones.com)

Sadly, the original Peacock Throne was dismantled and destroyed.

Called the Peacock Throne because of its shape and that

the figures of two peacocks stood behind it-

tails fanned and inlaid with precious gems and stones.

 

 

In Indian culture , the peacock is understandably lauded as a symbol of

grace, joy, love, and majestic beauty

 

 

For more on the era of the Mughal rulers,

why not visit The British Library exhibition

Mughal India:  Art, Culture and Empire until 2 April 2013