At the turn of the 20th century, in the popular art and media of the “West,” the “Middle East” was depicted as a mysterious, exotic region. Cliched images such as camels, deserts, half-naked dancing women, and buildings with minarets and domes were ubiquitous in illustrating anything related to Iran or the Middle East.

The images here show some of these cover designs for music sheet books, designs depicting Iran as imagined by the artists of the period.

✤ Also available in: Persian

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