Illuinated folio from Shah Tahmasp Shahnameh, Tabriz, Iran circa 1530 -1533
Image credit: The reddit museum
Zal was born an albino. Ashamed of his son's appearance, his father, Sam, abandoned him in the mountains where the mythical simurgh makes her home. She took pity on the infant and raised him as her own. Zal was spotted by a passing caravan and news of the sighting reached Sam, who set forth to be reunited with his son. With much persuasion, he parted from the simurgh with two of her feathers to burn whenever he needed to summon her help.