Shortly after the Battle of Taikota (1565) between Vijayanagara and the combined forces of the Deccan Sultanates an Ahmadnagar courtier wrote an illuminated mas̱navī (long poem) celebrating the victory and the bravery of his sultan. The unnoticed feature of the manuscript is that the symbols immediately surrounding the two opposing rulers are virtually identical, though one was Hindu and the other was Muslim. The article considers which symbols were Deccan-based, which India-based, and which were common across broad areas of Asia. Many of the most central symbols of kingship in the Deccan had very deep histories and broad usage. These include the parasol, sunshade, and kettledrums, whose use by kings stretched from China to North Africa and whose history reached back to ancient Mesopotamia. Similarly, the presentation of elegant honorific robes was typical of Central Asia, Persia, India, and China. Even the most distinctive feature of the Vijayanagara king and his troops, the folded conical cap, was not ‘Deccani’ but rather a headgear typical of Persia. The article concludes that rulers across Asia drew from a common stock of widely known symbols of legitimacy and ceremonies of loyalty with no reference to the religion that they personally practiced.