Laks (Iran)

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Total population
c. 2.5 million (est. 2000)
Regions with significant populations
Western Iran:
  2,000,000 to 2,500,000 [2]
mostly Shi'a Islam, minority: Yarsanism
Related ethnic groups
Lurs and other Iranian peoples

The Laks are an Iranian group in southwestern Iran, they speak Laki (or Leki), an independent[1][2] Iranian language or a dialect of Lurish[3][4][5][6][7][8][9] or Kurdish[10][11][12][13][14] languages.


The Laks inhabit a huge part of northern Luristan province (Laks of Pishekuh), and most of south eastern region of neighboring province of Kermanshah, and some of western Ilam province (Poshte-Kuhi Laks). The area to the east of Mount Kabir is known as Pishe-Kuh and west of the mountain is Poshte-Kuh.


There has been much debate over the ethnic identity of the Laks throughout the twentieth century.

Vladimir Minorsky, who wrote the entry "Lak" in the first edition of the Encyclopaedia of Islam, referred to the Lak as "the most southern group of Kurd tribes in Persia" and stated that their language has the characteristics of Kurdish.[14] Some of the Lak tribes live in Lorestān Province, among Lur tribes, although Minorsky quotes some evidence that they were brought there from further north.The Safavid era historian, Mirza Muhammad Husein Mostowfi (1749 A.D), classified Laki alongside Feyli, Bakhtiari and Mamasani as four subgroup of Lurish people.[15] Rahimi Osmanvandi in his book (Indigenous people of Mehregan Valley), emphasises on Lurish identity of Lak tribes. Amanullahi Baharvand also considered Laki as a main component of Lurish community and emphasised their Lurish ethnicity.[16][17]


The Zand dynasty who ruled parts of southwestern Iran was of Laki origin.[18]

Laki Tribes[edit]

  • azadbakht
  • bajelan
  • Jalilvand
  • Osmanvand
  • Pauravand
  • Kakavand
  • Kolivand
  • Yousefvand
  • Gorgavand
  • Shahyvand
  • Rizavand
  • Jalalvand
  • Mafivand
  • Balavand
  • Biranvand
  • Zohravand
  • Eslavand
  • Hassanvand
  • Khajevand
  • Itivand
  • Noraali


  1. ^ Shahsavari, Faramarz(2010): Laki and Kurdish. Iran and the Caucasus: volume14, Number 1, Pages 79-82
  2. ^ Lakī and Kurdish, Author: Shahsavari, Faramarz, Source: Iran and the Caucasus, Volume 14, Number 1, 2010 , pp. 79-82 [1]
  3. ^ B. Grimes (ed.), ‘Luri’, in Ethnologue (13th edition) (Dallas, 1996), p. 677; M. Ruhlen, A Guide to the World's Languages (Stanford, 1991), p. 327.
  4. ^ ایزدپناه، ح. فرهنگ لکی، مؤسسه فرهنگی جهانگیری، تهران ۱۳۶۷خ، ص ده (مقدمه)
  5. ^ "The Lurs of Iran". Cultural Survival. Retrieved 2015-09-21. 
  6. ^ امان الاهی بهاروند، سکندر. قوم لر. تهران: آتیه، 1393
  7. ^ William J. Frawley, William Frawley, International Encyclopedia of Linguistics& 4-Volume Set, Volume 1, Oxford University Press, 2003, ISBN 978-0-19-513977-8, s. 310.
  8. ^ Albrecht Klose, Sprachen der Welt, De Gruyter, 2001, ISBN 978-3-598-11404-5, s. 227.
  9. ^
  10. ^ "Laki". Ethnologue. 
  11. ^ Windfuhr, G. (2009). The Iranian Languages, Routledge, p. 587
  12. ^ Rüdiger Schmitt: Die iranischen Sprachen in Gegenwart und Geschichte. Wiesbaden (Reichert) 2000.
  13. ^ Rüdiger Schmitt (Hg.): Compendium Linguarum Iranicarum. Wiesbaden (Reichert) 1989.
  14. ^ a b V. Minorsky, "Lak", Encyclopaedia of Islam.
  15. ^ (فرهنگ ایران زمین، جلد 20، ص 406-409)
  16. ^ (بومیان دره مهرگان) تألیف رحیمی عثمانوندی
  17. ^ قوم لر، سکندر امان‌اللهی ، انتشارات آگاه تهران
  18. ^ Zand dynasty