Sayyid Ruhollah Mūsavi Khomeini, known in the Western world as Ayatollah Khomeini, was an Iranian politician and marja. He was the founder of the Islamic Republic of Iran and the leader of the 1979 Iranian Revolution that saw the overthrow of the last Shah of Iran, Mohammad Reza Pahlavi, the end of 2,500 years of Persian monarchy. Following the revolution, Khomeini became the country's Supreme Leader, a position created in the constitution of the Islamic Republic as the highest-ranking political and religious authority of the nation, which he held until his death, he was succeeded by Ali Khamenei on 4 June 1989. Khomeini was born in 1902 in what is now Iran's Markazi Province, his father was murdered in 1903. He began studying the Quran and the Persian language from a young age and was assisted in his religious studies by his relatives, including his mother's cousin and older brother. Khomeini was a marja in Twelver Shia Islam, a Mujtahid or faqih and author of more than 40 books, but he is known for his political activities.
He spent more than 15 years in exile for his opposition to the last Shah. In his writings and preachings he expanded the theory of welayat-el faqih, the "Guardianship of the Islamic Jurist", to include theocratic political rule by Islamic jurists; this principle, was appended to the new Iranian constitution after being put to a referendum. According to The New York Times, Khomeini called democracy the equivalent of prostitution. Whether Khomeini's ideas are compatible with democracy and whether he intended the Islamic Republic to be democratic is disputed, he was Time magazine's Man of the Year in 1979 for his international influence, Khomeini has been described as the "virtual face of Shia Islam in Western popular culture". In 1982, he survived one military coup attempt. Khomeini was known for his support of the hostage takers during the Iran hostage crisis, his fatwa calling for the murder of British Indian novelist Salman Rushdie, for referring to the United States as the "Great Satan" and Soviet Union as the "Lesser Satan."
Khomeini has been criticized for human rights violations of Iranians. He has been lauded as a "charismatic leader of immense popularity", a "champion of Islamic revival" by Shia scholars, who attempted to establish good relations between Sunnis and Shias, a major innovator in political theory and religious-oriented populist political strategy. Khomeini held the title of Grand Ayatollah and is known as Imam Khomeini inside Iran and by his supporters internationally, he is referred to as Ayatollah Khomeini by others. In Iran, his gold-domed tomb in Tehrān's Behesht-e Zahrāʾ cemetery has become a shrine for his adherents, he is considered "inviolable", with Iranians punished for insulting him. Ruhollah Khomeini's ancestors migrated towards the end of the 18th century from their original home in Nishapur, Khorasan Province, in northeastern part of Iran, for a short stay, to the kingdom of Awadh – a region in the modern state of Uttar Pradesh, India – whose rulers were Twelver Shia Muslims of Persian origin.
During their rule they extensively invited, received, a steady stream of Persian scholars, jurists and painters. The family settled in the small town of Kintoor, near Lucknow, the capital of Awadh. Ayatollah Khomeini's paternal grandfather, Seyyed Ahmad Musavi Hindi, was born in Kintoor, he left Lucknow in 1830, on a pilgrimage to the tomb of Imam Ali in Najaf, Ottoman Iraq and never returned. According to Moin, this migration was to escape from the spread of British power in India. In 1834 Seyyed Ahmad Musavi Hindi visited Persia, in 1839 he settled in Khomein. Although he stayed and settled in Iran, he continued to be known as Hindi, indicating his stay in India, Ruhollah Khomeini used Hindi as a pen name in some of his ghazals. There are claims that Seyyed Ahmad Musavi Hindi departed from Kashmir, instead of Lucknow. Ruhollah Musavi Khomeini, whose first name means "spirit of Allah", was born on 24 September 1902 in Khomeyn, Markazi Province, he was raised by his mother, Hajieh Agha Khanum, his aunt, following the murder of his father, Mustapha Musavi, five months after his birth in 1903.
Ruhollah began to study the Qur'an and elementary Persian at the age of six. The following year, he began to attend a local school, where he learned religion, noheh khani, other traditional subjects. Throughout his childhood, he continued his religious education with the assistance of his relatives, including his mother's cousin, Ja'far, his elder brother, Morteza Pasandideh. After World War I arrangements were made for him to study at the Islamic seminary in Esfahan, but he was attracted instead to the seminary in Arak, he was placed under the leadership of Ayatollah Abdul Karim Haeri Yazdi. In 1920, Khomeini commenced his studies; the following year, Ayatollah Haeri Yazdi transferred to the Islamic seminary in the holy city of Qom, southwest of Tehran, invited his students to follow. Khomeini accepted the invitation and took up residence at the Dar al-Shafa school in Qom. Khomeini's studies included Islamic law and jurisprudence, but by that time, Khomeini had acquired an interest in poetry and philosophy.
So, upon arriving in Qom, Khomeini sought the guidance of Mirza Ali Akbar Yazdi, a scholar of philos
Virtual International Authority File
The Virtual International Authority File is an international authority file. It is a joint project of several national libraries and operated by the Online Computer Library Center. Discussion about having a common international authority started in the late 1990s. After a series of failed attempts to come up with a unique common authority file, the new idea was to link existing national authorities; this would present all the benefits of a common file without requiring a large investment of time and expense in the process. The project was initiated by the US Library of Congress, the German National Library and the OCLC on August 6, 2003; the Bibliothèque nationale de France joined the project on October 5, 2007. The project transitioned to being a service of the OCLC on April 4, 2012; the aim is to link the national authority files to a single virtual authority file. In this file, identical records from the different data sets are linked together. A VIAF record receives a standard data number, contains the primary "see" and "see also" records from the original records, refers to the original authority records.
The data are available for research and data exchange and sharing. Reciprocal updating uses the Open Archives Initiative Protocol for Metadata Harvesting protocol; the file numbers are being added to Wikipedia biographical articles and are incorporated into Wikidata. VIAF's clustering algorithm is run every month; as more data are added from participating libraries, clusters of authority records may coalesce or split, leading to some fluctuation in the VIAF identifier of certain authority records. Authority control Faceted Application of Subject Terminology Integrated Authority File International Standard Authority Data Number International Standard Name Identifier Wikipedia's authority control template for articles Official website VIAF at OCLC
Islam is an Abrahamic monotheistic religion teaching that there is only one God, that Muhammad is the messenger of God. It is the world's second-largest religion with over 1.8 billion followers or 24% of the world's population, most known as Muslims. Muslims make up a majority of the population in 50 countries. Islam teaches that God is merciful, all-powerful and has guided humankind through prophets, revealed scriptures and natural signs; the primary scriptures of Islam are the Quran, viewed by Muslims as the verbatim word of God, the teachings and normative example of Muhammad. Muslims believe that Islam is the complete and universal version of a primordial faith, revealed many times before through prophets including Adam, Abraham and Jesus. Muslims consider the Quran in its original Arabic to be the final revelation of God. Like other Abrahamic religions, Islam teaches a final judgment with the righteous rewarded paradise and unrighteous punished in hell. Religious concepts and practices include the Five Pillars of Islam, which are obligatory acts of worship, following Islamic law, which touches on every aspect of life and society, from banking and welfare to women and the environment.
The cities of Mecca and Jerusalem are home to the three holiest sites in Islam. Aside from the theological narrative, Islam is believed to have originated in the early 7th century CE in Mecca, by the 8th century the Umayyad Islamic Caliphate extended from Iberia in the west to the Indus River in the east; the Islamic Golden Age refers to the period traditionally dated from the 8th century to the 13th century, during the Abbasid Caliphate, when much of the Muslim world was experiencing a scientific and cultural flourishing. The expansion of the Muslim world involved various caliphates, such as the Ottoman Empire and conversion to Islam by missionary activities. Most Muslims are of one of two denominations. About 13 % of Muslims live in the largest Muslim-majority country. Sizeable Muslim communities are found in the Americas, the Caucasus, Central Asia, Europe, Mainland Southeast Asia, the Philippines, Russia. Islam is the fastest-growing major religion in the world. Islam is a verbal noun originating from the triliteral root S-L-M which forms a large class of words relating to concepts of wholeness, submission and peace.
In a religious context it means "voluntary submission to God". Islām is the verbal noun of Form IV of the root, means "submission" or "surrender". Muslim, the word for an adherent of Islam, is the active participle of the same verb form, means "submitter" or "one who surrenders"; the word sometimes has distinct connotations in its various occurrences in the Quran. In some verses, there is stress on the quality of Islam as an internal spiritual state: "Whomsoever God desires to guide, He opens his heart to Islam." Other verses connect Islam and religion together: "Today, I have perfected your religion for you. Still others describe Islam as an action of returning to God—more than just a verbal affirmation of faith. In the Hadith of Gabriel, islām is presented as one part of a triad that includes imān, ihsān. Islam was called Muhammadanism in Anglophone societies; this term has fallen out of use and is sometimes said to be offensive because it suggests that a human being rather than God is central to Muslims' religion, parallel to Buddha in Buddhism.
Some authors, continue to use the term Muhammadanism as a technical term for the religious system as opposed to the theological concept of Islam that exists within that system. Faith in the Islamic creed is represented as the six articles of faith, notably spelled out in the Hadith of Gabriel. Islam is seen as having the simplest doctrines of the major religions, its most fundamental concept is a rigorous monotheism, called tawḥīd. God is described in chapter 112 of the Quran as: "He is God, the One and Only. Muslims repudiate polytheism and idolatry, called Shirk, reject the Christian doctrine of the Trinity. In Islam, God is beyond all comprehension and thus. God is described and referred to by certain names or attributes, the most common being Al-Rahmān, meaning "The Compassionate" and Al-Rahīm, meaning "The Merciful". Muslims believe that the creation of everything in the universe was brought into being by God's sheer command, "Be, it is" and that the purpose of existence is to worship or to know God.
He is viewed as a personal god who responds whenever a person in distress calls him. There are no intermediaries, such as clergy, to contact God who states, "I am nearer to him than jugular vein." God consciousness is referred to as Taqwa. Allāh is the term with no plural or gender used by Muslims and Arabic-speaking Christians and Jews to reference God, while ʾilāh is the term used for a deity or a god in general. Other non-Arab Muslims might use different names as much as Allah, for instance "Tanrı" in Turkish, "Khodā" in Persian or "Ḵẖudā" in Urdu. Belief in angels is fundamental
An ethnic group or an ethnicity, is a category of people who identify with each other based on similarities such as common ancestry, history, culture or nation. Ethnicity is an inherited status based on the society in which one lives. Membership of an ethnic group tends to be defined by a shared cultural heritage, origin myth, homeland, language or dialect, symbolic systems such as religion and ritual, dressing style, art or physical appearance. Ethnic groups, derived from the same historical founder population continue to speak related languages and share a similar gene pool. By way of language shift, acculturation and religious conversion, it is sometimes possible for individuals or groups to leave one ethnic group and become part of another. Ethnicity is used synonymously with terms such as nation or people. In English, it can have the connotation of something exotic related to cultures of more recent immigrants, who arrived after the dominant population of an area was established; the largest ethnic groups in modern times comprise hundreds of millions of individuals, while the smallest are limited to a few dozen individuals.
Larger ethnic groups may be subdivided into smaller sub-groups known variously as tribes or clans, which over time may become separate ethnic groups themselves due to endogamy or physical isolation from the parent group. Conversely separate ethnicities can merge to form a pan-ethnicity and may merge into one single ethnicity. Whether through division or amalgamation, the formation of a separate ethnic identity is referred to as ethnogenesis; the term ethnic is derived from the Greek word ἔθνος ethnos. The inherited English language term for this concept is folk, used alongside the latinate people since the late Middle English period. In Early Modern English and until the mid-19th century, ethnic was used to mean heathen or pagan, as the Septuagint used ta ethne to translate the Hebrew goyim "the nations, non-Hebrews, non-Jews"; the Greek term in early antiquity could refer to any large group, a host of men, a band of comrades as well as a swarm or flock of animals. In Classical Greek, the term took on a meaning comparable to the concept now expressed by "ethnic group" translated as "nation, people".
In the 19th century, the term came to be used in the sense of "peculiar to a race, people or nation", in a return to the original Greek meaning. The sense of "different cultural groups", in American English "racial, cultural or national minority group" arises in the 1930s to 1940s, serving as a replacement of the term race which had earlier taken this sense but was now becoming deprecated due to its association with ideological racism; the abstract ethnicity had been used for "paganism" in the 18th century, but now came to express the meaning of an "ethnic character". The term ethnic group was first recorded in 1935 and entered the Oxford English Dictionary in 1972. Depending on the context, used, the term nationality may either be used synonymously with ethnicity, or synonymously with citizenship; the process that results in the emergence of an ethnicity is called ethnogenesis, a term in use in ethnological literature since about 1950. Depending on which source of group identity is emphasized to define membership, the following types of groups can be identified: Ethno-linguistic, emphasizing shared language, dialect – example: French Canadians Ethno-national, emphasizing a shared polity or sense of national identity – example: Armenians Ethno-racial, emphasizing shared physical appearance based on genetic origins – example: African Americans Ethno-regional, emphasizing a distinct local sense of belonging stemming from relative geographic isolation – example: South Islanders Ethno-religious, emphasizing shared affiliation with a particular religion, denomination or sect – example: JewsIn many cases – for instance, the sense of Jewish peoplehood – more than one aspect determines membership.
Ethnography begins in classical antiquity. The Greeks at this time did not describe foreign nations but had developed a concept of their own "ethnicity", which they grouped under the name of Hellenes. Herodotus gave a famous account of what defined Greek ethnic identity in his day, enumerating shared descent, shared language shared sanctuaries and sacrifices shared customs. Whether ethnicity qualifies as a cultural universal is to some extent dependent on the exact definition used. According to "Challenges of Measuring an Ethnic World: Science and reality", in Challenges of Measuring an Ethnic World: Science and Reality: Proceedings of the Joint Canada-United States Conference on the Measurement of Ethni
In Shia Islam, marjaʿ known as a marjaʿ taqlīd or marjaʿ dīnī meaning "source to imitate/follow" or "religious reference", is a title given to the highest level Shia authority, a Grand Ayatollah with the authority to make legal decisions within the confines of Islamic law for followers and less-credentialed clerics. After the Qur'an and the prophets and imams, marājiʿ are the highest authority on religious laws in Usuli Shia Islam. Marājiʿ are accorded the title Grand Ayatollah, however when referring to one, the use of Ayatollah is not acceptable; the titles of Allamah and Imam have been used. From the perspective of jurisprudence, during the occultation of Muhammad al-Mahdi, Shiite clerics are his representatives, with responsibility for understanding and explaining Islamic religious jurisprudence. Shiite authorities in the history of Shi'ism have an important role in the religious and social thought of their communities. One example is the fatwa of Mirza Mohammed Hassan Husseini Shirazi imposing sanctions on the use of tobacco during Qajar rule, which led to the abolition of the tobacco concession.
The shi' of an ayatollah transpires when he becomes a celebrated figure in the hawza and his students and followers trust him in answering their questions, ask him to publish a juristic book, the risālah ʿamalīyah—a manual of practical rulings arranged according to topics dealing with ritual purity, social issues and political affairs. The risālah contains an ayatollah's fatwas on different topics, according to his knowledge of the most authentic Islamic sources and their application to current life. Traditionally only the most renowned ayatollahs of the given time published a risālah. Today, many ayatollahs of varying degrees of illustriousness have published one, while some of the renowned ones have refused to do so. Where a difference in opinion exists between the marājiʿ, each of them provides their own opinion and the Muqallid will follow his/her own marjaʿ's opinion on that subject. A mujtahid, i.e. someone who has completed advanced training in the hawza and has acquired the license to engage in ijtihad from one or several ayatollahs, is exempted from the requirement to follow a marjaʿ.
However ijtihad is not always comprehensive and so a mujtahid may be an expert in one particular area of Islamic jurisprudence and exercise ijtihad therein, but follow a marjaʿ in other areas of fiqh. Several senior Grand Ayatollahs preside over religious seminaries; the hawzas of Qom and Najaf are the preeminent seminary centers for the training of Shia clergymen. However, there are other smaller hawzas in other cities around the world, such as Karbala in Iraq, Isfahan and Mashhad in Iran. There are 86 Maraji living worldwide as of 2017 in Najaf and Qom; the most prominent and popular of these include Ali Khamenai in Tehran, Ali al-Sistani, Muhammad al-Fayadh, Muhammad Saeed al-Hakim and Bashir al-Najafi in Najaf. Ijtihad Hawza Risalah Society of Seminary Teachers of Qom List of Ayatollahs Lists of Maraji List of current Maraji Slate Magazine's "So you want to be an Ayatollah", explaining how Shiite clerics earn the title
Sadegh Ghotbzadeh was a close aide of Ayatollah Khomeini during his 1978 exile in France, foreign minister during the Iran hostage crisis following the Iranian Revolution. In 1982, he was executed for plotting the assassination of Ayatollah Khomeini and the overthrow of the Islamic Republic. Ghotbzadeh was born in Isfahan in 1936, he had a brother. His father was a wealthy lumber merchant; as a student, he was active in the student branch of the National Front following the toppling of Mohammad Mosaddegh in 1953. He left Iran in 1959 after being detained twice due to his opposition activities to the Shah's regime. Ghotbzadeh was a supporter of the National Front of Iran. In addition he was one of the senior members of the Freedom Movement of Iran led by Mehdi Bazargan in the 1960s, he attended Georgetown University's Walsh School of Foreign Service from 1959 to 1963. He contributed to the movement from the US, he was part of the more radical wing of the movement together with Ebrahim Yazdi, Mostafa Chamran and Ali Shariati.
However, he was dismissed from the school before graduating due to his skipping studies and exams to lead protests against the government of Mohammad Reza Pahlavi, including storming a posh party hosted by the Iranian ambassador to the United States, the son-in-law of the Shah, Ardeshir Zahedi. Ghotbzadeh left the US when his passport was revoked and moved to Algeria, Syria and to Iraq, where he met Ayatollah Khomenei in 1963. In December of the same year Ghotbzadeh along with Chamran and Yazdi met the Egyptian authorities to establish an anti-Shah organization in the country, called SAMA, special organization for unity and action. Chamran was chosen as its military head. Ghotbzadeh developed a close relation with Musa Al Sadr, an Iranian-Lebanese Shia cleric. During his stay in the Middle East, Ghotbzadeh was trained in Lebanon together with Iranian revolutionary militants and Palestinians. In the late 1960s, Ghotbzadeh went to Canada for higher education and graduated from now defunct Notre Dame University College in Nelson, BC, in 1969.
Next he settled in Paris using his Syrian passport which he obtained through the help of Musa Al Sadr. There he worked as a correspondent for Al Thawra; the job, in fact, covered his opposition activity in the city. Ghotbzadeh left the Freedom Movement in 1978, he became a close aide of Ayatollah Khomeini. Ghotbzadeh along with Mostafa Chamran was part of the faction, called "Syrian mafia", in the court of Khomeini, there was a feud between his group and the Libya-friendly group, led by Mohammad Montazeri. Ghotbzadeh was close to Lebanese Shii cleric Musa Al Sadr. Khomeini appointed him a member of the follow-up mission to search for fate of Al Sadr following the latter's disappearance in August 1978. Ghotbzadeh accompanied Khomeini on his Air France flight back to Iran on 1 February 1979, it was Ghotbzadeh, who translated the Ayatollah's infamous response "Hichi" to journalist John Simpson's question: "Ayatollah, would you be so kind as to tell us how you feel about being back in Iran?" He was Khomeini's translator in the press conference held in Tehran on 3 February 1979.
Following the Iranian Revolution Ghotbzadeh became a member of the revolutionary council when Bazargan and others left the council to form an interim government. In addition, he served as spokesperson of the Ayatollah, he was appointed managing director of National Iranian Radio and Television on 11 February 1979. He tried to overhaul it to be in line with Islamic teachings, purging royalists and leftists; this was criticised by a group of Iranian intellectuals and the interim government. On 13 March, two women, one with a gun and the other with a knife, attacked Ghotbzadeh protesting the fundamentalist policies of the Islamic regime. Nearly 15,000 women gathered outside the headquarters of the NIRT to protest his Islamist policy, he was appointed foreign minister in late November 1979 after Abolhassan Banisadr resigned as acting foreign minister amid heated disputes on the fate of the American hostages. In early 1980 Ghotbzadeh was involved in early Iran hostage crisis negotiations in Paris with Carter aide Hamilton Jordan, which led to "a complex multi-stepped plan", torpedoed by Khomeini announcing the hostages' fate would be decided by the new Iranian parliament.
Ghotbzadeh wrote an open letter to the Majlis in August 1980 arguing for the quick release of the hostages, told Reuters five days that "United States presidential candidate Ronald Reagan, supported by Kissinger and others, has no intention of solving the problem. They will do everything in their power to block it." In September and October, he made several other public statements alleging that a deal to delay the release of the hostages may have taken place. The French news agency Agence France Presse quoted him on 6 September as stating the "Reagan camp was trying hard to block a solution of the problem before the elections" and that he had "information" to prove it. On 11 September, the open letter was published in an Iranian newspaper with similar charges. A decade in 1991, Joseph E. Persico of The New York Times concluded a review of Gary Sick's book October Surprise stating: "Two friends of Ghotbzadeh who spoke to him during this period said that he insisted that the Republicans were in contact with elements in Iran to try to block a hostage release."
The House October Surprise Task Force investigating the October Surprise allegations interviewed close associates of Ghotbzadeh and concluded in 199
Iran called Persia, the Islamic Republic of Iran, is a country in Western Asia. With over 81 million inhabitants, Iran is the world's 18th most populous country. Comprising a land area of 1,648,195 km2, it is the second largest country in the Middle East and the 17th largest in the world. Iran is bordered to the northwest by Armenia and the Republic of Azerbaijan, to the north by the Caspian Sea, to the northeast by Turkmenistan, to the east by Afghanistan and Pakistan, to the south by the Persian Gulf and the Gulf of Oman, to the west by Turkey and Iraq; the country's central location in Eurasia and Western Asia, its proximity to the Strait of Hormuz, give it geostrategic importance. Tehran is the country's capital and largest city, as well as its leading economic and cultural center. Iran is home to one of the world's oldest civilizations, beginning with the formation of the Elamite kingdoms in the fourth millennium BCE, it was first unified by the Iranian Medes in the seventh century BCE, reaching its greatest territorial size in the sixth century BCE, when Cyrus the Great founded the Achaemenid Empire, which stretched from Eastern Europe to the Indus Valley, becoming one of the largest empires in history.
The Iranian realm fell to Alexander the Great in the fourth century BCE and was divided into several Hellenistic states. An Iranian rebellion culminated in the establishment of the Parthian Empire, succeeded in the third century CE by the Sasanian Empire, a leading world power for the next four centuries. Arab Muslims conquered the empire in the seventh century CE; the Islamization of Iran led to the decline of Zoroastrianism, by the country's dominant religion, Iran's major contributions to art and science spread within the Muslim rule during the Islamic Golden Age. After two centuries, a period of various native Muslim dynasties began, which were conquered by the Seljuq Turks and the Ilkhanate Mongols; the rise of the Safavids in the 15th century led to the reestablishment of a unified Iranian state and national identity, with the country's conversion to Shia Islam marking a turning point in Iranian and Muslim history. Under Nader Shah, Iran was one of the most powerful states in the 18th century, though by the 19th century, a series of conflicts with the Russian Empire led to significant territorial losses.
The Iranian Constitutional Revolution in the early 20th century led to the establishment of a constitutional monarchy and the country's first legislature. A 1953 coup instigated by the United Kingdom and the United States resulted in greater autocracy and growing Western political influence. Subsequent widespread dissatisfaction and unrest against the monarchy led to the 1979 Revolution and the establishment of an Islamic republic, a political system that includes elements of a parliamentary democracy vetted and supervised by a theocracy governed by an autocratic "Supreme Leader". During the 1980s, the country was engaged in a war with Iraq, which lasted for eight years and resulted in a high number of casualties and economic losses for both sides; the sovereign state of Iran is a founding member of the UN, ECO, NAM, OIC, OPEC. It is a major regional and middle power, its large reserves of fossil fuels – which include the world's largest natural gas supply and the fourth largest proven oil reserves – exert considerable influence in international energy security and the world economy.
The country's rich cultural legacy is reflected in part by its 22 UNESCO World Heritage sites, the third largest number in Asia and 11th largest in the world. Iran is a multicultural country comprising numerous ethnic and linguistic groups, the largest being Persians, Azeris and Lurs. Organizations including Amnesty International and Human Rights Watch have criticized Iran's women's rights record; the term Iran derives directly from Middle Persian Ērān, first attested in a third-century inscription at Rustam Relief, with the accompanying Parthian inscription using the term Aryān, in reference to the Iranians. The Middle Iranian ērān and aryān are oblique plural forms of gentilic nouns ēr- and ary-, both deriving from Proto-Iranian *arya-, recognized as a derivative of Proto-Indo-European *ar-yo-, meaning "one who assembles". In the Iranian languages, the gentilic is attested as a self-identifier, included in ancient inscriptions and the literature of the Avesta, remains in other Iranian ethnic names Alan and Iron.
Iran has been referred to as Persia by the West, due to the writings of Greek historians who referred to all of Iran as Persís, meaning "land of the Persians", while Persis itself was one of the provinces of ancient Iran, today defined as Fars. As the most extensive interaction the Ancient Greeks had with any outsider was with the Persians, the term persisted long after the Greco-Persian Wars. In 1935, Reza Shah requested the international community to refer to the country by its native name, effective March 22 that year; as The New York Times explained at the time, "At the suggestion of the Persian Legation in Berlin, the Tehran government, on the Persian New Year, March 21, 1935, substituted Iran for Persia as the official name of the country." Opposition to the name change led to the reversal of the decision, Professor Ehsan Yarshater, editor of Encyclopædia Iranica, propagated a move to use Persia and Iran interchangeably. Today, both Iran and Persia are used in cultural contexts, while Iran remains irreplaceab