Mohammad Shah Qajar

Mohammad Shah Qajar (born Mohammad Mirza, Persian: محمد شاه قاجار) (5 January 1808 – 5 September 1848) was the Shah of Qajar Iran from 23 October 1834 to 5 September 1848.

Mohammad Shah Qajar
Khaqan son of Khaqan[1]
Portrait of Muhammad Shah Qadjar - MV 6700 - v1.JPG
Portrait by Hasan Efchar Mohammad, 1837–1838, offered to King Louis Philippe of France by Mirza Hossein Khan in 1839
Shah of Persia
Reign23 October 1834  – 5 September 1848
PredecessorFath-Ali Shah Qajar
SuccessorNaser al-Din Shah
Born(1808-01-05)5 January 1808
Tabriz, Qajar Iran
Died5 September 1848(1848-09-05) (aged 40)
Tehran, Qajar Iran
ConsortMalek Jahan Khanom
WivesSee below
Mohammad Shah Qajar
FatherAbbas Mirza
MotherAsieh Khanom
ReligionShia Islam
TughraMohammad Shah Qajar's signature

Rise to powerEdit

Mohammad Shah was son of Abbas Mirza, the crown prince and governor of Azerbaijan,[2] who in turn was the son of Fat′h Ali Shah Qajar, the second Shah of the dynasty. At first, Abbas Mirza was the chosen heir to the Shah. However, after he died, the Shah chose Mohammad to be his heir. After the Shah's death, Ali Mirza, one of his many sons, tried to take the throne in opposition to Mohammad. His rule lasted for about 40 days. Nonetheless, he was quickly deposed at the hands of Mirza Abolghasem Ghaem Magham Farahani, a politician, scientist, and poet.


Politics and the militaryEdit

Ali was forgiven by Mohammad, who had then become Shah. A supporter of Mohammad, Khosrow Khan Gorji, was awarded with the governorship of Isfahan, while Farahani was awarded the position of chancellorship of Persia by Shah at the time of his inauguration. He was later betrayed and executed by the order of the Shah in 1835, at the instigation of Hajj Mirza Aghasi, who would become the Ghaem Magham's successor and who greatly influenced Mohammad's policies. One of his wives, Malek Jahan Khanom, Mahd-e Olia, later became a large influence on his successor, who was their son.

He also tried to capture Herat twice. To try to defeat the British, he sent an officer to the court of Louis-Philippe of France. In 1839, two French military instructors arrived at Tabriz to aid him. However, both attempts to capture the city were unsuccessful[3][4] (Siege of Herat (1838) and Anglo-Persian War).

Towards the end of Mohammad Shah's short reign, British officials petitioned for a farman or decree against the slave trade. In 1846, the British Foreign Office sent Justin Sheil to Persia to negotiate with the Shah on the slave trade. At first the Shah refused to limit either slavery or the slave trade on the grounds that the Quran did not forbid it and he could not forbid something that the Quran deemed legal. Further the Shah asserted that banning the slave trade would reduce converts to Islam. However, in 1848, Mohammad Shah made a small concession and issued a farman banning the maritime trade of slaves.[5] Also during the end of his reign, a revolt broke out in Khorasan led by Hasan Khan Salar. Despite efforts to quell it in his lifetime, the revolt would continue until 1850.

Mohammad was known to be somewhat sickly throughout his life, and he finally died at the age of 40 of gout in Mohammadieh Palace, now known as Bagh-e Ferdow.

Cultural trendsEdit

Royal portrait of Fath-Ali Shah Qajar attended by a young prince, almost certainly his grandson Mohammad Mirza. Attributed to Mihr 'Ali, circa 1820
Portrait of Muhammad Shah Qajar and his Vizier Haj Mirza Aghasi, second quarter of the nineteenth century, Ink, opaque watercolor and gold on paper, Iran, collection of the Metropolitan Museum of Art.[6]

Mohammad fell into the influence of Russia and attempted to make reforms to modernize and increase contact with the West. This work was continued by his successor, Nasser-al-Din Shah Qajar, during the reign of his first prime minister Amir Kabir.[7] These efforts to modernize the country brought about a great interest in photography.[8] Other artwork during this time includes a number of small-scale paintings on lacquer.[9]

During Mohammad's reign, the religious movement of Bábism began to flourish for the first time. The Persian symbol of The Lion and Sun and a red, white, and green background became the flag at this time.[10]

Marriages and childrenEdit


Mohammad Ali Shah Qajar had 15 wives,[11] many of whose offspring did not survive infancy:

  1. Mah Munawar Khanum, a lady from Tabriz.
  2. Malika-i-Jahan Khanum, Mahd-i-'Aliya
  3. Rahima Khanum
  4. Khadija Begum
  5. Shahzadi Khadija Sultan Khanum
  6. Zubaida Khanum
  7. Malik Khanum
  8. Gulrukh Khanum Garmrudi
  9. Bolur Khanum Zandia (or Bolor Khanum Zandieh or Zand)
  10. Uqul Beyga
  11. Zinat Khanum (or Zainab Khanum)
  12. Mihral Khanum
  13. Nizara Khanum
  14. Narqis Khanum
  15. Zubaida Khanum


During his reign, Mohammad had 13 sons and 10 daughters from 11 marriages (with some of whom he had no children).[11] Many of his children died in infancy.

  • By Mah Monavar Khanum:
  1. Toghroltakin Mirza (died in infancy)
  • By Malek Jahan Khanum, Mahd-e Olia:
  1. Sultan Malek Mirza (died in infancy)
  2. Sultan Mahmoud Mirza (died in infancy)
  3. Nasser-ed-Din Mirza (later Naser al-Din Shah Qajar)
  • By Rahimeh Khanum, sister of Yahia Khan Chehrighi:
  1. Zendejan Mirza (died in infancy)
  • By Khadijeh Khanum, daughter of Emam Verdi Mirza, son of Fath Ali Shah:
  1. Abbas Mirza "Molk-Ara"
  2. Fathali Mirza
  3. Ahmad Mirza
  • By Malek Khanum:
  1. Ebrahim Mirza (died in infancy)
  • By Ogholbeigeh Khanum of the Salour Turkomans:
  1. Abdosamad Mirza "Ezz-ed-Dowleh"
  • By Zeinab Khanum of the Afshar of Urumieh:
  1. Mohammad Taqi Mirza "Rokn-ed-Dowleh" (b.1840—d.1901)
  • By Malek Jahan Khanum, Mahd-e Olia:
  1. Princess Keshvar (died in infancy)
  2. Princess Malekzadeh "Ezzat ed-Dowleh" (born 1836)
  • By Khadijeh Khanum, daughter of Emam Verdi Mirza, son of Fath Ali Shah:
  1. Princess Tajmah
  2. Princess Assiye
  3. Princess Aziz ed-Dowleh
  • By Golrokh Khanum Garmroudi:
  1. Princess Afsar-ed Dowleh (died in infancy)
  • By Bolour Khanum Zandieh:
  1. Princess Ozra
  2. Princess Effat ed-Dowleh
  • By Ogholbeigeh Khanoum:
  1. Princess Zahra "Ehteram-ed Dowleh"


Mohammad Shah Qajar received the following honours in the year that he took the throne (1834)[citation needed] (all received in 1834)

See alsoEdit


  1. ^ Amanat, Abbas (1997), Pivot of the Universe: Nasir Al-Din Shah Qajar and the Iranian Monarchy, 1831-1896, Comparative studies on Muslim societies, I.B.Tauris, p. 10, ISBN 9781860640971
  2. ^ [1][dead link]
  3. ^ "History of Iran: Qajar Dynasty". Retrieved 10 May 2017.
  4. ^ "Qajar dynasty - Iranian dynasty". Encyclopædia Britannica. Retrieved 10 May 2017.
  5. ^ J.B. Kelly, 'Britain and the Persian Gulf 1795-1880 (Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1968)
  6. ^ "Portrait of Muhammad Shah Qajar and his Vizier Haj Mirza Aghasi".
  7. ^ The Qajar Dynasty Archived 17 April 2007 at the Wayback Machine
  8. ^ "Art of Persepolis Inc. - Persian Art". Retrieved 10 May 2017.
  9. ^ "19th Century Persian Art". Retrieved 10 May 2017.
  10. ^ History of the Lion & Sun Flag Archived 7 April 2007 at the Wayback Machine
  11. ^ a b "Children of Mohammad Shah Qajar". Retrieved 18 May 2017.

External linksEdit

Mohammad Shah Qajar
Born: 5 January 1808 Died: 5 September 1848
Iranian royalty
Preceded by Shah of Persia
Succeeded by