Mohammad Vali Mirza Farman Farmaian
Since his youth, Mohammad Vali had spent a great deal of time in Iranian Azarbaijan, where he owned considerable estates. Consequently, even in language, he preferred Azari Turkish to the nationally dominant Persian.
His roots to Iranian Azarbaijan were revealed when at the age of 26, he earned a prominent position in the Majles (Iranian parliament) as the representative of Tabriz. Working through the Majles, he invited American advisors to help reform the military, rural security system, gendarmerie, and public financial sector.
Through his life, Mohammad Vali built a reputation for being a fair person and an excellent mediator.
When his father and brothers were imprisoned during the 1921 coup that brought the Pahlavi dynasty to power Mohammad Vali Mirza escaped to Baghdad. Afterwards, he returned to live in virtual seclusion under Reza Shah. He died at the age of 92.
At the end of World War I, when the Russian Communists seized many properties in Azarbaijan, Mohammad Vali Mirza travelled to Moscow to settle accounts. Disguised as a beggar, he crossed the mountain passes of Turkey on his way north but was captured by a Venezuelan general named Rafael de Nogales, who was fighting on the German side and almost shot him as a spy. Mohammad Vali Mirza escaped only at the last minute because he spoke to the general in French, prompting the general to realize, as Nogales wrote in his memoirs, "that he was a prince of the lineage of Farman Farma." Afterward the two became friends, and Mohammad Vali Mirza later bestowed a medal on Nogales in gratitude.
Government Positions HeldEdit
- Princess Saideh Farman-Farmaian
- Princess Golnaz Farman-Farmaian
- Daughter of Persia; Sattareh Farman Farmaian with Dona Munker; Crown Publishers, Inc.,New York,1992
- Blood and Oil: Memoirs of a Persian Prince, Manucher Mirza Farman Farmaian Random House, New York, 1997.
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