Piruz Nahavandi

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Pirouz Nahavandi
For the eighteenth Sasanian King of Persia see Peroz I.

Pīrūz Nahāvandi (Persian: پیروز نهاوندی‎) (Firuzan or Piruzān) also known in Arabic as Abu-Lu'lu'ah al-Nahawandi (Arabic: أبو لؤلؤة النهاوندي‎) was a Sasanian soldier who served under the commander Rostam Farrokhzad, but was captured in the Battle of al-Qādisiyyah in 636 CE when the Sasanians were defeated by the Muslim army of Caliph `Umar ibn al-Khattāb on the western bank of the Euphrates River. After he was brought to Arabia as a slave, he managed to assassinate Umar in the Hijri year 23 (644–645).

Early life[edit]

Not much is known about Pirūz, except that judging by his name, he was most likely born in Nahavand, Iran. His religious affiliation is unknown, some sources claim that he was a Zoroastrian, while others that he was a Shia Muslim.

Move to Medina[edit]

After his capture, Pirūz was given as a slave to al-Mughira ibn Shu'ba.[1] In addition to his military skills, Pirūz was apparently a skilled carpenter and artisan. According to one report he was involved in the design of a vertical-axis windmill.[2] His master allowed him to live in his own household in the Islamic capital of Medina (although according to Ibn Sa'd, Mughira ibn Shu'ba, his owner who was also the governor of Basra, had written to 'Umar from Kufa; and then 'Umar had given Mughira special permission to send Pirūz to Medina, since captives were not permitted to live in Medina.[3]

There were Persian children slaves in Medina, seeing them, Pirouz would say, "You have been enslaved at such a tender age. I shall have my vengeance."[4]

Assassination of Umar[edit]

In the Hijri year 23, whilst Umar had just begun leading the Fajr (morning) prayer in Al-Masjid an-Nabawi, Pirouz had hidden the dagger in his robe, the grip of which was in the middle, and hid himself in a corner of the mosque. Shortly after Umar had begun the prayer, Pirūz leaped upon him and stabbed him six times (only three times, according to Ibn Sa'd), this was five times in the stomach and once in the navel which proved fatal. Pirūz made his way out of the mosque, wounding thirteen men who tried to stand in his way.[5] Six to nine of the men later died.


After Pirūz assassinated Umar, he escaped Medina for Iran. He died of natural causes and is buried in Kashan, where his tomb is located.


The supposed tomb of Pirouz Nahavandi is located in Kashan, Iran.

Pirūz Nahavandi's tomb is located on the road from Kashan to Fins, constructed in an eleventh-century distinctive Persian-Khwarezmian dynastic architectural style, consisting of a courtyard, porch and conical dome decorated with turquoise coloured tiles, and painted ceilings. The original date of its construction is unknown, but in second-half of fourteenth century it was fully restored and a new tombstone was placed over his grave."[6]

Controversy was caused recently when, in 2010, the International Union for Muslim Scholars called for the tomb to be destroyed, a request which was not well received by some Iranians, having been perceived as a specifically anti-Iranian act. The tomb is used as the local police head office.[7]


  1. ^ Saheeh al-Tawtheeq, Seerah wa Hatat al Farooq, page 369
  2. ^ RJ Forbes. Studies in ancient technology. Vol. 9. Brill, 1964.
  3. ^ 'Umar ibn al-Khattab: His Life and Times, Volume 2, Dr. Ali Muhammad al-Sallabi, Page 282
  4. ^ Ibn Sa'd, Tabaqat
  5. ^ Sahih al-Bukhari, Chapter 66, Book of the Virtues of the Companions, Hadith number 3497.
  6. ^ Mohammad-Ali E. (28 June 2007), CAIS NEWS: Tomb of Firuzan (Abu-lolo) in Kashan to be Destroyed 
  7. ^ http://www.al-ahwaz.com/english/2010/news/8-10-2010-1-world.html

External links[edit]