Mohammad Shah Qajar

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Mohammad Shah Qajar
محمد شاه قاجار
Lion and Sun Emblem of Persia.svg
Shahanshah of Persia
Mohammad Shah Qajar.jpg
Shah of Iran
Reign 23 October 1834  – 5 September 1848
Predecessor Fat′h-Ali Shah Qajar
Successor Naser al-Din Shah
Born (1808-01-05)5 January 1808
Tabriz, Persia
Died 5 September 1848(1848-09-05) (aged 40)
Tehran, Persia
Consort Malek Jahan Khanom, Mahd-e Olia
Issue Naser al-Din Shah
Abbas Mirza Molk Ara
Mohammad Taqi Mirza Rokn ed-Dowleh
Abdol-samad Mirza Ezz ed-Dowleh Saloor
Full name
Mohammad Shah Qajar
Dynasty Qajar
Father Abbas Mirza
Religion Shia Islam

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

Rise to power[edit]

Mohammad Shah was son of Abbas Mirza, the crown prince and governor of Azerbaijan,[1] 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 military[edit]

Mohammad as Shah

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[2][3] (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.[4]

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

Cultural trends[edit]

Possibly Mirza Abolhassan Khan Ghaffari Kashani, Sani ol Molk (active, 1814-1866). Portrait of a Nobleman or Royal Figure (Possibly Muhammad Shah Qajar), first half 19th century. Brooklyn Museum.

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, who became known as a very capable leader.[5] These efforts to modernize the country brought about a great interest in photography.[6] Other artwork during this time includes a number of small-scale paintings on lacquer.[7]

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.[8]


During his reign, Mohammad had 11 children to eight wives, and four more wives with whom he had no children. Seven of his children died in infancy, but among the more notable of the children were:


(all received in 1834)

See also[edit]


External links[edit]

Mohammad Shah Qajar
Born: 5 January 1808 Died: 5 September 1848
Regnal titles
Preceded by
Fat′h Ali Shah Qajar
Shah of Persia
Succeeded by
Nasser-al-Din Shah Qajar