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Padishah (Persian: پادشاه; lit.'Master King'; from Persian: pād [or Old Persian: *pati], 'master', and shāh, 'king'),[1][2] sometimes romanised as padeshah, patshah, padshah or badshah (Persian: پادشاه; Ottoman Turkish: پادشاه, romanizedpâdişâh; Turkish: padişah, pronounced [päː.d̟i.ʃɑː]; Urdu: بَادْشَاہ‎, Hindi: बादशाह, romanizedbaadashaah), is a superlative sovereign title of Persian origin.

A form of the word is known already from Middle Persian, or Pahlavi language, as pātaxšā(h) or pādixšā(y).[3][4][5][6] Middle Persian pād may stem from Avestan paiti,[7] and is akin to Pati (title). Xšāy, "to rule", and xšāyaθiya, "king", are from Old Persian.

It was adopted by several monarchs claiming the highest rank, roughly equivalent to the ancient Persian notion of "Great King", and later adopted by post-Achaemenid and the Mughal emperors of India. However, in some periods it was used more generally for autonomous Muslim rulers, as in the Hudud al-'Alam of the 10th century, where even some petty princes of Afghanistan are called pādshā(h)/pādshāʼi/pādshāy.[8]

The rulers on the following thrones – the first two effectively commanding major West Asian empires – were styled Padishah:

The compound Pādshah-i-Ghazi ("Victorious Emperor") is only recorded for two individual rulers:

  1. Ahmad Shah Durrani, Emperor of the Durrani Empire (r. 1747–1772)
  2. Rustam-i-Dauran, Aristu-i-Zaman, Asaf Jah IV, Muzaffar ul-Mamaluk, Nizam ul-Mulk, Nizam ud-Daula, Nawab Mir Farkhunda 'Ali Khan Bahadur [Gufran Manzil], Sipah Salar, Fath Jang, Ayn waffadar Fidvi-i-Senliena, Iqtidar-i-Kishwarsitan Muhammad Akbar Shah Padshah-i-Ghazi, Nizam of Hyderabad (r. 1829–1857)

Like many titles, the word Padishah was also often used as a name, either by nobles with other (in this case always lower) styles, or even by commoners.

Padshah Begum is the title of consorts of padishahs.

Ottoman Empire[edit]

Suleiman the Magnificent, longest reigning padishah of the Ottoman Empire. Portrait attributed to Titian c. 1530.

In the Ottoman Empire the title padishah was exclusively reserved for the Ottoman emperor, as the Ottoman chancery rarely and unwillingly addressed foreign monarchs as padishahs. The Habsburg emperors were consequently denied this title and addressed merely as the "kings of Vienna" (beç kıralı).[15] With the Peace of Zsitvatorok in 1606, it was the first time that the Sublime Porte recognized Rudolf II as equal of the padishah.[16] The Treaty of Küçük Kaynarca in 1774, gave similar concessions to the Russian Empire.[17]

In Ottoman sources[edit]

According to Ahmedi's İskendernâme, one of the earliest Ottoman sources, alongside the titles sultan and beg, Orhan and Murad I bore the title padishah as well.[18]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Etymonline.com, s.v. "pasha" Archived October 6, 2013, at the Wayback Machine.
  2. ^ Bartbleby.com Dictionary & Etymology
  3. ^ MacKenzie, D. N. (1971). A concise Pahlavi dictionary. London. p. 63. ISBN 978-1-136-61396-8. OCLC 891590013.{{cite book}}: CS1 maint: location missing publisher (link)
  4. ^ "pad(i)shah ." The Oxford Dictionary of English Etymology. Retrieved September 22, 2021 from Encyclopedia.com: https://www.encyclopedia.com/humanities/dictionaries-thesauruses-pictures-and-press-releases/padishah Archived 2021-10-05 at the Wayback Machine
  5. ^ "[ pādixšā(y) – Encyclopedia Pahlavica ]". Archived from the original on 2021-10-05. Retrieved 2021-10-05.
  6. ^ Horn, Paul (1893). Grundriss der neupersischen Etymologie. University of Michigan. Strassburg, K.J. Trübner. p. 61.
  7. ^ "[ Pad – Encyclopedia Pahlavica ]". Archived from the original on 2021-10-08. Retrieved 2021-10-08.
  8. ^ Babinger, Fr. & Bosworth, C.E. (1995). "Pādis̲h̲āh". In Bosworth, C. E.; van Donzel, E.; Heinrichs, W. P. & Lecomte, G. (eds.). The Encyclopaedia of Islam, Second Edition. Volume VIII: Ned–Sam. Leiden: E. J. Brill. ISBN 978-90-04-09834-3.
  9. ^ Korobeĭnikov, Dimitri (2014). Byzantium and the Turks in the Thirteenth Century. Oxford, United Kingdom. pp. 99–101, 290, 157. ISBN 978-0-19-870826-1. OCLC 884743514.{{cite book}}: CS1 maint: location missing publisher (link)
  10. ^ Charles Melville, "Padshah-i Islam: the conversion of Sultan Mahmud Ghazan Khan Archived 2021-10-09 at the Wayback Machine", Pembroke Papers I, ed. C. Melville, Cambridge: Middle East Centre, 1990: p. 172.
  11. ^ Kyle Crossley, Pamela (2019). Hammer and Anvil: Nomad Rulers at the Forge of the Modern World. Rowman & Littlefield. p. 162. ISBN 978-1-4422-1445-3.
  12. ^ "Countries Ab-Am". rulers.org. Archived from the original on 2018-06-26. Retrieved 2005-06-22.
  13. ^ श्रद्धा के साथ मनाया पंच पातिशाही गुरु अर्जुनदेव महाराज का शहीदी पर्व Archived 2021-08-15 at the Wayback Machine (in Hindi). Dainik Bhaskar. 1916.
  14. ^ Kaur, Madanjit (2021-05-15). Guru Gobind Singh: Historical and Ideological Perspective. Unistar Books. ISBN 978-81-89899-55-4.
  15. ^ Peter Fibiger Bang; Dariusz Kolodziejczyk (2012). Universal Empire: A Comparative Approach to Imperial Culture and Representation in Eurasian History. Cambridge University Press. p. 178.
  16. ^ Kenneth Meyer Setton (1991). Venice, Austria, and the Turks in the Seventeenth Century. p. 22.
  17. ^ Bernard Lewis (2002). What Went Wrong?: Western Impact and Middle Eastern Response. p. 164.
  18. ^ Halil Inalcik (1988–2016). "PADİŞAH پادشاه İslâm devletlerinde çok geniş ülkelere sahip hükümdarlara verilen unvan.". TDV Encyclopedia of Islam (44+2 vols.) (in Turkish). Istanbul: Turkiye Diyanet Foundation, Centre for Islamic Studies.

External links[edit]