Iran; key historical events
Page last modified 9/1/2020
See also Islam and Middle East
See also Judaism and Israel
8/1/2020, An airliner with 176 people on board crashed with no survivors shortly after taking off from Tehran on a flight to Ukraine. The plane blew up in mid-air, sparking speculation that it had been hit by a missile. The incident, early in the morning whilst still dark, coincided with a limited Iranian missile strike against US bases in Iraq, in a low-key revenge attack for the assassination of Qassem Soleimani on 3/1/2020.
3/1/2020, Early this morning, a US drone strike on Baghdad Airport killed Qassem Soleimani, head of the Iranian Al Quds air force, along with three other senior Iranian officials.
19/7/2019, Iran seized a British-owned tanker in the Persian Gulf. A second vessel was also arrested, but the captain was ‘warned’ and then allowed on his way. This followed the seizure of an Iranian tanker at Gibraltar, allegedly taking oil to Syria in defiance of EU sanctions. Iran alleged that the British tanker had entered the Gulf the wrong way, collided with a fishing boat, and then ignored its distress signal.
6/8/2018, US President Trump signed an executive order imposing sanctions on Iran, and cancelling the nuclear deal that had been signed in 2015.
8/5/2018, President Trump of the US unilaterally pulled out of the Iran Nuclear Deal, arranged by his predecessor President Obama, under which Iran received financial aid in return for curbing its nuclear missiles programme.
28/12/2017, Several days of protest began in Tehran in anti-government protests, angered by a poorly-performing economy.
21/8/2015, Britain and Iran re-opened their embassies in each other’s capitals. This followed a nuclear agreement between Iran and the USA organised by US President Obama (but not yet ratified by US Congress).
14/7/2015, Iran and the West reached a nuclear deal. Tehran agreed to limit its nuclear activirty in return for the lifting of Western sanctins against ot.
2013, Hassan Rouhani, a moderate, won the Iranian presidential elections.
24/11/2013, Iran and the US reached a deal on Iran’s nuclear programme and sanctions on Iran.
7/9/2012, Canada cut diplomatic ties with Iran, over Iran’s support for Syrian Government nuclear plans and human rights abuses.
9/2/2012, Iran suspended oil exports to Britain and France in retaliation for sanctions imposed by the EU in January 2012.
23/1/2012, The EU imposed sanctions on Iran because of continued Iranian enrichment of uranium.
2009, Iran admitted building a uranium enrichment plant but said it was ‘for peaceful purposes’. The country also test-fired missiles that could reach Israel and US bases in the Gulf.
2007, The Iran nuclear crisis continued, with Iran decalring it had begun full-scale nuclear fuel production.
11/4/2006, Iran’s President, Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, announced that his country has “joined the club of nuclear countries”.
26/10/2005, The Iranian President, Mahmoud Ahmadinejab, called for Israel to be ‘wiped off the map’ at a ‘World without Zionism’ conference in Tehran.
2005, The ultra-conservative Mayor of Tehran, Mahmoud Ahmadinejab, won the Iranian Presidential elections.
2004, Conservatives won elections to the Majlis.
26/12/2003. Earthquake measuring 6.7 on the Richter scale hit Bam, SE Iran. Over 25,000 killed and 30,000 injured.
7/11/2002, Iran banned advertising of American products.
2000, Reformist candidates won the Iranian elections. However the Conservatove retained power and thwarted reform.
24/9/1998, Tehran lifted the fatwa imposed on author Salman Rushdie for his book The Satanic Verses.
23/5/1997, In Iran, Hojjat al-Islam Seyyed Khatami was elected President. He won a landslide victory gaining 22 million out of 30 million votes.
10/5/1997, An earthquake near Ardekul, north east Iran, killed over 2,400 people.
1996, In elections to the Majlis, conservative candidates lost ground to more liberal factions.
1995, The USA imposed sanctions on Iran over its alleged support for international terrorist groups.
11/6/1993, Ali Akbar Rafsanjani, Refromist, was re-elected for a second term as President of Iran.
10/4/1993, Iran said income from tourism rose by 50% over the past year.
14/2/1993, Iran again called on Britain to hand over Salman Rushdie, sentenced to death by Ayatollah Khomeini on 14/2/1989 for his book The Satanic Verses.
2/11/1992, Iran increased the reward for killing Salman Rushdie.
27/9/1990, Britain resumed diplomatic relations with Iran, which had been suspended over the Rushdie affair.
12/9/1990, In Iran, Ayatollah Khamenei denounced the presence of US troops in Saudi Arabia. He called the struggle against the US a ‘holy war’.
21/6/1990, Earthquake hit Iran, 7.7 on the Richter scale, destroyed towns across 100 square miles of Gilan Province, NW Iran. Over 40,000 died and 100,000 were injured.
5/6/1990, Iran demanded that Britain hand over Salman Rushdie to British Muslims.
28/7/1989, In Iran, Rafsajani became the new elected President.
6/6/1989, There was hysteria at the funeral of Ayatollah Khomenei in Tehran.
4/6/1989, Ali Khamenei was appointed Supreme Leader of Iran.
3/6/1989, Death of the Ayatollah Khomeini, religious leader of Iran. Born in 1900, Khomeini attended several Islamic schools before moving to the city of Soq in 1922 where he became a Shiite scholar. Khomeini’s spite against Western influences and his advocacy of Islamic purity won him many followers and in the 1950s he was acclaimed as an Ayatollah, or major religious leader. Thrown out of Iran in 1964 he continued his fight against the Shah in exile. In 1979 his influence caused massive riots in Tehran, forcing the departure of the Shah. Unpopular in the West, Khomeini is mainly remembered for reinstating Islamic punishments and for a long and exhausting war with Iraq.
14/2/1989, Ayatollah Khomeini issued a ‘fatwa’ ordering Muslims to kill Salman Rushdie. Rushdie had published the ‘Satanic Verses’ which angered Muslims worldwide. On 7/3/1989 Iran severed relations with the UK.
12/2/1989, 12 people died in riots in Pakistan over Salman Rushdie’s ‘Satanic Verses’.
18/2/1989, In Afghanistan., President Najibullah imposed a State of Emergency to bolster his authority.
14/1/1989, British Muslims held public burnings of Salman Rushdie’s The Satanic Verses.
8/11/1988, Salman Rushdie won the Whitbread Prize for his book, The Satanic Verses.
3/7/1988, The US cruiser Vincennes mistakenly shot down an Iranian airliner, killing 286 people on a flight from Bandar Abbas to Dubai. The US believed the aircraft was a fighter plane.
18/4/1988, The USA retaliated against Iran for its mining of the Gulf. After warning the Iranians to evacuate, US warships destroyed Iranian oil platforms at Sirri and Sisan. Iranian boats fired back and were sunk by the US.
21/9/1987, The US seized an Iranian ship in the Gulf.
1985, Khamenei was re-elected President.
4/3/1984, The speaker of the Iranian Parliament claimed that 400 Iranian soldiers had been killed by Iraqi chemical weapons.
See Islamic World for Iran - Iraq War 1980-88
29/10/1981, Hosein Musavi became Prime Minister of Iran/
2/10/1981, Hojatoleslam Ali Khameini was elected President of Iran.
11/9/1981, In Tehran, a grenade killed one of Khomeini’s aides, Ayatollah Madani.
30/8/1981, In Tehran, a bomb attack killed President Ali Rajai, Prime Minister Hojatolislam Bahonar, and Colonel Dagsgerdi.
24/7/1981, Muhammad Ali Rajai was elected President of Iran.
28/6/1981. In Tehran, a bomb attack killed Ayatollah Beheshti, the Chief Justice and Head of the Islamic Republican Party, also four other Government Ministers.
21/1/1981. The US hostages in Iran were released. 50 men and 2 women were flown out of Iran after 444 days in captivity. The US had agreed to freeze the assets of the deposed Shah, end trade sanctions, and unfreeze Iranian assets in the USA. The hostages were flown to Algiers, then to Wiesbaden, Germany, to be greeted by Ex-President Carter. Ths hostage crisis began when the US allowed the ailing Shah of Iran to enter for medical treatment.
31/10/1980, The eldest son of the late Shah of Iran, Mohammed Reza Shah, proclaimed himself as the rightful heir to the Peacock Throne.
See Iraq for more events of Iran-Iraq War
24/9/1980. Iraq invaded Iran, making initial territorial gains. But by 1981 these were lost and Iran occupied some border areas of Iraq. The Iranians could not capture Baghdad or Basra, despite sending 250,000 men into battle. Iraq probably responded with poison gas. In 1984 the action switched to the Persian Gulf. Iraq attacked ships visiting Iranian ports, probably hoping for an Iranian blockade of Iraqi oil exports, which would have angered the West. Iran attacked ships serving Kuwait and Saudi Arabia, to deter them from supporting Iraq. Iran suffered more, as its tanker oil revenues plummeted. By March 1988 Iranian gains in Iraq had been recaptured and the border was virtually unchanged; Iran then agreed to a ceasefire.
22/9/1980. Iraqi aircraft attacked Iranian bases after some weeks of fighting on the Iran-Iraq border. Iraqi troops also entered Iranian territory. This was the beginning of the Gulf War; Iraq wanted total control of the Shatt-El-Arab waterway, for oil exports, but Iran claimed their mutual border ran down the middle of this waterway.
26/7/1980. The deposed Shah of Iran died in a Cairo hospital after a long battle with cancer, aged 60.
11//6/1980. A hostage from the US Embassy in Tehran, Richard Queen, was released due to illness.
5/5/1980. The Iranian Embassy in London was stormed by the SAS to rescue 19 hostages.
30/4/1980. In London, 6 armed men took over the Iranian Embassy, taking 25 people hostage. They threatened to blow up the embassy if 91 prisoners in Iran were not released. On 5/5/1980 a Special Air Service (SAS) team stormed the embassy, rescuing the hostages. 4 terrorists died, another died later, and one was captured.
24/4/1980. The US attempt to rescue the hostages held in Iran, Operation Eagle Claw, ended in fiasco. President Carter had to make a statement to the world. 90 commandos had taken off under cover of darkness from Pakistan with 8 Sikorsky helicopters and 6 Hercules transport planes. Three helicopters suffered mechanical failure in the desert dust of eastern Iran. The mission was abandoned but on taking off again from the desert 8 American servicemen died when another US helicopter collided with one of the Hercules planes. The burnt out planes and the bodies of the soldiers were abandoned where they fell. The Iranians were jubilant, and the Ayatollah Khalkhali displayed and mutilated the bodies at a macabre press conference in the Embassy.
7/4/1980, The US severed diplomatic relations with Iran and imposed economic sanctions, as the hostage crisis, which began on 4/11/1979, continued.
8/3/1980. President Jimmy Carter refused to apologise for past US actions in Iran in return for the release of 53 hostages. See 4/11/1979. On 7/4/1980 the US severed relations with Iran.
4/2/1980, Iran elected its first post-Revolution president, Abolhassan Bani-Sadr.
21/11/1979, Khomeini warned that if the US attacked Iran the hostages would be killed.
ordered the release of 13 female and Black hostages being held at the US
4/11/1979. Iranian demonstrators, and 100 Revolutionary
Guards, seized the American Embassy in
22/10/1979, The deposed Shah of Iran, Reza Pahlavi, went to the USA for medical treatment, see 4/11/1979.
23/7/1979, In Iran, Khomeini banned the broadcasting of music.
13/5/1979. The Chief of the Central Islamic Revolutionary
Court said that anyone who killed the
7/5/1979. Tehran lowered the minimum age of marriage to 13 for boys and 15 for girls.
1/4/1979, Iranians voted by a 98% majority to make their country an Islamic Republic; the Shah was officially deposed.
15/2/1979. In Iran, 4 Iranian army generals were executed by firing squad; two members of the Shah’s government were executed the following day.
10/2/1979, The Iranian Army mutinied against its leader and joined the Iranian Revolution. Khomeini now also controlled the law courts and government administration.
3/2/1979, Khomeini created the Council of the Iranian Revolution.
1/2/1979. Ayatollah Khomeini returned to Iran after 14 year’s exile in France, at the invitation of Bakhtiar.
16/1/1979. The Shah of Iran and
Empress Farah fled to
4/1/1979, The Shah of Iran appointed Dr Shakpur Bakhtiar as Prime Minister, in a concession to popular discontent.
1/1/1979, Iranian Prime Minister General Azhari resigned. He had been appointed to halt the Islamist protests on the streets of Iran, but despite the use of the army, police and secret police he had not achieved this. Demonstrators continued to call for the Shah tp be deposed, and for the return of Ayatollah Khomeini from exile.
16/12/1978. Civil war loomed in
28/11/1978, The Iranian Government banned religious marches.
6/11/1978, As disorder increased in Iran, a military government was appointed.
5/11/1978. Fierce fighting in Tehran; the Prime
resigned. The British Embassy in
31/10/1978. Iranian oil-workers’ strike halved production.
27/8/1978, The new Iranian Government of Sharif-Emami lifted the ban on political parties.
19/8/1978. Extremist Muslims in
students rioted in
11/5/1978. Rioting in Tehran as Muslims called for the removal of the Shah.
10/5/1978, Fundamentalist Islamic riots in Qom, Iran. 10 people killed.
7/1/1978, Riots erupted in the Iranian city of Qom after a government controlled newspaper made crude accusations against Khomeini, alleging that he had spied for the British and written erotic poetry.
1977, Khomenei’s son died. Subsequently, anti-Shah demonstrations broke out during the period of mourning.
19/11/1977, Iranian police broke up a peaceful middle class and student protest at Ayramehr University, where intellectuals had begun to challenge the rule of the Shah through letter writing, pamphlets and poetry readings. Students then protested on the streets, where they were met by the Savak security forces.
1975, The Shah of Iran and Saddam Hussein of Iraq concluded the Algiers Agreement. Under its terms, Iraq ceded ceded border areas north of the Shatt el Arab to iran, and agreed that the Iran-Iraq border should run down the middle of this waterway, not along the Iranian low-water mark on the north. In return Iran ceased military assistance to the Kurdish rebeks in northern Iraq. Saddam Hussein’s subsequent abrogation of this Agreement effectively started the Iran-Iraq War (1980-88).
30/11/1971, Iran occupied the Tunbs islands in the Persian Gulf, one day before the British Protectorate over them expired. Iraq severed diplomatic relations with the UK and Iran, alleging collusion.
26/10/1967. The Shah of Iran
and his wife were crowned in
27/10/1964, In Iran, Ayatollah Khomeini delivered a speech attacking the extent of US involvement in Iran, saying that Iran was virtually a ‘colony of America’. Following this he was deported and took up residence in the Shiite city of Najaf, Iraq.
1963, The Shah of Iran launched the ‘White Revolution’ a programme of land reform and economic modernisation. Opposition was suppressed.
9/5/1961, Ali Amini, the new Prime Minister of Iran, dissolved Parliament and banned political meetings.
21/3/1958. The Shah of Iran announced on TV that he was divorcing his wife of seven years, Queen Soraya, because she had not given him an heir. She moved to Paris and became an actress.
1957, The Shah established the Savak, a secret police force to control the opposition.
31/1/1957, The Trans-Iranian oil pipeline, from Abadan to Tehran, was completed.
28/10/1956, Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, President of Iran, was born.
5/8/1954, In Iran, an solution to the Abadan Crisis was announced. Iran retained ownership of its oil but sgreed to sell only to a consortium of eight international oil companies, and Iran and these eight companies shared the oil profits. This Agreement was signed by the Shah on 29/10/1954.
21/12/1953, In Iran, Dr Muhammad Mossadeq was sentenced to three years in prison. Iran was now a staunch ally of the USA.
22/8/1953, The Shah of Iran returned to the throne, in a coup backed by the UK and USA. Mossadegh was jailed as he was now losing favour within Iran, as Western oil sanctions bit, causing general poverty.
22/10/1952, Iran broke off diplomatic relations with Britain.
22/7/1952, After riots in Tehran, Dr Muhammad Mossadeq was reappointed Prime Minister with emergency powers for 6 months.
7/1952, Mossadegh demanded control of the Iranian armed forces; the Shah resisted this. There were major riots in Mossadegh’s favour, alarming the Royalists who thought this signified that Iran was about to become a Republic under Mossadegh.
4/10/1951, The Anglo-Iranian Oil Company removed its personnel from Abadan for safety reasons.
27/9/1951, Iranian troops occupied the Abadan oilfields.
23/8/1951, British oil companies and workers prepared to leave Iran.
5/7/1951, The International Court of Justice ruled against Iran (see 26/5/1951). US President Truman called for a compromise.
26/5/1951, Britain appealed to the International Court of Justice over the Iranian nationalisation of the oil industry. On 5/7/1951 the Court ruled in Britain’s favour.
19/5/1951, Britain warned Iran against seizing British oil assets there, 8 Britons died in riots there in April 1951.
30/4/1951. The day after
Mohammed Mossadeq took
Britain protested strongly at the nationalisation but evacuated the refineries on 3/10/1951.
28/4/1951, After a fortnight of rioting in Abadan, the Iranian Government appointed Dr Muhammed Mossadeq as Prime Minister.
7/3/1951, In Iran the Prime Minister, General Ali Razmara, was assassinated by a militant nationalist.
28/1/1951, The Shah of Iran ordered his Crown land to be sold to the farmers who lived and worked on it. Ownership of some 2,000 small villages was turned over to its residents. However large landowners resisted the move in the Iranian Majlis (Parliament), fearing for the integrity of their own estates. The Shah persisted with his policy and by 1958 over 500,000 acres of land had been shared out amongst 25,000 farmers, according to a law enacted in 1955. This law fixed the maximum landholding allowed at 25 acres of irrgated land and 37 acres of non-irrigated land. The Shah also began to redistribute large landholdings owned by the Iranian Government, separate from the Crown. In 1959 the Shah attempted to enact a law forcing large private landowners to sell to the Government, which would then redistribute this land to small farmers on easy terms; the landowners blocked this measure in the Majlis. By the early 1960s the Shah managed to get some of this private land redistributed, in the so-called White Revolution.
19/6/1947, Salman Rushdie was born.
25/4/1946, The USSR agreed to withdraw its troops from Iran.
15/12/1945. Iranian Azerbaijan declared itself an independent
republic, following a Communist-led revolt there against
16/9/1941. The Shah of Iran, Reza Khan Pahlavi, abdicated, under pressure from the UK and USSR. His son, Reza Pahlavi, took over.
21/3/1935, Persia officially changed its name to Iran.
27/12/1934. In Tehran, the government declared that ‘Persia’ would now be known as Iran.
1928, Reza Khan passed the Uniformity of Dress law, requiring all men to wear Western clothes, except the ulema, who could continue to wear therir cloaks and turbans, so long as they passed an examination, and also, later, forbidding women to wear the Muslim veil Soldiers would rip the veil off any women found wearing one and destroy it.
8/3/1927 Archaeologists discovered a 5,000-year-old manicure
18/2/1926, An Anglo-Persian oil treaty was signed, giving another 25-year oil exploration contract to the Anglo-Persian Oil Company.
13/12/1925, Reza Khan was proclaimed Shah of Iran. This established the Pahlavi Dynasty. He started a programme of westernisation, but this made him increasingly reliant on Germany for support.
31/10/1925, Persian Majles deposed the Shah, Sultan Ahmad.
21/2/1921, Reza Khan (born 1878,of the Pahlevan clan), an officer in the Iranian Army who had risen from the rank of Private to General, occupied Tehran with 1,200 men. Iran was in chaos after the ravages of World War One and its ruler Ahmad Shah, the last of the Qajar dynasty, was young and incompetent,and the cabinet was weak and corrupt. Subsequently known as Reza Shah Pahlavi, he modernised the country, organised its transport links, and retook control of Iran’s finances from foreign investors. His foreign policy was to play the principal foreign powers in the region, the Soviet Union and Britain, off against each other. This policy failed when Britain and Russia became allies in World War Two in 1941. Britain and Russia jointly occupied Iran in August 1941 so the Soviet war effort could be supplied. Reza Shah then abdicated so his son, Mohammed Reza Shah, could adapt Iranian foreign policy to the new situation, and continue the dynasty. Reza Shah died in Johannesburg, South Africa, in June 1944.
1920, Tudeh, the Communist Party of Iran, was founded. Bolshevik forces invaded the Caspian province of Gilan, hoping for a pro-Soviet revolution. Other regions, including Khurasan, Azerbaijan and Kurdistan, rebelled against central control. However in 1921 Reza Khan seized power and signed a treatybwoth Russia, allowing for the withdrawal of Bolshevik forces. By 1922 the four rebel provinces were back in Iranian control.
26/10/1919. Shah of Iran, Mohammed Reza Pahlavi, was born.
9/8/1919, Britain guaranteed to preserve the integrity of Persia.
7/8/1916. Iran formed an alliance with
For main European events of World War One see France-Germany
1909, The Anglo-Persian Oil Company established a pipeline terminus on the island of Abadan.
16/7/1909, Ali Kuh Khan, leader of the Bakhtari tribe, https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bakhtiari_people
deposed Ali Shah, the Shah of Persia. The Russian Army then invaded northern Persia, occupying the city of Tabriz, ostensibly on behalf of the deposed Shah. They antagonised the Bakhtari. Ali Kuh Khan replaced the Shah with his son, 12-year-old Ahmad.
23/6/1908, Mohammed Ali Shah of Persia mounted a successful coup with the help of the Cossack brigade; he then imposed martial law in Tehran.
26/5/1908. Significant oil fields were found in Persia (Iran), the first oil strike in the Middle East.
15/12/1907, The new Shah of Persia attempted to depose the new liberal Chief Minister. However, popular protests forced him to reverse this move.
1907, Persian Shah Muzaffar ud-Din died aged 54 after a weak reign of 11 years. He was succeeded by his 35-year-old son who reged until 1909 as Mohammed Ali.
7/10/1906, The Shah opened the Persian Assembly.
15/5/1903, British Foreign Secretary Lord Lansdowne announced that Britain would strongly resist the establishment of any fortified base by another power on the Persian Gulf. This was aimed at countering expansionist plans by Russia.
18/8/1902, The Shah of Persia arrived in London on a State Visit.
1901, The Shah of Persia granted concessions over 1.2 million square kilometres to oil prospector William Knox D’Arcy. These concessions were transferred to the Anglo-Persian Oil Company in 1909.
1/10/1901, Abdurrahman Khan, Amir of Kabul, died and was succeeded by his son Habibula.
1/5/1896, Nasr-ed-Din, Shah of Persia, was assassinated, aged 65. He was succeeded by his 43-year-old son, Muzaffar-ed-Din.
19/7/1849, Sayid Ali Mohammed, founder of the Bahai religion, was executed in Persia by order of the Shah.
1848, Persia’s Kajar Shah Mohammed Ali died aged 38, after a 13-year reign during which he has nearly bankrupted the country and almost precipitated a revolution. He was succeeded by his 17-year-old son, Nasr-ed-Din, who reigned until 1896. He was assisted, until 1852, by the capable Finance Minister, Taki Khan.
18/7/1823, The Treaty of Erzerum was signed, between the Sultan of Ottoman Turkey and the Qajar Shah of Persia; this Treaty defined their common frontier in lower Iraq. However the two powers continued to dispute possession of the town of Muhammara, at the mouth of the Karun River, a disagreement dating from 1812. In 1847 a second Treaty of Erzerum was signed, giving Muhammara to Persia.
24/10/1813, The Treaty of Gulistan was signed between Persia and Russia. Persia ceded territory to Russia, and recognised Russia as having sole right of navigation on the Caspian Sea. Russia was also granted a say in the succession of the Qajars.
4/5/1807, The Finkenstein Treaty was signed between France and Persia. The French agreed to military aid and advice, to assist Persia in expelling the Russians from Georgia. In return Persia promissed to assist France in any French invasion of British-held India.
17/6/1797, Agha Mohammad Khan, Shah of Persia, died.
1787, Tehran became the capital of Iran under the rule of Agha Mohammed Khan Qajar.
1786, Start of the Qajar Dynasty in Iran.
1736, The Persian Safavid Dynasty, which had endured since 1502, ended with the death of Shah Abbas III, aged 6. The Turkish Nadir Kuli, who had effectively ruled Persia for the past decade, now became Nadir Shah and ruled until 1747.
1731, Shah Tahmasp II of Persia died after a brief reign. He was succeeded by his 8-month-old son, who ruled for 5 years. The end of his reign marked the end of the Safavid Dynasty, which had endured since 1502.
1730, Persian Shah Ashtraf was assassinated after a defeat near Shiraz, en route to Kandahar. He was succeeded by Tahmasp II.
1719, The Afghans took Bam, and were not expelled until 1801.
1694, Shah Suleiman of Persia died after a dissolute reign of 27 years. His 19-year-old son Husein succeeded him, and ruled until 1722.
1629, Abbas I (The Great), Shah of Persia, born 1571, died. He became Shah in 1588, and established a standing army, achieving greater stability in Persia. From 1598, he recovered Azerbaijan and parts of Armenia from the Ottoman Turks, and Khurasan from the Uzbeks. He also transferred the Persian capital from Qazvin to Isfahan.
1623, Abbas I, Shah of Persia, captured Baghdad after a year’s siege.
1605, Abbas I, Shah of Persia, defeated the Turks at Bassora, thereby extending Persian rule beyond the Euphrates River.
1597, Abbas I, Shah of Persia, decisively defeated the Uzbegs at a major battle near Herat. They had been harassing the borders of Persia.
23/5/1524, Shah Ismail of Persia died aged 38. He was succeeded by his eldest son, Tahmasp, aged 10.
23/8/1514, At the Battle of Chaldiran, Selim I defeated the Persians under Shah Ismail I.
1512, Shi-ism became the State religion of Persia.
1501, Accession of Shah Ismail; start of the Safavid Empire.
1145, The Friday Mosque at Isfahan was constructed.
4/12/1131, (Iran) Omar Khayyam, Persian poet and mathematician, born 5/15/1048, died at Nishapur.
1043, End of the Ziyarid Dynasty in Persia.
628, Death of King Chosrau II ‘Parviz’, Sassanid King of Persia from 588. He was the grandson of Chosrau I. Chosrau II came close to defeating the Byzantine Empire in 626, when his armies stood across the Bosphorus from Constantinople itself. However Emperor Hercaclius led a counter-attack and defeated Chosrau II at Nineveh in 627. Subsequently Chosrau II was deposed and executed by his son, Kavadh II. Meanwhwhile Heraclius entered Jerusalem and restored the ‘True Cross’ to its rightful place in 630.
619, King Chosrau II took Egypt.
609, King Chosrau II attacked the Byzantine Empire, which was severely weakened due to wars with the Goths and other Germanic tribes, and also the Justinian Bubonic Plague – see Roman Empire. In 614 Chosrau II captured Jerusalem, acquiring Christianity’s most Holy relics; fragments of wood said to come from the ‘True Cross’, the ‘Holy Lance’ that had pierced Jesus’ side, and the ‘Sacred Sponge’ that had refreshed Jesus,
579, Death of King Khosrau I ‘Anushirvan’. A Sassanid King of Persia, he ruled from 531, succeeding his father, Kavadh I.
570, Persia overturned Abyssian rule in Yemen.
531, King Kavadh I died. He was succeeded by Khosrau I.
499, Kavadh I recovered the throne of Persia, deposing Djamasp.
496, Kavadh I was deposed and exiled by his brother Djamasp.
488, Kavadh I succeeded Balash as king.
460, Hormizd II became King of Persia.
438, Yazdegerd II became King of Persia.
399, Yazdegerd I became King of Persia.
337, Shahpur II started a war against the Romans.
297, Rome took the Kingdom of Armenia from Persia, also capturing the Persian Harem.
294, Narseh became ruler of Persia. He ruled until 302. He attempted to recover Armenia from Rome,driving out the Romans in 297; however in 298 he was defeated by Rome.
277, Mani, foiunder of Manichaeism, was crucified by the Persians.
259, Persia defeated another Roman army. They captured the emperor Valerian and held him in a cage for a year, before killing him.
244, The Sassanid Persians defeated a Roman army, killing the Emperor who was leading it.
243, Roman Emperor Gordian III defeated a Persian army under Shapur I at the Battle of Resaena.
241, Shapur I succeeded Ardashir I as King of Persia.
226, The Sassanid Dynasty, which lasted until 642, was begun by Prince Ardashir, grandson of Sassan.
For conquests of Alexander the Great, see Greece
17/7/330 BCE, King Darius III was deposed and killed by Bessus, the satrap of Bactria. Bessus assumed the kingship as Artaxerxes IV.
336 BCE, Assassination of King Arses of Persia; accession of King Darius III.
338 BCE, King Artaxerxes III was assassinated by poisoning; accession of his younger son, King Arses.
358 BCE, Artaxerxes III ended the Satraps Rebellion.
359 BCE, Accession of Artaxerxes III in Persia.
360 BCE, In Persia,the revolt of the Satraps (regional governors).
405 BCE, King Darius II of Persia (424 – 405 BCE) died. Succeeded by Artaxerxes II, who ruled until 359 BC.
408 BCE, Unsuccesful attempt by the Medes to throw off Persian rule.
424 BCE, Xerxes II became King of Persia but was assassinated two months afterwards. Succeeded by Darius II, who died in 405 BCE.
424 BCE, Death of Artaxerxes II (ruled 465-424).
465 BCE, Death of Xerxes, King of Persia 485 – 465 BCE (born 519 BCE). Murdered by his bodyguards, his son Artaxerxes succeeded him.
469 BCE, Athenian forces won a major victory over Persia on the River Eurymedon, establishing Athenian hegemony on the region.
480 BCE, King Xerxes of Persia led an invasion force into Greece; however Athens and Sparta set aside their differences to unite and fight him. The Greeks eventually won and were left more powerful than before.
485 BCE, Death of King Darius I, King of Persia 521 – 485 BCE. He was succeeded by his son, Xerxes.
Darius organised the Persian Empire into 20 Satrapies (provinces). He also introduced economic measures, incuding tax reforms and a common currency across the Empire, and a standing army. However after his death Persia declined.
See Jewish / Bible history for events in Persia 500 BCE and earlier.
See Greece for events of Greco-Persian wars, 5th century BCE
For ancient Middle East e.g. Persia, Babylonia, Assyria, see also Judaism