A Photographic Glimpse Into The Life Of The Shah

October 26, the 4th of Aban on the Iranian calendar, marks Shah Mohammad Reza Pahlavi's birthday. He would have been 99 on the date this year. His self-declared mission for his country was to usher it to a "great civilization."

Life And Legacy

Like his father, Reza Shah, he did his best to modernize an ancient country that was the cradle of civilization. A country that introduced human rights to the community of nations. During the past forty years, after his dream for the great civilization was disrupted by a revolution that halted the country's progress and isolated it in the international community, the new regime did everything to tarnish his image, to undermine his achievements and to magnify his mistakes. Yet, many Iranians in and out of the country still remember him, four decades after his death in exile, as an educated patriot who loved his nation.

Even the younger generation of Iranians born long after his demise appreciate his legacy, although they wish he had given priority to the democratization of Iran rather than pushing it forward toward economic development without providing the political foundation that perhaps would have ensured continued modernization, balanced growth and progress.

Reigned From 1941-1979

Representing Iran

Turmoil In Iran