Islamic Republic of Iran

جمهوری اسلامی ایران (Persian)
Jomhuri-ye Eslāmi-ye Irān
استقلال، آزادی، جمهوری اسلامی
Esteqlāl, Āzādi, Jomhuri-ye Eslāmi
("Independence, freedom, the Islamic Republic")
(de facto)[1]
Anthem: سرود ملی جمهوری اسلامی ایران
Sorud-e Melli-ye Jomhuri-ye Eslāmi-ye Irān
("National Anthem of the Islamic Republic of Iran")
Location of Iran
and largest city
35°41′N 51°25′E / 35°41′N 51°25′E / 35.683; 51.417
Official languagesPersian
Recognised regional languages
Ethnic groups
State religion:

Constitutionally recognized minorities:

  • Iranian
  • Persian (historically)
Ali Khamenei
• President
Hassan Rouhani
Eshaq Jahangiri
Ali Larijani
Ebrahim Raisi
Islamic Consultative Assembly
Establishment history
c. 678 BC
550 BC
247 BC
224 AD[9]
934 AD
15 December 1925
7 January 1978 – 11 February 1979
24 October 1979
28 July 1989
• Total
1,648,195 km2 (636,372 sq mi) (17th)
• Water (%)
• 2018 estimate
82,531,700[11] (18th)
• Density
48/km2 (124.3/sq mi) (162nd)
GDP (PPP)2019 estimate
• Total
Decrease $1.471 trillion[12] (18th)
• Per capita
Decrease $17,662[12] (66th)
GDP (nominal)2019 estimate
• Total
Increase $458.500 billion[12] (25th)
• Per capita
Increase $5,506[12] (95th)
Gini (2016)Negative increase 40.0[13]
HDI (2018)Decrease 0.797[14]
high · 65th
CurrencyRial (ریال) (IRR)
Time zoneUTC+3:30 (IRST)
• Summer (DST)
UTC+4:30 (IRDT)
Date formatyyyy/mm/dd (SH)
Driving sideright
Calling code+98
ISO 3166 codeIR
Internet TLD

Iran (Persian: ایرانIrān [ʔiːˈɾɒːn] (About this soundlisten)), also called Persia,[15] and officially the Islamic Republic of Iran (Persian: جمهوری اسلامی ایرانJomhuri-ye Eslāmi-ye Irān (About this soundlisten) [dʒomhuːˌɾije eslɒːˌmije ʔiːˈɾɒn]), is a country in Western Asia.[16][17] With 82 million inhabitants,[11] Iran is the world's 18th most populous country.[18] Its territory spans 1,648,195 km2 (636,372 sq mi), making it the second largest country in the Middle East and the 17th largest in the world. Iran is bordered to the northwest by Armenia and the Republic of Azerbaijan,[a] to the north by the Caspian Sea, to the northeast by Turkmenistan, to the east by Afghanistan and Pakistan, to the south by the Persian Gulf and the Gulf of Oman, and to the west by Turkey and Iraq. Its central location in Eurasia and Western Asia, and its proximity to the Strait of Hormuz, give it geostrategic importance.[19] Tehran is the political and economic center of Iran, and the largest and most populous city in Western Asia with more than 8.8 million residents in the city and 15 million in the larger metropolitan area.[20]

Iran is home to one of the world's oldest civilizations,[21][22] beginning with the formation of the Elamite kingdoms in the fourth millennium BCE. It was first unified by the Iranian Medes in the seventh century BCE,[23] and reached its territorial height in the sixth century BCE under Cyrus the Great, whose Achaemenid Empire stretched from Eastern Europe to the Indus Valley, one of the largest empires in history.[24] The empire fell to Alexander the Great in the fourth century BCE and was divided into several Hellenistic states. An Iranian rebellion established the Parthian Empire in the third century BCE, which was succeeded in the third century CE by the Sasanian Empire, a leading world power for the next four centuries.[25][26]

Arab Muslims conquered the empire in the seventh century CE, and the subsequent Islamization of Iran led to the decline of the once dominant Zoroastrian religion. Iran's major contributions to art, philosophy, and science spread throughout the Muslim world and beyond during the Islamic Golden Age. Over the next two centuries, a series of native Muslim dynasties emerged before the Seljuq Turks and the Ilkhanate Mongols conquered the region. The rise of the native Safavids in the 15th century led to the reestablishment of a unified Iranian state and national identity,[9] with the country's conversion to Shia Islam marking a turning point in Iranian and Muslim history.[10][27]

Under Nader Shah, Iran was one of the most powerful states in the 18th century,[28] though by the 19th century, a series of conflicts with the Russian Empire led to significant territorial losses.[29][30] The Persian Constitutional Revolution in the early 20th century created a constitutional monarchy and the country's first legislature. A 1953 coup instigated by the United Kingdom and the United States resulted in greater autocratic rule under Mohammad Reza Pahlavi and growing Western political influence.[31] A far-reaching series of reforms known as the White Revolution was launched by the Shah in 1963, prompting industrial growth, land reforms, and increased women's rights.[32] Nevertheless, widespread dissatisfaction and unrest against the monarchy persisted, leading to the Iranian Revolution, which established the current Islamic Republic.[33] For most of the 1980s, Iran fought a war with Iraq that resulted in millions of casualties and economic devastation for both sides.

Iran's political system has elements of a presidential democracy with a theocracy governed by an autocratic "Supreme Leader".[34] It has been described as authoritarian, with significant constraints and abuses against human rights.[35][36][37][38]

Iran is a founding member of the UN, ECO, NAM, OIC, and OPEC. It is a major regional and middle power,[39][40] and its large reserves of fossil fuels—including the world's largest natural gas supply and the fourth largest proven oil reserves—exert considerable influence in international energy security and the world economy.[41][3] The country's rich cultural legacy is reflected in part by its 22 UNESCO World Heritage Sites, the third largest number in Asia and 11th largest in the world.[42] Historically a multi-ethnic country, Iran remains a pluralistic society comprising numerous ethnic, linguistic, and religious groups, the largest being Persians, Azeris, Kurds, Mazandaranis and Lurs.[3]


The term Iran derives directly from Middle Persian Ērān, first attested in a third-century inscription at Rustam Relief, with the accompanying Parthian inscription using the term Aryān, in reference to the Iranians.[43] The Middle Iranian ērān and aryān are oblique plural forms of gentilic nouns ēr- (Middle Persian) and ary- (Parthian), both deriving from Proto-Iranian *arya- (meaning "Aryan", i.e. "of the Iranians"),[43][44] recognized as a derivative of Proto-Indo-European *ar-yo-, meaning "one who assembles (skilfully)".[45] In the Iranian languages, the gentilic is attested as a self-identifier, included in ancient inscriptions and the literature of the Avesta,[46][b] and remains also in other Iranian ethnic names Alan (Ossetian: Ир Ir) and Iron (Ирон).[44] According to the Iranian mythology, the country's name comes from name of Iraj, a legendary prince and shah who was killed by his brothers.[47]

Historically, Iran has been referred to as Persia by the West, due mainly to the writings of Greek historians who referred to all of Iran as Persís (Ancient Greek: Περσίς; from Old Persian 𐎱𐎠𐎼𐎿 Pārsa),[48] meaning "land of the Persians", while Persis itself was one of the provinces of ancient Iran that is today defined as Fars.[49] As the most extensive interaction the Ancient Greeks had with any outsider was with the Persians, the term persisted, even long after the Greco-Persian Wars (499–449 BC).

In 1935, Reza Shah requested the international community to refer to the country by its native name, Iran, effective 22 March that year.[50] Opposition to the name change led to the reversal of the decision in 1959, and Professor Ehsan Yarshater, editor of Encyclopædia Iranica, propagated a move to use Persia and Iran interchangeably.[51][unreliable source?] Today, both Iran and Persia are used in cultural contexts, while Iran remains irreplaceable in official state contexts.[52]

Historical and cultural usage of the word Iran is not restricted to the modern state proper.[53][54][55] "Greater Iran" (Irānzamīn or Irān e Bozorg)[56] refers to territories of the Iranian cultural and linguistic zones. In addition to modern Iran, it includes portions of the Caucasus, Anatolia, Mesopotamia, Afghanistan, and Central Asia.[57]


The Persian pronunciation of Iran is [ʔiːˈɾɒːn]. Common Commonwealth English pronunciations of Iran are listed in the Oxford English Dictionary as n/ and n/,[58] while American English dictionaries such as Merriam-Webster's provide pronunciations which map to n/,[59] or likewise in Random House Webster's Unabridged Dictionary as n/. The Cambridge Dictionary lists n/ as the British pronunciation and n/ as the American pronunciation. Similarly, Glasgow-based Collins English Dictionary provides both English English and American English pronunciations. The pronunciation guide from Voice of America also provides n/.[60]

The American English pronunciation n/ RAN may be heard in U.S. media. Max Fisher in The Washington Post[61] prescribed n/ for Iran, while proscribing n/. The American Heritage Dictionary of the English Language, in the dictionary's 2014 Usage Ballot, addressed the topic of the pronunciations of Iran and Iraq.[62] According to this survey, the pronunciations n/ and n/ were deemed almost equally acceptable, while n/ was preferred by most panelists participating in the ballot. With regard to the n/ pronunciation, more than 70% of the panelists deemed it unacceptable. Among the reasons given by those panelists were that n/ has "hawkish connotations" and sounds "angrier", "xenophobic", "ignorant", and "not...cosmopolitan". The n/ pronunciation remains standard and acceptable, reflected in the entry for Iran in the American Heritage Dictionary itself, as well as in each of the other major dictionaries of American English.

Other Languages
Acèh: Iran
Адыгэбзэ: Къажэрей
адыгабзэ: Иран
Afrikaans: Iran
Akan: Iran
Alemannisch: Iran
አማርኛ: ፋርስ
Ænglisc: Persealand
Аҧсшәа: Џьамтәыла
العربية: إيران
aragonés: Irán
ܐܪܡܝܐ: ܐܝܪܐܢ
armãneashti: Iran
arpetan: Éran
অসমীয়া: ইৰান
asturianu: Irán
Avañe'ẽ: Iran
azərbaycanca: İran
تۆرکجه: ایران
বাংলা: ইরান
Bân-lâm-gú: Iran
башҡортса: Иран
беларуская: Іран
беларуская (тарашкевіца)‎: Іран
भोजपुरी: ईरान
Bikol Central: Iran
български: Иран
Boarisch: Iran
བོད་ཡིག: ཡི་ལང་།
bosanski: Iran
brezhoneg: Iran
буряад: Иран
català: Iran
Чӑвашла: Иран
Cebuano: Iran
čeština: Írán
Chavacano de Zamboanga: Irán
chiShona: Iran
chiTumbuka: Iran
corsu: Iranu
Cymraeg: Iran
dansk: Iran
davvisámegiella: Iran
Deitsch: Iraen
Deutsch: Iran
ދިވެހިބަސް: އީރާން
dolnoserbski: Iran
डोटेली: इरान
ཇོང་ཁ: ཨི་རཱན་
eesti: Iraan
Ελληνικά: Ιράν
emiliàn e rumagnòl: Iràn
эрзянь: Иран Мастор
español: Irán
Esperanto: Irano
estremeñu: Irán
euskara: Iran
فارسی: ایران
Fiji Hindi: Iran
føroyskt: Iran
français: Iran
Frysk: Iran
Gaeilge: An Iaráin
Gaelg: Yn Eeraan
Gagauz: İran
Gàidhlig: Ioràn
galego: Irán
ГӀалгӀай: ХIиран
贛語: 伊朗
Gĩkũyũ: Iran
گیلکی: ايران
ગુજરાતી: ઈરાન
गोंयची कोंकणी / Gõychi Konknni: ईराण
客家語/Hak-kâ-ngî: Iran
한국어: 이란
Hausa: Iran
Hawaiʻi: ‘Ilana
հայերեն: Իրան
Արեւմտահայերէն: Իրան
हिन्दी: ईरान
hornjoserbsce: Iran
hrvatski: Iran
Ido: Iran
Ilokano: Iran
বিষ্ণুপ্রিয়া মণিপুরী: ইরান
Bahasa Indonesia: Iran
interlingua: Iran
Interlingue: Iran
Ирон: Иран
isiZulu: I-Irani
íslenska: Íran
italiano: Iran
עברית: איראן
Jawa: Iran
Kabɩyɛ: Iranɩ
kalaallisut: Iran
ಕನ್ನಡ: ಇರಾನ್
Kapampangan: Iran
къарачай-малкъар: Иран
ქართული: ირანი
कॉशुर / کٲشُر: ایٖران
kaszëbsczi: Iran
қазақша: Иран
kernowek: Iran
Kinyarwanda: Irani
Kirundi: Irani
Kiswahili: Uajemi
коми: Иран
Kongo: Iran
Kreyòl ayisyen: Iran
kurdî: Îran
Кыргызча: Иран
Ladino: Iran
лакку: Иран
لۊری شومالی: ایران
Latina: Irania
latviešu: Irāna
Lëtzebuergesch: Iran
лезги: Иран
lietuvių: Iranas
Ligure: Iran
Limburgs: Iran
lingála: Iran
Lingua Franca Nova: Iran
Livvinkarjala: Iran
la .lojban.: iran
lumbaart: Iran
magyar: Irán
मैथिली: इरान
македонски: Иран
Malagasy: Iràna
മലയാളം: ഇറാൻ
Malti: Iran
Māori: Īrāna
मराठी: इराण
მარგალური: ირანი
مصرى: ايران
مازِرونی: ایران
Bahasa Melayu: Iran
Minangkabau: Iran
Mìng-dĕ̤ng-ngṳ̄: Iran
мокшень: Иран
монгол: Иран
မြန်မာဘာသာ: အီရန်နိုင်ငံ
Nāhuatl: Iran
Dorerin Naoero: Iran
Na Vosa Vakaviti: Iran
Nederlands: Iran
Nedersaksies: Iran
नेपाली: इरान
नेपाल भाषा: इरान
日本語: イラン
Napulitano: Iran
нохчийн: Иран
Nordfriisk: Iraan
Norfuk / Pitkern: Eraan
norsk: Iran
norsk nynorsk: Iran
Novial: Iran
occitan: Iran
олык марий: Иран
ଓଡ଼ିଆ: ଇରାନ
Oromoo: Iraan
oʻzbekcha/ўзбекча: Eron
ਪੰਜਾਬੀ: ਈਰਾਨ
पालि: ईरान
Pangasinan: Iran
پنجابی: ایران
Papiamentu: Iran
پښتو: ايران
Patois: Iran
ភាសាខ្មែរ: អ៊ីរ៉ង់
Picard: Iran
Piemontèis: Iran
Tok Pisin: Iran
Plattdüütsch: Iran
polski: Iran
português: Irão
Qaraqalpaqsha: İran
qırımtatarca: İran
română: Iran
rumantsch: Iran
Runa Simi: Iran
русиньскый: Іран
русский: Иран
саха тыла: Ираан
ᱥᱟᱱᱛᱟᱲᱤ: ᱤᱨᱟᱱ
Gagana Samoa: Iran
संस्कृतम्: ईरान
Sängö: Iran
sardu: Iran
Scots: Iran
Seeltersk: Iroan
Sesotho sa Leboa: Iran
shqip: Irani
sicilianu: Iran
සිංහල: ඉරානය
Simple English: Iran
سنڌي: ايران
SiSwati: I-Irani
slovenčina: Irán
slovenščina: Iran
ślůnski: Iran
Soomaaliga: Iiraan
کوردی: ئێران
српски / srpski: Иран
srpskohrvatski / српскохрватски: Iran
Sunda: Iran
suomi: Iran
svenska: Iran
Tagalog: Iran
தமிழ்: ஈரான்
Taqbaylit: Iṛan
tarandíne: Iran
татарча/tatarça: Иран
తెలుగు: ఇరాన్
tetun: Iraun
ትግርኛ: ኢራን
тоҷикӣ: Эрон
ತುಳು: ಇರಾನ್
Türkçe: İran
Türkmençe: Eýran
Twi: Iran
тыва дыл: Ирaн
удмурт: Иран
ᨅᨔ ᨕᨘᨁᨗ: Iran
українська: Іран
اردو: ایران
ئۇيغۇرچە / Uyghurche: ئىران
Vahcuengh: Iran
vèneto: Iran
vepsän kel’: Iran
Tiếng Việt: Iran
Volapük: Lirän
Võro: Iraan
walon: Iran
文言: 伊朗
West-Vlams: Iran
Winaray: Iran
Wolof: Iraan
吴语: 伊朗
Xitsonga: Iran
ייִדיש: איראן
Yorùbá: Ìránì
粵語: 伊朗
Zazaki: İran
Zeêuws: Iran
žemaitėška: Irans
中文: 伊朗
kriyòl gwiyannen: Iran
Sakizaya: Iran