Rezā Shāh was a military colonel who founded the Pahlavi dynasty and reigned as the Shah of Iran from December 1925 to September 1941. He was also the prime minister of Iran from October 1923 to November 1925. His tenure saw the introduction of many social, economic, and political reforms, and he is regarded as the founder of modern Iran.
Reza Pahlavi is the oldest son of Mohammad Reza Pahlavi, the last Shah of Iran, and his wife Farah Diba. He was the crown prince before the Iranian Revolution overthrew the Pahlavi dynasty in 1979. He is the founder of the self-styled National Council of Iran and a prominent critic of Iran's Islamic Republic government.
Hassan Rouhani is an Iranian politician and the current president of Iran. Serving as the Iranian president since 3 August 2013, Rouhani was named in Time magazine's 100 Most Influential People in the World list in 2013. One of the most popular Iranian politicians of all time, Hassan Rouhani is credited with improving the country's diplomatic relations with other countries.
Zerubbabel was a governor of Yehud Medinata, a province in the Achaemenid Empire. The grandson of Jeconiah, Zerubbabel is credited with leading the first group of Jews, who returned from the Babylonian exile, in the first year of Cyrus the Great. Zerubbabel is also credited with laying the foundation of the famous Second Temple in Jerusalem.
Ali-Reza Pahlavi was an Iranian prince who belonged to the Pahlavi Imperial Family. The son of Mohammad Reza Pahlavi, Ali Reza was second in the order of succession to the imperial throne before the Iranian Revolution. Ali-Reza Pahlavi suffered from depression and passed away from a self-inflicted gunshot wound in Boston, USA, at the age of 44.
Mahmoud Ahmadinejad was the president of Iran from 2005 tom 2013. He had also been the mayor of Tehran earlier and had also served as a leader of the conservative coalition Alliance of Builders of Islamic Iran, or Abadgaran. He is also part of the Islamic Society of Engineers.
9 Shapur I
Shapur I ruled as the Shahanshah of the Sasanian Empire from 240 to 270. A fierce conqueror, Shapur destroyed the Arab city of Hatra in the early 240s before waging wars against Roman emperors like Philip the Arab and Valerian and capturing cities of Nisibis, Carrhae, Dura-Europos, and Antioch. Shapur remained active in his later years before dying of illness.
11 Ali Khamenei
Shahpur Bakhtiar was an Iranian politician best remembered for serving as the 45th Prime Minister of Iran from 6 January 1979 to 11 February 1979. Bakhtiar also wrote many articles and books, including Ma Fidélité and 37 Days after 37 Years. Shahpur Bakhtiar was killed in France on 6 August 1991 after he had escaped a couple of assassination attempts.
Nizam al-Mulk was a Persian political philosopher, scholar, and vizier of the Great Seljuk Empire. Nizam rose to the position of the de facto ruler from humble beginnings. He is perhaps best remembered for founding several important institutions known as madrasa in cities across the Seljuk Empire. Nizam al-Mulk is also credited with writing an important political treatise called Siyasatnama.
Mohammad Khatami is an Iranian politician who served as the President of Iran from 1997 to 2005. A respected and influential politician, Khatami advocated tolerance, freedom of expression, and civil society during his presidency. He also served as the Minister of Culture of Iran from 1982 to 1992.
Artabanus of Persia was a Persian political figure who lived during the Achaemenid dynasty. He was reportedly Regent of Persia for a few months between 465 BC and 464 BC. It is believed that he served as the chief official of Xerxes I and was either his vizier or his head bodyguard.
16 Cambyses I
Cambyses I was the king of Anshan from c. 580 to 559 BC. He was an early member of the Achaemenid dynasty and was a great-grandson of its founder Achaemenes. Not much is known about his life other than the fact that he reigned under the overlordship of Astyages.
Nusrat Bhutto was the wife of the former Prime Minister of Pakistan, Zulfikar Ali Bhurro. She was the First Lady of Pakistan from 1971 to 1977. Nusrat Bhutto also served as a senior member of the federal cabinet between 1988 and 1990.
Maryam Rajavi is an Iranian woman best known as the leader of a political-militant organization called People's Mojahedin Organization of Iran (MEK), which is working towards overthrowing the Iranian government. In July 2021, Maryam Rajavi organized a protest and condemned Ebrahim Raisi, calling him the "henchman" of the butchery of 30,000 political prisoners.
19 Shapur II
Shapur II ruled as the Shahanshah of the Sasanian Empire from 309 to 379. Referred to as Shapur II the Great, he ruled for the entirety of his life and is remembered as the longest-reigning monarch in the history of Iran. His reign, which witnessed the expansion of his empire's territory, marked the beginning of the first Sasanian golden era.
Masoud Barzani is a Kurdish politician who served as the President of Kurdistan Region from 2005 to 2017. A respected politician, Barzani has been serving as the head of the Kurdistan Democratic Party since 1979. Barzani is credited with playing a crucial role in the progression of the Kurdistan Region polity after the end of the Gulf War in 1991.
Cyaxares ruled as the king of the Medes from 625 to 585 BC. He is credited with founding the Median Empire and helped transform the empire into a regional power by uniting most of the ancient Iranian tribes after collaborating with the Babylonians to wipe out the Assyrian Empire.
Ardeshir Zahedi was an Iranian diplomat and politician best remembered for serving as the Minister of Foreign Affairs from 12 January 1966 to 12 September 1971. An influential politician, Ardeshir Zahedi also served as ambassador to the US and to the UK from 1960 to 1962 and from 1962 to 1966 respectively.
Fazlollah Zahedi was an Iranian statesman and lieutenant general who served as the 36th Prime Minister of Iran after overthrowing Mohammad Mosaddegh in the 1953 Iranian coup d'état with the help of the Great Britain and the United States. Fazlollah Zahedi was serving as the Ambassador to the UN in Geneva, Switzerland, when he died at the age of 71.
24 Moshe Katsav
Moshe Katsav is an Israeli ex-politician who became the second Mizrahi Jew to serve as the President of Israel from 1 August 2000 until his resignation on 1 July 2007. Katsav resigned after allegations of sexual harassment from his female subordinates. In 2011, Moshe Katsav was sentenced to seven years of imprisonment, of which he served five, at Maasiyahu Prison.
Abolhassan Banisadr was an Iranian writer and politician who served as the first president of Iran from 4 February 1980 to 22 June 1981. Prior to his presidency, Banisadr served as the Minister of Finance from 17 November 1979 to 10 February 1980. Abolhassan Banisadr is also credited with co-founding a political organization called National Council of Resistance of Iran.
Sogdianus of Persia ruled over the Achaemenid Empire from 424 to 423 BC. His rule was cut short by his untimely death as he was captured and killed by his half-brother Ochus who succeeded Sogdianus and ruled over the Persian Empire until 404 BC. Interestingly, Sogdianus of Persia had ascended the throne after having his elder half-brother Xerxes II killed.
Hossein Rezazadeh is an Iranian politician. Also a former weightlifter, he is a two-time Olympic champion and four-time World Weightlifting champion. He is widely considered one of the greatest weightlifters of all time. The Rezazadeh Stadium was built in his honor. He entered politics in 2013 and was elected as a member of the City Council of Tehran.
30 Musa al-Sadr
Musa al-Sadr was an Iranian-born Lebanese scholar and political leader. He founded the Amal Movement, a political party associated with the Shia sect. He was born into an influential family tracing to Musa Ibn Jaafar, the seventh Shia Imam. At the peak of his popularity, he was considered a towering figure in Shia politics. He went missing in August 1978.
Massoud Rajavi was a political figure who became the leader of the People's Mujahedin of Iran (MEK) in 1979. He joined the MEK as a young law student at the University of Tehran. He actively participated in the 1979 Iranian Revolution. He was married to Maryam Rajavi, who became the co-leader of the MEK. He disappeared in 2003.
32 Amir Kabir
Amir Kabir was chief minister to Naser al-Din Shah Qajar (Shah of Persia) for three years. He is regarded as "Iran's first reformer." He tried to bring gradual reform to the country. He executed many Babis, including the founder of the movement, the Báb. Later in his life, he was exiled to Fin Garden in Kashan and eventually murdered.
Mehdi Bazargan was an Iranian academic, scholar, head of Iran's interim government, and long-time pro-democracy activist. He is best remembered for serving as the 46th Prime Minister of Iran from 4 February 1979 to 6 November 1979. A renowned and respected academic, Mehdi Bazargan served as the head of the University of Tehran's first engineering department.
Ahmad Khomeini was an Iranian political leader who played an important role in the Iranian Revolution. The son of Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini, Ahmad served as his father's right-hand man before, during, and after the Revolution. Acting as a bridge between Ruhollah Khomeini and the Iranian people, many of Ahmad Khomeini's decisions had decisive effects on the outcome of the Revolution.
Maryam Namazie is a British-Iranian secularist, human rights activist, communist, commentator, and broadcaster. Namazie has had a huge impact on the lives of refugees around the world. In the USA, she co-founded the Committee for Humanitarian Assistance to Iranian Refugees. Maryam Namazie is also an outspoken critic of cultural relativism and the oppression of women in some Muslim countries.
Mohammad Bagher Ghalibaf is an Iranian politician and former military officer. He is the current Speaker of the Parliament of Iran. From 2005 to 2017, he served as the Mayor of Tehran. After serving as the commander of the Islamic Revolutionary Guards' Aerospace Force from 1997 to 2000, he served as the Chief of police between 2000 and 2005.
37 Bahram V
Bahram V was the Sasanian King of Kings from 420 to 438. He was the son of Sasanian Shah Yazdegerd I and was groomed for succeeding his father from an early age. He was trained under the Lakhmid kings and took over the kingdom upon his father’s death, becoming one of the most famous kings in Iranian history.
Ali Reza Pahlavi was an Iranian socialite best known as the younger son of former Shah of Iran, Mohammad Reza Pahlavi. Ali Reza was second in the right of succession to the Iranian throne prior to the Islamic Revolution. He died at the age of 44 from a self-inflicted gunshot wound after suffering from depression for a long time.
Teispes ruled as the King of Persia from 675 BC until his death in 640 BC. He is said to have conquered the Elamite city of Anshan in a bid to expand his small kingdom. Teispes was succeeded by his son Cyrus I, who went on to rule over Persia for 20 years.
Mohammad Mirmohammadi was an Iranian politician who served as the senior adviser to Iran's Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei. He was conservative and principlist. A member of the Expediency Discernment Council, he was also a member of the 6th and 7th Iranian parliaments for Qom. He has served as the secretary-general of the Islamic Civilization Party as well.
Mostafa Chamran was an Iranian physicist, politician, and commander. He served as the first defense minister of post-revolutionary Iran. He helped to found the Amal Movement in southern Lebanon. He was the commander of paramilitary volunteers in the Iran–Iraq War, known as "Irregular Warfare Headquarters". He died in the war and is known as a martyr in Iran.
Bahram Chobin was a nobleman, political leader, and general of the late Sasanian Empire. He also served as its ruler from 590 to 591. A respected political leader renowned for his character, skills, and accomplishments, Bahram Chobin came to be known as a hero and his life inspired several folktales and literary works.
43 Ahmad Qavam
Ahmad Qavam was a politician best remembered for serving as the Prime Minister of Iran on five occasions between 1921 and 1952. During one of his terms as the Prime Minister, Ahmad Qavam played a key role in the signing of the 1942 Tripartite Treaty between Britain, Russia, and Iran.
Hushang Ansary is an Iranian-American former businessman, diplomat, and philanthropist. He is best known for serving as the Iranian Minister of Tourism and Information from 1971 to 1974. He also served as the Minister of Finance from 1974 to 1977. Hushang Ansary is a recipient of several prestigious awards like the Woodrow Wilson Award and Ellis Island Medal of Honor.
Sadegh Ghotbzadeh was an Iranian politician who worked closely with Ayatollah Khomeini during his 1978 exile in France. He served as the foreign minister during the Iran hostage crisis following the Iranian Revolution. He was arrested on charges of planning to kill Ayatollah Khomeini and criticizing the Islamic Republic Party. He was executed in 1982.
46 Bahram I
Bahram I ruled as the fourth Shahanshah of the Sasanian Empire from June 271 to September 274. Unlike his predecessors, Bahram was intolerant towards Manichaeism. Bahram I's reign marked the beginning of the end of Manichaeism as he imprisoned and executed Mani with the help of the Zoroastrian priest Kartir.
47 Mahmud Gawan
Hossein Fatemi was an Iranian scholar who served as the Minister of Foreign Affairs from 16 September 1952 to 19 August 1953. He worked closely with Mohammad Mosaddegh and proposed the nationalization of Iranian gas and oil assets. When the Mosaddegh government was toppled after the 1953 coup d'état, Hossein Fatemi was arrested, tortured, and executed by a firing squad.
Hadi Khosroshahi was an Iranian cleric and diplomat. As a 15-year-old, he joined Sayyid Mojtaba Mir-Lohi, the leader of the militant outfit Fada'iyan-e Islam (Devotees of Islam). He served as the first Iranian Ambassador to the Vatican. In the Vatican, he founded Europe's Islamic Culture Center. He also had close ties to Egypt's Muslim Brotherhood.
Qazi Muhammad was an Iranian Kurdish leader best remembered for establishing the Democratic Party of Iranian Kurdistan. He served as the President of the short-lived self-governing state Republic of Mahabad. In 1947, Qazi Muhammad was hanged to death by the Pahlavi dynasty after accusing him of treason.