EḤTEŠĀM-AL-DAWLA, ḴĀNLAR KHAN (d. Tehran, Šawwāl 1278/April 1862), seventeenth son of ʿAbbās Mīrzā (q.v.) and governor of several regions in Persia during the reigns of Moḥammad Shah (1250-64/1834-48) and Nāṣer-al-Dīn Shah (1264-1313/1848-96) Qajar. He was named governor of Yazd shortly after Moḥammad Shah had appointed Ḥājī Mīrzā Āqāsī (q.v.) premier in 1251/1835 and most probably on the latter’s recommendation. Within two years, however, Ḵānlar Khan was transferred from Yazd to Kermān and Sīstān, where he suppressed a Baluch revolt. An uprising at Yazd forced him to leave Kermān and return, without authorization, to regain that province from his uncle Bahman Mīrzā Bahāʾ-al-Dawla (q.v.). The subsequent confrontation between the two angered Moḥammad Shah, and it was again Āqāsī who intervened on Ḵānlar Khan’s behalf. In 1257/1841 Ḵānlar Khan was placed in charge of Hamadān, a post he held until the middle of 1264/1848, just two months before the death of Moḥammad Shah (Eʿteżād-al-Salṭana, pp. 511-12, 515-16, 529; Sepehr, II, pp. 100, 105, 109, III, p. 49). After a few months as governor of Māzandarān he was sent to the southwest to put the affairs of Borūjerd and Baḵtīārī in order. Administration of Lorestān and Ḵūzestān was added to his duties in early 1267/1851. During that period he managed to rid the area of most of the local bandits. He also finished the protracted construction of the costly Nahr-e Hāšem dam (later known as Sadd-e nāṣerī) across the river Hāšem, a man-made derivative of the Karḵa (Ādamīyat, pp. 391-92; Sepehr, III, pp. 49-51, 109-11, 129, 164-68; Sākī, pp. 334-36). These achievements were, however, overshadowed by his poor performance as commander of a sizable Persian army at Moḥammara in the Anglo-Persian war of 1273/1856-57 (q.v.), which eventually resulted in the Persian withdrawal from Herat (Kasrawī, pp. 178-85; for personal accounts of the war see Farāhānī; Outram, pp. 215-338). Although he was not personally reprimanded (he is reported to have paid a considerable indemnity), many of his officers were severely punished by the central government (Curzon, Persian Question II, pp. 339-40). His last appointment was as governor of Isfahan, and he died during a visit to Tehran, where he had gone to report on its affairs to Nāṣer-al-Dīn Shah.


Bibliography (for abbreviations in this bibliography, see “Short References.”):

F. Ādamīyat, Amīr Kabīr wa Īrān, 3rd ed., Tehran, 1348 Š./1969.

Asnād-e Eḥtešām-al-Dawla, 2 vols., Tehran University, Central Library, microfilm no. 7032. Bāmdād, Rejāl I, pp. 473-76.

B. English, John Company’s Last War, London, 1971, pp. 121-36.

Eʿtemād-al-Salṭana, Maʾāṯer wa’l-āṯār I, pp. 63, 65, 68, 91; II, pp 679-80.

Montaẓam-e nāṣerī III, pp. 1617, 1718-19, 1727.

ʿAlīqolī Mīrzā Eʿteżād-al-Salṭana, Eksīr al-tawārīḵ, ed. J. Keyānfar, Tehran, 1370 Š./1991.

Y. Farāhānī, Jang-e Īrān o Engelīs dar Moḥammarayāketābča-ye marḥūm Ḵānlar Mīrzā Eḥtešām-al-Dawla dar bāb-e jang-e Īrān o Engelīs dar Moḥammara, 2nd ed., Tehran, 2537=1357 Š./1978.

A. Kasrawī, Tārīḵ-e pānṣad sāla-ye Ḵūzestān, 4th ed., Tehran, 2536=1356 Š./1977.

J. Outram, Lieut.-General Sir James Outram’s Persian Campaign in 1857, London, 1860.

ʿA.-M. Sākī, Joḡrāfīā-ye tārīḵī wa tārīḵ-e Lorestān, Ḵorramābād, 1343 Š./1964.

Ḵ. Sardār Ẓafar, Ḵāṭerāt-e Sardār Ẓafar, Tehran, 1348 Š./1969, pp. 171-73.

Moḥammad-Taqī Lesān-al-Molk Sepehr, Nāseḵ al-tawārīḵ. Qājārīya, 3 vols. in 1, ed. J. Qāʾem-maqāmī, Tehran, 1337 Š./1958.

(Kambiz Eslami)

Originally Published: December 15, 1998

Last Updated: December 15, 1998