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Mozaffaroddin Shah Visits Russia

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September, 4, 1905 A.D.:
Mozaffaroddin Shah Visits Russia

By: Mir M.Hosseini

The Qajar king Mozaffaroddin Shah paid a visit to Saint Petersburg. Russian Czar gave a gala dinner at the palace in his majesty's honor in Peterhof. The real reasons behind this visit are unknown but rising tensions against Russian presence in some provinces of Iran might have been an issue on the negotiation table.
On March, 23, 1905, reports of an anti-Russian movement in northern Iran, specially in Mashhad created concern among Russians who saw Iranians as their subjects. There were reports of some other uprisings in other parts of the Russian empire, however Iran was ruled by the puppet Qajar dynasty.
During Qajar era, changes in Shiite faith were made, with support from some clerics that based Shah's authority as the representative of the 12th Imam. A formal religious concept which was adopted in Iran during formation of the Safavid Dynasty, gradually developed into Velayat Faghih in modern times. The problem was that Iranians were taught into year-long mourning ceremonies, while Russia and Britain were cutting pieces from the Empire either through wars or tricks.
Shah's third European tour started with his arrival in Astara on June, 4. He then travelled to Vienna. Shah was in Paris on Jul, 17. Doctors had told him to get as much fresh air as possible, although he was possibly allergic and had asthma. In Shah's company, there were Grand Vezir Einoddoleh, 45 officials and 20 servants. Like his father, he borrowed money from foreigners to cover travel expenses.
Meanwhile, sectarian violence was promoted not only among Muslims and other religions which led to a massacre of Armenians in Baku, but also among different readings of Islam and Shiite faith.
While Britain and Russia saw Persia being In a stale of disintegration, miraculously, Mozaffaroddin Shah listened to rising public awareness in Iran despite Einoddoleh's advice and decided to terminate a sitting in Abdolazim shrine in Rhagae not by force, but by sending royal carriages to bring dissidents to Tehran in honor on Dec, 21, 1905. His last European trip had given him a vision that made Mozaffaroddin Shah sign the Constitutional Monarchy into law in July, 1906.

KEY TERMS:Abdolazim , Armenia , Armenian , Astara , Baku , Britain , Constitution , Constitutional Monarchy , Czar , Dynasty , Einoddoleh , Imam , Iran , Iranian , Islam , Mashhad , Monarchy , Mozaffaroddin Shah , Muslim , Paris , Persia , Petersburg , Qajar , Rhagae , Russia , Russian , Safavi , Safavid , Safavid Dynasty , Saint Petersburg , Shah , Shiite , Tehran , Velayat Faghih , Vezir , Vienna

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