Iranian Azeris

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The Iranian Azeris (Persian: ایرانیان آذربایجان; Azeri: ایران آذربایجانلیلاری), also known as Iranian Azerbaijanis, are Iranians of full or partial Azeri descent. Iranian Azeris are a Turkic-speaking people they are mainly descended from the earlier Iranian-speakers of the region.[1] The mother tongue of most Iranian Azeris is Azeri language. Azeri language is a Turkic language learned and spoken by Iranian peasants.[2]

Iranian Azeris
ایران آذربایجانلیلاری
Total population
Flag of Iran.svg Iran: 16% of population[3][4]
Regions with significant populations
  • East Azerbaijan
  • West Azerbaijan
  • Ardabil
  • Zanjan
Languages
  • Azeri
  • Persian
Religion
Shia Islam

History[change | change source]

Ancient age[change | change source]

In the Achaemenid period Azerbaijan was part of the satrapy of Media. When the Achaemenid empire collapsed, Atropates, the Persian satrap of Media, made himself independent in the northwest of this region in 321 B.C. Thereafter Greek and Latin writers named the territory Media Atropatene or, less frequently, Media Minor. The Middle Persian form of the name was (early) Āturpātakān, (later) Ādurbādagān whence the New Persian Āḏarbāyjān.[5]

Medieval age[change | change source]

The Safavids, emerged in the Ardabil region of Iranian Azerbaijan and continued their existence until 1722/1736 by capturing all of Iranian Azerbaijan. The Safavids reasserted the Iranian identity of the region and established an independent Iranian state.[6] It is estimated that the Safavid dynasty was partly or wholly of Kurdish origin.[7][8][9]

Later, Iranian Azerbaijan fell into the hands of Pahlavis in 1925. The Azerbaijan People's Government was founded in 1945 but was overthrown by the Pahlavis in 1946.

With the 1979 Iranian Islamic revolution, Iranian Azerbaijan became a part of the Islamic Republic of Iran and has survived to the present day.

References[change | change source]

  1. Fyre 2004, pp. 321–326: "The Turkish speakers of Azerbaijan (q.v.) are mainly descended from the earlier Iranian speakers, several pockets of whom still exist in the region."
  2. Planhol 2004, p. 204–212: "Azeri, not unlike Uzbek (see above), lost the vocal harmony typical of Turkish languages. It is a Turkish language learned and spoken by Iranian peasants."
  3. "Iran". The World Factbook. Central Intelligence Agency (United States). "Persian 61%, Azeri 16%, Kurd 10%, Lur 6%, Baloch 2%, Arab 2%, Turkmen and Turkic tribes 2%, other 1%"
  4. "Iran - Azeris". World Directory of Minorities and Indigenous Peoples. "Azeris compose around 16 per cent of the overall population of the Islamic Republic of Iran and 3 times the population of neighbouring Azerbaijan."
  5. Schippmann 1987, pp. 221–224: "In the Achaemenid period Azerbaijan was part of the satrapy of Media. When the Achaemenid empire collapsed, Atropates, the Persian satrap of Media, made himself independent in the northwest of this region in 321 B.C. (thus H. H. Schmitt, Untersuchungen zur Geschichte Antiochos’ des Grossen und seiner Zeit, Wiesbaden, 1964, p. 61; in 328 according to V. Minorsky in EI2 I, p. 188, or 328-27 according to Kaerst, in Pauly-Wissowa, II, co1. 2150). Thereafter Greek and Latin writers named the territory Media Atropatene or, less frequently, Media Minor (e.g. Strabo 11.13.1; Justin 23.4.13). The Middle Persian form of the name was (early) Āturpātakān, (later) Ādurbādagān) whence the New Persian Āḏarbāyjān (on the name Atropatene and its derivation, see Minorsky, loc. cit.; Andreas, “Adarbigana,” in Pauly-Wissowa, I, cols. 345ff.; Weissbach, “Atropatene,” in Pauly-Wissowa, II, cols. 2149-50, and Streck, in Pauly-Wissowa, Suppl. I, cols. 223-24; Schwarz, Iran, repr. 1969, pp. 959ff.)."
  6. Savory 1980, p. 3: "Why is there such confusion about the origins of this important dynasty, which reasserted Iranian identity and established an independent Iranian state after eight and a half centuries of rule by foreign dynasties?"
  7. Matthee 2005, p. 17; Matthee 2008.
  8. Amoretti & Matthee 2009.
  9. Savory 2008, p. 8.

Sources[change | change source]

  • Fyre, R. N. (2004). "IRAN v. PEOPLES OF IRAN (1) A General Survey". Encyclopædia Iranica. Vol. XIII. Fasc. 3. pp. 321–326. The Turkish speakers of Azerbaijan (q.v.) are mainly descended from the earlier Iranian speakers, several pockets of whom still exist in the region.
  • Planhol, Xavier de (2004). "IRAN i. LANDS OF IRAN". Encyclopædia Iranica. Vol. XIII. Fasc. 2. pp. 204–212. Azeri, not unlike Uzbek (see above), lost the vocal harmony typical of Turkish languages. It is a Turkish language learned and spoken by Iranian peasants.
  • Schippmann, K. (1987). "IRAN i. LANDS OF IRAN". Encyclopædia Iranica. Vol. III, Fasc. 2. pp. 221–224. In the Achaemenid period Azerbaijan was part of the satrapy of Media. When the Achaemenid empire collapsed, Atropates, the Persian satrap of Media, made himself independent in the northwest of this region in 321 B.C. (thus H. H. Schmitt, Untersuchungen zur Geschichte Antiochos’ des Grossen und seiner Zeit, Wiesbaden, 1964, p. 61; in 328 according to V. Minorsky in EI2 I, p. 188, or 328-27 according to Kaerst, in Pauly-Wissowa, II, co1. 2150). Thereafter Greek and Latin writers named the territory Media Atropatene or, less frequently, Media Minor (e.g. Strabo 11.13.1; Justin 23.4.13). The Middle Persian form of the name was (early) Āturpātakān, (later) Ādurbādagān) whence the New Persian Āḏarbāyjān (on the name Atropatene and its derivation, see Minorsky, loc. cit.; Andreas, “Adarbigana,” in Pauly-Wissowa, I, cols. 345ff.; Weissbach, “Atropatene,” in Pauly-Wissowa, II, cols. 2149-50, and Streck, in Pauly-Wissowa, Suppl. I, cols. 223-24; Schwarz, Iran, repr. 1969, pp. 959ff.).
  • Matthee, Rudi (2005). The Pursuit of Pleasure: Drugs and Stimulants in Iranian History, 1500-1900. Princeton Universty Press. pp. 18. The Safavids, as Iranians of Kurdish ancestry and of nontribal background (...)
  • Amoretti, Biancamaria Scarcia; Matthee, Rudi (2009). "Ṣafavid Dynasty". In Esposito, John L. (ed.). The Oxford Encyclopedia of the Islamic World. Oxford University Press. Of Kurdish ancestry, the Ṣafavids started as a Sunnī mystical order (...)
  • Matthee, Rudi (2008). "SAFAVID DYNASTY". Encyclopædia Iranica. As Persians of Kurdish ancestry and of a non-tribal background, the Safavids (...)
  • Savory, Roger (2008). "EBN BAZZĀZ". Encyclopædia Iranica. Vol. VIII. Fasc. 1. p. 8. This official version contains textual changes designed to obscure the Kurdish origins of the Safavid family and to vindicate their claim to descent from the Imams.
  • Savory, Roger (1980). Iran under the Safavids. Cambridge University Press. p. 3. Why is there such confusion about the origins of this important dynasty, which reasserted Iranian identity and established an independent Iranian state after eight and a half centuries of rule by foreign dynasties?