Tadj ol-Molouk

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Tâj ol-Moluk Âyromlu
The Queen Mother
Tadj olMolouk.jpg
Queen consort of Iran
Tenure15 December 1925 – 16 September 1941
BornNimtâj Âyromlu
(1896-03-17)17 March 1896
Baku, Russian Empire
(now in Azerbaijan)
Died10 March 1982(1982-03-10) (aged 85)
Acapulco, Mexico
Reza Shah
(m. 1916;died 1944)
Issue Princess Shams
Mohammad Reza Shah
Princess Ashraf
Prince Ali Reza
Full name
English: Taj ol-Molouk
Persian: تاج‌الملوک آیرملو
House Pahlavi
Father Teymur Khan Ayromlou
MotherZahra Khanum
Religion Islam

Tâj ol-Moluk Âyromlu (Persian : تاج الملوک آيرملو, born Nimtâj Âyromlu [1] (Persian : نیم‌تاج آیرملو; 17 March 1896 – d. 10 March 1982) was Queen of Iran as the wife of Reza Shah, founder of the Pahlavi dynasty and Shah of Iran between 1925 and 1941. The title she was given after becoming Queen means "Crown of the Kingdom" in the Arabic language. She was the first Queen in Iran after the Muslim conquest in the 7th century to have participated in public royal representation and played a major role in the Kashfe hijab (ban of the veil) in 1936.

Persian language Western Iranian language

Persian, also known by its endonym Farsi, is a Western Iranian language belonging to the Iranian branch of the Indo-Iranian subdivision of the Indo-European languages. It is a pluricentric language predominantly spoken and used officially within Iran, Afghanistan and Tajikistan in three mutually intelligible standard varieties, namely Iranian Persian, Dari Persian and Tajiki Persian. It is also spoken natively in the Tajik variety by a significant population within Uzbekistan, as well as within other regions with a Persianate history in the cultural sphere of Greater Iran. It is written officially within Iran and Afghanistan in the Persian alphabet, a derivation of the Arabic script, and within Tajikistan in the Tajik alphabet, a derivation of Cyrillic.

Reza Shah Shah of Iran, Founder of the Imperial state of iran

Reza Shah Pahlavi, commonly known as Reza Shah, was the Shah of Iran from 15 December 1925 until he was forced to abdicate by the Anglo-Soviet invasion of Iran on 16 September 1941.

Pahlavi dynasty Dynasty that ruled Iran from 1925 until 1979

The Pahlavi dynasty was the last ruling house of the Imperial State of Iran from 1925 until 1979, when the Persian monarchy was overthrown and abolished as a result of the Iranian Revolution. The dynasty was founded by Reza Shah Pahlavi in 1925, a former brigadier-general of the Persian Cossack Brigade, whose reign lasted until 1941 when he was forced to abdicate by the Allies after the Anglo-Soviet invasion of Iran. He was succeeded by his son, Mohammad Reza Pahlavi, the last Shah of Iran.



She was the daughter of Brigadier General Teymur Khan Ayromlou. [2] Her marriage was reportedly arranged and proved an advantage in the military career of Reza Shah at the time, due to the connections of her father, enabling him to advance in the Cossack hierarchy.

Brigadier General Teymur-Xân Âyromlu was a prominent figure in the army of Persia at the start of the twentieth century. Queen Tâj ol-Moluk Âyromlou was his daughter. The notable General Muhammad-Husayn Ayrom was his nephew.

On 23 February 1921, Reza Shah took power in a coup in Tehran.

1921 Persian coup d'état, known in Iran as 3 Esfand coup d'état, refers to several major events in Persia in 1921, which eventually led to the establishment of the Pahlavi dynasty as the ruling house of the country in 1925.


Queen Taj ol-Molouk, between 1926-1941 Taj ol-Molouk - queen of Persia.jpg
Queen Taj ol-Molouk, between 1926–1941

On 15 December 1925, her spouse declared himself Shahan-Shah (King of Kings), and she was granted the title Maleke (Queen).

Privately, Tadj ol-Molouk did not live with Reza Shah at this point, as he reportedly devoted his time on his other wives, Touran Amir Soleimani, and, from 1923, Esmat Dowlatshahi. Neither did she involve herself in politics on her own initiative. However, it was she who was given the position of Queen during his reign, which signified an important role in his policy on women. She was the first Queen of Iran to have played a public role, and to have performed an official position out in public society.

Her role as a queen participating in public representational duties had a great importance within the new policy of women's role in Iran, as it was the policy of her husband to increase women's participation in society as a method of modernization, in accordance with the example of Turkey. [3] She played an important part in the abolition of the veil in Iran during the reign of her husband. The unveiling of women had a huge symbolic importance to achieve this, and the shah introduced the reform gradually so as not to cause unrest: while women teachers where encouraged to unveil in 1933 and schoolgirls and women students in 1935, the official declaration of unveiling were made on 8 January 1936, and the queen and her daughters where given an important role in this event. [3] That day, Reza Shah attended the graduation ceremony of the Tehran Teacher's College with the queen and their two daughters unveiled and dressed in modern clothes, without veils. [3] The queen handed out diplomas, while the shah spoke about half the population being disregarded, and told women that the future was now in their hands. [3] This was the first time an Iranian queen showed herself in public. Afterwards, the Shah had pictures of his wife and daughters published, and unveiling enforced throughout Iran. [3]

Tadj ol-Molouk continued to participate in public representation in this fashion when obliged to by her husband and thus played an indirect role in his policy, but she never made any initiatives of her own and stayed out of political involvement. In 1939, she attended the wedding of her son to Fawzia of Egypt. The relationship to Fawzia was not, however, described as a good one.

Fawzia Fuad of Egypt Egyptian royal

Fawzia Fuad of Egypt, also known as Muluk Fawzia of Iran, was an Egyptian princess who became Queen of Iran as the first wife of Mohammad Reza Pahlavi.

Later life

On 16 September 1941, Reza Shah was deposed and exiled. She did not follow him to his exile in South Africa, instead choosing to remain at the court of her son in Iran.

She held significant influence over her son and reportedly dominated the royal household. The conflict between Tadj ol-Molouk and her daughter-in-law Queen Fawzia attracted attention at the time, and reportedly participated in the factors which lead to the departure of Fawzia to Egypt and the dissolution of the royal marriage in 1945. She was acknowledged to have had a deeply devoted relationship to Princess Shahnaz.

In 1950, Tadj ol-Molouk participated in arranging the marriage between her son the shah and Soraya Esfandiari-Bakhtiari. She left Iran with most of the members of the royal house during the tenure of Mossadegh, and returned to Iran after the fall of Mossadegh in 1953.

During the reign of her son, Tadj ol-Molouk normally did not participate in royal representation, in contrast to her daughters and daughter-in-law, nor did she participate much in charity. She did not fully attend the coronation of the shah in 26 October 1967, attending only the reception following it rather than the coronation itself. She did arrange two receptions in her palace annually: one to celebrate the birthday of her eldest grandson, and one to celebrate the fall of Mossadegh. When the health of the shah was beginning to deteriorate in 1971, this was not admitted, and the official reason for physicians to visit the palace was for the sake of the elderly Tadj ol-Molouk.

Before the 1979 revolution, Tadj ol-Molouk was sent by Mohammad Reza Pahlavi to the house of Shams Pahlavi in Beverly Hills. [4] She arrived in Los Angeles on 30 December 1978 aboard an Imperial Iranian Air Force Boeing 747. [5] Soon after her arrival, on 2 January 1979, Iranian students in the city attacked the house and attempted to burn it. [4] [6] Then she and her daughter took refuge at the Palm Springs estate of Walter Annenberg, former US ambassador to the United Kingdom. [4]

She died in Acapulco, Mexico, on 10 March 1982 [7] after a lengthy battle with leukemia seven days before her 86th birthday.[ citation needed ]


Queen Nimtaj had four children: Shams, Mohammad Reza, the last Shah of Iran, and his twin sister Ashraf, and Ali Reza. [8]

Titles, styles and honours

Styles of
Queen Tadj ol-Molouk of Iran
Imperial Coat of Arms of Iran.svg
Reference style Her Imperial Majesty
Spoken styleYour Imperial Majesty



National honours

Foreign honours

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Iranian royalty
Preceded by
Badr al-Molouk
Queen consort of Iran
Succeeded by
Fawzia of Egypt