Gholam Reza Pahlavi

Iranian royal

Gholam Reza Pahlavi (Persian: غلامرضا پهلوی‎‎; 15 May 1923 – 7 May 2017) was an Iranian prince and a member of the Pahlavi dynasty, as the son of Reza Shah and half-brother of Mohammad Reza Pahlavi, the last Shah of Iran.

Following the death of his half-sister Ashraf Pahlavi on 7 January 2016, Gholam Reza became the only living child of Reza Pahlavi. He resided in Paris with his family. He died on 7 May 2017 at the age of 93, eight days before his 94th birthday.


  • 1 Early life and education
  • 2 Career and activities
  • 3 Personal life and later years
  • 4 Book
  • 5 Honours
    • 5.1 National honours
    • 5.2 Foreign honours
  • 6 References
  • 7 External links

Early life and education

Pahlavi was born on 15 May 1923 in Iran. He was the fifth child and third son of Reza Shah, the founder of the Iranian Pahlavi dynasty. His mother, Turan (Qamar ol-Molouk) Amirsoleimani, was related to the Qajar dynasty deposed in 1925 in favor of Reza Shah. More specifically, she was the daughter of a Qajar dignitary, Issa Majd al Saltaneh. She was also the granddaughter of Majd ed-Dowleh Qajar-Qovanlu Amirsoleimani, Naser al Din Shah's maternal cousin. Gholam Reza's parents were married in 1922 and divorced shortly after his birth in 1923.

He received primary education in Persia (Iran) and then went to Switzerland for secondary education. In 1936, he returned to Iran and attended military school. He accompanied his father, Reza Shah, to his exile in Mauritius when he was forced to abdicate in September 1941. In the aftermath of Reza Shah's abdication, the British and Russian envoys attempted to put Gholam Reza on the throne, bypassing then Crown Prince Mohammad Reza when their efforts to end the Pahlavi dynasty and reinstate the Qajar dynasty failed. It, however, also did not work. Gholam Reza graduated from Princeton University.

Career and activities

Upon returning to Iran, he attended military officers' training college for a military career. Pahlavi began his career in Iran's armed forces serving as inspector general. After holding different positions in the army he was promoted to the rank of lieutenant general in 1973.

In 1955, he became a member of the International Olympic Committee. He also served as president of the Iranian National Olympic Committee. He was a member of the Royal Council which ruled Iran during the international visits of Mohammad Reza Pahlavi.

In early December 1973, he and his wife officially visited China just before the first Iranian ambassador, Abbas Aram, began to serve in that country. As president of the Iranian national Olympic committee, he supported China's objection to Taiwan's participation in the 1976 Montreal Olympic Games. However, he never tended to play an active role in domestic politics. During the reign of Mohammad Reza Pahlavi, he owned land in Iran and was a large shareholder in six firms. He retired from the Iranian army as a brigadier general.

Personal life and later years

Gholam Reza Pahlavi at Book Launch Ceremony in Nice, France, 2007.

Pahlavi married Homa Aalam on 4 April 1947 in Tehran. They had a daughter, Mehrnaz (born 4 February 1949), and a son, Bahman (born 30 January 1950). They divorced in 1956 and he married Manijeh Jahanbani, a Qajar princess, in Tehran on 6 March 1962. This marriage produced two daughters and a son: Azardokht (Khadijeh) Pahlavi, Maryam (Zahra) Pahlavi and Bahram Pahlavi.

Pahlavi left Iran before the 1979 revolution along with other relatives. He settled in Paris. In the immediate aftermath of the revolution, Ayatollah Sadegh Khalkhali, a religious judge and then chairman of the Revolutionary Court, informed the press that a death sentence was passed on the members of the Pahlavi family, including Gholam Reza and other former Shah officials. He d... more

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