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'Military report on Tehran and adjacent Provinces of North-West Persia (including the Caspian Littoral)' [‎8r] (20/610)

The record is made up of 1 volume (301 folios). It was created in 1922. It was written in English. The original is part of the British Library: India Office The department of the British Government to which the Government of India reported between 1858 and 1947. The successor to the Court of Directors. Records and Private Papers.


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PARA. 1.—Growth of Russian influence in Northern Persia
Persia first came into contact with Russia in 1723 when 1723-182&,
Peter the Great sent an army from the Volga which occupied
Rasht and the greater part of the plain of Gllan, and Shah
Tahmasp, the last of the Safavls, agreed to cede the Caspian
provinces of Gilan ? IVlazandaran and Astarabad to the Tsar
in return for his assistance against the Afghans. The
Russians, however, did not enter IVlazandaran or Astaiabad
and in 1734 they evacuated Gilan.
No further conflict occurred with Russia until the end of
the 18th century when Russian armies invaded Georgia, then a
dependency of Persia, and Agha Muhammad Khan Kajar was
murdered while marching to meet them in 1797. Fighting 1
co ntinued during the early years of the reign of Fath AH Shah,
who succeeded him, and was ended by the peace of Gulistan
in 1813 by which Persia ceded Georgia, Darbend, Baku, Shirwan,
Shaki, Ganja (Elisavetopol), Karabagh, Mughan, Lenkoran,
and ail naval rights on the Caspian, and in return Russia under
took to secure the succession of Abbas Mirza, the. heii-
apparent. This last clause is significant as the first sign of
Russian interference in the internal concerns of Persia.
The exasperation of the Persians against the over-bearing
attitude *of the Russians, against their interpretation of doubtful
clauses in the treaty of Gulistan and their ill-treatment of the
Muhammadan population of the provinces ceded to them,
forced the Shah into a 2nd war with Russia in 1826.
After some initial successes it proved disastrous to him
and after the capture of Erivan and Tabriz by the Russians
it was terminated in 1828 by the treaty of Turkomanchai
which superseded the treaty of Gulistan. The Khanates/ o
Erivan and Nakhichivan were ceded to Russia and the new
Russo-Persian frontier was defined. The Shah was also to
pay an indemnity of 5,000,000 2 tumans. The conditions o • e
peace of Gulistan allowing no ships of war on the Caspian
except those flying the Russian flag, and safeguarding e
succession of the Heir-Apparent to the throne of Persia were
In addition the treaty of Turkomanchai contained an
important commercial compact.
1 In 1804 the Russians made a descent in Gilan. They landed at Enzali.but
when attempting to advance through the jungle to Rasht, were ambushed by the
Gilakis, retreated to Enzali and gave up the enterprise.
a The equivalent at that time to rather more than £3,000,000.

About this item


Military report compiled by Captain LS Fortescue of the General Staff of the Mesopotamia Expeditionary Force and printed in Calcutta at the Superintendent Government Printing, India, 1922.

The volume begins with a statement defining the geographical area covered by the report. The report is divided into ten chapters, plus appendices, each concerning a different subject, as follows:

  • Chapter 1: History
  • Chapter 2: Geography
  • Chapter 3: Climate, Water, Medical and Aviation
  • Chapter 4: Ethnography
  • Chapter 5: Administration (including a table of provinces with administrative details (folios 123-30)
  • Chapter 6: Armed Forces of the Persian Government
  • Chapter 7: Economic Resources
  • Chapter 8: Tribes
  • Chapter 9: Personalities
  • Chapter 10: Communications
  • Appendices: Glossary of terms; Weights, measures and coinage; Bibliography; Historical sketch (Chapter 1) continued from June 1920 to the end of 1921

At the back of the volume (folio 302) is a map to illustrate the report.

Extent and format
1 volume (301 folios)

There is a contents page (folio 5) and list of illustrations (folio 6) at the front of the volume and an index at the back (folios 270-300). All refer to the volume's original pagination. The index also includes map references of all places marked on the map.

Physical characteristics

Foliation: the foliation sequence (used for referencing) commences at the front cover with 1, and terminates at the inside back cover with 303; these numbers are written in pencil, are circled, and are located in the top right corner of the recto The front of a sheet of paper or leaf, often abbreviated to 'r'. side of each folio.

Pagination: the file also contains an original printed pagination sequence.

Written in
English in Latin script
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'Military report on Tehran and adjacent Provinces of North-West Persia (including the Caspian Littoral)' [‎8r] (20/610), British Library: India Office Records and Private Papers, IOR/L/MIL/17/15/23, in Qatar Digital Library <> [accessed 29 March 2020]

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