Wikijunior:Asia/Iran

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Flag of Iran.svg Iran
Location of Iran

Iran (Persian: ایران‎‎), officially the Islamic Republic of Iran (formerly called Persia), is a country in Western Asia. The president of Iran is Hassan Fereydoun, the capital is Tehran and the currency is the Iranian rial.

Where is Iran?[edit]

Iran is located in the Middle East, in Asia.

To the north of Iran are Turkmenistan, Azerbaijan and Armenia, including the Caspian Sea. To the east is Pakistan and Afghanistan, to the south is bordered by the Gulf of Oman and the Persian Gulf, and Iraq and Turkey cover the west.

How many people live in Iran?[edit]

The Milad Tower in Tehran, Iran

Being the 17th most populous country in the world, around 80 million people live in Iran (8.4 million of the population are living in Tehran, which makes Tehran the largest city in Western Asia and one of the largest cities in the Middle East), which is equivalent to 1.08% of the total world population. About 50.7% of the population are men, and the rest (49.3%) are women. Iran also holds over 1 million refugees, mainly from Iraq and Afghanistan.

What are the most common languages in Iran?[edit]

"Farsi" in Persian writing

Most of the people in Iran speak Persian (also known as Farsi), which is the official language and the most spoken language in Iran (with 65 million speakers). Other common languages include Azerbaijani, Kurdish, Lurish, Gilaki, Mazandarani, Luri, Arabic and Baluchi.

What is the most common religion in Iran?[edit]

Mashhad, a holy Shia city

The most common religion in Iran is Shi'ism, as about 90% of Iranians practice Shi'ism. Shi'ism is one of the two main branches of Islam, and it is mostly practiced in Iran and Iraq. There is also a population of Sunni Muslims (mostly Arabs and Kurds), and a very small population of Christians, Jews, Zoroastrians, etc.

What is the sport of Iran?[edit]

Practitioners at a zurkhaneh, performing strength training

The national sport of Iran is wrestling. Many types of wrestling exist in Iran, and it has been practiced there since ancient times. But currently, the most popular sport in Iran is football (association football).

Ancient people of Persia invented polo. Chess was also popular in ancient Persia.

Another ancient sport, which is currently practiced only in Iran, is varzesh-e bastani. It is a combination of martial arts, calisthenics, strength training and music, which is practiced in a special stadium called zurkhaneh.

What are some important sites?[edit]

  • Persepolis (also known as Takht-e-Jamshid), near Shiraz, was the capital city of the ancient Persian Empire. It was built by cutting huge stones.
  • Naqsh-e Jahan Square, also known as Imam Square, was once the city center of the Isfahan, which was a capital city of Persia in its Islamic period.
  • Golestan Palace, is the palace that became the seat of government for the Qajar dynasty in Iran. Golestan was built during the Safavid dynasty (1502-1736), reviewed and reformed by Karim Khan of the Zand Dynasty (1750-1779), and became the seat of government for the Qajar Dynasty (1742-1797). Another important feature of the Golestan Palace is that the palace became the residence of the Qajar Family during the reign of Agha Mohammed Khan (the founder of the Qajar Dynasty). This is because the location of this palace, the city of Tehran, became the capital of the Qajar Dynasty. Other than the interesting history, the palace holds a jungle of beautiful architecture! The Golestan Palace consist of 17 structures, including palaces and museums. The 17-structure building encloses heaps of gardens and royal buildings. Due to it's beautiful, Persian-based structure, the Golestan Palace has became an inspiration for Iranian artists and architects.
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