Mazandaran

From Academic Kids

Map showing Mazandaran in Iran

Mazandaran (مازندران in Persian) is a province in northern Iran, bordering the Caspian Sea in the north. Mazandaran or Mazenderan was a part of the Persian province of Hyrcania.

Sari is the provincial capital. Gorgan also used to be a part of Mazandaran until recently, but is now the capital city of the new Iranian province of Golestan (since 1997).

The province covers an area of 23,833 sq. km. Townships of the province are: Amol, Babol, Babolsar, Behshahr, Tonekabon, Chaloos, Ramsar, Savad Kooh, Qaem Shahr, Mahmood Abad, Neka, Noor and Noshahr.

The Caspian Sea is to the north, the provinces of Tehran and Semnan lie to the south. To the west it has common borders with Gilan province, and to the east stands the province of Golestan.

In 1996, the province had apopulation of about 2.6 million.

Contents

History

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Ramsar.jpg
Ramsar was a popular vacation resort for visiting Americans during the Shah's era. It continues to be used today as a tourist attraction for Iranians.
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Imamzadeh Taher, built in 1424CE near Noshahr.

The name is from Old Persian "mahs Indra" (Great/Big Indra, a vedic god).

Climatic conditions of Mazandaran have prevented the preservation of historical monuments. Thus there are hardly any sound vestiges remaining from pre-Islamic periods in the coastal plains of Mazandaran. But the province is known to have been populated from early antiquity, and Mazandaran has changed hands among various dynasties from early in its history.

In the year 651CE, during the caliphate of Uthman ibn Affan, S'ad Ibn Abi Waqqas, the governor of Kufa, first conquered the coasts of Tabarestan. For the next two hundred years, Tabaristan maintained an existence independent of the Umayyad Caliphate which supplanted the Persian Empire in the early seventh century, but was temporarily absorbed into the Abbasid Caliphate until a separate state in the same territory broke loose as the Alavid Emirate, under a descendant of Ali, and protected by the neighbouring Saffarid Emirate to the southeast. A similarly-situated state arose as the Ziyarid Emirate a century later.

During the Abbasid caliphate of Abou Jafar Al-Mansur, Tabarestan witnessed a wave of popular revolt. Ultimately, Vandad Hormoz established an independent dynasty in Tabarestan in 783CE. In 1034CE, Soltan Mahmoud Ghaznavi entered Tabarestan via Gorgan followed by the invasion of Soltan Mohammad Kharazmshah in 1209CE. Thereafter, the Mongols governed the region and finally were overthrown by the Timurid Dynasty.

After the dissolution of the feudal government of Tabarestan, Mazandaran was incorporated into modern Persian Empire by Shah Abbas I in 1596.

During the reign of Nadir Shah, the province was used as a front to confront Imperial Russia.

Geography and Culture

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Nima Yooshij's tomb in Yush village, is tucked away in the Alborz Mountains of Iran.

Mazandaran province is geographically divided into two parts: the coastal plains, and the mountainous areas. The Alborz Mountain Range surrounds the coastal strip and plains of the Caspian Sea like a huge barrier.

There is often snowfall during most of the seasons in the Alborz regions, which run parallel to the Caspian Sea's southern coast, dividing the province into many isolated valleys.

Language

Mazanderani or Tabari is an ancient northwestern branch of the Iranian languages, and is even considered by some a language in its own right.

Notibly, the language did not come under the influence of other incoming languages such as Mongolian, Arabic, or Tatar, and is still spoken in various dialects in the region.

Celebrities from Mazandaran

many reputed scholars and poets have been raised in Mazandaran, for example, Nima Yooshij, the great late contemporary poet of Iran.

Being formerly part of the greater province of Taparestan or Tabaristan, two famous 9th-century Persian scholars are from Mazandaran, both commonly called "al-Tabari" (meaning simply "from Tabaristan").

Mazandaran today

Economy

Rice, grain, fruits, cotton, tea, tobacco, sugarcane, and silk are produced in the lowland strip along the Caspian shore. Oil wealth has stimulated industries in food processing, cement, textiles, cotton, and fishing (caviar).

Suitable environmental conditions, pleasant and moderate climate, beautiful natural landscapes, and proximity to Tehran, have led the province to be one of the main recreational and tourism areas of Iran.

Iran's Cultural Heritage Organization lists close to 630 sites of historical and cultural significance, hence a wealth of tourist attractions.

Colleges and Universities

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Mazandaran has several institutes of higher education. Most were built after the revolution of 1979.

External links



de:Tabaristan

eo:Mazandaran fa:استان مازندران

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