Princess Qajar – The Symbol of Beauty in Persia

Princess Qajar of Persia - The Symbol of Beauty
Written by Aakif

Princess Qajar was considered the symbol of beauty in Persia for whom 13 men committed suicide. Who was she actually? In this write-up, we shall discuss the complete biography of Princess Qajar, her family and life.

Was Princess Qajar actually beautiful? We will discuss it later on. Before that, we will discuss her personal life and personality.

Who was Princess Qajar?

The original name of Princess Qajar was Zahra Khanom Tadj es-Saltaneh. Born in 1883, she was the daughter of Naser al-Din Shah Qajar (King of Persia, 1848 – 1896). Her mother’s name was Turan es – Saltaneh. Her father was assassinated in 1896.

Apart from being considered beautiful, she was actually smart and outspoken. She was courageous and bold. Moreover, she took initiative and broke multiple taboos in society.

Princess Qajar

At the age of 13, she got married to Sardar Hassan Shojah Saltaneh, an aristocrat and the son of the defense minister ‘Shojah al-Saltaneh’. They had four children. Later on, she divorced her husband, breaking a taboo and becoming one of the first women in the royal family to get a divorce.

She was also the first woman in the court who took off her hijab and started wearing western clothes.

In fact, she was a feminist who spoke up for women’s rights. She was a memoirist of the Qajar Dynasty. In her memoir Crowning Anguish: Memoirs of a Persian Princess from the Harem to Modernity, she depicted a clash between harem (symbolically, restricting women from the public sphere) and modernism.

Apart from this, princess Qajar was also a writer, a painter, an intellectual, and an activist.

It is well-known that the famous Iranian poet, lyricist, and musician Aref Qazvini took a special interest in princess Qajar. He was so mad at her love that he wrote the poem Ey Taj for her.

She died in 1936 at the age of 53.

Was Princess Qajar actually beautiful?

Not at all. Princess Qajar was not beautiful, actually not beautiful from our definition of feminine beauty.

Princess Qajar had masculine bodily features with a mustache on her face. She resembled more a man than a woman.

Princess Qajar

One can say that in Persia at that time, men had probably a great liking for such women. It is also a universal fact that the definition of beauty differs in different regions and tribes.

For example, if we refer to the fact that beauty in women is seen in Mursi Tribe, we can easily understand how the definition of beauty differs geographically.

The Mursi are famous for their lip-plates, large pottery, or wooden discs in the lower lips, their girls and women wear from the age of 15.


Hence, we cannot deny the fact that the men in Persia actually took a special interest in and felt keen love for Princess Qajar. It should not come as a surprise that 13 men actually took their lives by committing suicide for the princess.

Wrapping Up

As it is said that beauty is in the eye of the beholder. Such was the case of how men fell in love with Princess Qajar.

It reminds me of the story of Laila and Majnu. Laila had a dark complexion and was not apparently beautiful. People even questioned Majnu about his choice and love. His reply was ‘You cannot see what I see in her’.

To cap it all, Princess Qajar was beautiful but we fail to recognize her beauty.

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About the author


A versatile human being with a passion for reading and writing - always striving for growth, living in the moment but trying to keep pace with the evolving world.

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