ABU’L-FATḤ KHAN JAVĀNŠĪR, son of the ruler of Qarābāḡ, Ebrāhīm Ḵalīl Khan Javānšīr, and through his sister brother-in-law of Fatḥ-ʿAlī Shah. In the First Russo-Persian War Abu’l-Fatḥ Khan supported the Persians and fought on the side of the crown prince ʿAbbās Mīrzā; his father placed himself under the protection of the Russians (in 1804) and died two years later near his capital, Shusha, in somewhat mysterious circumstances. In the treaty of Golestān (1813), Qarābāḡ was ceded to Russia; even before it was signed, Abu’l-Fatḥ Khan withdrew from Qarābāḡ along with his fellow tribesmen, and ʿAbbās Mīrzā made him governor of Dezmār. “Dezzamār” (according to Yāqūt) lay on a southern tributary of the Aras, which flowed into the main river at Ordūbād; by Yāqūt’s time it was already described as a stout fortress (qaḷʿa ḥaṣīna; see Schwarz, Iran, p. 1172; Le Strange, Lands, p. 167). In the years following 1813 Abu’l-Fatḥ Khan smuggled his warriors back across the Aras into southern Qarābāḡ and took up residence in the village of Garmī (eight farsangs south of Shusha). Presumably this must have been done with the connivance of his brother Mahdī-qolī Khan, who had succeeded his father in 1806 as governor of Shusha in the service of the Russians. A map drawn by W. Monteith and preserved in the British Foreign Office (no. 60/13) shows that Abu’l-Fatḥ Khan’s domain bordered in the south on the Aras and stretched from Ḵodā-āfarīn in the east to the Maqrī mountains in the west. Since he continued to hold office as governor of Dezmār, his territory lay partly on Persian and partly on Russian soil—an anomaly characteristic of the situation at that time. Admittedly the exact location of the frontier in the area of Maqrī and Qapān (the tract of land around Ordūbād) was a bone of contention; the Russians, at least, regarded the Aras as their frontier. In 1818, long before the outbreak of the Second Russo-Persian War, ʿAbbās Mīrzā invaded the territory to which the Russians laid claim and which was de facto under their sovereignty; supported by 100 horsemen, he brought Abu’l-Fatḥ Khan back by force. This frontier violation by the crown prince is not mentioned in the chronicles but is reported by the British chargé d’affaires, Willock, in a letter of 22 March 1818, to Castlereagh (Foreign Office, 60/13). What happened to Abu’l-Fatḥ Khan thereafter is not known; he does not appear to have taken part in the battles of the Second Russo-Persian War. His brother Mahdī-qolī Khan crossed into Persian soil in 1822. Under the terms of the peace of Torkmāṇčāy in 1828, the whole of Qarābāḡ was finally ceded to Russia.
Bibliography : Lesān-al-molk Sepehr, Nāṣeḵ al-tawārīḵ IX (lith. ed., not paginated; for ed., see Storey I, pp. 153-54). ʿAbd-al-Razzāq Donbolī, Maʾāṯer-e solṭānīya, tr. in H. J. Brydges, The Dynasty of the Kajars, London, 1833, pp. 270, 277, 390. Reżā-qolī Khan Hedāyat, Rawżat al-ṣafā-ye Nāṣerī, Tehran, 1270-74/1853-56, IX, pp. 423-25. Fasāʾī, tr. Busse, p. 139. R. G. Watson, History of Persia from the Beginning of the Nineteenth Century to the Year 1858, London, 1866, pp. 148-49, 153-54, 206-07.
Originally Published: December 15, 1983
Last Updated: July 21, 2011
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Vol. I, Fasc. 3, pp. 285-286