AḴTAR, a Persian newspaper published in Istanbul by Āqā Moḥammad-Ṭāher Qarāǰadāgī (or Tabrīzī) beginning on 16 Ḏu’l-ḥeǰǰa 1292/13 January 1876. For many years Aḵtar appeared weekly, and from time to time even more frequently. The first Persian newspaper to be published outside Iran, it was also one of the few to be printed with movable type, and soon acquired a wide reputation as a well-written periodical of moderate views. Among its well-known contributors were Mīrzā Āqā Khan Kermānī, Shaikh Aḥmad Rūḥī, and Mīrzā Mahdī Tabrīzī. E. G. Browne, writing in 1888, described it as “the only Persian newspaper worth reading.” Its main field of interest was politics and social conditions, and in spite of its moderate tone and the fact that Āqā Moḥammad-Ṭāher had originally started it at the suggestion of an Iranian diplomat in Istanbul, Mīrzā Naǰaf-qolī Khan, it soon attracted unfavorable notice in government circles in Tehran and came under attack by government-sponsored newspapers there. In 1313/1895-96, doubtless as a result of diplomatic representations, it was suppressed by the Ottoman government, and did not reappear. According to E. G. Browne, Āqā Moḥammad-Ṭāher was still living in 1914.
M. S. Hāšemī, Tārīḵ-eǰarāyed va maǰallāt-e Īrān I, pp. 63-65.
E. G. Browne, Press and Poetry, pp. 17-18, 36-37.
(L. P. Elwell-Sutton)
Originally Published: December 15, 1984
Last Updated: July 29, 2011
This article is available in print.
Vol. I, Fasc. 7, p. 730