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MIRZA RIZA KHAN ARFA OD-DOVLA (MIRZA RZA KHAN TABRIZI; 1846-1937), PERSONAL ARCHIVE
More than 30 rare documents, letters, original photographs, business cards, books and various documents of the Iranian politician’s family. 1) Handwritten letter from Alexander Somov, State Counsellor and diplomat, in which he pays his respects to the Prince and informs him that the Tsar (Nicholas II) has handwritten to Count Lamsdorff’s report that the Prince has arrived in St Petersburg as Ambassador and that the Prince «will be received with full hospitality». 23 October / 5 November 1904. Paper with the monogram. In French. 2) Letter of congratulations on the Prince’s appointment as a member of the International Institute for Peace, chaired by the Prince of Monaco. May 14, 1913. Official stamped paper of the Prince of Monaco. Presumably signed by Gaston Moch, one of the champions of peace, head of the Institute and a close associate of Albert I. 3) Danish M.R. khan Memoirs of Mirza-Riza-khan Danish, Adjutant General of His Majesty the Shah of Persia. Tifl is: Tifl is Metekhi prison castle publishing, 1894. - , 55 p.; 20cm. In individual leather binding, with gold embossing: “Danisсh” on the bottom of the top cover. 4) Poetic poem dedicated to Sheik which ends with the words: “Et le récit de jeune et de vieux prend fin et le seul but de Daniche a été de constater la logique du jugement du juste Sheik. Imprimé en 5 exemplaires”. Only 5 copies. This may be the only surviving copy. 5) A sa majesté impériale le schah de Perse. Hymne national persan. Paroles Mirza Riza Khan Danéche. Musique de J.Strauss. National Anthem of Persia. Dedicated to the Shah of Persia. Lyrics by Mirza Riza Khan Danéche. In illustrated publisher’s cover. Rare edition. 6) Poésies de Mirza-Riza-Khan Daniche: traduction d’une ode persane de Mirza-Riza-Khan Daniche dédiée a Sa Majesté L’impératrice Alexandra Fedorovna. S.-Peterbourg, 1900. Poems of Mirza-Riza-Khan Daniche: a translation of a Persian ode. St. Petersburg, 1902. With the dedication to the Empress Alexandra Fedorovna. In publisher’s gold-tinted cardboard. 7) La collection de S.A. le Prince Mirza-Riza Khan Daniche Arfa-ud-Dovleh Ambassadeur de Perse. Constantinople, 1902. The Collection of Prince Mirza-Riza Khan Daniche, the Ambassador of Persia. Constantinople, 1902. In illustrated publisher’s cover. 8) Quelques lettres reçues par Le Prince Arfa-ud-Dovleh Mirza Riza Khan Daniche durant l’année 1900 a propose de ses poésies. Stockholm, 1900. Some letters received by Prince Mirza Riza Khan Daniche in 1900. Stockholm, 1900. In an illustrated publisher’s cover. 9) Alphabet rechdié by Mirza Riza Khan. Premier publication of ‘’Société de la propagation de l’instruction parnri les Persians’’. Tifl is, 1882. Mirza Riza Khan’s Alphabet. The first publication of the Society for the Propagation of Education among Persians. Tifl is, 1882. 10) His Highness Prince Arfa-ud-Dovleh Mirza Riza Khan Danisch and Public Opinion by Henri-Eug. Lazard. Second edition. Arlon, 1905. 11) Échos de la Conférence de la Haye par Le Prince Arfa-ud-Dovleh Mirza Riza Khan Daniche. Constantinople, 1903. With a portrait of the prince. As a delegate to the Hague Peace Conference, Mirza Riza Khan wrote a poem “Peace”, which he later sent to Leo Tolstoy. The Russian writer replied with a warm letter outlining his thoughts on how to end wars on earth. 12) A selection of letters in Russian and French, including letters to his wife Else. 13) Letter in French sent to Monaco, dated 1934. Paper with a monogram in the upper left corner. 14) Studio photograph of Prince Mirza in a ceremonial suit. With a dedication: “a Mlle Elsa Zindberg. 1900 Prince M.Rinza Khan.” Constantinople, photo studio Phebus, 1900. The photograph was intended for his bride, and later his wife Elsa Zinberg, a Swede. 15) Studio photograph of Prince Mirza with a sculptural bust in his honour and a portrait in the uniform. The pedestal of the bust lists the Prince’s regalia. 16) Photograph of the Prince with Catholic priests. 17) Studio photograph of Prince Mirza’s son. Hans Nachf hof-Photograph, Dresden. 18) Photograph of Prince’s wife, Elsa. 19) Six original photographs of Prince’s wife’s relatives. The photographs were taken in a photo studio in Stockholm and Helsinki, some of them are hand-signed. 20) Two photographs of the Prince’s brother in the uniform of a Persian general. Inscribed: “A ma très chère soeur. Hassan. 1 II 65”. 21) Two photographs of the Prince. Photograph of a group, with the Prince sitting in the centre. The second presents Prince at home with a smoking instrument. 22) Postcard showing the Prince’s children. Printed in Monte Carlo. Printed inscription “Danichgah” Monaco (Principauté). Les Enfants de S.A. le prince Mirza Riza Khan”. 23) Photograph (female portrait) with a dedicatory inscription to the Prince’s wife Elsa on the reverse. 24) Group photograph from the International Conference in Rome. Next to the Prince is Maria Corelli, the famous Italian writer of English descent. Corelli died in the same year, 1924 at the age of 68. In offi cial sources, the date of her death (21 April) is wrong as the photo in taken in June (the photographer’s stamp on the reserve in Italian: 4 GIU (June. 1924). Signed and inscribed: “souvener de Rome - giugno 1924 - Maria Korelli”. 25) Prince Mirza’s business card in French. 26) Stamped envelope and letterpress paper. The envelope has the coat of arms and the inscription “Paix porte prosperite” (“Peace bears prosperity”). 27) Signed envelopes for the Prince from Turkey, Constantinople, and from the Principality of Monaco. 28) Two impressions of wax seals. 29) Member/participant card of the XIX General Peace Congress, held in Rome from 25 September to 3 October 1911. Mirza Riza Khan Arfa od Dovla (1846-1937) was a prominent Iranian statesman, political figure and writer. He was fluent in French and Russian. He was a member of the High Society of the Principality of Monaco. He was Persian envoy to Russian and Ottoman Empires. His diplomatic career began in Tiflis, where he worked at the Iranian Consulate in the Caucasus. He was an interpreter and adviser to the embassy in St Petersburg, later appointed Consul General of Persia in Tiflis and Persian envoy to St Petersburg from 1895 to 1901. Then he served for several years in Constantinople. Mirza Riza Khan lived for a time as a private citizen in his own villa in Monaco, and then he served as Minister of Justice and then Minister of Education in Persia from 1912-1914. In 1899 he took an active part in the Hague Peace Conference. In 1904 and in 1933-1937 he was nominated 5 times for the Nobel Peace Prize. Mirza Riza-khan is widely known in Iran for his literary and educational activities. He signed his poetic works with the pseudonym «Danish». He also reformed the alphabet of Persian language by adapting and supplementing the Arabic alphabet. For this, he received the title of Prince, becoming one of the few people in Iran who carried this title without being related to the ruling dynasty.