Photographer's Note

Part of the gate of the National Garden with the emblem of the Lion and Sun, Tehran.

This is one of the rarest places in Iran that the emblem is still present there, as the emblem was considered as an imperialistic symbol by the Islamic fanatics following the revolution of 1979.

The philosophy behind the "Lion & Sun" emblem goes back to over two thousand years and to the emergence of the Iranian Nation. Ancient Iranians believed that Sun is the center of energy and Lion is the symbol of energy, the embodiment of power and bravery.

At all times, the "Lion & Sun" appeared on most flags, even if the defeated dynasty had to be destroyed, the "Lion & Sun" was transformed from one flag to the other with different colors.

During the Safavid dynasty who were a religious group and strongly believed in Islam, the sword appeared on the flag. The Sword was Imam Ali's symbol ( Mohammad's son-in-law. )

During The Afshari Dynasty, Nadir Shah created a rectanglular flag of the red, white and green color scheme, using the "Lion & Sun" as an emblem.

During the Qajar dynasty, Fath-Ali-Shah introduced one flag on a red background with a Sitting Lion (no Sword) representing the war time, and another flag with a Sitting Lion (with sword) on a green surface representing peace time, the Lions' Sun's rays on both of these flags, covered all surfaces of the flags.

Later when Amir Kabir ordered military compounds be build in place of mosques, all the soldiers wore uniforms using Iranian cloth and buttons decorated with the "Lion & Sun". He combined The Red and Green Colors from The Afshari Era with the addition of White in the middle with the "Sun & Lion" as the symbolic flag.

During the reign of Mohammed Ali Shah Qajar, The House representatives recognized The Red, White, and Green flag with the "Lion & Sun", carrying "The Sword", as the national emblem.

During the Pahlavis' Reign, vast efforts were made to familiarize the Iranians with their historical past and the "Lion & Sun" flags were deployed in most areas such as official government buildings. Meanwhile, the Pahlavi Dynasty had its own blue colored flag with the imperial coat of arms representing the royal court.

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Additional Photos by Akbar Shafiee (Leo71538) Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 172 W: 49 N: 167] (555)
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