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Valueless Union: Russian-Iranian Relations Before the Time of Troubles in the Interpretation of Iranian and Russian Historiography

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Abstract. In the 20th century, especially in the first half of it, there was a surge of interest in the history of Russian-Iranian relations in Iran and among Iranian historians abroad expressed in the appearance of a whole series of fundamental works, which are almost unknown in Russia. In addition to their exclusivity, their uniqueness was in the fact that authors such as S.M.’A. Jamal-Zade, N. Falsafi and N.Kh. Mo’ezzi were educated in Europe and actively used European, Russian, Iranian and Ottoman sources in their research. Acquaintance with their works showed that many classic Iranian historians, when referring to the history of interstate relations between the Russian kingdom and the Safavid state, often turned to sources of Russian origin, emphasizing their value, as S.M.’A. Jamal-Zade stated the “Byzantine tradition” provides careful recordings of what is happening among the tsarist government officials. Other authors like N.Kh. Mo’ezzi and N. Falsafi in their works largely used additional sources of European, Iranian and Ottoman origin. Their works, in comparison with Russian historiography, make it possible to clarify a number of issues of a fundamental nature, including such as the interests of Shah ‘Abbas in relation to Russia, the aims and objectives of the Gilan embassies from Akhmad Khan, the embassy of A.F. Zhirovoy-Zasekin and many others.

Keywords: Russian-Iranian relations, Fedor Ioannovich, Boris Godunov, Muhammad Khudabende, Shah Abbas the Great, Biya-Pish, Gilyan, Ahmad Khan, embassy, history of diplomacy.

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