A country in the Middle East, between the Caspian Sea and the Persian Gulf; population 79,100,000 (estimated 2015); languages, Farsi (Persian) (official), Azerbaijani, Kurdish, Arabic, and others; capital, Tehran.
Previously known as Persia, the country adopted the name Iran in 1935. Iran was a monarchy until 1979, when the shah was overthrown in a popular uprising, headed by Ayatollah Khomeini, which led soon after to the establishment of an Islamic republic. From 1980 to 1988 Iran was at war with its neighbour Iraq. See also Persia, Iran–Iraq War