Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini became a lightning rod for the mass protests which overthrew the Shah of Iran in 1979, but the causes of the Iranian Revolution lay elsewhere.
The protests that broke out across Iran towards the end of 2017 were not triggered by one event. Their cause was mounting unrest at zulm: an all-encompassing term for the injustice, iniquity and oppression that has permeated Iranian society for more than a century.
Iran, despite its conquest by the armies of Islam, retained its own Persian language and much of its culture. Khodadad Rezakhani examines the process by which a Zoroastrian empire became part of the Islamic world.
The monumental city of Persepolis was the pride of the Persian empire until its destruction by fire. Richard Stoneman revisits its builders, Darius and Xerxes, and their role in its construction.
George Woodcock outlines how, by about 515 B.C., architects, sculptors, goldsmiths and silversmiths were assembled from all quarters of the Persian Empire to build a new capital, Parsa, which the Greeks called Persepolis.