A Brief Biography of His Holiness


Subh-i Azal




Atiyya Ruhi









Translated From Persian & Published




Bayani Digital Publications






The following is a brief account of Subh-i Azal’s biography given by Atiyya Ruhi a great grand daughter of Subh-i Azal. This lady was one of the most respected and learned Bayanis of her era. Fluent in Arabic and Persian, she had an in-depth knowledge of the history and teachings of the Bayani faith.

She took special interest in educating children by organizing tutorial sessions at her own home.

Her high spirit, her constant smile, her gentleness and her  apparent similarity with her great grandfather made her to have a special place in the hearts and minds of the Bayanis. This opportunity is taken to acknowledge her contribution and to cherish her memory.

















This is a draft translation of the original Persian text. No attempt has been made to edit the text. The footnotes have been provided by the translator to provide brief explanation for those who are not familiar with Bayanic terms.


A Brief Biography of His Holiness Subh-i Azal



Mirza[1] Yahya[2] known as Subh-i Azal[3] was the son of Mirza Abbas of Nur[4] who was known as Mirza Buzurg (Great Mirza)[5]. Mirza Buzurg was from Nur in the Iranian province of Mazandaran. He was a ministers in the court of Fath-Ali-Shah of Ghjar[6]. He was a well educated man highly skilled in various calligraphies[7].

Mirza Buzurg had a great wealth and lived in the Tehran suburb of Arab-ha (the Arabs[8]) during the late days of his life and owned many houses which were later confiscated by Mohammad Shah[9]. The reason for the confiscation was that The shah’s daughter who learned calligraphy from Mirza Buzurg expressed love towards his teacher. Mirza Buzurg was a religious man who already had four wives, and therefore married her on the basis of Sigheh[10]. This proved to be too much for the Shah to bear and ordered the confiscation of Mirza Buzurg’s houses. Mirza Buzurg died in 1250 A.H (1834 A.D.). His remains were buried in Vadi-al-Islam in Najaf[11]. 


Mirza Yahya (Subh-i Azal) was born in 1247 A.H (1831 A.D) in the Tehran[12] suburb of Arab-ha. His mother died when giving birth to him. Subh-i Azal who was left without a mother and lost out on motherly love and affection lost his father when he was only three years old.

According to Mirza Buzurg’s will, the nursing of this child was left to Kahdija Khanum[13] the mother of Mirza Husayn Ali. However his step mother was not very caring towards him.

This however changed when one night Fatima Khanum dreamed of prophet Muhammad and His Holiness Ali who asked for the child to be brought to their presence. Prophet Muhammad kissed the child and instructed Fatima Khanum that the child must be well cared for until he is delivered to the Qa’em[14].

Since then, the step mother regarded this child differently and labored hard to look after him, to the extent that she is to have said that after this dream, she loved him more than she loved her own children.


Subh-i Azal grew up under the care of his step mother and the support of his step brother Mirza Husayn Ali[15] who was 13 years senior to him.

According to Mirza Husayn Ali and others relatives, Subh-i Azal was extremely quiet and gentle, he disliked playing with children of his own age. Of his childhood memories, he has narrated the following account to Fakhrieh Khanum who was his niece and his daughter-in-law and who had gone to Cyprus and captured the account in her travel narrative:

“One night, while I was sitting in my room studying, I heard some noise coming from the court yard, but I ignored it and did not leave the room and continued with my work. When dinner was brought for me, I noticed that it was more lavish than previous nights. Early in the morning, I walked out to wash my hands and face, I noticed a lot of dishes washed and stacked along the bank of a stream of water.

I asked the servants about what had happened, “last night was the wedding of Mirza Mahdi’s your brother”, I was told. Only then I realized.”


In regards to the education of Subh-i Azal, as recorded in Nuqtat’ul-Kaf and told by Mirza Husayn Ali for Haji Mirza Jani of Kashan, he learned Persian and did well in calligraphy but Arabic was not his favorite. The following account is a translation of an extract from one of Count De Gobineau’s[16] books:

“When Subh-i Azal reached the age of five, his step mother took him to the school. However he did not stay at the school any longer than three days. This was because he was beaten by a wooden stick[17] by his teacher.”


Subh-i Azal spent his childhood in Teheran while spending the summers in the village of Takur in Nur, the birth place of his ancestors as per family customs.

Subh-i Azal was thirteen years of age when the Primal Point (i.e. the Bab) made his manifestation public.


Mirza Husayn Ali had become a strenuous follower of the Bab and arranged meetings with his Babi friends at home. They would read from the writings of the new faith,  discussing and analyzing the new teachings. Subh-i Azal at this young age witnessed these gatherings until one night according to himself he was attracted to and was affected by prayers of worship which included repeated phrases such as and similar to ‘Oh! My Lord, My Master’.

Subh-i-Azal developed in his heart a sincere devotion to the author of these words and started to investigate the new faith and became a devoted follower of the Bab. This apparently occurred in mid 1263 A.H (1847 A.D).

Subh-i Azal confirms in one of his tablets that his devotion was to the extent that he packed and traveled to Khorasan where the Babi community according to Bab’s instructions had gathered to join Mulla Husayn of Bushrawayeh known as Bab’ul-Bab.


It was on the way to Khorassan when his brother Mirza Husayn Ali was informed of his intention and made him to return. After a while, Subh-i Azal traveled to Nur and then proceeded to Bar-Furush where he met Haji Muhammad Ali of Bar-Furush entitled ‘His Holiness Quddus one of the Letters of the Living who had accompanied the Primal Point in his travel to Mecca.

This was late 1264 A.H (1848 A.D) when His Holiness Quddus returned to Barfurush from the great historical gathering of the BABis in Badasht.

Subh-i Azal met Quddus in the outskirt of the city and went to Bar-Furush with him and received Quddus’s attention. The meeting of Quddus and witnessing his spirituality and his devotion influenced Subh-i Azal deeply and for that he thanked god for the blessing.


At Barfurush, one night when Subh-i Azal intends to meet Quddus again, returns sad and disappointed never to see him again after a Babi who had been hidden in the woods rushed out to inform those who desired to meet Quddus to give the news that several people had gathered to invade the house and that he himself was beaten and forced to leave Quddus’s house.

Subh-i Azal succeeds to meet her Holiness Tahira[18] (Qurat-al-Ayn)[19] during his stay in Barfurush. Qurat-al-Ayn had traveled to Nur to propagate the new faith after returning from the Badasht gathering [20] and separating from His Holiness Quddus.

Not long after, she arrived in Barfurush and met Subh-i Azal in the presence of His Holiness Quddus who told Her Holiness to take Subh-i Azal with herself to Nur (Nutat-al-Kaf p. 241)[21].


Qurat-al-Ayn, Subh-i Azal and Haji Mirza Jani of Kashan traveled to Nur from Bar-Furush after which Subh-i Azal returned to Nur. Details of the travels to and from Nur are detailed by Subh-i Azal in his Sata’at, P.186.

This coincided with the heat of the fighting in the castle of Tabarsi where Babis fought the government forces with utmost bravery under the leadership of Quddus and Bab-al-Bab[22].


Subh-i Azal, Mirza Husayn Ali and Mulla Zayn-al-Abedin their uncle together with several of their relatives and comrades set to travel to Bar-Furush to help defending the castle. Government forces however arrested this group several kilometers from Amul and brought them to the governor Mirza Taqi Khan.

The governor ordered their imprisonment, but Subh-i Azal escaped the eyes of the officials and spent the night in the woods. In the morning a villager discovered him in the area and informed a group of people who took his cloth and gave him some old cloth and brought him to Amul[23] on foot with his hands tied.


On the way to Amul he was the subject of harassment and humiliation and was spat upon. He was brought to the city and reunited with his other imprisoned companions.


The next day the governor ordered their beating and they were beaten with a wooden stick. Subh-i Azal was thrown into the pool with his cloth.

When it came to subject Subh-i Azal to the beating, Mirza Husayn Ali asked for taking his place stating that he was a child and could not bear the beating, at this point, Mulla Zayn al-Abedin was beaten badly when he threw himself on his nephew to cover him.

Later, the governor of Amul sent a messenger to Abbas Quli Khan of Larijan who was the commander of the government forces stationed on the outskirts of the Tabarsi castle. In his communication, the governor gave an account of the arrested ones and asked for instructions. Abbas Quli Khan wrote to the governor that these people are from a respected family and should not be harassed, and gave order for their immediate release and to be sent to Nur. As a result, the prisoners were rid of the governor but did not succeed reaching the castle of Tabarsi to join and help other Babis who later became martyrs there.


Subh-i Azal stayed in Nur for three days in the castle of Dar-Kula a property that he had inherited. There, he took to propagate the new faith as a result of which three became believers. Mirza Jani says that during this period, he was with Subh-i Azal day and night and gives several accounts of Subh-i Azal’s devotion, quietness and gentleness at the time when he was not older than eighteen.

He says that Subh-i Azal had a total attachment to Quddus and read from his works with an attractive voice. He also occasionally spoke to Mirza Jani on the subjects of Unity[24] during which the Haji asked him of the mysteries in some verses of Quran. Subh-i Azal’s sensitive spirit was however heart whenever the discussion became too long.


After some stay in Nur, he returned to Takur and then to Teheran. Forty days later, he heard the news of the martyrdom of Quddus by which he was extremely saddened. Nuqtat-al-Kaf writes that as a result of hearing this news, he fell ill to a fever which lasted three days and nights. The reaching of the news of Quddus’s martyrdom must have occurred in Sha’ban 1265 A.H (July 1849 A.D) as the martyrdom of Quddus occurred between Jamad and Rajab 1265 A.H.


During the late 1265 A.H. His Holiness Quddus and Bab-al-Bab who were among the most prominent followers of Bab, fought to their last breath with utmost bravery and scarification leading the defense of the Babi strongholds. This event is known as ‘the insurrection of the castle of Tabarsi’. First it was His Holiness Bab-al-Bab who was martyred in the castle and then Quddus who was later martyred in Barfurush.


Day by day the persecution of this community was increased. The Primal Point[25] was imprisoned in a castle located on a remote rocky and mountainous area in Chehriq[26]. Communication with the Point was blocked and the government forces who had tightened the screws on the Babis with all their might and from every angle. They were under the illusion that the newly kindled lights of this new faith would be put out by killing of the Babis one after another.


The Babis were also witnessing the loss of their leaders and elders such as the execution of the seven martyrs in Teheran.

The tree of the new faith planted by the Bab and watered with the blood of his devoted believers gave fruit at this dark and critical period by the manifestation of Subh-i Azal and his appointment to the station of Mirror-ship[27] by the Primal Point.

This excited believers and gave them new hope. The manifestation of Subh-i Azal was a crucial factor in enforcing the foundations of the new faith. This event as documented by Gobineau and other historians was unprecedented. Its account was as follows :

At this time, Subh-i Azal was nineteen years of age living in Teheran. Communicating and liaising with the Primal Point was difficult because the government of the day had ordered that no one’s communication should reach him. Aqa Sayyid Husayn the scribe who was at the service of his master during the imprisonment in Maku and Chehriq had came to Teheran from Chehriq. On his return, Subh-i Azal sent his petition hidden in a pen case to Chehriq through Aqa Sayyid Husayn the scribe.

After reading the letter, the Primal Point arose and sat several times in extreme jubilation giving thanks to god for fulfilling its prophecy.[28]


During those days, the Primal Point had bean wearing cloth of mourning[29] due to the martyrdom of His Holiness Quddus, he changed cloth, prayed and thanked god infinitely for the manifestation of Subh-i Azal.

This day coincided with 25th of Nawruz[30], the Point ordained the day to be remembered as a day of celebration and appointed Subh-i Azal to his succession or Mirror-ship (Page 151 of Subh-i Azal’s Sata’at).


The primal Point gives this good news to his disciples by writing to them and asking them to submit to Subh-i Azal.

The Point’s response to Subh-i Azal’s letter is a tablet in which the Primal Point has conferred upon him the station of Mirror-ship and in which he has addressed him in terms of ‘thou art I, and I am thou’.


Subh-i Azal married his cousin Fatima Khanum when he was sixteen or seventeen years of age. Mirza Muhammad Hadi was the fruit of this marriage. He also married Maryam Khanum known as Qaneteh the great grand mother of the author.

Qaneteh was a learned lady and was a companion of Her Holiness Qurat-al-Ayn who contributed significantly to the propagation of the Bayani faith.

Qaneteh with her son the late Aqa Nur, together with Akhund Mulla Muhammad Jafar of Naraq who was one of the great (religious) scientists of Kashan were imprisoned in a basement in Teheran.

Aqa Nur’s aunts Ezziyya Khanum[31], Fatima Khanum and his uncle Hajji Mirza Quli managed to secure the release of Qaneteh and Aqa Nur after Mulla Muhammad Jafar of Naraq was poisoned with coffee mixed with poison.

Aqa Nur was sent to Rasht under the name of Mirza Muhammad Hasan the Physician where he later died.

One of Subh-i Azal’s daughters married Shaykh Ahmad Ruhi[32]. They were survived by their daughter Aliyya Khanum who died in Cyprus on 11th Feb 1972. She was survived by their son named Reshad and a grand son named Esmat who resides in Cyprus.

Another daughter of Subh-i Azal married Mirza Aqa Khan of Kerman. They did not have children. Another one of his daughters married her cousin (son of Fatima Khanum). They were survived by their daughter named Meymanat who resided in Teheran.

Manifestation of Subh-i Azal was in the year 1266 A.H (1850 A.D). This is confirmed by Subh-i Azal in his correspondence with the French Mr. Nicholas the author of ‘The History of Sayyid Ali Muhammad the Bab’ and occurred just a few month before the martyrdom of the Primal Point.

In the testamentary tablet, His Holiness the Point makes no distinction between himself and Subh-i Azal. Moreover, he left him with instructions to protect the Bayani faith and to passes its command to him. More importantly, he is described as ‘the mighty path of the truth’ and trusts him with the completing of the remaining eight Wahids[33] of the Bayan. The testamentary tablet is stamped with his own stamp which reads ‘Verily, I am the Proof of God and His light’.


The Primal Point introduced Subh-i Azal to all of his disciples in several tablets. These tablets appear in most of the books left from the elders of this community. Some have been printed and collected. Subh-i Azal himself had many of the tablets which were in the handwriting of His Holiness the Point. These are quoted at the end of the Book of Mustayqath and their originals are available.

The majority of the writings of the Point were however in possession of Mirza Husayn Ali (Baha) who had collected them from the Babis before his made his claim public. These are not available.

His Holiness the Point in his correspondences with his nominated disciples and the Letters of the Living has instructed them to obey Subh-i Azal.


In a letter addressing Mirza Husayn Ali, the Primal Point gives explicit instructions to protect Subh-i Azal to enable him to propagate the Bayani faith[34].

After the execution of the Primal Point, Mirza Suleyman who served in an army regiment, paid the officials, and according to the Point’s testament brought his body to Subh-i Azal who buried it together with the body of Mirza Muhammad Ali Zanuzi at the shrine of Imamzadeh Masum[35]. After the burial, together with his elder brother Mirza Husayn Ali, left for Nur where he stayed for a while.


One day, Subh-i Azal speaks to his other brother Mirza Muhammad Hassan about the inheritance from their father. Since Subh-i Azal had not reached the age of maturity at the time of his father’s death, his share of the inheritance was deposited by his uncle Sheykh Azizullah. Mirza Muhammad Hassan demands from his uncle, Subh-i Azal’s share in front of others. The uncle refuses to return the share and a scuffle breaks out during which Mirza Muhammad Hassan attacks his uncle with his walking stick.

The uncle goes to Teheran to seek justice, his arrival in Teheran coincides with the assassination attempt against Naser-al-Din Shah by the Babis.

The uncle finds the situation favorable and provides a list of names to the Shah stating that these people were involved in the shooting. The list among others included Subh-i Azal and Mirza Husayn Ali (Baha).


Apparently, after investigating the accused ones, they concluded that the main motivator was Mirza Husayn Ali (Baha) whom they begun to seek  and to arrest.

Baha took refuge at the Russian embassy where his brother-in-law worked as a secretary. Baha was given up to the government on the condition that he was not harmed. Four month later as a result of Russian’s pressure, he was released and was deported to Baghdad. [36]


Subh-i Azal intended to return to Teheran. However, on the way to Teheran, he learned about the assassination attempt and the arrest of Baha. He consequently went to Rasht under the disguise of a Dervish and then to Karbala and finally to Baghdad where he was later joined by Baha[37].


When crossing the border, the officials spoke to him for a while but failed to identify him. He managed to survive the Iranian deathmen even though the government had set a thousand Toomans[38] for his arrest.

While residing at Baghdad, Babis traveled from Iran to Baghdad and sought instructions from Subh-i Azal[39]. After a while, Baha thought of making his own claim[40]. He would often write what he called verses and then would have them washed out in the see and would say that ‘they were the share of the fish’![41].

Elders of the Babi community went to Baghdad and admonished Baha for his improper behavior. As a result, he took to the Suleymaniyya[42] where he stayed for two years. There, he also made fresh claims as a result of which he received death treats and saw no option but writing to Subh-i Azal asking for permission to return which was granted.


Baha confirms this in his Iqan[43] where he says: “I swear by god that I had no intention to return from my exile and no hope of re-union with my travel…. until, the decree to return was issued from the source of command to which I submitted and returned by necessity.”[44]

As a result of the pressure by the Iranian government and during the tenure of Hajji Mirza Husayn Khan the ambassador, the Ottoman government moved Babis to Istanbul in 1280 A.H (1863 A.D) and 5 years later on 20th Rabi-Awwal 1285 A.H (10th July 1868 A.D) to Edirne.

On Tuesday 6th Jamadi-Awwal 1285 A.H. (25 August 1868) Baha, and his family were sent to Acre and Subh-i Azal and his family were sent to Cyprus. Acre and Cyprus were both under the Ottoman control.


According to the Ottoman records, at the time of arrival in Cyprus, Subh-i Azal was accompanied by his two wives, 6 sons and four daughters.

The cause of the separation of these two brothers in Edirne is as follows:

Baha had recently made claim to the office of He-Whom-God-Shall-Make-Manifest and was unsettled. He had letters written in the context of ‘We (Babis) shall rule the earth under the leadership of Subh-i Azal’ and threw them into the house of the governor during the night. The letters had Subh-i Azal’s forged signature.


After much investigation by the Ottoman officials, they decided to send four of the Baha’s followers (Mushkin Qalam of Khurasan, Mirza Ali the Traveler, Muhammad Baqir of Isfahan and Abdul-Gafar) with Subh-i Azal to Cyprus and four of the Subh-i Azal’s followers (Sayyid Muhammad of Isfahan, Aqa jan Beg of Kashan, Mirza Reza Quli of Tafresh and his brother Mirza Nasrullah of Tafresh) with Baha to Acre.

The purpose of this initiative was to enable the Ottoman officials to receive information from the rival parties and to be informed of the visits made by their visitors.


Just before the departure, Mirza Nasrullah of Tafresh was poisoned by Baha’s men. The other three followers of Subh-i Azal were murdered by Baha’s men and at his behest shortly after their arrival in Acre[45].

The Ottoman officials arrested the murderers and imprisoned them. These were released after a while after Abbas Effendi (Baha’s eldest son) interceded.

Professor Browne has confirmed the murder of the Azalis at the hands of Bahais in his book ‘A Year Amongst the  Persians’.

Subh-i Azal’s living condition in Cyprus was very difficult. Some financial assistance were sent by Azalis.

Professor Browne is a renowned British Orientalist who traveled to Cyprus in 1307 A.H. (1890 A.D.). On the same year he also traveled to Acre. He has given an account of his meetings with the two brothers and published it in the introduction to the Nutat’ul-Kaf which he published. Later he made other trips to Cyprus.

In 1313 A.H. (1896 A.D.) the visit by my late father Ahmad Thamareh, together with my mother to Cyprus coincided with Professor Browne’s visit to that Island. Professor Browne was their guest for fifteen days.

The late Ahmad Thamareh[46] was at the service of Subh-i Azal from the age of seven to the age of fourteen where he studied Persian and Arabic. He then returned to Iran and married my mother who was Subh-i Azal’s niece. He was back in Cyprus in 1312 to 1313 A.H (1895 to 1896 A.D.) during which Naser-al-Din Shah of the Qajar dynasty was assassinated.

Subh-i Azal resided in Cyprus until his ascension on Monday 12th  Jamadi-al-Awwal 1330 A.H (Monday 27th April 1912) at 7:00AM.

A wife and several children were still living after his ascension. He also had two sons in Iran by the names  Mirza Hadi who died before his father and Aqa Nur who is the grand father of the author and died in Rasht after his father died.


Fifteen years ago when I together with my aunt the daughter of Aqa Nur, made a trip to Cyprus, only one of Subh-i Azal’s son Abdul Ali who died two years later was still living. His son Jalal Azal who was married to Esmat Khanum the daughter of Badi-u-llah (Baha’s son) died on 5th April 1971 with no issue.

Three daughters by the names of Wahida Khanum, Alemeh Khanum and Na’ereh Khanum survived Abdul-Ali. Of these only Alemeh Khanum had married and had two children by the names of Sholeh and Azal. His son is a Physician and Sholeh is married with several children.


Finally on the subject of Subh-i Azal’s spirit, his patience, gentleness and dignity was to the extent that a single soul with no companion and with no helper living in prison like condition was the target of a world of internal and external foes and the subject of infinite difficulties and harassments on a daily basis and yet he did not complain to the slightest with his most mighty will. History does not know of may with such ability.

His Holiness has left numerous writings and apart from those destroyed by the foes, today exists over 120 small and large volumes of his sacred writings which have survived. Some of these are:


·        Kitab-i Nur                       

·        Quds-al Azal                     

·        Sahiyyat

·        Eliyyin

·        Mustayghath

·        Nafahat-al-Ons

·        Nafahat-al-Ruh

·        Taghrid-al Ons

·        Merat-al-Bayan                 

·        Behaj

·        Akhlaq-al-Rowhaniyyn      

·        La’ali va Majali

·        Hayakel

·        Ketab-i Aqsa

·        Kitab-i Tuba

·        Mathnavi

·        Sahayef

·        Abhajiyya


·        Qadriyya

·        Azaliyya

·        Nuriya

·        Vajh

·        Jam’

·        Lama’at-al-Azal

·        Sata’at

·        Lahazat

·        Lavame

·        Javame-al-Jayakel

·        Lavahez va al-Nafaeh

·        Athar-al-Qulam

·        Commentary on Sureat-al-Baqareh

·        Kalamat-al-Hekmat


And many other volumes known to the learned ones.




Nuqtat-ul-Kaf (The Point of the Letter K) is a book written by Hajji Mirza Jani of Kashan who was a very reputable merchant from Kashan. This book was written during the early years of the manifestation of the Point when there was no split and therefore is free from any impartiality. He was executed with 27 other Babis after the failed assassination attempt against the then Shah of Iran in the most horrific manner.

Copies of this book were destroyed by Baha’s followers after the split between the two brothers.

In its replacement the Bahais wrote another book and named it ‘The New History’ claiming that it was written from Nuqtat-al-Kaf. Until, Professor Browne found a copy of this book at the French National Library when he was researching the history of this faith. This book was among the books belonging to Count De Gobineau and was purchased by the French National Library.

Browne added an introduction to the book and published it in 1910 in Netherlands. In his introduction he detailed the deletions and additions that the Bahais had made to the original book in writing ‘The New History’ to the benefit of Baha’s claim.

Appendix I


Abjad notation












































































































Appendix – II


Mirza Buzurg’s Family Tree

By Jalal Azal


Mirza Abbas of Nur known as Mirza Buzurg, son of Rida Quli Beg, married :

a)      Fatima Khanum, daughter of Haji Aqa of Karbala known as Khan Nana-Nana, who bore him :

1)      Mirza Aqa - No issue

2)      Mirza Muhammad Hasan - Azali


b)      Nusrat Khanum, the Georgian, who bore him:

3)      Husnayya Khanum - Azali


c)      A Turkamani Khanum, who bore him:

4)      Mirza Muhammad Quli - See note 1.


d)      Kulsum Khanum who bore him:

5)      Mirza Muhammad Taqi known as Parishan, Azali, no issue

6)      Mirza Ibrahim, Azali

7)      Izziyya Khanum or Shah Sultan Khanum commonly called Khanum-i-Buzurg, Azali, no issue, See  note 2.

8)      Fatma Sultan Khanum, Azali

9)      Mirza Rida Quli, known as Hakim (The Philosopher), Azali


e)      Khadija Khanum, a widow who bore him:

10      Mirza Husayn Ali (Baha)

11      Mirza Musa, See note 3

12      Mirza Mahdi, no issue

13      Sara Khanum, See note 4

14      Nisa Khanum, See note 5


f)        Kuchak Khanum of Karmanshah, who bore him:

15)    Mirza Yahya (Subh-i-Azal)

Please see here for a detailed family tree of Subh-i Azal in English.

Please see here for a detailed family tree of Subh-i Azal in Farsi.



Appendix – II (Continued)




1.      Mirza Muhammad Quli (No. 4) accompanied Baha to Acre.

2.      Izziyya Khanum (No. 7) was the authoress of Tanbihun-Naimin (Awakening of the Sleepers) commonly called Risala-i-Amma (The Aunt's epistle), in reply to Sir Abbas Effendi's letter urging her to Bahaism.

3.      Mirza Musa (No. 11) accompanied Baha to Acre. He was surnamed Kalim (Interlocutor) by Baha. Mirza Musa, the Interlocutor, ranks first among the apostle of Baha "Pillars of the Faith". The Bahai World 1928-1930, Vol, III. New York, PP.80-81.

4.      Sara Khanum (No. 13) was married to Mirza Muhammad Khan, brother of Mirza Husayn Ali's (Baha's) first wife Asiya Khanum, Mirza Muhammad Khan was not a believer to have been a follower of Mirza Husayn Ali (Baha).

5.      Nisa Khanum (No. 14) was married to Mirza Majid Ali, who acted as secretary to the Russian minister, and who harboured Mirza Husayn Ali (Baha) in his house for a while, following the attempt on the Shah's life on August 15, 1852. Nisa Khanum and her husband were not believers in Mirza Husayn Ali (Baha).


[1] ‘Mirza’ was a common title given to literate people.

[2] ‘Yahya’ is an Arabic noun and an attribute of god meaning ‘One who gives life’.

[3] ‘Subh-i Azal’ was Mirza Yahaya’s title conferred on him by the founder of the faith of Bayan. It means ‘The Morning of Eternity’.

[4] ‘Nur’ is a small town in the Iranian province of Mazandaran in north. ‘Nur’ is a Persian word and means light.

[5] Refer to Appendix II. for the family tree of Mirza Buzurg.

[6] Qajars were one of the Persian dynasties removed finally by the father of the former Shah of Iran in 1920.

[7] Calligraphy was a major area of study during tat period.

[8] This may not have been because Arabs lived there. The reason for this naming is not known.

[9] Muhammad Shah succeeded Fath-Ali Shah.

[10] ‘Sigheh’ is an Islamic marriage arrangement practiced in those times. It is a marriage on a short term basis. The term is however served as a distinction with a permanent arrangement and may even last life long.

[11] A city in Iraq.

[12] Capital of Iran.

[13] ‘Khanum’ means lady.

[14] Qa’em is the Promised One of the Islamic faith. This account was told by Mirza Husayn Ali (Baha, Subh-I Azal’s brother to the author of Nuqtat-al-Kaf, Haji Mirza Jani of Kashan).

[15] Mirza Husayn Ali later known as Baha is the same person who later revolted against Subh-i Azal and claimed to be the Messiah of the faith of Bayan. Subh-i Azal rejected his claim and hence the division of the Babis into Azalis and Bahais.

[16] Count De Gobineau was a French Diplomat at the French Embassy in Iran. He was the first Western historian who wrote about and researched the new faith.

[17] This practice was very common during those periods put up by all children. The fact that Subh-i Azal was not prepared to go to the school because of such practice is very unusual. This practice was abolished by the founder of the Bayani faith.

[18] Tahira meaning ‘the most pure’ is the title given by the Bab to the only female member of the Bab’s 18 Letters of the Living. Her name was Fatima and was among the most respected and learned in her time. She is revered for her heroic resistance, her spirit, her ideals for women and her martyrdom by friends and foes.

[19] This title was given by Sayyid Kazim of Rasht one of the harbingers of the new faith who died shortly before the public manifestation of the Point. It means ‘the apple of eye’.

[20] A province in Mazandaran.

[21] Nuqtat’l-Kaf written by Hajji Mirza Jani of Kashan is the oldest and most credible history of the events during the first eight years of the manifestation of the Point.

[22] Meaning the gate of the gate. This title was conferred by the Point. The significance of this title is that the station of Gate-hood claimed by the Point in the first four years of his manifestation was then passed to Bab-al-Bab. The Bab himself had elevated to the station of ‘Mirror-ship of God).

[23] A city in Mazandaran.

[24] A difficult subject of metaphysics on Unity of god.

[25] Primal Point is one of the Bab’s titles. Briefly, the analogy is made with a book which is made of words being made of letters and letters being made of a single Point. The (eighteen) Letters of the Living are the first believers who became believers by the point. Every one else becomes a believer by the Letters of the Living. ‘Living’ is one who is a believer. The Point and the Eighteen Letters of the Living make up 19 (equivalent to the Arabic word Wahid (One). Nineteen is the most significant number in Bayan. Everything is brought to life by 19. In other words Everything = 19 X 19 = 361. The numerical value of All things ‘Kul-i-Shay’ according to the ancient Abjad notation is also 361. There are only 18 unique letters in Arabic alphabet, the rest are shaped by a ‘Point’. Refer to Appendix I for a list of Abjad notations.

[26] Located in Tabriz west of Iran.

[27] The station of Mirror-ship replaces the station of successor-ship in Islam. The station implies that even though the origin is what stands before the mirror the reflection in the mirror is equivalent with the source. In other words, the Point has nominated Subh-i Azal to be his own reflection and equivalent with himself.

[28] In fact, the manifestation of Subh-i Azal was prophesised by the Point earlier and was anticipated. The tanks giving to God was for the fulfilment of this prophecy. The title Subh-i Azal was pre-determined and was referred to in the Point’s writings well before Subh-i Azal’s manifestation.

[29] Wearing black.

[30] Naw-Ruz is the national Iranian festivity celebrating the new year. Here means the first month of the Iranian year.

[31] Ezziyya Khanum is the author of Tanbih-al-Naimin (Awakening of the Sleepers) in response to Abbas Efendi (Mirza Husayn Ali’s son) inviting her to become a Bahai.

[32] Shaykh Ahmad Ruhi and Mirza Aqa Khan of Kerman were among the most prominent leaders of the Bayani faith who were together arrested by the Turkish authorities and returned to Iran on the request of the then Iranian government and were killed in horrific manner. These two were prominent figures in the Iranian Constitutional movement seeking to implement democracy in Iran. They are the co-authors of Hasht-Behest (Eight Paradises) on the subject of the teaching of the Bayani faith.

[33] The Bayan which is the principal holy book is divided into 19 Wahids (Chapters) each containing 19 Babs (Units). The Point revealed the first 11 Wahids.

[34] In this letter, Mirza Husayn Ali is not addressed by his name or his self assumed title. He is addressed by ‘the brother of Azal’ and the numerical value of his name which equals 238 in the Abjad notation.

[35] Located in south of Teheran. Bahais claim that some years later, they stole the remains and took them to Acre where they are buried in a Shrine.

[36] Was it not for the intervention and the influence of the Russians, Baha would have been most certainly executed.

[37] It is important to note that the Point’s explicit instructions for Subh-i Azal was to put protection of his life before everything. Later events revealed the reason.

[38] One Tooman is 100 Rials. One Rial is 10 Qeran and one Qeran is 10 Abbasi which can be considered as a dollar today.

[39] During this time, Baha worked for Subh-i Azal managing the Babais affairs and as an intermediary between Subh-i Azal and Babais.

[40] It is prophesised in the Holy Bayan that after the Bayanic faith has reached the stage of perfection which is after 1500 to 2001 years, God shall reveal another prophet who will introduce a new faith and will replace Bayanic teachings. Cyclic manifestations is one of the principals of the Bayanic teachings. This promised one is referred to in the Bayan as He-Whom-God-Shall-Make-Manifest. It is this station that Baha claimed within 22 years of the manifestation of the Point.

[41] These writings were in fact Baha’s exercise books which Baha filled in order to practice to obtain currency and fluency in writing verses.

[42] Where Kurds lived.

[43] Iqan was written by Baha and at the request of Subh-i Azal in response to one of the Baba’s uncles. This book was initially named ‘Khaluiyya’ (for the uncle) and was renamed to Iqan (certitude) after his claim. According to Subh-i Azal this book was reviewed and corrections were made by Subh-i Azal.

[44] The official English translation of Iqan made by Shoghi Efendi has intentionally translated this passage incorrectly.

[45] Bahais claim that these people created troubles for them. What they really mean is that they told the Muslim public in Palestine that these people unlike what they pretend are not Muslims and claim to have introduced a new religion. Bahai leadership was extremely uncomfortable with such development.

[46] Thamareh meaning ‘The Fruit’ was also one of Subh-i Azal’s titles. The Point considered that he was the Fruit of the Bayan.