The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.



a Mongol dynasty that ruled in the Near and Middle East from the mid-13th to the mid-14th century. The Hulaguid rulers, whose dynasty was founded by Hulagu, bore the title il-khan.

The Hulaguid state arose as the Mongol Feudal Empire disintegrated; in addition to Iran and Arab Iraq, it encompassed eastern Asia Minor as far as the Kizil-Irmak River and most of modern Afghanistan, the Turkmen SSR, and Transcaucasia. The vassals and tributaries of the state were Georgia, the Trebizond Empire, the Sultanate of Konya, the Cilician Armenian State, the Kingdom of Cyprus, and the Kurt state. The capital was successively Maragheh, Tabriz, and Sultaniyeh.

Political power in the Hulaguid state was wielded by a feudalized aristocracy that had emerged from nomadic Mongol and Turkic tribes. The government was administered by members of the Iranian aristocracy. The peasants were bound to the land; this status was affirmed by an edict of 1303.

The dire economic straits of the countries under Hulaguid rule prompted Il-khan Ghazan (ruled 1295–1304) to enact, with the help of Vizier Rashid ad-Din, a series of administrative and economic reforms. He established a strictly fixed tax on land, abolished arbitrary levies, carried out irrigation projects, distributed to landowners vacant land on favorable terms, and introduced a unified system of weights and measures for the entire state. Il-khan Ghazan aligned himself with the Muslim, primarily Iranian, aristocracy of officials and clergy; he converted to Islam and made it the state religion. In an effort to mollify the Mongol military aristocracy, he issued an edict in 1303 awarding fiefs (iqtas) to all Mongols who performed military service.

Central authority was weakened by the decline of the cities and of commodity production—a decline that continued despite reforms—and by the separatist aspirations of the Mongol-Turkic feudal lords. By the mid-14th century the Hulaguid state had disintegrated, in effect, into several independent states, the strongest of which were the states of the Jalayirids (1336–1411) and the Mozaffarids (1340’s and early 1350’s to c. 1393). Popular uprisings, including the Serbadar revolts and the Sayyid movement, hastened the collapse of the Hulaguid state.

The last il-khan of the Hulaguid dynasty, who roamed Gorgan with his horde, was killed when his headquarters was destroyed by the Serbadars in December 1353.


Rashid ad-Din. Dzhami at-tavarikh, vol. 3. Baku, 1957. (Persian text with Russian translation.)


Belenitskii, A. M. “K voprosu o sotsial’nykh otnosheniiakh v Irane v khulaguidskuiu epokhu.” Sovetskoe vostokovedenie, vol. 5. Moscow-Leningrad, 1948. Pages 111–23.
Petrushevskii, I. P. Zemledelie i agrarnye otnosheniia v Irane v XIII-XIV vv. Moscow-Leningrad, 1960.
Spuler, B. Die Mongolen in Iran, 3rd ed. Berlin, 1968.
The Cambridge History of Iran, vol. 5. Cambridge, 1968. Pages 303–421, 483–537.


The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.