|My Great Grandfather "The Brave Sultan"|
Sadly, it is said that he met his demise at the hands of the very King he served. Recalling family legend, it was said that the Shah's sychophants had found "The Brave Sultan" to be a liability to the throne due to his prowess in battle, politics, skills, and intelligence. He had many alliances with both the Northern and Southern Persian lords (Khans). They thought that he may eventually take the throne from the Shah himself. Interestingly the two were from the same province and knew each other well.
The way he was "assassinated" relates to a family story in regards to when he was invited by the Shah to attend a gathering at the Palace, which he of course being a loyal Khan under the Shah, did not refuse. Once he attended, it is said that his tea had been poisoned and later when he was rushed to the hospital, he was injected with an air syringe to finish him off. As is the game of politics, one day the person who won back all the Persian lands from the invading Soviets and was given the title of "Brave Sultan" by the Shah himself, was later killed for the same purpose for being "too strong" and "too brave" and a threat to the very crown who titled him. Some say that the Shah had knowledge of this action, others say he did not. God knows best.
Noble and honorary titles in Persia (Iran)
|Shoja Sultan with his Bodyguard & Cook|
The titles Khan (the lowest commonly awarded) and Khan Bahadur (Altaic root baghatur, related to the Mongolic baatar 'brave, hero'; but in India meaning simply 'one class higher') were also bestowed in feudal India by the Great mughal (whose protocol was largely Persian-inspired) upon Muslims and Parsis, and later by the British Raj, as an honor akin to the ranks of nobility, often for loyalty to the crown. Khan Sahib was another title of honour, one degree higher than Khan, conferred on Muslims and Parsis; again like Khan Bahadur, it was also awarded with a decoration during British rule.
In the major South Asian Muslim state of Hyderabad, Khan was the lowest of the aristocratic titles bestowed by the ruling Nizam upon Muslim retainers, ranking under Khan Bahadur, Nawab (homonymous with a high Muslim ruler's title), Jang, Daula, Mulk, Umara, Jah. The equivalent for the courts Hindu retainers was Rai.
In Swat, a Pakistani Frontier State, it was the title of the secular elite, who, together with the Mullahs (Muslim clerics), proceeded to elect a new Amir-i-Shariyat in 1914.
It seems unclear whether the series of titles known from the Bengal sultanate, including Khan, Khan ul Muazzam, Khan-ul-Azam, Khan-ul-Azam-ul-Muazzam etc. and Khaqan, Khaqan-ul-Muazzam, Khaqan-ul-Azam, Khaqan-ul-Azam-ul-Muazzam etc., are merely honorific or perhaps relate to a military hierarchy.
Iran History from 1900-1978
Shoja Sultan was also a part of the Constitutionalist Movement of Iran: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Persian_Constitutional_Revolution