(1) A theocratic Islamic republic in the Middle East in western Asia; Iran was the core of the ancient empire that was known as Persia until 1935; rich in oil
From , from the Old Iranian endonym (as in , ), signifying "of the Iranians". came to refer to the lands in which Iranians lived during the late 3rd/early 4th century. Prior to that time it signified people/culture (i.e. the Iranian nation), rather than geography. The antonymic (> ), originally meaning "non-Iranian", underwent a parallel development. Old Persian ariya is a derivation of , the self-designation of the Aryan people. The designation of Ossetians of their language as is a cognate.
- A country in the Middle East known as Persia until 1935. Official name: Islamic Republic of Iran.