Sayyid Ali Khamenei ( سید علی خامنه ای ) was born on the 29th of Farvardin of 1318 S.H./28th of Safar 1358 L.H./19th of April of 1939 C.E..
Sayyid Ali Husseini Khamenei, the son of the late
Hujjatolislam wal-Muslemin Hajj Sayyid Jawad Husseini Khamenei, was born
in the holy city of Mashhad in the month Farvardin of the year 1318 of
the Solar Hijri calendar – equivalent the year 1358 of the Lunar Hijri
He is the second son of the family. Like many seminarians and
teachers of religious teachings, the life of the late Sayyid Jawad
Khamenei was very simple: “My father, though a well-known
religious figure, was a bit of an ascetic. We had a hard life. I
remember that sometimes we had nothing for supper but bread with some
raisins, which our mother had somehow improvised”.
The house in which the family of Sayyid Jawad lived was in a poor neighborhood: “Our
house, some sixty-five square meters, consisted of a single room and a
gloomy basement. When visitors came to see my father as the local cleric
to consult about their problems, the family had to move into the
basement while the visit went on…. Years later some charitable persons
bought the small, empty lot adjacent to our house, so we were able to
build two more rooms”.
1- Family of Ayatollah Ali Khamenei
Father of Ayatollah Ali Khamenei
His father was born in Najaf on the 16th of Azar of 1274 S.H./20th of
Jumadi at-Thani 1313 L.H. – and he passed away on the 14th of Tir of
1365 S.H.. He was one of the ulama and mujtahids of his time and he
migrated to Tabriz with his family.
After finishing the Sath level, he migrated to Mashhad in the year
1336 L.H.. In the area of fiqh and usul, he was under the tutelage of
outstanding personalities like Hajj Agha Hussein Qomi, Mirza Mohammad
Aghazade Khorasani (known as Kafai), Mirza Mahdi Isfahani and Hajj Fazel
In the area of philosophy, he was taught by Agha Bozorg Hakim Mashhadi and Sheikh Asadollah Yazdi.
Later on, he went to Najaf in the year 1345 L.H. and he benefitted
from the lessons of Mirza Mohammad Hussein Naeeni, Sayyid AbulHassan
Isfahani and Agha Zia ul-Din Iraqi was given permission to practice
ijtihad by these three personalities.
After this, he decided to return to Iran. He went to Mashhad and stayed there for the rest of his life.
As well as teaching, he was entrusted with the task of public prayer
leadership in the Mosque of Siddiqis of Mashhad Market (also known as
He was also one of the public prayer leaders of Goharshad Mosque. He was deeply interested in studying.
His scholarly peers included Hajj Mirza Hussein Abai, Hajj Sayyid Ali
Akbar Khui, Hajj Mirza Habib Maleki and other such personalities with
whom discussions and research continued for many years.
He was a pious man who was indifferent to material affairs and who led an ascetic lifestyle.
After the victory of the Islamic Revolution, he continued his ascetic
lifestyle although his children held high-ranking political and
He was always trusted by the people because of his human qualities.
He was buried in a portico behind the holy zarih of Imam Ridha (a.s.).
In a message of condolence to Ayatollah Khamenei, Imam Khomeini
(r.a.) described Ayatollah Sayyid Jawad Khamenei as a pious and
Sayyid Ali Khamenei’s great-grandfather, Sayyid Mohammad Husseini
Tafreshi was a descendent of the Aftasi Sayyids. He was a descendent of
Sultan ul-Ulama Ahmad, known as Sultan Sayyid Ahmad who was one of the
grandchildren of Imam Sajjad (a.s.).
His grandfather was Sayyid Hussein Khamenei who was born in Khamenei
in the year 1259 L.H. and who passed away on the 20th of Rabi ath-Thani
Sayyid Hussein went to Najaf for studies and he became the student of
great ulama such as Sayyid Hussein Kuhkamari, Fazel Irawani, Fazel
Sharbiani, Mirza Baqir Shaki and Mirza Mohammad Hassan Shirazi and after
finishing his studies in Najaf Islamic Seminary, he became one of the
faqihs and teachers of that seminary.
He went to Tabriz in the year 1316 L.H. and he taught at Talebiyah Islamic seminary.
He also became the public prayer leader of Jameh Mosque of Tabriz. He
had lofty political and social thoughts and he was a supporter of the
He always encouraged people to support and protect this movement.
Some of his works are his annotated edition of books such as “Riyath
al-Masael”, “Qawanin al-Usul”, “Makassib” – written by Sheikh Ansari –
and “Fawaed al-Usul”.
His annotated edition of “Luma’h” was dedicated to the Hussainiyah
Shushtari Library in Najaf. Shaikh Mohammad Khiabani, a seminarian who
engaged in political activities in the Constitutional era, was his
student and son-in-law.
Sayyid Mohammad Khamenei – born in 1293 in Najaf and died in the year
1353 L.H. in Najaf – was Ayatollah Khamenei’s paternal uncle.
He was known as “prophet” and he was one of the students of Akhund Khorasani, Shariat Isfahani and other great personalities of Najaf. He was well-aware of the developments of the time and he was considered to be one of the supporters of the Constitutional Movement.
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