Martyrdom Of Imam Ali

Observed on the 21st day of Ramadan in Iran, the Martyrdom of Imam Ali is a public holiday that commemorates the martyrdom of Ali ibn Abu Talib—the son-in-law of the Prophet Muhammad and considered by Shia Muslims to be the first Imam. Imam Ali is also known as Hazrat Ali and is considered an important figure not only for Shia Muslims but for Muslims all across the globe.

He was the first male to accept Islam—which for many people means that he is the first Muslim in history. This holiday is celebrated with people taking time off work and attending religious services.

The History of the Martyrdom of Imam Ali

Imam Ali was born to Abu Talib and Fatima bint Asad and became the first male to accept the religion of Islam. He fought alongside Muhammad during the early years of Islam, and when he migrated to Medina, he married Muhammad’s daughter Fatima and became his son-in-law.

When Caliph Uthman ibn Affan was assassinated, Ali was appointed the Caliph in 656. He ruled as Caliph until 661 when he was struck by a poisonous sword wielded by Ibn Muljam—a Kharijite from Egypt. The sword strike to Ali’s head proved fatal. Ibn Muljam was captured and executed in retaliation, and Ali became a martyr.

Fast Facts About Iran

Below are some fast facts about Iran that we feel most of our readers will find illuminating.

  • Iranian females above the age of nine are required to wear a hijab in public.
  • Polo originated in Iran during the 6th century as cavalry training.
  • Soccer is the most popular sport in Iran.
  • Approximately 10% of the world’s oil reserves are located in Iran.

Observing the Martyrdom of Imam Ali

This holiday is observed through fasting, prayer, and religious services. This day is also marked by national mourning. Mourners across Iran fill mosques and visit religious sites to mark this solemn event.

Where is it celebrated?
Iran (National holiday)
When is it?
This year (2024)
March 31 Sunday
Next year (2025)
March 21 Friday
Last year (2023)
April 12 Wednesday