Iranians tend to be enthusiastic observers of holidays and festivals, and Westerners are likely to be struck by the very large number of occasions they have for celebrating them. Indeed, even some members of the Iranian parliament (Majles) have complained that the country has so many declared holidays (as many as 145 nonworking days in a year, with about 26 official public holidays) that it is adversely affecting the development of the country. There are what might be called civil holidays, general Islamic holidays, specifically Shi‘ite holidays, and national holidays, as well as events particular to specific religious and ethnic minorities in the country. Some are quite joyous and festive in tone, others somber and refl ective, and still others amount to little more than days on which government offi ces and some businesses are closed. The focus in this chapter is on those holidays and festivals that have an offi cial or quasi-offi cial status affecting the country as a whole.