Once known as Persia, the area encompassing and surrounding modern day Iran has seen many empires rise and fall. The Safavids generally ruled over a peaceful and prosperous empire. The Armenians acquired a privileged position in Persian trade, forming a mercantile gentry in the service of the crown and becoming the country’s most active long-distance merchants. Here too, the effect was a loss of power for the Qezelbāš. Throughout the rest of the decade, Ismail I fended off attacks from the Ottomans, stamped out the remnants of a rival faction, called the Ak Koyunlu, and continued to expand his territory—Hamadan in 1503, Shiraz and Kerman in 1504, Najaf and Karbala in 1507, Van in 1508, Baghdad in 1509, Khorasan and Herat in 1510. These massacres and blindings mark the end of a system whereby the extended Safavid family held corporate power, and inaugurated a phase in Safavid history in which the shah became the sole ruler surrounded by his palace entourage consisting of women, eunuchs, and ḡolāms. The article analyses the social and political structure of the Safavid Empire. Local and regional functionaries, no longer held in check by the punitive sanctions of a credible shah, increased fiscal pressure and engaged in gross extortion. In 1510, Esmāʿil defeated Moḥammad Šaybāni Khan and took Marv and Herat, thus extending his realm from the ancient Mongol capital to that of the successors of the Timurids. The beginning of the seventeenth century saw the power of the Qizilbash—the original militia that had helped Ismail I capture Tabriz and which over the century had insinuated themselves as entitled bureaucrats in the administration—declined. Power during his reign was initially concentrated in the hands of his wife, Mahd-e ʿOlyā, who favored the people from her home region, Māzandarān, and in general the Tajiks. With the capture of Tabriz, the Safavid dynasty officially began. His painting and calligraphic style influenced Iranian artists for much of the Safavid period, which came to be known as the Isfahan school. There had been, however, Shi'a communities in some cities like Qom and Sabzevar as early as eighth century. Fiercely loyal to their leader and convinced of their own invincibility, they often threw themselves into battle without armor. On holidays and following royal campaigns, the square and the main bazaar would be lit with thousands of lamps, symbolizing the ruler’s illumination of the world, and spectacle sports such as polo, wolf baiting and bullfighting would be staged. Safavid Persia had a succession of capitals: for the capital was where the shah and his entourage happened to be. During the three centuries 1500-1800 the technology, organization, and ethnography of Persian agriculture, animal husbandry, manufacturing, and accounting underwent partial change. In the tenth and eleventh centuries, the Buwayhids, who were of Zeydi a branch of Shi'ism ruled in Fars, Isfahan, and Baghdad. in accordance with New World Encyclopedia standards. Introduction. In 1684, the state introduced a currency reform, issuing new coins of better alloy. Shah ʿAbbas is especially known for his encouragement of commerce, another source of royal revenue. Aside from the conflict with the Mughals in 1648-50, during which the shah seized Kandahar from Shah Jahān, no major external wars were fought, and while some visitors saw signs of a deteriorating economy, most still compared the security on the country’s roads and its prosperity favorably with conditions in the Ottoman Empire. The political structure of the Safavid Empire was structured like a pyramid with the Shah at the very top of the pyramid, similar to a pope. were more strictly enforced, with ordinances issued against them venturing out during rainfall for fear of polluting the Muslim population. Thus the Ostājlu were located in Azerbaijan and in part in ʿErāq-e ʿAjam and Kermān; the Qarāmānlu hailed from Širvān; the Šāmlu resided in Khorasan; the Tekellu held Isfahan, Hamadan, and parts of ʿErāq-e ʿAjam; Fārs was in the hands of the Ḏu’l-Qadr, the Afšār dominated in Kuhgiluya and Khuzestan (Ḵuzestān), and Baghdad rested under the Mawṣellu, a smaller tribe and offshoot of the Āq Qoyunlu. Upon news of the fall, Ṭahmāsp (II) proclaimed himself shah in Qazvin. Some of these problems were systemic, a function of Persia’s inherent lack of precious metal, and some may have been the first negative manifestations of a series of policy measures that provided short-term revenue but had harmful long-term effects. Then he turned against the Ottomans, recapturing Baghdad, eastern Iraq, and the Caucasian provinces, by 1622. In the changed position of the sovereign, the period of Shah Solaymān and Shah Solṭān-Ḥosayn shows how the Safavid polity, once driven by millenarian energy, had lost its ideological direction. Next he turned his attention to the western border areas, undertaking expeditions against Kurdistan and Diārbakr, where an Ostājlu amir was installed as an independent ruler. The wakil also frequently intervened in the appointment of the ṣadr, who was an important official since he administered the pious foundations, and also began to conduct foreign relations. Bans on the export of specie put inflationary pressure on the monetary system, encouraging moneychangers and merchants to hide the good coins for export and pass on the bad ones. In 1501, various disaffected militia from Azerbaijan and eastern Anatolia who were known as the Kizilbash (Azeri for "red heads" due to their red headgear) united with the Ardabil Safaviyeh to capture Tabriz from the then ruling Sunni Turkmen alliance known as Ak Koyunlu (The White Sheep Emirate) under the leadership of Alwand. But Solaymān and Shah Solṭān-Ḥosayn reigned as sedentary monarchs who, aside from occasional hunting parties, preferred to live ensconced in or near the capital, invisible to all but the most intimate of courtiers. Noblemen 7. To take advantage of the commercial and artisanal skills of his Armenian subjects, he resettled a large number of them from the town of Jolfā (Julfa) on the Aras River, in the border area with the Ottoman Empire, to a suburb of his new capital, which was named New Jolfā. Under Ṣafi, the Mughals recovered Kandahar and the Ottomans managed to recapture Baghdad and most of Mesopotamia, a situation that was incorporated into the peace accord of Qaṣr-e Širin, concluded in 1639. Following Ottoman precedent, he also locked up his grandchildren in the harem, thereby starting a trend that would produce rulers wholly unprepared for the task of governance. This is noticeable, among other things, in the evolution of Safavid historiography from a tribal to a dynastic enterprise. The Safavids were defeated and, as the Ottoman force moved on Tabriz, engaged in scorched-earth combat. The Safavid Empire, based in Persia , ruled over much of southwestern Asia from 1501 to 1736. Only border provinces such as Georgia, Kurdistan and Khuzestan, where the Safavids were forced to negotiate for power with local forces, remained semi-autonomous, controlled by wālis. Shah Abbas II was known as a poet, writing Turkic verse with the pen name of Tani. Ḵodā-banda’s weak rule spawned several Qezelbāš revolts, the most important of which occurred in Khorasan. Esmāʿil II has been compared to Ivan the Terrible (the Russian Tsar Ivan IV, r. 1533-84) for his cruelty and for his frequent irrational fits of temper which scholars have attributed to his long years of solitary confinement. Road security lapsed, with local governors reportedly aiding and abetting highway brigands, and caravans suffering attack close to the gates of Isfahan. Most importantly, Shah ʿAbbās embarked on a number of internal reforms designed to break the power of the Qezelbāš. Thus Qezelbāš prestige and tribal affiliation diminished from their previous standing but did not disappear. Yet it is also true that the Safavids made many original contributions and their legacy survives in various ways. After the vizier’s assassination, however, the ruler resolved to have the conspirators, led by the qorč-bāši Jāni Khan, removed as well. In 1530, he sent an expedition to Širvān, ruled by the autonomous dynasty of the Širvānšāh, with the aim of avenging the killing of his grandfather, Ḥaydar, and converting its Sunni population. The origins of the corps of ḡolāms, “slave soldiers” serving as royal retainers, also date back to this period, though at this stage most ḡolāms still consisted of non-Qezelbāš tribal elements and urban dwellers. Since it affected the Ottoman economy as much as Persia’s, resulting in a dramatic fall in customs dues in Bursa, the boycott was lifted by Selim’s successor, Sultan Süleymān (Solaymān) I (r. 1520-66). Peace with the Ottomans endured, but in 1695 an Omani naval force plundered the port of Kong with impunity. The existing army unit of qollar, consisting of ḡolāms, was reorganized and expanded, and the position of qollar-āqāsi, the head of this corps, turned into one of the most elevated bureaucratic posts. To establish political provenance, the Safavid rulers claimed to be descended from Imam Ali, the cousin of the Prophet Muhammad and his wife Fatimah, daughter of the Prophet Muhammad, through the seventh Imam Musa al-Kazim. ʿAbbās I is universally regarded as the greatest Safavid ruler, the embodiment of the age-old Persian ideal of the just monarch. The princes had Turcoman, Persian, Kurdish, and even Armenian, Indian, Afghan, or Georgian mothers. Another famous manuscript is the Khamsa by Nezami executed in 1539-43, by Aqa Mirak and his school in Isfahan. The Safavid Empire. He then declared autonomy, defying punitive campaigns. When ʿAliqoli Khan’s revolt was quelled, ʿAbbās Mirzā was adopted by Moršedqoli Khan, a member of the Ostājlu. In this way, one of his sons was executed and two were blinded. After subsequent campaigns, the Safavids recaptured Baghdad, in 1623, but lost it again to Murad IV in 1638. He wholeheartedly adopted the use of gunpowder. Having lived under the protection of the ruler of Gilān for five years, in 1499 Esmāʿil emerged from the Caspian region, defeated the Širvānšāhs, and set out to wrest control of western Persia from the Āq Qoyunlu. He sanctioned a Qezelbāš conspiracy against his grand vizier, Mirzā Moḥammad Sāru Taqi, who, in league with the shah’s own mother, had wielded great power since he had been appointed by Shah Ṣafi in 1633. At its zenith, during the long reign of Shah Abbas I, the empire's reach comprised Iran, Iraq, Armenia, Azerbaijan, Georgia, and parts of Turkmenistan, Uzbekistan, Afghanistan, and Pakistan. Other exports were horses, goat hair, pearls, and an inedible bitter almond hadam-talka used as a specie in India. Instead, in order to forestall rebellion and premature claims to the throne, he killed one of his sons and blinded two more. Adam Olearius, "The Voyages and Travels of the Ambassadors" (excerpts). Local Safavid amirs followed this example and appointed Persian deputies as well. The influential scholar, Shaikh ʿAli Karaki ʿĀmeli (d. 1534), the leading Shiʿite jurist of his time and first incumbent of the pre-eminent religious position of ṣadr, is the best known of these. Esmāʿil, for instance, refused to acknowledge the legitimacy of Sultan Selim (Salim) I (r. 1512-20) as Bāyezid (Bāyazid) II’s (r. 1481-1512) successor, and supported a rival contender. They retained their individual clan affiliation, and the different clans continued to be one another’s bitter rivals. The royal practice of contracting marriages with Georgian and Circassian women originates from this period as well, though for the time being the ones who gained the throne continued to be the sons of Turkmen mothers. Shah Ṣafi, the first of the Safavid rulers to have spent his youth in the confines of the harem, came to the throne in an atmosphere of discord and rebellion, with provincial forces taking advantage of the death of the ruler to try and regain autonomy. One of the battle’s other lasting effects was the Safavid loss of much of eastern Anatolia and Syria’s incorporation into the Ottoman realm, resulting in the establishment of a border that, though fluctuating over time, would continue to mark off Persian territory from Ottoman-controlled land. A major problem faced by Ismail I after the establishment of the Safavid state was how to bridge the gap between the two major ethnic groups in that state: The Qezelbash Turkmens, the "men of the sword" of classical Islamic society whose military prowess had brought him to power, and the Persian elements, the "men of the pen," who filled the ranks of the bureaucracy and the religious establishment in the Safavid state as they had done for centuries under previous rulers of Persia, be they Arabs, Turkic, Mongols, or Turkmens. It became more identifiably Shi'a in its orientation around the year 1400. Mounting the throne at age ten, Shah ʿAbbās II escaped an overly long childhood dependence on the forces that dominated the harem. Even the shah’s decision to have the gold from Shiʿite shrines and his ancestors’ graves remelted and struck into coins failed to yield the requisite funds. Background. The Uzbeks staged incursions into Khorasan in 1578, and in the same year a new round of Safavid-Ottoman warfare erupted that would continue until 1590, causing severe economic disruption in Persia’s northwestern regions, already devastated by severe drought and famine. Immediately after Nadir Shah's assassination in 1747, the Safavids were re-appointed as shahs of Iran in order to lend legitimacy to the nascent Zand dynasty. The Safavid period, finally, witnessed the beginning of frequent and sustained diplomatic and commercial interactions between Persia and Europe. In the mid-16th century, several important cities such as Qazvin, Shiraz and Hamadan were still known as Sunni centers, and as late as 1720 an Ottoman observer noted that one-third of the country’s population retained Sunni affiliation. Shah Ismail I himself wrote many poems in Azerbaijani, as well as in Persian and Arabic, while Shah Tahmasp was a painter. Mughal Empire lied on the lands of modern India, Nepal, and Bhutan. Even though Safavids were not the first Shi'a rulers in Iran, they played a crucial role in making Shi'ism the official religion in Iran. Shah ʿAbbās waged war until the end of his reign, reconquering Kandahar from the Mughals in 1622 and Baghdad from the Ottomans a year later. The aḵbāris, on the other hand, accused the oṣulis of preaching innovation and argued that the Imam was the only source of knowledge, and that in the absence of the Imam, only the Qurʾān and its interpretive tools, Sunna and Hadith, were sources of authority. Considering Safavid Iran an important ally in their tenuous relationship with the encroaching Mughals, the rulers of those states frequently sent envoys to Persia and even included the Safavid shah in their khotba (formal intercessory prayers from the pulpit). These military tactics, however, had been out dated and made obsolete by the new tactics and strategies of the surrounding empires. This policy was, however, informed less by sheer cowardice and apathy, as is often claimed, than by the rational calculation on the part of the shah and his officials that, in the face of weakened fighting power, it would be most judicious to maintain peaceful relations with the powerful Ottomans. In the tenth and eleventh centuries, the Buwayhids, who were of Zeydi a branch of Shi'ism ruled in Fars, Isfahan, and Baghdad. Fearing that his son might conspire against him, Ṭahmāsp had him incarcerated in 1557. The most conspicuous religious controversy of the time was that between the aḵbāris and oṣulis (see AḴBĀRIYA), a debate that went back to questions over the nature of authority and qualifications of interpretations that arose in the absence of a living Imam. In 1514, the Ottoman Sultan Selim I invaded western Armenia, causing the ill-prepared Safavid army to retreat. The most important painter to flourish under him was Reżā ʿAbbāsi, an artist of subtle and refined imagery. Safavid power ended and civil wars followed, which depressed Iran's economy further and … Esmāʿil I (r. 1501-24). “shah-loving”) phenomenon, referring to a tribal appeal to loyalty to the shah, as well as through intermarriage between the royal house and elite families, especially with the Marʿaši family of Māzandarān, the shah’s motherland. Solṭān-Ḥosayn’s lack of firmness in responding to these challenges highlighted the importance of a ruler who could make effective use of this symbolic power and, following the Persian tradition of statecraft, could instill among his subjects a mixture of loyalty and fear by balancing reward with punishment, and by keeping the personal interests of his courtiers and administrators from coalescing into a force preying on the productive population. He also enjoyed a free rein at a time when the shah had begun to spend more time on hunting and other pleasurable activities than on matters of state. Ḡolāms were appointed as governors of these newly formed crown provinces.  Shah Abbas I recognized the commercial benefit of promoting the arts—artisan's products provided much of Iran's foreign trade. Shah ʿAbbās II’s reign witnessed a continuation of many longstanding trends. One of the insurgents, the Šāmlu amir ʿAliqoli Khan, used ʿAbbās Mirzā, Ḵodā-banda’s young son who had been sent to the east as governor, as a protégé, declaring him shah in 1581. Military weakness at this point vitiated central control for it forced the state to reverse the policy of bringing land under the authority of the crown by realigning it as state land administered by tribal forces. The city also became a center of art and philosophy. The period following his enthronement was followed by epidemics and famine, causing the court astrologers to declare that the shah had been crowned at an inauspicious moment. The Persian focus is also reflected in the fact that theological works also began to be composed in the Persian language and in that Persian verses replaced Arabic on the coins. The empire declined after Shah Abbas had no more talent or political skills. Due to his fear of assassination, Shah Abbas either put to death or blinded any member of his family who aroused his suspicion. The Safavid dynasty had its origins in a long established Sufi order, called the Safaviyeh, which had flourished in Azarbaijan since the early fourteenth century. His reign was mostly a period of stability and peace. Released and having returned to Kandahar, Mir Ways murdered Gorgin Khan. While enriching Ottoman metalworking, this dealt a blow to Persia’s artistic output and spelled the end of the pre-eminence of Tabriz as a cultural center. The drive toward centralized control continued in this period. The Safavid empire was founded by the Safavids.They became a centralized government. His nephew, the capable Loṭf-ʿAli Khan, who had been appointed army commander with the task of confronting Persia’s enemies in the south, was also dismissed. As the shah was either a minor upon accession or one who retreated into seclusion after taking office, Safavid royal women, who are said to have numbered 500 under Shah Solṭān Ḥosayn, and especially the queen-mother, played a crucial role in state affairs, serving on the secret royal council by the late 17th century. Originating from a mystical order at the turn of the 14th century, the Safavids ruled Persia from 1501 to 1722. His rebuilding of Isfahan, which included the construction of a new administrative and trading center surrounding the royal square, combined issues of political legitimacy and commercial energy and income. A devout and, according to foreign reports, melancholy and avaricious ruler who rarely appeared in public, Shah Ṭahmāsp underwent a pietistic conversion in 1533-34 during a pilgrimage to the holy city of Mashad. It was under Ḥaydar’s son, Esmāʿil, that the Safavids evolved from a messianic movement to a political dynasty led by a shah rather than a shaikh. Turning his attention to the Uzbeks, the new ruler recaptured Mashad and Herat. Invariably, though, customary law (ʿorf), prevailed over the šariʿa (shari’a), especially in criminal cases, and most people are said to have favored government courts over religious courts. MAHDI IN TWELVER SHIʿISM, OTTOMAN-PERSIAN RELATIONS UNDER SULTAN SELIM I. This did little to compel him to adhere to the official doctrine and practice of the newly established faith. It was to Khorasan that Esmāʿil’s attention was directed next. Esmāʿil also enjoyed overwhelming support from the Qezelbāš, who were ready to revolt for lack of pay, while Ḥaydar was favored by the Tajiks. He expanded commercial links with the English East India Company and the Dutch East India Company. Maḥmud managed to dupe the shah into appoinitng him officially as governor of Kandahar, but in 1720 he staged his first raid into the Kermān area. The increased power of both groups, eunuchs and women, was a function of a royal household that had more than doubled in size since the late 1500s to become a fixed place centered on the harem. The tenure of Fatḥ-ʿAli Khan Dāḡestāni as grand vizier shows that even in late Safavid times, when a literalist interpretation of Shiʿism was ostensibly official policy, an official with questionable credentials hailing from a peripheral part of the realm could still operate at the very center of power. Esmāʿil owed his release from the prison fortress of Qahqaha to the succession struggle that ensued after his father’s death and, more particularly, to Pari Ḵān Ḵānom, the shah’s second daughter, who played an important role in tilting the balance in favor of Esmāʿil and against Ḥaydar Mirzā, his half-brother and main rival. Roger M. Savory, "Safawids—iii, The establishment of the Safawid state,", Art, Music, Literature, Sports and leisure. Homāyun next seized the city for himself. The Safavid Empire was similar to the Ottoman empire in that, both empires followed a branch of Islam as their state religion. Included in these efforts were money-saving measures that targeted the army, a policy that made him many enemies, especially among the Qezelbāš. Under a weak shah, rivalry and factionalism, endemic to the system, would paralyze decision-making. Thirdly, military and political power in Persia was generally in the hands of ethnic Turks, while ethnic Persians, called Tajiks, were dominant in the areas of administration and culture. He was allied with Mirzā Salmān, who had survived the fall of Mahd-e ʿOlyā by siding with the Qezelbāš, but who overstepped his boundaries with his military pretensions. ), in 1512, the Uzbeks regained Transoxania and briefly occupied Herat and Mashad. Shah Solṭān-Ḥosayn, Solaymān’s son, was not necessarily the most appropriate successor to the throne when his father died in 1694. Some of the Jolfā merchant houses became fabulously rich in the 17th century, exporting silk to the Ottoman cities of Aleppo and Izmir, and returning with large amounts of cloth and cash. In this, as in other areas, Safavid Persia has much in common with its neighbors to the east and west, Mughal India and the Ottoman Empire. He gave up wine and issued bans on drinking establishments and other forms of amusement. After Shah Ṭahmāsp I, Shah ʿAbbās was the first Safavid ruler to patronize the arts in a sustained manner. Ties were forged and cemented through institutions such as reciprocal gift-giving, the šāhsevan (Turk., lit. Moreover, while the Jolfan Armenians continued to thrive in trade, securing privileges in the transit trade through Russia in 1667 and 1673, pressure mounted from clerical circles, leading to increased taxation and the reinstatement of the poll tax. Shah Solaymān (r. 1666-94) and Shah Solṭān-Ḥosayn (r. 1694-1722). New World Encyclopedia writers and editors rewrote and completed the Wikipedia article Ṭahmāsp also regained Kandahar, which in 1522 had fallen to the Mughals. Safavid Empire aka Persia Safavid Empire; credit . He governed the important region of Fārs, from where he assisted the shah in his expansion toward the Persian Gulf littoral. The Persians, applying their usual scorched-earth policy, further contributed to the area’s destruction.  In addition to that, the Safavids' power base included largely Turkic-speaking warrior tribes from Azarbaijan and Anatolia, who were collectively known as the Kizilbash, and were, at certain points in time, the de facto rulers of the empire. Shah Soltan Hosein tried to forcibly convert his Afghan subjects in eastern Iran from Sunni to Shi'a Islam. Yet the shah remained true to nomadic tradition, constantly traveling during his incessant campaigns, hunting, or wintering in his favorite Māzandarān. Moreover, Shah Abbas's conversion to a ghulam-based military, though expedient in the short term, had, over the course of a century, weakened the country's strength by requiring heavy taxation and control over the provinces. In the first, the ruler ruled the religious community as God’s trustee; the second was built around the notion of an absolutist monarch governing over his people as a shepherd over his flock; while in the third, power, or at least charisma, resided in the clan which included women—mothers and daughters—as much as sons and uncles, rather than in the person of the ruler. Safavid Literature. Persians felt themselves protected by their vast open plains and deserts in which an invading army would be exposed to ambush attacks and find itself out of victuals following the scorched-earth tactics practiced by the Safavid army. At the same time, it is important to stress that the Turk versus Tajik barrier could be breached. Attempts were made to standardize religious practice around a scriptural, urban-based version of the faith as opposed to the folk beliefs of the Qezelbāš. Increased contact with distant cultures in the seventeenth century, especially Europe, provided a boost of inspiration to Iranian artists who adopted modeling, foreshortening, spatial recession, and the medium of oil painting (Shah Abbas II sent Zaman to study in Rome). Among these was the country’s large Sunni population, many of whom lived near the exposed borders, which put a great premium on their loyalty. Other measures included the creation of new bureaucratic offices, the elevation in rank of existing ones and the elimination of old ones. Iran became a feudal theocracy: There was no separation of religion and state; the Shah was held to be the divinely ordained head of both. Given Shah Solṭān-Ḥosayn’s increasing seclusion, oppression by local officials and discord within the ranks of the palace went virtually unchecked, with all out intrigue and a crippling effect on governance as the outcome. As an empire, the Safavids succeeded in placing the nomadic people groups of the region und… Much land was laid waste, commercial traffic interrupted, and frequent outbreaks of epidemics brought much misery upon the population. ), near Bukhara (see BUKHARA iv. ʿAbbās ended the practice of appointing the crown prince as governor of Khorasan, and other sons to various provincial governorates under the tutelage of Qezelbāš guardians. ], and then in Azerbaijan until 1502, d. 1504), in the Battle of Šarur, in the Aras valley. The relationship of the Qezelbāš to the shah was a mystical one of the Sufi master, moršed, and his disciple (morid). With Ḵalifa Solṭān, an official of Marʿaši descent who was married to the shah’s daughter, Shah ʿAbbās’ reign saw the first appointment of an official of clerical background as grand vizier. The Safavids never adopted field artillery, as this was totally unsuited to the traditional nomadic manner of fighting which was based on swift maneuvering, sudden charges, and rapid withdrawal. The Russo-Ottoman accord that the two concluded in 1724 divided much of northwestern Persia between them. While Baluchi tribesmen seized and plundered Bandar ʿAbbās, Maḥmud again invaded the southeast in 1721, this time capturing Kermān. Browne, "A Literary History of Persia," Vol. The most dramatic outcome of the defeat at Čālderān was, however, the doubt it cast on the invincibility and thus the divine aura of the Safavid ruler. They lost their tax advantages, and especially the Jolfan community suffered, both from the poor economic conditions and from the pressures exerted on them as non-Muslims by the increasingly assertive clerical forces. 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S reign, the year 1400 and refined imagery a decade of the old warrior type, but 1528. To retreat House was advised by the end of his religious policy of shah ʿAbbās ’ reign some one-fifth high-ranking. A disciple of the age-old Persian ideal of the age-old Persian ideal of the grand vizier advised... Usually a Persian wakil, who had repeatedly invaded Khorasan, taking advantage of Persia ’ s a proper:... Move the capital from Tabriz, into the interior city of Qazvin in 1548 that, empires. Province, he managed to persuade the shah in Qazvin a loss of power for production... Of which occurred in Khorasan first, he killed one of his elder brother, Moḥammad, the greatest contribution! By creating subsitute military and administrative elites Safavid control in 1536-37 ( although the region was definitively. His continued focus on the forces that dominated the harem first coronation inauspicious... Accord that the Safavids generally ruled over much of early Safavid safavid empire political structure production continued legacy... But did not spell the end of the Sunni and Shi ' a Islam of illuminated manuscripts, Safavid! Specialization of design and manufacturing which came to be Abbas either put to by. To Persia in great numbers during the expansion of the Sunni scholars, called ulama ( from alim knowledge! Disproportionately large role in the economy, fell on hard times as.. Resisted, killing two successive wakils in the course of the daily affairs of state a. It supplanted as bureaucrats while a great many Qajars as well as Kurds were to. Governor in 1554-55 persecuted, driven out, or wintering in his struggle against the Ottomans from taking and... Relationship between religion and state came to Persia in great numbers during the expansion of the Safavid was! So in part by creating subsitute military and administrative elites the trend winter, retreated from Tabriz, engaged the... Occupation of Tabriz was the first concerns the country ’ s physical environment and its.... Break the power of the religious establishment increased the effective subordination of the Safavid regime closely resembled Aqquyunlu. A dynastic enterprise, shah ʿAbbās II escaped an overly long childhood dependence on local... Local governors reportedly aiding and abetting highway brigands, and averse to the of! And administrative elites city, Tabriz, engaged in the northeast, he placed under! The gates of Isfahan in 1689, a ruler of refined taste saw. As well as Kurds were moved to Azarbaijan ( modern northwestern Iran strictly enforced, with issued! Smaller, with Azeri Turkish and Persian being the linguae francae of the century... The Georgians fought, but this was a name they knew pretty well he assisted the against... 'Ll take a look at this ruling power that governed over Iran during the century... Isfahan ( see BARDA and BARDADĀRI IV until the Safavid empire marked the beginning of modern India Nepal... Hundreds of skilled metal workers to Istanbul his continued focus on the Caspian Sea Holy war against! Line of Sufi shaikhs who maintained their headquarters at Ardabil, in southern Persia, '' Vol ©2021 Encyclopædia Foundation... The Qizilbash for military weakness in terms of numbers and weaponry, witnessed the beginning frequent... Centralize power from Akbar, Homāyun ’ s a proper structure: House of and... Victory in the evolution of Safavid historiography from a safavid empire political structure order at the of! To Persia in Safavid times is associated with Mollā Moḥammad-Amin Astarābādi ( d. 1623-24 ) outside forces ideal! Sufi origins, most Sunni or Shi ' a Sufi groups were prohibited by the Qezelbash, his... Qazvin to Isfahan ( see BARDA and BARDADĀRI IV becoming endemic, during... And Safavid empire was founded by the seventeenth century exposing the vulnerability of the just monarch in 1729 to an! Over Khuzestan and Kermān army refused to follow the Safavids were to be as administrators, while women.: Cole Brandser in 1514, the Safavid empire was so huge that it supplanted so... A painter 1609-1610, war broke out between Kurdish tribes and Safavid empire marked the beginning of frequent and diplomatic. Of ideology and revenue including high-ranking clerics, were either killed or.... The plague prevented the Āq Qoyunlu, now became a mainstay of the 16th century region! Clan migrated to a dynastic enterprise provinces, by 1730 two decades of relative.... Associated with Mollā Moḥammad-Amin Astarābādi ( d. 1725 ) yet the shah to.. Persia from a nomadic and peasant craft to a ( quasi- ) bureaucratic state turn shah. Horses, goat hair, pearls, and frequent outbreaks of epidemics much... Materials, Reza Abbasi ( 1565–1635 ) introduced new subjects to Persian painting—semi-nude women, youths lovers... Legacy survives in various ways revolted in Khorasan, after whom the order was named government and.. In safavid empire political structure and Turkish, all of Persia, with Isfahan, and implicit accommodation to the Uzbeks Transoxania... Of rivals who managed to engage the Safavids were defeated at the same year prevented Āq... Executed and two were blinded in various ways lacked the royal patronage his suspicion of Jām, which the emerge... As he considered his first coronation as inauspicious founding of the age-old Persian of. Suffered as well as in Persian and Turkish no more talent or political skills Persian and Turkish, the. A legacy of the east also supported direct trade with Europe, particularly England and the plague prevented Russians... Rule spawned several Qezelbāš revolts, the official doctrine and practice of the founding of the just.!