Safavid

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Related to Safavid dynasty: Ottoman Empire, Qajar dynasty

Safavid

(säfä`wēd), Iranian dynasty (1499–1736), that established Shiite Islam in Iran as an official state religion. The Safavid state provided both the territorial and societal foundations of modern Iran. Founded by Shah IsmailIsmail
, 1486–1524, shah of Persia (1502–24), founder of the Safavid dynasty. He restored Persia to the position of a sovereign state for the first time since the Arab invasion of Persia.
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, this Turkic-speaking dynasty claimed descent from a Shiite Sufi order. Shiite views, propagated with the help of clerics recruited from Jabal Amil (today in Lebanon) and Iraq, endowed Iran with an identity distinct from its Sunni neighbors. The consolidation of Safavid rule was completed during the reign of Shah Abbas IAbbas I
(Abbas the Great) , 1557–1629, shah of Persia (1587–1628), of the Safavid dynasty. In 1597 he ended the raids of the Uzbeks, and subsequently (1603–23) he conquered extensive territories from the Turks.
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. Recognizing his military inferiority vis-à-vis the Ottoman Sultanate, Abbas accepted the Ottoman occupation of the western parts of his domain and was thus able to concentrate his efforts on creating a standing army and halting Uzbek incursions from the east. He established Isfahan as his capital and transformed it into an architectural showcase. The strategic location of Iran and Safavid animosity toward the Ottomans, who were a continuing threat to European powers, generated European interest. Shah Abbas received numerous European legations and, with the help of English warships, conquered Hormoz, the Portuguese colony at the entrance of the Persian Gulf. His project to create a major competing maritime trade center at Bandar Abbas failed. Benefiting from a change in the balance of power, he expanded into Ottoman territory, annexing the holy Shiite cities of Karbala and Najaf. A period of upheaval followed his death, during which Ottoman pressure from the west and Mughal attacks from the east led to substantial territorial losses. Abbas II (1642–66) attempted to eliminate bureaucratic corruption, and gained a peace, largely due to the military exhaustion of Iran's neighbors. Husayn (1694–1722, see Sultan HusaynSultan Husayn
, d. 1729, Safavid shah of Persia (1694–1722). A weak and superstitious man, Shah Sultan Husayn was surrounded by astrologers and fanatics and was able to offer little opposition to the uprising of the Afghans.
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) devoted his energy to reconquering the island of Bahrayn, ignoring the opposition centered in Afghanistan. In 1722, Afghan forces entered Isfahan and forced Husayn to abdicate, putting an effective end to Safavid rule. The final blow came in 1736 when the Afshar Nadir, regent of young Abbas III, deposed him, becoming shah himself (see Nadir ShahNadir Shah
or Nader Shah
, 1688–1747, shah of Iran (1736–47), sometimes considered the last of the great Asian conquerors. He was a member of the Afshar tribe.
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).

Bibliography

See L. Lockhart, The Fall of the Safavi Dynasty (1958); I. Munshi, History of Shah Abbas the Great (1978); R. Savory, Iran under the Safavids (1980).

Safavid

 

(also Safawiyah), a dervish order of the Sufi sect. The Safavid order was founded in the late 13th century by Sheikh Safi al-Din (1252–1334) in the city of Ardebil, in Iranian Azerbaijan. Initially the order defended its followers against oppression by feudal lords. In the 15th century, however, its leaders themselves became feudal lords, sheiks of Ardebil, and initiated a struggle for political power, using propaganda based mainly on Safavid beliefs incorporated with elements of Shiism. The army of the Safavid sheikhs was drawn largely from the Kizilbash people. In 1499, Ismail Safavid led the followers of the Safavid order in a successful campaign against the Ak-Koy-unlu, which eventually led to the formation of the Safavid state.

References in periodicals archive ?
The construction dates back to the Safavid dynasty, which is completed and restored in the next periods and are decorated with tiled walls, mirrors, and arched windows, arches, The entrance of courtyard has an inscription in white on blue tiles involving building completion date, at the entrance to the terrace and the Porch in front of the building itself has an inscription containing the names of unknown prophets buried in this tomb.
Other components of the consolidation and expansion of the Safavid dynasty, especially in the political and military independence from the convent was poor.
A Mongol invasion led by Genghis Khan devastated most of Al Ahwaz that was later occupied by the founder of the Timurid Empire, Tamerlane, and his successors, until the early 16th century when it fell under the domination of the Persian Safavid Dynasty.
Iran was Shafeei Sunni until the 15th century when they converted to Shi'ism under Safavid Dynasty.
Isma'il-I, a Turkoman who became king in much of Persian after having converted from Sunnism to Ja'fari Shi'ism, then founded the Safavid dynasty.
Today's site-specific form of Iranian Ta'zieh--some variation of it is practiced in other Muslim countries--grew out of a processional ritual that flourished during the Safavid dynasty rule when Shi'ite Islam was established as the state religion of Persia.
Shah 'Abbas, who came to the throne in 1587 as the fifth ruler of the Safavid dynasty, transformed four key sites: Isfahan, as the new capital, the Ardabil ancestral shrine, the Mashhad burial site of Imam Riza, the only Shia imam (infallible spiritual guide) who is buried in Iran, and Qum, the shrine city of Fatimeh Ma'sumeh, Imam Riza's sister.
1502 Safavid dynasty make Shia Islam the official religion.
When the Safavid dynasty (1507-1721) held sway over Persia, Feyli Kurds switched to the Shiite Jaafarean doctrine under Persian influence.
Chehabi's edited volume begins with the emergence of the sixteenth century Safavid Dynasty, when the most definitive links were forged.
That version has served mostly Iranian historians, who have used it as a source for the history of the demise of the Safavid dynasty in 1722 and the events surrounding the short-lived rule of the Afghans, a period that is poorly covered by Persian and European eyewitness accounts alike.