"There is this narrative of decline, a narrative of stasis strongly present in people's understanding - both Muslim and non-Muslim, Middle Eastern, westerner - of the Muslim world on the eve of colonialism. While you will be able to view the content of this page in your current browser, you will not be able to get the full visual experience. Top 10 blogs in 2020 for remote teaching and learning; Dec. 11, 2020 Religious and political power were completely intertwined, and encapsulated in the person of the Shah. "If you want to run an empire, the best possible way is to have unity through diversity. Ayatollah Khomeini's challenge to the Shah's Royal authority confirmed a deep religious tradition in Iranian society and history. The artistic achievements and the prosperity of the Safavid period are best represented by Isfahan, the capital of Shah Abbas. The first result of this was that the military forces became less effective. In finding a successor, Shah Abbas made the same mistake the Ottoman monarch Suleyman made. That's what we are trying to question. After the death of Shah ʿAbbās I (1629), the Safavid dynasty lasted for about a century, but, except for an interlude during the reign of Shah ʿAbbās II (1642–66), it was a period of decline. he Decline and Fall of the Safavid Empire is at NYUAD. John Dennehy is deputy editor of The Review. But is decline inevitable and what lessons can be learnt from history? Eṣfahān fell to the Ghilzai Afghans of Kandahār in 1722. from 6.30pm to 8pm and is open to the public. The Safavid Empire, based in Persia , ruled over much of southwestern Asia from 1501 to 1736. Dec. 15, 2020. At one point, the empire stretched from the Caucasus to Afghanistan and the Safavids were one of the "gunpowder" empires, along with the Mughals and Ottomans. Learn about the Islamic empire. The Safavid Empire was, for a time, one of the most important empires in the Muslim world, along with its neighbors, the Mughals and the Ottomans. Its beautiful square, its mosques, its aura that is still visible today," says Matthee, a professor of history at the University of Delaware in the United States. With their major enemy keeping quiet, the Safavid Shahs became complacent, and then corrupt and decadent. The Afghan revolt brought down the Safavid Empire; although partially checked by the rise of the warlord Nader Shah and his empire, eventually modern Afghanistan was founded in … Some look back and think, what if things had gone a different way," says Stearns. When did the Roman empire end? Bandit chiefs and feudal lords plundered it at will, further weakening the Empire, and people yearned for strong central rule and stability. References: Wiki entry on Safavid Dynasty; Shapour Ghassemi, History of Iran: Safavid Empire, 1502-1736 Under Safavid rule eastern Persia became a great cultural centre. The army itself ceased to be reliable and began to loot and plunder the empire's inhabitants. Also, threats from the Ottomans and Russians added to the military threat from outside of the region. It covered all of Iran, and parts of Turkey and Georgia, All other religions, and forms of Islam were suppressed, The Empire's economic strength came from its location on the trade routes, The capital, Isfahan, is one of the most beautiful cities in the world, The Empire declined when it became complacent and corrupt. BBC Â© 2014 The BBC is not responsible for the content of external sites. One of the reasons for the Safavids' success was its harnessing of minorities - something that could be in danger of evaporating today. In the face of this, the argument that the West, and America in particular, is in decline has been put forward as one of the contributing reasons for this turmoil. He killed or blinded his ablest sons. The wealth from oil enabled him to head an opulent and corrupt court. That's what we are trying to question." Because Shi'ism was now a state religion, with major educational establishments devoted to it, its philosophy and theology developed greatly during the Safavid Empire. "The British Empire declined. How to increase brand awareness through consistency; Dec. 11, 2020. Islam was on top, but Jews, and especially Armenians, were relatively well-treated. The Persians called it Nisf-e-Jahan, 'half the world', meaning that to see it was to see half the world. For art to succeed at this scale, patronage had to come from the top. Safi al-Din converted to Shi'ism and was a Persian nationalist. The Safavid empire collapsed in the 18th century and the reasons for this are complex. ", The Safavid empire collapsed in the 18th century and the reasons for this are complex. According to Justin Stearns, assistant professor in Arab crossroads studies at NYUAD, and the organiser of the event, many people understand the Muslim world at this time to be in decline and both events seek to question this. The Safavid Empire lasted until 1736. The Safavids benefited from their geographical position at the centre of the trade routes of the ancient world. The ulama retained control of religious practice; and enforced the Sharia (Qur'anic Law) in personal and family matters. Iran's predicament was part of a worldwide trend. This is the subject of a talk at New York University Abu Dhabi (NYUAD) on Sunday on the decline and fall of the Safavid empire - a powerful Persian dynasty that was the forerunner of the modern Iranian state. In the 15th century the brotherhood became more militarily aggressive, and waged a jihad (Islamic holy war) against parts of what are now modern Turkey and Georgia. By terminating the wars with the Ottomans, Qaṣr-e Širin also put an end to the most imminent threat to Persia’s survival, thus further contributing to the decline of the Safavid army. Ali was also venerated. In specifically religious terms the Safavids not only persecuted Sunni Muslims, but Shi'ites with different views, and all other religions. Safavid Empire Made by: Megan Powell, Vicky Rodriguez, Keely Hoppmeyer, and Brennen Powell Safavid vs Other Empires Social: The Safavids gave women more rights while the Ottomans tried to remain more traditional Mughals began to take away women's freedoms such a making them veil The Afghan Shahs controlled the state and foreign policy, and could levy taxes and make secular laws. The empire continued to expand during Shah Abbas's reign but after his death, the dynasty gradually lost its vigor. Finally, after fighting on the side of Germany in World War I and suffering defeat, the empire was dismantled by treaty and came to an end in 1922, when the … When the Safavids came to power, Shah Ismail was proclaimed ruler at the age of 14 or 15, and by 1510 Ismail had conquered the whole of Iran. It ceased to expand and began to face economic competition from India and Europe. 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Why did the Safavid Empire decline so quickly? He was the founder of the Safavid Empire. The ulama continued to tolerate the non-religious Shahs right up until the 1970s but they finally overthrew the monarchy in 1979. "There was a clear hierarchy. After Shah Abbas's death, the central government began to decline. The Safavid brotherhood was originally a religious group. The Safavid Empire was held together in the early years by conquering new territory, and then by the need to defend it from the neighbouring Ottoman Empire. Ali eventually became the fourth caliph (or Imam, as Shiites call their leaders), but only after the two that preceded him had both been assassinated. Although Babur was born in Ferghana (in modern day Uzbekistan), it was the accomplishments of direct ancestor, Timur, that inspired him to head south to invade the Indian subcontinent. 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