Safavid Iran: Rebirth of a Persian Empire

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The Safavid dynasty, which reigned from the late fifteenth to the eighteenth century, links medieval with modern Iran. The Safavids witnessed wide-ranging developments in politics, warfare, science, philosophy, religion, art and architecture. But how did this dynasty manage to produce the longest lasting and most glorious of Iran’s Islamic-period eras?

Andrew Newman offers a complete re-evaluation of the Safavid place in history as they presided over these extraordinary developments and the wondrous flowering of Iranian culture. In the process, he dissects the Safavid story, from before the 1501 capture of Tabriz by Shah Ismail (1488-1524), the point at which Shìism became the realm's established faith; on to the sixteenth and early seventeenth century dominated by Shah Abbas (1587-1629), whose patronage of art and architecture from his capital of Isfahan embodied the Safavid spirit; and culminating with the reign of Sultan Husayn (reg. 1694-1722).

Based on meticulous scholarship, Newman offers a valuable new interpretation of the rise of the Safavids and their eventual demise in the eighteenth century. Safavid Iran, with its fresh insights and new research, is the definitive single volume work on the subject.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher

"There is an enormous amount of valuable material here and very wide and impressive reading."--Charles Melville, Reader in Persian History, University of Cambridge

"An original, provocative analysis and synthesis of the latest scholarship and thinking on this critical period of Iran’s history--the first such authoritative overview in twenty-five years."--Professor Gene Garthwaite, Dartmouth College

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781845118303
  • Publisher: I. B.Tauris & Company, Limited
  • Publication date: 12/15/2008
  • Pages: 288
  • Sales rank: 1,048,404
  • Product dimensions: 6.10 (w) x 9.10 (h) x 1.00 (d)

Meet the Author

Andrew J. Newman is Senior Lecturer in Islamic Studies and Persian in the Department of Islamic and Middle Eastern Studies at the University of Edinburgh.

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Table of Contents

* Preface and Acknowledgements
• Map: Iran in the Safavid Period
• Introduction
• Laying the Foundations: Ismail I (1488-1524)
• Reconfiguration and Consolidation: The Reign of Tahmasp (1524-1576)
• The Second Civil War: Ismail II (1576-1577) and Khudabanda (1578-1587)
• Monumental Challenges and Monumental Responses: The Reign of Abbas I (1587-1629)
• Shifts at the Centre and a Peace Dividend: Shah Abbas II (1642-1666)
• The Peace Dividend Consolidated: Shah Abbas II (1642-1666)
• Meeting the Challenges: Shah Sulayman (1666.68-1694)
• Denouement or Defeat: The Reign of Shah Sultan Husayn (1694-1722)
• Epilogue: Poetry and Politics - The Multiplicity of Safavid Discourse
• Appendix I: Key Dates
• Appendix II: Key chronicles and travellers
• Notes
• Select Bibliography
• Index

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