IrSafvd

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Phase I Variables (polity-based)

General variables

♠ RA ♣ William Farrell; Edward A L Turner ♥

♠ Original name ♣ Safavid Empire ♥

♠ Alternative names ♣ mamalik-i Iran; mamlikat-i Iran ♥ The Safavids their state mamAlik-i Iran [the "dominions of Iran"] or mamlikat-i Iran [the "kingdom of Iran"]. [1]

♠ Peak Date ♣ 1629 CE ♥ Reign of Shah Abbas I (1587-1629 CE). “Shah Abbas I (known as Shah Abbas the Great) has deservedly been considered the ruler who revived the political and military power of the Safavids.” [2] "Abbās I is universally regarded as the greatest Safavid ruler, the embodiment of the age-old Persian ideal of the just monarch." [3] Under Abbas I "military, political and economic stability."[4]

Iran’s role in the silk trade led to the forging of important diplomatic relations with European powers. The death of Abbas is usually seen as the beginning of the slow decline of Safavid rule; certainly by the end of the 17th century they were no longer a great military force and their administration had stagnated.[5]

Temporal bounds

♠ Duration ♣ 1501-1722 CE ♥ Note: Secondary literature dates the start of the polity a year earlier than we do. 1501 is the year Ismāil defeated the Āq Qoyunlu and proclaimed himself Shah. [6] The end date is the same 1722 when the Afghans forced Solṭān-Ḥosayn to surrender to them. He gave the title of shah to the Afghan leader Maḥmud Ḡilzay. [7]

1527-1531 CE Takkalu regency. 1531-1532 CE Shamlu-Ustajlu alliance.[8]


♠ Degree of centralization ♣ unitary state ♥

either confederated state or unitary state. Did the shah appoint and remove regional governors and impose taxes and send them to the centre [unitary]?

♠ Supra-polity relations ♣ alliance ♥ The Safavids were an independent state.

Numerous marriage alliances. For example, Tahmasp had Georgian, Circasian and Daghistani wives.[9]

Supra-cultural relations

♠ preceding (quasi)polity ♣ Ak Koyunlu ♥ "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. In 1501, the Safavid army broke the power of the Āq Qoyunlu by defeating their ruler, Alvand (r. 1497 in Diārbakr [q.v.], and then in Azerbaijan until 1502, d. 1504), in the Battle of Šarur, in the Aras valley." [10] Core region: Anatolia and Azarbaijan: "A once parochial and religiously ambiguous millenarian movement that had depended heavily on the nomadic elements of the Anatolian and Azarbaijani environments now inherited the dynastic infrastructures of two well-established empires (the Aq Qoyunlus and Timurids) and annexed cities and territories from equally centralized polities, such as the Ottomans and the Mamluks."[11]
♠ relationship to preceding (quasi)polity ♣ elite migration; continuity ♥ The Safavids drove out the Āq Qoyunlu from Persia with the help of Qezelbāš tribal forces. They installed themselves as Shahs, princes etc and Qezelbāš were given regional governorships. They declared the new regime to be Shi'i and the existing Sunni population was "persecuted, driven out, or killed". [12] Evidence for this is material cultural e.g. new coins minted and texts such as chronologies. [13] "the Safavids were themselves the posterity of the Aq Qoyunlu, not only in a genealogical sense, but also as heirs to a tribally constituted military elite". [14] Ismail began from a power base in the Caspian region, before moving into western Persia and Azerbaijan after defeating the the Āq Qoyunlu.[15]
♠ succeeding (quasi)polity ♣ ♥ Solṭān-Ḥosayn surrendered to the Afghans and gave the title of shah to their leader Maḥmud Ḡilzay. [16]
♠ Supracultural entity ♣ Turco-Mongol; Perso-Islamic; Shia-Islamic ♥ "chancellery correspondence after 1588 pointed to the Safavid dynasty as the custodian of a complex heritage, which on the one hand recognized ecumenicalism and on the other claimed exclusive divine absolutism and soteriological superiority. This Universalist emphasis was in part inherited from the Turco-Mongol world of the Fourteen and Fifteenth centuries, but we also cannot dismiss the importance of those Universalist empires and world conquerors of the Archaemenian and Sasanian eras represented so faithfully as exemplars in Perso-Islamic literature and art."[17] "The 'Shi'fication' and Iraniation' of the Safavid Empire over a period of a hundred years prepared the landscape for a regional split into distinct Sunni Ottoman and Shi'i Safavid dominions." [18]
♠ scale of supra-cultural interaction ♣ 2,700,000 ♥ km squared.

♠ Capital ♣ Tabriz; Qazvin; Isfahan ♥ Tabriz was the first capital of the Safavids; Qazvin was a later capital. Isfahan under Shah Abbas. [19] "In view of the vulnerability of Tabriz to Ottoman attacks, Shah Tahmasp [(1524-76)] decided to transfer the capital from Tabriz to Qazvin." [20] Relocated from Tabriz to Qazvin under Tahmasp, and moved to Isfahan by Abbas I.[21]

♠ Language ♣ Persian; Turkic; Arabic ♥ Persian used in literature and inscription on coins. Initially Arabic was used on coins. [22] Turkic was used by some at court. "Government officials and their servants, merchants, artisans and their apprentices, professors and students, all spoke Persian. Business and preaching were usually done in Persian. " [23] "Qizilbash tribal elements and the early shahs especially were more comfortable in dialects of Turkish, native Iranians (Tajiks) spoke Persian and the primary language of the established faith was Arabic."[24]

General Description

The Safavid period of rule in Persia (1501-1722 CE) was begun by Shah Ismail (1501-1524 CE) and is known as a 'gunpowder empire' due to the now widespread use of artillery and muskets on the battlefield.[25]

Shah Ismail, whose original power base was near the Caspian sea, began the conquest of Iran with the capture Tabriz from the Ak Koyunlu. He declared that the state religion was Shi'ia and the Safavids were decisive for the spread of Shi'ism in Iran.

While initially the governing system was "largely a continuation of its Aq Qoyunlu counterpart and its Turco-Mongolian traditions"[26] it eventually became a "highly cen­tralized and complex bureaucratic system"[27] based at the Safavid court in the capital city. The highest officials of the Safavid court included the Vazir-e-azam (chief minister), Amir al-omard (commander in chief of the army, later titled Sepdhsdldr-e koll-e lasgar-e Iran), the Sadr (judiciary and religious minister), and vice-regent. [28]

As a defensive measure against Ottoman attacks Shah Tahmasp (1524-1576) moved the capital from Tabriz to Qazvin, but Shah Abbas I (1587-1629 CE) moved it again, further south, to a new monumental city at Isfahan. Under Shah Abbas Isfahan’s population grew to 200,000.[29] The rule of Shah Abbas I (1587-1629 CE) is widely thought of as representing the peak Safavid achievement. Incredible wealth acquired from the state monopoly over the silk trade, was spent on large-scale building works. Abbas also made key reforms to improve the administration and the army.[30][31] [32]

Social Complexity variables

♠ RA ♣ William Farrell; Edward A L Turner ♥

Social Scale

♠ Polity territory ♣ 2,700,000 ♥ km2. Calculated with Google map distance calculator. In comparative terms note: "The Safavid polity was never as large physically as those of the Achaemenians or Sassanians." [33]

Ismail expanded towards Persian Gulf, Kurdistan and Iraq. In fact under Ismail the Safavid polity was at its greatest territorial extent, later Shahs could never hold onto such large borders.[34]


♠ Polity Population ♣ 9,000,000 ♥ Floor estimates a total population of 9 million. He also estimates the urban population was between 10 to 15 % of this total. [35]


♠ Population of the largest settlement ♣ 200,000 ♥ Under Shah Abbas Isfahan’s population grew to 200,000 [36]

Safavid Persia did not have large cities: "Isfahan was smaller than Damascus, Cairo and Istanbul."[37]


Hierarchical Complexity

♠ Settlement hierarchy ♣ [4-5] ♥ levels.

Under Shah Abbas Isfahan’s population grew to 200, 000 [38] Under Ṭahmāsp I (r. 1524-76) the main city "Tabriz, may have had as many as 80,000 inhabitants; Hormuz perhaps numbered 50,000. Most other cities were much smaller, with Isfahan, Kashan and Shiraz having a population of between 15,000 and 20,000 people.” [39]

1. Large cities e.g Isfahan and Tabriz.

2. Small cities e.g. Kashan and Shiraz.
3. Towns
4. Villages
(5. Hamlets)

♠ Administrative levels ♣ 6 ♥ levels.

1. The Shah

- “At the top of the Safavid administrative and social structure was the Shah. He and his court constituted the apex of a substantial bureaucracy centred in the capital. The highest officials of the court included Vazir-e-azam (chief minister), Amir al-omard (commander in chief of the army, which later titled Sepdhsdldr-e koll-e lasgar-e Iran), Sadr (judiciary and religious minister), and vice-regent." [40]
"haram women and palace eunuchs"[41]
2. khassa lands
khassa lands were controlled directly by the central court, as distinct to mamalik lands controlled by the provincial administration.[42]


_Central government_

"highly cen­tralized and complex bureaucratic system"[43] "Ismail's bureaucratic structure was largely a continuation of its Aq Qoyunlu counterpart and its Turco-Mongolian traditions."[44]

2. vakil, vikalat (vicegerency)[45]
"Qadi-yi Jahan's nomination as co-vazir, to be shortly followed by a promotion to the office of vakil".[46]
3. niyabat (deputyship to vicegerency)[47]
3. vizier[48] / Vazir-e-azam (chief minister)
vizier an office below vakil: "Qadi-yi Jahan's nomination as co-vazir, to be shortly followed by a promotion to the office of vakil, is a continuation of those policies that had been effected since the 1508 "palace revolution," keeping administrative power out of the hands of the Qizilbash."[49]
“At the top of the bureaucracy was Vazir-e-azam (chief minister). He generally had a lengthy stay in office and on frequent occasions continued to serve in the office after the Shah who had appointed him had died." [50]
3. Divan-e-ala (State Council)
"The daily functioning of the state ran by Divan-e-ala (State Council), which included the Vazir-e-azam, Mustaufi al-mamalek (finance minister), Sadr, and Amir al-omara (army chief commander). Financial institution was directly overseen by the Shah and his chief minister (Vazir-e-azam). Except for the Shah, the latter was the final authority of financial affairs." [51]
4. Divan for taxation
5. sub-head in divan for taxation?
6?. ra'is did this official still exist at this time or was it replaced by the kalantar?
The ra'is "was essentially the link between the government and the taxpayers ... cases involving taxation were referred to his dīvān."[52]
3. Divanbegi (chief judge)
"dīvānbegī, the chief 'orfī judge of the empire, who could intervene in any matter under the jurisdiction of the dārūḡa; once he had done so, the latter could no longer concern himself with it"[53]


_Provincial government_

2. Darughah, Daruga (or beglerbegī) and his deputy (same level). Vali (viceroy of border states) & Beiglar-beigi (governor general of a province), Hdkem - ("ruler of major cities and areas") [54]
"Provincial governorships were held by tribal elites appointed from the centre or, as a sign of the inability of the coalition controlling the capital to enforce its writ throughout the realm, retained by tribes out of favour at the centre."[55]
dārūḡa was a police officer or a post analogous to the šeḥna: Jean Chardin 1669 CE said "[E]ach fortress or town has its own governor called darugha ... they are appointed directly by the king and each one has a deputy also appointed by the king indepen­dently of the governor". [56] Under the Safavids "the term beglerbegī tended to supersede dārūḡa in the sense of a local governor, as distinct from a police officer"[57]
3. asas and ahdat (guards) and mir sab (night watch)
"The dārūḡa was espe­cially charged with the maintenance of security at night, in which task he was assisted by officials called ʿasas and aḥdāṯ (guards) and a mīr šab (night watch)."[58]
3. Prison chief
"the dīvānbegī, the chief 'orfī judge of the empire, who could intervene in any matter under the jurisdiction of the dārūḡa; once he had done so, the latter could no longer concern himself with it" [59]
4. Prison guard inferred
3. gassal-basi (chief of the washers of the dead)[60]
4. Washers of the dead
A "chief of the washers of the dead" suggests there also were less prestigious posts.[61]
3. Kalantar
c15th century onward "designated an official of the 'civil' hierarchy, in charge of a town or a ward."[62] Under the Safavids "As the head of a town or ward the kalāntar was, like the raʾīs, a link between the central government and the taxpayers; it was his task to reconcile the interests of the two parties."[63]
4. moḥaṣṣeṣ-e mamlakat (clerk) (or Mustaufi al mamalek?)
"in effect, the kalāntar’s clerk and appointed with his approval."[64] "the technical business like preparing and auditing the budget, assessing taxes, and collecting the revenues, was in the hands of a large staff of accountants, clerks, tax collectors, and financial experts under the direction of Mustaufi al mamalek." [65]
4. naqib (guild supervisor)
"an official whose functions included the supervision of guild affairs".[66]
4. ostādān (master craftsman)
Kalantar appointed master craftsmen (ostādān)[67]
4. rīš-safīdān (elder of guild)
Kalantar appointed elders (rīš-safīdān) of the guilds[68]
4. Kadkodas (of villages/wards)
"If the town was large, the kalāntar appointed kadḵodās over the wards."[69]
5. roʾasā ? of hamlet
Kalantar appointed "the roʾasāʾ and kadḵodās of the villages and hamlets of the bolūkāt (administrative subdivisions)"[70]


2. Minor Provincial governors
- Khan ("head of tribe or small city" ), Sultan ("lowest position in the provincial governorship") [71]


♠ Religious levels ♣ [5-6] ♥ levels.

Twelver Shi‘ism official faith, established by Ismail.[72]

1. The Shah. The shahs claimed the titles of “representatives of the Twelfth Imam of the Shi'ites and to bear the title of Morsed-e-kdmel (the supreme spiritual leader of the Sufi order)” [73]

2. Mulla Bashi "a learned person of high repute ... whom many Safavid kings chose as a close companion, who could counsel them on religious matters and read various prayers for them on different occasions." [74]
2. Sadr "the highest religious office of the land, whose incumbent was chosen directly by the king." [75]
3. "the chief official religious dignitary (shaikh al-islam) of the bigger cities". Sadars appointed them "with the consent of the king".[76]
4. Mujtahids. These were clerics outside political power. They gave "fresh opinions on sacred law". [77]
5. Imans - leaders of prayers in the mosques. "Chosen freely by the members of the religious community itself."

[78]

"chancellery correspondence after 1588 pointed to the Safavid dynasty as the custodian of a complex heritage, which on the one hand recognized ecumenicalism and on the other claimed exclusive divine absolutism and soteriological superiority. This Universalist emphasis was in part inherited from the Turco-Mongol world of the Fourteen and Fifteenth centuries, but we also cannot dismiss the importance of those Universalist empires and world conquerors of the Archaemenian and Sasanian eras represented so faithfully as exemplars in Perso-Islamic literature and art."[79]

♠ Military levels ♣ [6-7] ♥ levels.

This hierarchy is for the Qizilbish army. How many levels in the Georgian/Caucasian corps (ghulam or qullar corps) created by Abbas I?[80]

1. Shah

2 qurchibashi chief of royal guard or mounted cavalry[81]
2. amir al-umara (commander-in-chief) of Qizilbash forces[82] Amir al-omard (commander in chief of the army, which later titled Sepdhsdldr-e koll-e lasgar-e Iran).[83]
He "had extensive influence over the Shah on military issues. He was responsible for the well being of the army, employment of personnel, support and ammunitions, and superintendent of the royal military workshops (boyutdt)." [84]
3. Military governors/tribal chiefs
the Ustajlu and Shamlu tribes provided most of the commanders-in-chief. Other tribes in the Qizilbash confederation were the Rumlu, Dhul-Qadr and Takkalu.[85]
4. Officers of 1000
e.g. The tribal corps were organised into groups of a thousand with a chief appointed to lead them. Each group of royal archers had a centurion in command of them. [86]
5. Officers of 100?
6. Officers of 10?
6 or 7. Individual soldiers

Professions

♠ Professional military officers ♣ present ♥ Officers in the royal guard were full-time professionals.

♠ Professional soldiers ♣ present ♥ Soldiers in the royal guard were full-time professionals.

Georgian/Caucasian corps (ghulam or qullar corps) created by Abbas I.[87]

♠ Professional priesthood ♣ present ♥ e.g. Imans. Under Shah Abbas Shi'i clergy made "key pillar of the state. [88]

Bureaucracy characteristics

The central government employed full-time bureaucratic officials, including chief accountants, comptroller-general and chief scribe. They were paid a salary, although it was not a meritocratic system: some post were hereditary and others picked by the Shah. The government did have its own specialist buildings such as the mints.. [89]

♠ Full-time bureaucrats ♣ present ♥

e.g. Tahmasp had chief accountants, comptroller-general and chief scribe. [90]

♠ Examination system ♣ absent ♥ "Succession was typically hereditary for all administrative positions, although the shah could always break the line." [91]

♠ Merit promotion ♣ absent ♥ "Succession was typically hereditary for all administrative positions, although the shah could always break the line." [92]

[93]

♠ Specialized government buildings ♣ present ♥ e.g. the official mints. [94]

Law

♠ Formal legal code ♣ present ♥

Law and its administration was split into secular and religious spheres. Secular law was formed through the legal code issued by the central government. Religious law was Islamic and run through the shari'ah courts. Court had judges.

"Almost all taxes were in direct forms and were collected throughout the country in accordance with the legal code prepared by the central government." [95]

♠ Judges ♣ present ♥ "the dīvānbegī, the chief 'orfī judge of the empire, who could intervene in any matter under the jurisdiction of the dārūḡa; once he had done so, the latter could no longer concern himself with it" [96]

♠ Courts ♣ present ♥ e.g. shari'ah courts. [97]

♠ Professional Lawyers ♣ present ♥ Imami Shi'i jurists (faqīh) "Already by the 14th century the Shi’ite jurists developed an elaborate legal system of private law based on ijtihad, the exercise of logical reasoning by utilizing the sources of the law to form qualified legal opinion within a specific timeframe. The exercise of ijtihad in turn led to the development of an elaborate methodology of jurisprudence, the science of the usul al-fiqh. Some of the best legal minds articulated complex linguistic debates on legal semantics and phenomenological discussions on the authority of the text" (Amanat 2003, 3) [98] Debate between Usuli and Akhbari scholars over use of independent legal reasoning (ijtihad) [99]

Specialized Buildings: polity owned

♠ irrigation systems ♣ inferred present ♥ - a "double dam" was built by the ghulam Allah Verdi Khan in the Shiraz area [100] Expanded qanat system started in the Iron Age that brought irrigation and likely drinking water from higher areas. This technology spread through the Near East and into Central Asia, as far as China and some parts of Eurasia. [101]
♠ drinking water supply systems ♣ present ♥ Shah Abbas had cisterns built. [102] Expanded qanat system started in the Iron Age that brought irrigation and likely drinking water from higher areas. This technology spread through the Near East and into Central Asia, as far as China and some parts of Eurasia. [103]
♠ markets ♣ present ♥ Safavid government had a muhtasib[104] (a supervisor of bazaars and trade). Shah Abbas built bazaars.[105] "the dārūḡa fixed prices, which no shopkeeper dared to transgress, for fear of punishment".[106] The kalāntar of Isfahan, among his duties, "oversaw the bāzār".[107] General reference for Seljuk? - Safavid? time period: "The bāzār was usually, though not always, divided into a number of sūqs (markets) in which different crafts and occupations had separate quarters. At night, after members of the crafts and shopkeepers had shut their premises and retired to their homes, the gates of the bāzārs were locked and barred."[108]
♠ food storage sites ♣ present ♥ "Caravansaries, where goods were unloaded on arrival and where merchants could take rooms, were to be found both in or close to the bāzārs and on the outskirts of the city."[109]

Transport infrastructure

♠ Roads ♣ present ♥ "Abbas I developed the communications network, secured roads, and invested in the infrastructure." [110] Road building.[111]
♠ Bridges ♣ present ♥ e.g. Khaju Bridge built by Shah ʿAbbās II over the Zayanderud at Isfahan [112]
♠ Canals ♣ present ♥ Shah Abbas had canals built to take water from the Alburz Mountains to Ashraf. [113] "In Isfahan in 1566-1567, an Afshar chieftain built a canal from the nearby Zayanda Rud to the Masjid-i Ali".[114]
♠ Ports ♣ present ♥ e.g. Anzali on the Caspian Sea. [115]

Special purpose sites

♠ Mines or quarries ♣ present ♥ Although Matthee caution that the Safavids "explored the potential of the existing [silver mines] ones only haphazardly and intermittently" [116]

Information

Writing System

♠ Mnemonic devices ♣ suspected unknown ♥
♠ Nonwritten records ♣ present ♥ administrative and tax documents. [117]
♠ Written records ♣ present ♥ e.g. the documents in the Chancery [118] "court/diplomatic correspondence and religious endowment (vaqf) documents".[119]
♠ Script ♣ present ♥ Persian and Arabic script. [120] The Safavids had a thriving literature culture based around the court. Persian and Arabic written systems were used. Religious and philosophical texts, history, practical works and, of course, poetry were produced by scholars and artists associated with the court. The central government also kept it own administrative records, although these have not survived.
♠ Non-phonetic writing ♣ absent ♥
♠ Phonetic alphabetic writing ♣ present ♥ Persian and Arabic have phonetic alphabets. [121]

Kinds of Written Documents

♠ Lists, tables, and classifications ♣ present ♥ administrative and tax documents.[122]
♠ Calendar ♣ present ♥ e.g. the sonar and lunar calendars [123]
♠ Sacred Texts ♣ present ♥ e.g. The Qur'an.
♠ Religious literature ♣ present ♥ e.g. Persian theological works [124] "most Shi‘i clerics of the day, whether resident in Iran or abroad, composed their scholarly works in Arabic."[125]
♠ Practical literature ♣ present ♥ Cookbooks from the period have survived [126] [127]
♠ History ♣ present ♥ e.g. chronicles outlining the history of the Safavids. [128] About two dozen Persian-language "court-chronicles" exist from the Safavid period.[129]
♠ Philosophy ♣ present ♥ e.g. Mir Damad "“wrote on a variety of topics, his main interest was in the field of philosophy, where he attempted to bring together the philosophies of Avicenna and Suhrawardi. He also had an interest in the philosophies of time" [130] Abbas I funded philosophers.[131]
♠ Scientific literature ♣ present ♥ e.g. Shakyh Baha’al-Din al-Amili "wrote on a diverse variety of topics, including scientific works such as treatises on mathematics, numerology and astrolabes; traditional Islamic sciences such as tafsir and hadith". [132]
♠ Fiction ♣ present ♥ Tahmasp and Abbas I funded poets. Nimatallahi Vahshi (d.1583-4 CE), Sayyid Ali b. Khvaja Mir Ahmad ("Muhtasham" d.1587-1588 CE or 1592 CE), Urfi Shirazi (1556-c1591 CE), Sharaf Jahan (d.1560), satirist Hayrat (d.1553 CE), Damiri (d.c1578 CE), Abdi Bek Shirazi (d.1580 CE).[133]


Money

♠ Articles ♣ present ♥
♠ Tokens ♣ suspected unknown ♥
♠ Precious metals ♣ suspected unknown ♥
♠ Foreign coins ♣ present ♥ Foreign gold and silver specie, much of it coming into Iran through the silk trade.[134]
♠ Indigenous coins ♣ present ♥ The Safavids minted silver tangas, as well as tumans and dınars. Copper coins were also minted for small dominations. [135] When Esmāʿil became shah he had coins "struck in his name". [136] To begin with, the basic coins the Safavids minted were silver tangas, as well as tumans and dınars. The range of coins minted expanded over the late 17th century. There were money testers to insure quality control of coin weights and purity. Copper coins were also minted for small dominations, and "From the available evidence it has been surmised that each Iranian city had its own copper mint" although these coins were only used within regions. [137] When Esmāʿil became shah he had coins "struck in his name". [138] Credit was obtained through Indian merchants trading in Persia. "Whether owing to their exemption from Islamic restrictions on any open practice of usury or to their expertise in money-changing, the Indian banyas (traders and bankers by caste) became fairly numerous in Persia, becoming closely associated with the mints. Credit was also greatly influenced by the multitude of Indian usurers (in Isfahan alone there were over 10,000 banyas in the seventeenth century)." [139]
♠ Paper currency ♣ suspected unknown ♥ No data.

Postal System

♠ Couriers ♣ present ♥ "The Safavid government maintained a postal system, mainly to relay messages and government orders. The couriers gradu­ally came to be known as čāpār. The system of relay stations no longer existed, however. The čāpārs took riding animals wherever they could find them. They even had the right to make people dismount and give up their animals ... Riding animals actually came mostly from villagers, who would send somebody with the čāpār to retrieve the animal. The čāpārs, of course, did not dare to demand riding animals from important personages or Eu­ropeans."[140] Spies used the postal service to transmit intelligence. [141]
♠ Postal stations ♣ absent ♥ "The Safavid government maintained a postal system, mainly to relay messages and government orders. The couriers gradu­ally came to be known as čāpār. The system of relay stations no longer existed, however."[142]
♠ General postal service ♣ absent ♥ "The Safavid government maintained a postal system, mainly to relay messages and government orders. The couriers gradu­ally came to be known as čāpār. The system of relay stations no longer existed, however."[143]

Warfare variables

♠ RA ♣ William Farrell; Edward A L Turner ♥

Military Technologies

Military use of Metals

♠ Copper ♣ suspected unknown ♥
♠ Bronze ♣ suspected unknown ♥
♠ Iron ♣ present ♥ Iron plate armour. [144]
♠ Steel ♣ present ♥ Shah Ismail's Qizilbash soldiers described as having steel armour. [145] Steel plate armour.[146]

Projectiles

♠ Javelins ♣ present ♥ Safavids had 'combat spears' which were designed to be thrown in battle. Training with these was an important exercise too. [147]
♠ Atlatl ♣ absent ♥ Weapon of the Americas
♠ Slings ♣ inferred absent ♥
♠ Self bow ♣ inferred absent ♥ Unnecessary as they used the more powerful composite bow.
♠ Composite bow ♣ present ♥ Royal guard described as having bows and arrows, these were made in the compound manner. [148]
♠ Crossbow ♣ present ♥ Safavid diplomat carrying a "victory letter" presented the Mamluk Sultan an ornamental copy of the Quran, a prayer carpet, a kiswah for the Kabah in Mecca, and a crossbow.[149]
♠ Tension siege engines ♣ inferred present ♥ At Shamakhi 1606 CE "siege engines, cannon, horses, and pack animals"[150]
♠ Sling siege engines ♣ inferred present ♥ At Shamakhi 1606 CE "siege engines, cannon, horses, and pack animals"[151]
♠ Gunpowder siege artillery ♣ present ♥ The Safavids used cannon for sieges rather than in the field. [152] Siege cannon used in 1507 CE at Siege of Arantelia.[153]
♠ Handheld firearms ♣ present ♥ e.g. Esmāʿil introduced corps of musketeers into his army. [154] The Safavid armies were equipped with 'traditional' weapons and armour: bows, swords, cavalry horses. But this period also saw the use of firearms: both artillery (mainly in a defensive capacity) and muskets on the battle. They did not have a professional navy, instead employing mercenaries when needed. [155]

Handheld weapons

♠ War clubs ♣ present ♥ e.g maces [156]
♠ Battle axes ♣ present ♥ Qizilbdsh troops sometimes used battle axes. [157]
♠ Daggers ♣ present ♥ Mentioned in poetry.[158]
♠ Swords ♣ present ♥ Royal guard described as having scimitars. [159]
♠ Spears ♣ present ♥ Cavalry armed with spears/lances [160]
♠ Polearms ♣ suspected unknown ♥

Animals used in warfare

♠ Dogs ♣ absent ♥
♠ Donkeys ♣ suspected unknown ♥
♠ Horses ♣ present ♥ Royal guard described as having horses. [161]
♠ Camels ♣ present ♥ Mainly used for the baggage train. [162]
♠ Elephants ♣ inferred absent ♥ "Certainly the Arabs of Sind, the Saffarids, and the later Buyids made almost no use of them at all."[163]

Armor

♠ Wood, bark, etc ♣ present ♥ Some shields made of wood. [164]
♠ Leather, cloth ♣ inferred present ♥ The qizilbdsh troops "wore light armour". [165] Leather face and neck protectors.[166] Wool and silk Khaftan and Shalvar-e Khaftan (gambeson and gambeson pants). Balatane-ye namadi (felt jacket).[167]
♠ Shields ♣ present ♥ Shah Abbas wore a 'target' when on horseback i.e. a small shield. His soldiers also used shields. [168]
♠ Helmets ♣ present ♥ Shah Ismail's Qizilbash soldiers described as having 'robust' helmets. [169]
♠ Breastplates ♣ inferred present ♥ Mentioned in Safavid literature.[170]
♠ Limb protection ♣ present ♥ Shaneband, saqband, payband, Bazuband protected the shoulders, shins, feet, and arms respectively. Ranin thigh protector, bala bazuband upperarm protector.[171]
♠ Chainmail ♣ present ♥ Shah Ismail's Qizilbash soldiers described as wearing chainmail. [172] Zereh mail armour. [173]
♠ Scaled armor ♣ suspected unknown ♥ On bardings for horses?
♠ Laminar armor ♣ suspected unknown ♥
♠ Plate armor ♣ present ♥ e.g. the Chahar-Ayned [lit. "four mirrors"] - four armour plates wrapped round the torso. [174] Iron plate armour: "four iron plates covering chest and back with a hole for the arms on the two side pieces was an innovation of the Safavid Period." [175]

Naval technology

♠ Small vessels (canoes, etc) ♣ suspected unknown ♥
♠ Merchant ships pressed into service ♣ present ♥ Shah Abbas would recruit sailors from Arab vassal states to man converted merchant ships. [176]
♠ Specialized military vessels ♣ absent ♥ The early Safavid did not have a proper navy.[177] The early Safavid did not have a proper navy. Shah Abbas would recruit sailors from Arab vassal states to man converted merchant ships. He also received support from the English who provided armed ships and landed Safavid troops. [178]

Fortifications

♠ Settlements in a defensive position ♣ present ♥ ' The ghulam Allah Verdi Khan built a fort in the Shiraz area. [179]
♠ Wooden palisades ♣ suspected unknown ♥
♠ Earth ramparts ♣ present ♥ Safavid soldiers used breastwork in sieges. [180]
♠ Ditch ♣ present ♥ Safavid soldiers dug trenches during sieges. [181] "Shah Abbas arrived at Ganja in 1606 to make heavy use of trenches, siege works, and cannon fire to subdue its Ottoman garrison."[182]
♠ Moat ♣ present ♥ Isfahan: "Canals were outside the city walls, which might have functioned as a wet moat."[183] "There was a citadel at Sarakh situated on the top of a hill and surrounded by a moat."[184]
♠ Stone walls (non-mortared) ♣ absent ♥
♠ Stone walls (mortared) ♣ present ♥ "The Safavid cities' fortifications were not that impressive. Isfahan was surrounded by a wall with eight gates. ... The Safavids, after making Isfahan their capital, did not rebuild the wall. ... Since Isfahan faced no threat, there was no point in constructing time-consuming and costly fortifications." [185]
♠ Fortified camps ♣ suspected unknown ♥ Were any fortified camps necessary on Shah Abbas's campaign to retake Iraq from the Ottomans?
♠ Complex fortifications ♣ present ♥ "The important towns in Central Asia had citadels and were walled and further protected by mud circumvallation."[186] "Some forts were protected by double walls."[187] The ghulam Allah Verdi Khan built a fort in the Shiraz area. [188] Tabriz and many Iranian cities did not have defensive walls around the whole site, although they did have a central citadel where defenders would retreat to. [189]Isfahan had "more than 3,500" towers around the city. These were the so-called 'pigeon towers'. [190]
♠ Long walls ♣ ♥ km.
♠ Modern fortifications ♣ suspected unknown ♥

Phase II Variables (polity-based)

Institutional Variables

♠ RA ♣ Edward A L Turner ♥

Limits on Power of the Chief Executive

Power distributed

♠ Constraint on executive by government ♣ ♥
♠ Constraint on executive by non-government ♣ ♥
♠ Impeachment ♣ ♥

Social Mobility

Status

Elite status

♠ elite status is hereditary ♣ present ♥ Safavid dynasty.

Religion and Normative Ideology

♠ RA ♣ Enrico Cioni ♥

Deification of Rulers

♠ Rulers are legitimated by gods ♣ present ♥ “In a departure from the principle of tawhid and thus from the belief that God governs the entire world, all spheres of life in the Islamic state are expected to be organized in accordance with Islamic revelation. In other words, political authority in Islam has always to be grounded in divine legitimacy.” [191] "The grand venture that Safavid Iran represented in its origins and ascending phase was one of imperial, universal aspirations articulated by a charismatic warrior-king who presented himself to his followers and the world at large as divinely appointed and an incarnation of various constitutive elements of the Iranian tradition." [192]

♠ Rulers are gods ♣ [present; absent] ♥ Islam is monotheistic [193] However, Safavid rule partly rested on pre-Islamic notions of divine kingship: "Shah Isma'il, the first Safavid ruler to hold territorial power, was a charismatic king of transcendent stature whose career represented a remarkable merger of the ancient Iranian concept of kingship and Twelver Shi'ism's millenarian, redemptive impulse. His subjects famously revered him as an incarnation of the divine. The humiliating defeat against the Ottomans at the Battle of Chaldiran left many to wonder about the direct link between the shah and the heavenly realm, though not enough to end the association. Isma'il's successor, Shah Tahmasb (r. 1524-76) continued to be venerated as a god-like figure to the point where people would reverently kiss the doors of his palace and considered any water the shah had touched a cure against fever. [...] Safavid shahs retained their divine aura until the last days of the dynasty, even as some clerics began to criticize them for personal behavior unbecoming to Muslim rulers. It is tempting to think that this aura—charismatic, divinely inspired, imperial—helps explain why no Safavid ruler was ever deposed and that, with the possible but unproven exception of Shah Ismaʿil II (d. 1578), none was ever assassinated. Compare this to the Ottoman state, where one sultan, Osman, was killed in 1622 and seven out of fourteen of his successors were ousted in the next two centuries. [...] Even in later times, Safavid shahs continued to be revered as incarnations of the divine by their subjects." [194]

Normative Ideological Aspects of Equity and Prosociality

♠ Ideological reinforcement of equality ♣ present ♥ “In Islam all men are equal, whatever their colour, language, race or nationality. Islam addresses itself to the conscience of humanity and banishes all false barriers of race, status and wealth.”[195] However, it is worth noting that Safavid rule partly rested on pre-Islamic notions of divine kingship: "Shah Isma'il, the first Safavid ruler to hold territorial power, was a charismatic king of transcendent stature whose career represented a remarkable merger of the ancient Iranian concept of kingship and Twelver Shi'ism's millenarian, redemptive impulse. His subjects famously revered him as an incarnation of the divine. The humiliating defeat against the Ottomans at the Battle of Chaldiran left many to wonder about the direct link between the shah and the heavenly realm, though not enough to end the association. Isma'il's successor, Shah Tahmasb (r. 1524-76) continued to be venerated as a god-like figure to the point where people would reverently kiss the doors of his palace and considered any water the shah had touched a cure against fever. [...] Safavid shahs retained their divine aura until the last days of the dynasty, even as some clerics began to criticize them for personal behavior unbecoming to Muslim rulers. It is tempting to think that this aura—charismatic, divinely inspired, imperial—helps explain why no Safavid ruler was ever deposed and that, with the possible but unproven exception of Shah Ismaʿil II (d. 1578), none was ever assassinated. Compare this to the Ottoman state, where one sultan, Osman, was killed in 1622 and seven out of fourteen of his successors were ousted in the next two centuries. [...] Even in later times, Safavid shahs continued to be revered as incarnations of the divine by their subjects." [196]

♠ Ideological thought equates rulers and commoners ♣ absent ♥ “In Islam all men are equal, whatever their colour, language, race or nationality. Islam addresses itself to the conscience of humanity and banishes all false barriers of race, status and wealth.”[197] However, Safavid rule partly rested on pre-Islamic notions of divine kingship: "Shah Isma'il, the first Safavid ruler to hold territorial power, was a charismatic king of transcendent stature whose career represented a remarkable merger of the ancient Iranian concept of kingship and Twelver Shi'ism's millenarian, redemptive impulse. His subjects famously revered him as an incarnation of the divine. The humiliating defeat against the Ottomans at the Battle of Chaldiran left many to wonder about the direct link between the shah and the heavenly realm, though not enough to end the association. Isma'il's successor, Shah Tahmasb (r. 1524-76) continued to be venerated as a god-like figure to the point where people would reverently kiss the doors of his palace and considered any water the shah had touched a cure against fever. [...] Safavid shahs retained their divine aura until the last days of the dynasty, even as some clerics began to criticize them for personal behavior unbecoming to Muslim rulers. It is tempting to think that this aura—charismatic, divinely inspired, imperial—helps explain why no Safavid ruler was ever deposed and that, with the possible but unproven exception of Shah Ismaʿil II (d. 1578), none was ever assassinated. Compare this to the Ottoman state, where one sultan, Osman, was killed in 1622 and seven out of fourteen of his successors were ousted in the next two centuries. [...] Even in later times, Safavid shahs continued to be revered as incarnations of the divine by their subjects." [198]
♠ Ideological thought equates elites and commoners ♣ present ♥ “In Islam all men are equal, whatever their colour, language, race or nationality. Islam addresses itself to the conscience of humanity and banishes all false barriers of race, status and wealth.”[199]

♠ Ideology reinforces prosociality ♣ present ♥ “The third pillar is almsgiving, obligatory charity or welfare money for the poor (zakat). For most purposes, this involves the payment each year of two and a half per cent of one’s capital or accumulated wealth and assets, excluding such items as primary residence, car and professional tools. Only certain people are qualified to receive obligatory charity. There are, of course, other forms of charity over and above the obligatory zakat, which can be donated to such recipients as seem appropriate.//Islam stands for brotherhood and social justice and it asserts that the poor and the needy have rights to the wealth of the rich. Payment of almsgiving represents the duty to care for the community’s social welfare. It is a great sin not to share one’s wealth with the needy and to let them suffer from hunger and disease. Zakat is a duty enjoined by God and undertaken by Muslims in the interest of society as a whole. However, it is also of humanitarian and socio-political value as well as being motivated by spiritual and moral concerns. It is an effective instrument for cultivating the spirit of social responsibility on the part of the contributor and the feeling of security and belonging on the part of the recipient. The Qur’an says ‘Those who spend their wealth by night and day, in private and public shall be rewarded by their Lord. No fear shall come upon them, neither shall they grieve’ (2:274).” [200] “Charity does not consist merely of offering help to the needy; rather it includes anything one does which is of good to others. A hadith of the Prophet mentions that charity includes removing thorns from the road and smiling at one’s brother. And open-handedness in spending and giving are to be practised not only towards the poor but also towards one’s family, relatives, friends, neighbours, guests and even strangers. Generosity and hospitality are thus highly valued qualities among Muslims in every part of the world. Allah’s command to help each other in goodness is not only limited to Muslims, but it covers the whole of mankind in matters that bring virtue to all human beings.” [201]

♠ production of public goods ♣ present ♥ “The Arabic word waqf (pl. awqaf) means “the holding and preservation of a certain property for the confined benefit of a philanthropy with prohibiting any use or disposition of the property outside that specific purpose.” The definition indicates the perpetual nature of waqf as it broadly relates to land and buildings, although there is waqf of books, agricultural machinery, cattle, shares and stocks, and cash. [...] In the history of Islam, the first religious waqf was the mosque of Quba' in Medina. It was built upon the arrival of the Prophet Muhammad in 622. Six months later it was followed by the Mosque of the Prophet in the center of Medina. Mosques, as well as real estate that provides revenues for mosque maintenance and expenses, are in the category of religious waqf.//Philanthropic waqf aims at supporting the poor segments of society and the public interest of the community by funding such institutions as hospitals, orphanages, nursing homes, libraries, scientific research, education, public services, and care of animals and the environment. There are alsoawqaf for interest-free loans to small businesses and for maintenance of parks, roads, bridges, and dams. This started during the time of the Prophet Muhammad. On advice from the Prophet, 'Uthman, a well-to-do Companion, bought the Well of Rumah and made it into waqf, to provide everybody with free drinking water. This was followed by the waqf of 'Umar. When he asked the Prophet what to do with a palm orchard he acquired in the city of Khaybar, the Prophet said, “If you like, you may hold the property as waqf and give its fruits as charity.” [202]

Moralizing Supernatural Powers

♠ Moral concern is primary ♣ present ♥
♠ Moralizing enforcement is certain ♣ present ♥
♠ Moralizing norms are broad ♣ present ♥
♠ Moralizing enforcement is targeted ♣ present ♥
♠ Moralizing enforcement of rulers ♣ present ♥
♠ Moralizing religion adopted by elites ♣ present ♥
♠ Moralizing religion adopted by commoners ♣ present ♥
♠ Moralizing enforcement in afterlife ♣ present ♥
♠ Moralizing enforcement in this life ♣ present ♥
♠ Moralizing enforcement is agentic ♣ present ♥

These data were reviewed by expert advisors and consultants. For a detailed description of these data, refer to the relevant Analytic Narratives, reference tables, and acknowledgements page. [203] [204] [205]

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Newman, Andrew J. 2009. Safavid Iran: Rebirth of a Persian Empire. I.B. Tauris. New York.

Mitchell, Colin P. 2009. Practice of Politics in Safavid Iran, The: Power, Religion and Rhetoric. I.B. Tauris. London.