Encyclopaedia of Islam, Second Edition


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(30,242 words)

Author(s): Savory, R.M. | Bruijn, J.T.P. de | Newman, A.J. | Welch, A.T. | Darley-Doran, R.E.
, a dynasty which ruled in Persia as “sovereigns 907-1135/1501-1722, as fainéants 1142-8/1729-36, and thereafter, existed as pretenders to the throne up to 1186/1773. I. Dynastic, political and military history. The establishment of the Ṣafawid state in 907/1501 by S̲h̲āh Ismāʿīl I [ q.v.] (initially ruler of Ād̲h̲arbāyd̲j̲ān only) marks an important turning-point in Persian history. In the first place, the Ṣafawids restored Persian sovereignty over the whole of the area traditionally regarded as the heartlands of Persia for the first ti…


(16,103 words)

Author(s): Colin, G.S. | Ayalon, D. | Parry, V.J. | Savory, R.M. | Khan, Yar Muhammad
i. — general In Arabic, the word nafṭ (Persian nafṭ) is applied to the purest form ( ṣafwa ) of Mesopotamian bitumen ( ḳīr —or ḳārbābilī ). Its natural colour is white. It occasionally occurs in a black form, but this can be rendered white by sublimation. Nafṭ is efficacious against cataract and leucoma; it has the property of attracting fire from a distance, without direct contact. Mixed with other products (fats, oil, sulphur etc.) which make it more combustible and more adhesive, it constituted the basic ingredient of “Greek fire”, a liquid incendiary compo…

Ismāʿīl I

(2,029 words)

Author(s): Savory, R.M. | Gandjeï, T.
( Abu’ l-Muẓaffar ), born 25 Rad̲j̲ab 892/17 July 1487, died 19 Rad̲j̲ab 930/23 May 1524, shah of Persia (907/1501-930/1524) and founder of the Ṣafawid dynasty [see ṣafawids ]. 1. Biographical and historical: Under Ismāʿīl, Iran became a national state for the first time since the Arab conquest in the 1st/7th century. An important factor in this process was the proclamation by Ismāʿīl of the It̲h̲nā ʿAs̲h̲arī (D̲j̲aʿfarī) form of S̲h̲īʿism as the official religion of the Ṣafawid state. By this action, Ismāʿīl decisively differ…

ʿAbbās I

(1,331 words)

Author(s): Savory, R.M.
, styled the Great, king of Persia of the Ṣafawī dynasty, second son and successor of Muḥammad Ḵh̲udābanda, was born on 1 Ramaḍān 978/27 January 1571, and died in Māzandarān on 24 Ḏj̲umāḍā I 1038/19 January 1629, after a reign of 42 solar (43 lunar) years. In 980/1572-3 he remained at Harāt when his father moved to S̲h̲īrāz. In 984/1576-7 Ismāʿīl II put to death the lala (tutor) of ʿAbbās, and appointed ʿAlī Ḳulī Ḵh̲ān S̲h̲āmlū governor of Harāt with orders to execute ʿAbbās himself. ʿAlī Ḳulī procrastinated, and, when the death of Ismāʿī…


(740 words)

Author(s): Müller, H.
, Ḳāḍī Aḥmad Ibrāhīmī Ḥusaynī , Persian chronicler and chancery clerk ( muns̲h̲ī ), was born on 17 Rabīʿ I 953/18 May 1546 in Ḳum(m), the son of the muns̲h̲ī S̲h̲araf al-Dīn Ḥusayn al-Ḥusaynī. In 964/1556-7 he went with his father to Mas̲h̲had at the court of the art-loving prince Ibrāhīm Mīrzā b. Bahrām Mīrzā b. Ismāʿīl I, where he was trained by well-known calligraphers. In 973/1566 he was a muns̲h̲ī at the court of S̲h̲āh Ṭahmāsp I, together with his father. At the instigation of S̲h̲āh Ismāʿīl II, he started composing in 984-5/1576-7 his chronicle K̲h̲ulāṣat al-tawārīk̲h̲

Mard̲j̲aʿ-i Taḳlīd

(8,817 words)

Author(s): Calmard, J.
(pl. marād̲j̲iʿ-i taḳlid , Pers. for Ar. mard̲j̲aʿ/marād̲j̲iʿ al-taḳlīd ), title and function of a hierarchal nature denoting a Twelver Imām S̲h̲īʿī jurisconsult ( muad̲j̲tahid , faḳīh ) who is to be considered during his lifetime, by virtue of his qualities and his wisdom, a model for reference, for “imitation” or “emulation”—a term employed to an increasing extent by English-speaking authors—by every observant Imāmī S̲h̲īʿī (with the exception of mud̲j̲tahids ) on all aspects of religious practice and law. As in the case of other institutions, the history of this function (called mar…

Lur-i Kūčik

(1,830 words)

Author(s): Minorsky, V.
, a dynasty of Atābegs [see atabak ] which ruled in northern and western Luristān between 580/1184 and 1006/1597 with K̲h̲urramābād as their capital. The Atābegs were descended from the Lur tribe of D̲j̲angrūʾī (D̲j̲angardī?). The dynasty is also known by the name of K̲h̲urs̲h̲īdī from the name of the first Atābeg. (It remains to be seen if this name is connected with that of Muḥammad K̲h̲urs̲h̲īd, vizier of the former rulers of Luristān before the rise of the Atābegs of Lur-i Buz…


(16,419 words)

Author(s): Duri, A.A. | Gottschalk, H.L. | Colin, G.S. | Lambton, A.K.S. | Bazmee Ansari, A.S.
, a collection of poetry or prose [see ʿarabiyya ; persian literature ; turkish literature ; urdū literature and s̲h̲iʿr ], a register, or an office. Sources differ about linguistic roots. Some ascribe to it a Persian origin from dev , ‘mad’ or ‘devil’, to describe secretaries. Others consider it Arabic from dawwana , to collect or to register, thus meaning a collection of records or sheets. (See Ḳalḳas̲h̲andī, Ṣubḥ , i, 90; LA, xvii, 23-4; Ṣūlī, Adab al-kuttāb , 187; Māwardī, al-Aḥkām al-sulṭāniyya , 175; D̲j̲ahs̲h̲iyārī, Wuzarāʾ , ¶ 16-17; cf. Balād̲h̲urī, Futūḥ ,…


(6,780 words)

Author(s): Sellheim, R. | Sourdel, D. | Fragner, B. | Islam, Riazul
(a.) pl. kuttāb , secretary, a term which was used in the Arab-Islamic world for every person whose rôle or function consisted of writing or drafting official letters or administrative documents. In the Middle Ages this term denoted neither a scribe in the literary sense of the word nor a copyist, but it could be applied to private secretaries as well as to the employees of the administrative service. It can denote merely a “book-keeper” as well as the chief clerk or a Secretary of State, directly responsible to the sovereign or to his vizier. The use of kātib is theref…


(17,714 words)

Author(s): Björkman, W. | Colin, G.S. | Busse, H. | Reychmann, J. | Zajaczkowski, A.
i.— Classical arabic 1) Diplomatic has reached the status of a special science in the West, and the results of such research are accessible in good manuals (like Harry Bresslau’s Handbuch der Urkundenlehre für Deutschland und Italien , 2nd. ed. 1931). Much less work has been done on Arabic documents: the material is very scattered, and not yet sufficiently collated to permit detailed research. Yet Arabic documents have aroused interest for some considerable time: a number have been published, and the editing o…


(570 words)

Author(s): Savory, R.M.
(Täkkä-lü), the name of a group of Turcomans originating from the regions of Menteşe, Aydin, Saruhan, Hamit and Germiyan in southern Anatolia, an area known collectively as Tekeili [ q.v.] ( Tārīk̲h̲-i Ḳizilbās̲h̲ān , ed. Mīr Hās̲h̲im Muḥaddit̲h̲, Tehran 1361 AHS/1982, 27). The Turcoman tribes of Anatolia were one of the primary targets of Ṣafawid propaganda ( daʿwa ) [see bāyazīd ii ; ṣafawids. i ], and the Takkalūs responded early to this call and entered the service of the Ṣafawid s̲h̲ayk̲h̲s D̲j̲unayd and Ḥaydar [ q.v.]. In 905/1499, when Ismāʿīl [see ismāʿīl i …


(1,342 words)

Author(s): Orhonlu, Cengiz | Baer, G. | Ed.
This Persian term “master of the house, head of the family”, Pahlavi katak-xvatai, acquired, in addition to the above meanings, those of husband, chief of a tribe, headman of a village and tithe-officer in a town (Chardin, Voyages , ed. 1811, iv, 77, “dixenier de quartier”) responsible to the kalāntar [ q.v.] (cf. M. Muʿīn, Persian dictionary, Tehran 1345, iii, 2921). In Ottoman Turkish, it evolved into the form k y ahya , with the meanings “steward of a household”, “head of an artisans’ gild” (see below). (i) In Ottoman Turkish administrative usage Already in Il-K̲h̲ānid Persia we find the ka…


(8,430 words)

Author(s): Rosenthal, F. | Bosworth, C.E. | Wansbrough, J. | Colin, G.S. | Busse, H. | Et al.
, one of many Arabic words used to express the concept of “gift”, and the preferred legal term for it, see following article. The giving of gifts, that is, the voluntary transfer of property, serves material and psychological purposes. In the pre-history of man, it probably antedates the contractual payment for goods and services. In Islam, it has retained its inherited functions as an important component of the social fabric and has exercised a considerable influence on political life. Literature (in the narrow sense…


(8,470 words)

Author(s): Pellat, Ch. | Lambton, A.K.S. | Orhonlu, Cengiz
(a.), pl. k̲h̲iṣyān “castrated man, eunuch”. I.—In the central Islamic lands. From the 4th/10th century especially, several euphemisms were applied to eunuchs, who were numerous in the palaces and frequently invested with important functions: notably k̲h̲ādim (coll. k̲h̲adam , pl. k̲h̲uddām ), muʿallim , s̲h̲ayk̲h̲ , ustād̲h̲ (see M. Canard, Ak̲h̲bâr ar-Râdî ..., i, 210-1, note), later on ṭawās̲h̲ī (which, according to al-Maḳrīzī, Hist , des Sultans Mamlouks , tr. Quatremère, 1/2 (1849), 132, comes from the Turkish ṭābūs̲h̲ī = Osmanli̊ tapug̲h̲či̊


(4,559 words)

Author(s): Sourdel, D. | Bosworth, C.E. | Lambton, A.K.S.
, term which may be translated approximately as chamberlain, used in Muslim countries for the person responsible for guarding the door of access to the ruler, so that only approved visitors may approach him. The term quickly became a title corresponding to a position in the court and to an office the exact nature of which varied considerably in different regions and in different periods. Basically the Master of Ceremonies, the ḥād̲j̲ib often appears as being in fact a superintendent of the Palace, a chief of the guard or a righter of wrongs, s…


(8,785 words)

Author(s): Cahen, Cl. | Talbi, M. | Mantran, R. | Lambton, A.K.S. | Bazmee Ansari, A.S.
, non-Ḳurʾānic term which is used to mean on the one hand the duty of every Muslim to “promote good and forbid evil” and, on the other, the function of the person who is effectively entrusted in a town with the application of this rule in the supervision of moral behaviour and more particularly of the markets; this person entrusted with the ḥisba was called the muḥtasib . There seems to exist ¶ no text which states explicitly either the reason for the choice of this term or how the meanings mentioned above have arisen from the idea of “calculation” or “sufficiency” which is expressed by the root. i.—G…


(14,750 words)

Author(s): Zaman, Muhammad Qasim | Bianquis;, Th. | Eddé, Anne-Marie | Carmona, A. | Lambton, Ann K.S | Et al.
(a.), vizier or chief minister. I. In the Arab World 1. The ʿAbbāsids. Etymology The term wazīr occurs in the Ḳurʾān (XXV, 35: “We gave Moses the book and made his brother Aaron a wazīr with him”), where it has the sense of “helper”, a meaning well attested in early Islamic poetry (for examples, see Goitein, The origin of the vizierate, 170-1). Though several scholars have proposed Persian origins for the term and for the institution, there is no compelling reason to doubt the Arabic provenance of the term or an Arab-Islamic origin and evolution of the institution of the wazīr (cf. Goitein, op. ci…


(16,115 words)

Author(s): Geoffroy, E. | Lory, P. | O'Fahey, R.S. | Zarcone, Th. | Clayer, Nathalie | Et al.
Ṭarīḳa (Ar., pls. ṭuruḳ , ṭarāʾiḳ ) is a term which can signify the “manner of behaving” ( sīra ); it thus qualifies the “method” ( mad̲h̲hab ) of a person, the conduct which is typical of him and which should generally be imitated. These definitions supplied by the LʿA (Beirut 1988, viii, 155) accord with Ḳurʾānic usages of ṭarīḳa (cf. in particular, XX, 63, 104). The Ṣūfīs adapted these conceptions, viewing them from a spiritual perspective, but they were careful first of all to relate the term to its most concrete sense: that of “way” or “path”. In this context, ṭarīḳa is synonymous with ṭarīḳ


(27,665 words)

Author(s): Khadduri, M. | Cahen, Cl. | Ayalon, D. | Parry, V.J. | Bosworth, C.E. | Et al.
, war. i.— Legal Aspect Ḥarb may mean either fighting ( ḳitāl ) in the material sense or a “state of war” between two or more groups; both meanings were implied in the legal order of pre-Islamic Arabia. Owing to lack of organized authority, war became the basis of inter-tribal relationship. Peace reigned only when agreed upon between two or more tribes. Moreover, war fulfilled such purposes as vendetta and retaliation. The desert, adapted to distant raids and without natural frontiers, rendered the Arabs habituated to warfare and fighting became a function of society. Islam, prohibiting …


(14,774 words)

Author(s): Ed. | Spuhler, F. | Golvin, L. | Allgrove, J.
(a.), pls. busṭ/busuṭ , absiṭa , which implies the general meaning of extensiveness (thus in Ḳurʾān, LXXI, 18), is a generic term for carpet, more specifically, one of fairly large dimensions. Any kind of carpet with a pile is called a ṭinfisa if it is decorated with multicoloured bands, a zarbiyya ( zirbiyya , zurbiyya , pl. zarābī cf. Ḳurʾān, LXXXVIII, 16); if it is decorated with a relief design, a maḥfūra whilst a prayer carpet is called a sad̲j̲d̲j̲āda (modern Turkish seccade ), and the collective sad̲j̲d̲j̲ād is sometimes used as a generic term (on the …
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