The Shahs Of The Safavid Dynasty

Shah Ismail (1502-1524) was the first shah and founder of the Safavid Empire Shah Ismail started his campaign in Azerbaijan in 1502, and had re-unified all of Iran by 1509. He was a Shia Muslim from Ardabil in Northwestern Iran and reigned as Shah Ismail I of Iran from 1502 to 1524. He is revered as a spiritual guide in Alevism, as well as playing a key role in the rise of the Twelver branch of Shia Islam over the formerly dominant Ismaili. He was a descendant of Safa al din which is traced back too Ali the fourth imam of the Muslim faith.
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Abbas the great (1587-1629) was the greatest shah the Safavid Empire ever had.
Abbas was also the Third son of Shah Mohammed. Abbas came to the throne during a troubled time for Iran. Under his weak-willed father, the country was riven with discord between the different factions of the Qizilbash army, who killed Abbas' mother and elder brother. Meanwhile, Iran's enemies, the Ottoman Empire and the Uzbeks, exploited this political chaos to seize territory for themselves. In 1587, one of the Qizilbash leaders, Murshid Qoli Khan, overthrew Shah Mohammed in a coup and placed the 16-year-old Abbas on the throne. But Abbas was no puppet and soon seized power for himself. He reduced the influence of the Qizilbash in the government and the military and reformed the army, enabling him to fight the Ottomans and Uzbeks and reconquer Iran's lost provinces. He also took back land from the Portuguese and the Mughals. Abbas was a great builder and moved his kingdom's capital from Qazvin to Isfahan. In his later years, the shah became suspicious of his own sons and had them killed or blinded.

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