Advent of Islam 642-661
A major turning point in Iranian History occurred in seventh AD by the
Arab conquest. New religion and script were introduced as the influence
of Islam revolutionized Iranian art. Characteristics of Iranian costume
emerged in new and complex forms.
Umayyad Period 661-750
In the seventh to mid-eight century non Iranian Umayyad Muslim Caliphs ruled initially form Medina (Saudi Arabia) then from Damascus Syria.
Abbasid Period 750-1040
Abbasids were another non-Iranian Dynasty after overthrow of Umayyad
Dynasty and acted as the leaders of Islam, both religiously and politically. Although then authority was rejected by some, Abbasids were centered in
Baghdad on the Tigrus, encouraging the development of science and
philosophy as well as poetry and prose, art, and architecture.
Saljuq Period 1040-1256
The Mongols sacked Baghdad and killed the last Caliph of the line; put an end to Abbasid Caliphate.
Saljuqs were a Turkmen tribe of central Asia that Converted to Sunni Islam
and migrated to Iran in eleventh century. Saljuqs were ruling from
Isfahan. Their rulers titled by Baghdad Caliphate Sultans were
Patrons of the Persian literature who founded many monuments and colleges
to train future administrators with Sunni doctrine in accordance.
Son of Genghis Khan, Hulaqu Khan founded the Ilkhanid Dynasty after
capturing Baghdad and all of Iran. The Ilkhanids reunited the region as a
political and territorial entity after centuries of fragmented rule by
Timurid Period 1383-1501
Tamerlane the Turkic conqueror founded Timurid Dynasty with its Capital
at Samarghand enriching the city and surrounding regions building many
spectacular palaces and mosques. The Goharshad Mosque in Mashhad is one
of the greatest examples of Timurid arts.
Safavid Period 1501-1736
During fifteenth century several families and tribes, mostly of Turkic
origin ruled over various parts of Iran. Among them the Safavids headed
by a militant Sufi order founded by Sheikh Safi of Ardebil. Safavids
conquered Tabriz and then the rest of Iran. In 1501 Ismail I proclaiming himself Shah marked the beginning of Safavid Dynasty. Ismail embraced
Jafari Shia Islam as the state religion.
Shah Abbas the Safavid moved Safavids capital to Isfahan and made great
contributions to education, commerce, urban development and
architectural beauty of Persia. In time of Safavids the Ottomans were
the biggest threat in the north western boarders and the Uzbeks were
invading from north. One of the most important battles was with Afghans having them utterly
defeated in a series of brilliant victories.
Afsharid and Zand 1736-1795
Nadir founded the next Dynasty. First he tried to restore the safavids
but the successors showed no merit, therefore he started a new Dynasty
called Afsharids, named after the Turkish tribe which he belonged.
Nadir defeated rebellions in Iranian territories and won a glorious
battle against the Mughal kings of India bringing back home the fabulous
Peacock throne and two precious diamonds, sea of light and mountain of
light. It is displayed in collection a treasury of Nadir (Which is maintained
in National Jewels of Tehran). Nadir in his last years was ruthless and
harsh therefore he was assassinated by one of his own troops.
Following his death, Karim Khan Zand, the ruler of southern Iran,
consolidated his power and founded Shiraz as the capital in mid eighteenth century.
Karim Khan entitled himself Vakilo Roaya and was advocate of the peasants for his morality and
good ethics. He made urban developments in his capital, Shiraz which
today can be observed in Vakil complex.
Qajar Period 1795-1925
After death of Karim Khan Zand in the late eighteenth century, a leader of
the Turkmen Qajar tribe, Agha Mohammad Khan reunified Iran under a new
Dynasty. During the time of Qajaris western science, technology and
educational methods were introduced. Many wars happen between Qajars and
Russians and as a result the Kingdom of Persia lost some of its north western
boarders including today’s Georgia, Armenia and Azerbaijan.
Pahlavi Period 1925-1975
From 1925 Pahlavi Dynasty, the last Iranian Kingdom dynasty was founded by
Reza Khan, an Iranian army officer of the last Qajar King. Reza Khan and
his Son Mohammad Reza, the last King of Iran rushed into modernization and
radical reforms which later caused their decline in the late 1970s.
Contemporary Iran 1979
Massive demonstrations and strikes against the court of Pahlavi with
leadership of Imam Khomeini in exile and other parties succeeded the
revolution in 1979 and people voted for Islamic Republic.
In early years of Islamic Republic of Iran, the country was invaded by its
neighbor, Iraq which last for eight years. After Iran-Iraq war
national efforts led Iranian society to industrial and commercial
development to make modern contemporary Iran which welcomes you to