Table of Contents

  • ISFAHAN viii. QAJAR PERIOD

    Heidi Walcher

    The historical changes affecting the Isfahan of this period included loss of its status as the royal capital and its transformation into a major provincial city.

  • Isfahan ix. THE PAHLAVI PERIOD AND THE POST-REVOLUTION ERA

    Habib Borjian

    In the process of consolidating his power in Isfahan, Reza Shah managed to constrain two powerful social groups: the Shiʿite clergy and the Baḵtiāri tribesmen.

  • ISFAHAN x. MONUMENTS

    Sussan Babaie with Robert Haug

    According to the French traveler Jean Chardin, in the late 17th century Isfahan housed some 162 mosques, 48 theological colleges (madrasa), 1,802 caravansaries, and 273 bathhouses.

  • Isfahan x. MONUMENTS (1) A Historical Survey

    Sussan Babaie with Robert Haug

     Isfahan’s monuments developed in the early medieval period first under the ʿAbbāsid caliphate and Buyid patronage. But many of the extant monuments of Isfahan date to the periods in history when the city served as the capital of the ruling dynasties of the Great Saljuqs (1040-1194) and the Safavids (1501-1722).

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  • Isfahan x. Monuments (2) Palaces

    Sussan Babaie with Robert Haug

    European visitors to Safavid Persia, for example, found themselves increasingly bound by Isfahan, where they were able to gain a royal audience or conduct their business with the court and government bureaucracy without having to follow the itinerant monarchs.

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  • Isfahan x. Monuments (3) Mosques

    Sussan Babaie with Robert Haug

    Isfahan is known historically for its large number of mosques. According to Abu Noʿaym of Isfahan, the first large mosque in Isfahan was built during the Caliphate of Imam ʿAli b. Abi Ṭāleb (r. 656-61). The French traveler Jean Chardin counted 162 mosques during his travels to Isfahan in the middle of the 17th century.

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  • Isfahan x. Monuments (4) Madrasas

    Sussan Babaie with Robert Haug

    The earliest extant madrasa in Isfahan is the 1325 Emāmi Madrasa, which is also known as the Madrasa-ye Bābā Qāsem after the name of its first teacher, who is buried in a nearby tomb. As in Persian mosque type, this and most other madrasas in Persia follow the four-ayvān courtyard-centered plan.

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  • Isfahan x. Monuments (5) Bridges

    Sussan Babaie with Robert Haug

    On the southern edge of the city of Isfahan lies the Zāyandarud River, the unnavigable river that has been the major source of water in the region since the earliest settlements in its environs. Until the transfer of the Safavid capital to Isfahan in the late 16th century, the river was well outside the city walls.

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  • Isfahan x. Monuments (6) Bibliography

    Sussan Babaie with Robert Haug

  • Isfahan xi. SCHOOL OF PAINTING AND CALLIGRAPHY

    Massumeh Farhad

    The “Isfahan” school of painting and calligraphy generally refers to works of art associated with the city, when it was chosen as the Safavid capital. The school has two distinct phases of first the followers of Reżā ʿAbbāsi and then the European style.

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