Abstract and Keywords
The infighting and turmoil following the demise of Timur was exploited by a lone bearer of the Safavid dynasty, Isma'il, who rather than having a military/nomadic background hailed from a religious one. His reign marked a departure from the hitherto predominant militarized polity, with the incorporation of Shi'a as the state religion, thus providing his followers with a much stable trait to identify with, rather than personal charisma, which resulted in the misfortune of the Timurids. During Timur's reign, the hereditary land-grant (Iqta) system, allotted to the amirs (commander), led to enhanced exploitation of the people, thereby projecting the failure of elite Islam. It led to the rise of an alternative, Sufi'ism, as an inherent protest mechanism. Social protest movements were complemented with the context of an emerging Ottoman Anatolia, with strong affiliation with the Sufi/Shi'a orders. Timur's excesses on the artists–exporting them to his homeland–proved a major source of decisive discontent.
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