Today in Middle Eastern history: the Battle of Chaldiran (1514)

and that's the way it was

Today is the anniversary of a battle that had far-reaching implications for the Middle East, but that gets relatively little recognition if you’re not a specialist in either Ottoman or Safavid history. I happen to know a bit about both (though I wouldn’t call myself a specialist in, well, anything, come to think of it), so if you’ll indulge me I’d like to tell you a little about the Battle of Chaldiran, which took place on August 23, 1514.

We have to start our story in 1501 (hey, where are you going?), when control of Iran passed from the Turkic tribal confederation known as the Aqquyunlu (“White Sheep”) to the Safavids, who were a Sufi order-turned dynasty of “Turkicized Persian” (i.e., ethnically Iranic but culturally and linguistically Turkic) origins who came to power on the back of a zealously devoted band of Turkic warriors known as the Qizilbash (“red heads”)…

View original post 1,390 more words


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.