A Review of the Features of Safavid Documents

  •  Mozhgan Esmaili    


During the rule of the Safavid dynasty (1502-1722 AD) the chancellery and royal documents played an important role in the administration of the state affairs.
The royal documents constituted one of the main components of the chancelleries in management of the day-to-day affairs.
The said documents are one of the main sources of research which include all royal communications, decrees, documents, political agreements, administrative and officials writings, economic, cultural and military reports, judicial, financial and legal documents as well as private and family communications.
Hence a study of the royal documents would shed light on the mode of administration during the said era. The present paper is an attempt to review the main features of some of the documents circulated in the chancelleries and throughout the state during the Safavid era. The Safavid documents can be divided into various categories on the basis of their functionalities. The main thrust of the present paper is to discuss the nature of the diwanyat as well as their functions in the administration of the state where there was no constitution and the royal decrees and other forms of royal documents effectively played the role of the constitution and law. Attempts have been made to rely on the original documents, which are available in different archives, libraries and museums.

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