Shah Isma'TI was crowned in Tabriz in 90511499 marking the beginning of the reign of the Safavids which was to last over two centuries until in 1133/1720 the Afghans conquered Persia, sacked the Safavid capital at Ispahan, and killed Shah Sultan l:Iusayn, the last of the Safavid rulers. During this period Persia, which until now had been partly Shi 'ah and partly Sunni, wavering between these two orthodox perspectives of the Islamic revelation, became completely Twelve-Imam Shi 'ah, and Shi'ism, which had until now remained a minority creed, found itself as the official religion of an empire and had to face political and social issues it had never been forced to face before.4