Iran history – geography britannica.com tgask

An Iranian cultural renaissance in the late 8th century led to a reawakening of Persian literary culture, though the Persian language was now highly Arabized and in Arabic script, and native Persian Islamic dynasties began to appear with the rise of the Ṭāhirids in the early 9th century. The region fell under the sway of successive waves of Persian, Turkish, and Mongol conquerors until the rise of the Ṣafavids, who introduced Ithnā ʿAsharī Shīʿism as the official creed, in the early 16th century. Over the following centuries, with the state-fostered rise of a Persian-based Shīʿite clergy, a synthesis was formed between Persian culture and Shīʿite Islam that marked each indelibly with the tincture of the other.

With the fall of the Ṣafavids in 1736, rule passed into the hands of several short-lived dynasties leading to the rise of the Qājār line in 1796. Qājār rule was marked by the growing influence of the European powers in Iran’s internal affairs, with its attendant economic and political difficulties, and by the growing power of the Shīʿite clergy in social and political issues.

The country’s difficulties led to the ascent in 1925 of the Pahlavi line, whose ill-planned efforts to modernize Iran led to widespread dissatisfaction and the dynasty’s subsequent overthrow in the revolution of 1979. This revolution brought a regime to power that uniquely combined elements of a parliamentary democracy with an Islamic theocracy run by the country’s clergy. The world’s sole Shīʿite state, Iran found itself almost immediately embroiled in a long-term war with neighbouring Iraq that left it economically and socially drained, and the Islamic republic’s alleged support for international terrorism left the country ostracized from the global community. Reformist elements rose within the government during the last decade of the 20th century, opposed both to the ongoing rule of the clergy and to Iran’s continued political and economic isolation from the international community. Land

Iran is bounded to the north by Azerbaijan, Armenia, Turkmenistan, and the Caspian Sea, to the east by Pakistan and Afghanistan, to the south by the Persian Gulf and the Gulf of Oman, and to the west by Turkey and Iraq. Iran also controls about a dozen islands in the Persian Gulf. About one-third of its 4,770-mile (7,680-km) boundary is seacoast.

Official name Jomhūrī-ye Eslāmī-ye Īrān (Islamic Republic of Iran) Form of government unitary Islamic republic with one legislative house (Islamic Consultative Assembly [290 1]) Supreme political/religious authority Leader: Ayatollah Sayyed Ali Khamenei Head of state and government President: Hassan Rouhani Capital Tehrān Official language Farsī (Persian) Official religion Islam Monetary unit rial (Rls) Currency Exchange Rate 1 USD equals 42074.125 Iranian rial Population (2017 est.) 80,697,000 Population rank (2017) 18 Population projection 2030 88,257,000 Total area (sq mi) 628,872 Total area (sq km) 1,628,771 Density: persons per sq mi (2017) 128.3 Density: persons per sq km (2017) 49.5 Urban-rural population Urban: (2015) 73.4% Rural: (2015) 26.6% Life expectancy at birth Male: (2016) 69.8 years Female: (2016) 73.1 years Literacy: percentage of population age 15 and over literate Male: (2015) 91.2% Female: (2015) 82.5% GNI (U.S.$ ’000,000) (2015) 399,736 GNI per capita (U.S.$) (2015) 5,095