Derived from this Question and this Answer is a question about the history of the twelver Shia branch of Islam. Would you please notify in short how did this branch evolved through the ages? Please focus on:
- the main events that largely helped spreading this perspective,
- the percentage of their followers compared to other Shia and Sunni communities at least qualitatively if not possibly quantitatively,
- and in particular whether or not the Safavid empire in Persia can be rightly considered as the main reason for this perspective to become the mainstream Shia community in the present era.