During the last century three great seers or supermen have appeared in Persia -- the Bab, BAHA'O'LLAH and Abdul Baha. (5:1)
The Bab was born in Shiraz, in the month of October, 1819. At the age of twenty-four he heralded the advent of a universal teacher whom God would manifest, and through whom the unity of all nations would be established. The Bab (door or gate) effected a reformation of Islam, opening the way for a broader movement -- for always with earnestness and zeal he cried of one who was to come after him to illumine not only Islam, but the whole world. The young reformer made his declaration in 1844 at Shiraz and afterward at Mecca, where one hundred thousand people had congregated. (5:2)
His teachings met with instant opposition on the part of the orthodox religionists of the day. After two years he was imprisoned and held a prisoner until 1850 when he was shot in the public square of Tabriz. (5:3)
But physical torture and death were ineffectual to stop the onsweep of the reformation inaugurated by the Bab. When, some years later, BAHA'O'LLAH arose as the one who was expected, thousands accepted him and at once came under his banner. BAHA'O'LLAH was not personally related to the Bab, nor had he ever seen him, though he became one of the first disciples of the Bab's teachings.