Tomb of Nader Shah, as the second most popular historical monument of this city, is established in a peaceful garden. Visiting this complex can introduce one of the most powerful kings of post-Islamic Iran, whose victories made Iran a powerful country of the time. This can be a short journey in the life of a soldier, a king, and a man who ruined his power and dynasty with his own hands.
Why should you visit Tomb of Nader Shah on your next trip to Mashhad?
Mashhad is known as the first and the most important religious city of Iran. Similar to other big, important and old cities of Iran, such as Isfahan and Shiraz, Mashhad also provides historical sites and touristic attractions for those who are interested in the history of Iran. In the long list of attractions, Tomb of Nader Shah is ranked as the second important and popular monument of this historical city. But who was Nader Shah and why his Mausoleum is placed in Mashhad?
Nader Shah, Napoleon of Iran?
Many historians believe that Nader was one of the most powerful rulers of Iran during its post-Islamic period, as some refer to him as the Second Alexander of Iran. He is also known as the Napoleon of Iran, because of his great victories. Nader Shah was born in 1688 in an obscure Turkish Afghan which at that time was part of the lands under control of Safavid kingdom. He became the local chieftain during the last years of Safavid dynasty which was also full of political chaos as well as corruptions. At those times, he gathered an army of 5000 in order to help Shah Tahmasp in regaining the throne of his late father which has been lost four years before. His victories in the war brought him fame and power so that he depose king in favor of his younger son and shortly after the death of the son, he proclaimed the throne himself. In the end, he reached to the Persian throne in 1736 and managed to restore the national independence of Iran and protect the integrity of Iranian territorial in an effective way. To that end, he has gone down to Iranian history as an enigmatic figure who had rescued the country at dark moments of its history.
The empire Nader Shah establish during 1700s AD stretched from the Caucasus Mountains to northern parts of India. Iran’s territory has been expanded significantly thanks to rapid victories of Nader Shah in the early years of his regime. As an example, his campaign against India was so successful and wealthy for the Iranian Empire, that for three years all the taxes in this Empire were suspended. However, due to his desire for extracting more tax money for the sake of his expensive military campaigns as well as his illness, he became cruel day after day. He made his own son blind and mad towers of skulls from new revolts who he had crushed them ruthlessly. This rather cruel behavior forced his officers and courtesies to plot against him and finally during the night of 20th June 1747 to assassin him while he was surprised during sleep.
Nader Shah was arguably one of the most powerful empires of the world in his own time. He founded the Afshari dynasty which falls down quickly after his assassination. Among his famous victories and achievements for Iran, one can mention his defeat against Ghilzay Afghans and bringing treasures such as Daria-i-Noor and Koh-i-Noor, which are precious gemstones, from India.
It also worth to know that, a French translation of Nader Shah’s biography has been done during the 18th century and under the order of Christian VII, king of Denmark.
Tomb of Nader Shah in Mashhad
Tomb of Nader Shah is placed in a beautiful, small manicured garden in the downtown of Mashhad. Despite the well-known mausoleum of big emperors, Tomb of Nader Shah is rather a modern monument established in Mashhad. The construction of this tomb and its location was originally ordered and set by Nader Shah himself. He asked for a normal grave near the Imam Reza Holy Shrine. This original grave was made of bricks and mud. Later on, during the Qajar era, the present version of the tomb was established to honor Nader Shah’s efforts and victories for the country.
Tomb of Nader Shah is built with Grey-granite. The contrast between the color of the granite and the small lush garden where it is established in between has brought a peaceful atmosphere to the downtown of Mashhad. On the entrance path, visitors come across a big statue of Nader Shah and some of his armies who is holding an ax in his hand riding a horse. 12 stone tiers are also present around the Tomb of Nader Shah. Abolhassan Sadiqi, a well known Iranian sculptor has designed and build this statue.
Close to the tomb of Nader Shah, two small museums are established in the garden. One of these museums exhibits weapons and ancient warfare, through time. The other museum is dedicated to Nader Shah himself, exhibiting his personal objects and weapons. In the same museum, artifacts such as guns and a rhino-hide shield which belong mostly to the Afshari dynasty are also exhibited. A carpet deprecating of Nader Shah’s portrait on horseback is also available in this museum. A Portuguese cannon monument calling “Guarding” is also placed in the garden of the Tomb of Nader Shah. This monument has been made during the 1590s and has been seized to Iran 30 years ago.
Iran is a big country with a rich history. Many different emperors and kings ruled this country through centuries and have left their footprints in huge historical monuments. Travel to Iran provides a great opportunity for people to not only visit the art and unique architecture of Iran but also get more familiar with the history of one of the most powerful and important countries of the middle east. Among well-known touristic and historical cities of Iran, Mashhad is one of the popular destinations for millions of travelers, both from Iran and other parts of the world. Tomb of Nader Shah, as the second most popular historical monument of this city, is established in a peaceful garden. Visiting this complex can introduce one of the most powerful kings of post-Islamic Iran, whose victories made Iran a powerful country of the time. This can be a short journey in the life of a soldier, a king, and a man who ruined his power and dynasty with his own hands.