Mashhad is one of the ancient cities of Iran that has witnessed many historical events. After the Afghan attack on Isfahan, the Safavid capital at the end of their dynasty, this city experienced a tremendous political transformation. Nader Qoli, the commander of the Iranian army that pushed back the aggressors, established the Afsharid dynasty and chose Mashhad as his capital. The tomb of Nader Shah Afshar is one of the prominent Mashhad Tourist Attractions.
The tomb of Nader Shah is located at the center of the Naderi Garden Museum Complex. Prominent Iranian architect, Hooshang Seyhoun, designed the Naderi Garden Museum Complex in 1963. This complex consists of two museums that have been established to display and introduce historic weaponry. One of the museums is used to display weaponry from different historic periods and the other one focuses on the weapons specific to the era of Nader Shah Afshar.
History of The Tomb of Nader Shah
Nader Shah Afshar was crowned the king of Iran in the 18th century. He chose Mashhad as his capital for the first time in history. Immediately after becoming king, Nader Shah attacked India to preserve the dominance of Iran, Since Iran was attacked by the Afghans supported by India. The attack on India brought Nader Shah considerable spoils of war.
After returning from his fruitful trip, he decided to build a tomb for himself. For this purpose, he ordered to bring heavy black marble blocks from Azerbaijan to Khorasan. He also built two other tombs for himself in different places.
After his death, Nader Shah was not buried in any of the tombs he had built. His headless body was temporarily buried in the cemetery located in Mashhad. Then, Agha Mohammad Khan Qajar moved his body to Tehran.
At the end of the Qajar period in 1917, Ahmad Qavam or Qavam os-Saltaneh built a new tomb for Nader Shah in Mashhad. Then, he transferred his bones from Tehran to the new tomb. This building remained for a long time.
During the Pahlavi period and between the years 1957 and 1963, the now-defunct Society for the National Heritage of Iran decided to build a tomb in honor of Nader Shah. Therefore, they decided to demolish the tomb built by Qavam os-Saltaneh and build another tomb in its place.
Today, the tomb of Nader Shah Afshar is located on the northwest side of Shohada Crossroads, in a garden with an area of 14,400 square meters. In 1976, this tomb was added to the Iran National Heritage List.
Features of The Current Tomb of Nader Shah
This tomb has a platform with twelve steps and a burial site with a roof over it like a tent. This tent is identical to the nomadic tents where Nader Shah was born and killed.
In addition, there is another raised platform near the burial site. There is a statue of Nader Shah Afshar riding a horse on this platform, along with three other statues.
There is a book stall near the tomb. In addition, there are two museum halls to the sides of the tomb. All the mentioned structures are located inside a large garden.
The museums in the tomb of Nader Shah were established with the efforts of the Society for the National Heritage of Iran and with the presence of Mohammad Reza Pahlavi. Today, this museum is managed by the Organization of Cultural Heritage, Handicrafts, and Tourism. This tomb was renovated in 2006.
Various artifacts are on display in the halls of the two museums. One of the museums holds weapons and military uniforms of the Nader Shah period, paintings, battle scenes, etc. Also, two swords that belonged to Nader Shah are also on display in this museum.
The word Al-Sultan Nader (King Nader) is engraved on one of these swords. A poem is written on the second sword, which was presented to Nader Shah Afshar by the people of Iran on his coronation day.
The second museum in the Tomb of Nader Shah used to be a storage place for weapons from different periods of Iran’s history. Today, this museum has become a place to preserve and display historical information and pictures of Nadir Shah Afshar.
Materials such as hard granite stones have been used in the construction of the tomb. In the construction of the tomb, the goal was to construct a building similar to the original structure built by Nader Shah himself. Therefore, huge stone blocks were used in the construction of certain areas of the tomb.
Ocher-colored marble from Maragheh was used in the construction of the inner walls of the tomb of Nader Shah. These stones symbolize Nader Shah’s murder in a tent.
Visit This Tomb in Mashhad
Mashhad has a long and interesting history. It should be noted that the city holds other tombs of historical and religious significance besides the Imam Reza shrine. The tomb of Nader Shah was built in memory of an Iranian general who saved Iran as we know it today.
Whether you travel to Mashhad on an Iran tour package, religious pilgrimage tours, or by yourself, Destination Iran invites you to visit this historical attraction. It is vital to remember that Iran has been preserved by the sacrifices of Iranian patriots.
Where is The Tomb of Nader Shah Afshar?
The tomb of Nader Shah Afshar is located in Mashhad City, in northeast of Shahada Crossroads. You can see the exact location of this tomb below:
Frequently Asked Questions About The Tomb of Nader Shah Afshar
If you cannot find the answer to your questions in the following, share your questions with us through the comments section of this post. We will answer them as soon as possible.
What was the story of the exhumation of Nader Shah Afshar?
Nader Shah had built three tombs for himself and one was located in Mashhad. But his headless body was not buried in any of them. His body was first buried somewhere in Mashhad. Sometime after, Agha Mohammad Khan Qajar moved his body to Tehran.
At the end of the Qajar period, Qavam os-Saltaneh built a new tomb for Nader Shah in the city of Mashhad, and Nader Shah’s remains were transferred to the new tomb. This tomb remained for a long time. But during the era of Reza Shah(first Pahlavi period), the current tomb was built in place of the original.
During the construction of the tomb, ground instability and subsidence forced the architects to work fortifying the tomb’s foundation. This required the exhumation of Nader Shah’s grave for the third time.
After that, his bones were placed in a sealed chest. After two years and the completion of the tomb, these bones were placed in shrouds and buried in their final resting place.
Who was the architect of the tomb of Nadershah Afshar?
The designer and architect of the current Naderi tomb, which was built in the first Pahlavi period, was Iranian architect Hooshang Seyhoun.
What museums are located in the tomb of Nader Shah?
There are two museums in the tomb of Nader Shah. One holds weapons and military uniforms from the era of Nader Shah. Two of Nader Shah’s swords are kept in this museum, one of which has the word “Al-Sultan Nader” engraved on it. The second museum displays historical information about Nader Shah and his pictures.
What is the meaning behind the design of Nader Shah’s tombstone?
The design of Nader Shah’s tombstone is very similar to the Daria-i-Noor diamond that he brought to Iran after his battle with India.