Karim Khan (kärēmˈ khän) [key], d. 1779, ruler of Persia (1750–79), founder of the Zand dynasty. He emerged victorious from a contest for power and ruled under the title Vakil [representative]. His rule was one of tranquility, and he made Shiraz, his capital, beautiful with buildings including the Mosque of Vakil and the Bazaar of Vakil. He allowed a few northern ethnic groups to remain virtually independent. One of them was the Qajars; from them was to come Aga Muhammad Khan, who overthrew (1794) Lutf Ali Khan, the last ruler of the Zand dynasty.
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