Nasir ad-Din nä´sər äd-dēn [key], 1831?–1896, shah of Persia (1848–96). He and his able vizier, Mirza Taqi Khan, were responsible for shaking Persia from a long period of inertia. He traveled extensively in Europe and brought back many Western ideas, some of which he applied to the reorganization of the government. Nasir ad-Din Shah had ambitions to reclaim the old Persian territories to the east and made an effort to wrest Herat from Afghanistan, but British intervention put an end to his hopes and forced Persia to recognize the claim of Afghanistan. Nasir ad-Din Shah granted numerous concessions to the British, including the Reuter concession in 1872 and the Imperial Bank of Persia in 1889. Babism arose during his reign. He wrote travel diaries, and his simple and pithy style influenced later Persian literature. In later years, he resisted demands for reforms. He was assassinated by one of his subjects and was succeeded by Muzaffar ad-Din.
The Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia, 6th ed. Copyright © 2012, Columbia University Press. All rights reserved.
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