Nadir Shah (1688-1747), Turkoman ruler, who deposed Iran's Safavid dynasty and established a short-lived Middle Eastern Empire. He gained prominence as a military leader during the Afghan occupation of Iran in the 1720s. Acting in behalf of the defeated Safavids, he expelled the Afghans in 1729, and in 1732 became regent.
The following year he forced the Ottoman Turks out of Mesopotamia, which they had seized during the Afghan invasion, and induced the Russians to give up Iranian territory they had occupied. In 1736 he took the Iranian throne for himself as Nadir Shah.
By 1738 he had conquered Afghanistan, and in 1739 he invaded northern India, capturing Delhi, the capital of the Mughal Empire; he soon extended his rule into what is now Russian Turkestan. Nadir Shah's victories made him briefly the Middle East's most powerful sovereign, but his empire quickly disintegrated after he was assassinated in 1747.
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