ALLĀHYĀR KHAN ABDĀLĪ, a chieftain of the important Afghan tribe of the Abdālī (later known as the Dorrānī). Elected leader of the tribe in 1137/1725-26, he was governor of Herat when Nāder-qolī (the future Nāder Shah) advanced to reconquer the city in 1141/1729. Allāhyār Khan lost battles at Kāfer Qaḷʿa (present-day Eslām Qaḷʿa) and Rebāṭ-e Parīān, fell back on Herat, and was soon obliged to surrender. Nāder pardoned him and confirmed him as governor of the city. He remained loyal when the Abdālī revolted in 1142/1730, and was driven from Herat to Marūčaq by the rebels, who then defeated Nāder’s brother Ebrāhīm Khan before Mašhad. When Nāder himself advanced, Allāhyār joined him with reinforcements; the rebels were defeated in Moḥarram, 1144/July, 1731, and Allāhyār was reappointed to Herat. Revolt flared up anew, and this time Allāhyār joined the rebel cause, unsuccessfully attacking the Iranian forces. Nāder seized his family at Marūčaq, but negotiations failed and Herat was again besieged. Allāhyār capitulated on 1 Ramażān 1144/27 February 1732, and was exiled with his adherents to Multan. Nāder also transported 60,000 members of the Abdālī tribe to Mašhad, Nīšāpūr, and Dāmḡān. Lockhart has suggested (Nadir Shah, p. 54) that Nāder’s unusually lenient treatment of these intractable tribesmen was aimed at recruiting them in a non-Iranian, non-Shiʿite army in anticipation of his clash for power with Ṭahmāsb II.


Mīrzā Mahdī Astarābādī, Jahāngošā-ye Nāderī, ed.

Sayyed ʿAbdallāh Anwār, Tehran, 1341 Š./1962, pp. 88-89, 95-96, 132-37, 140, 157-66.

L. Lockhart, Nadir Shah, London, 1938, pp. 31-34, 51-54.

(J. R. Perry)

Originally Published: December 15, 1985

Last Updated: August 2, 2011

This article is available in print.
Vol. I, Fasc. 8, p. 893

Cite this entry:

J. R. Perry, “ALLĀHYĀR KHAN ABDĀLĪ,” Encyclopædia Iranica, I/8, p. 893, available online at (accessed on 30 December 2012).