Arg of Karim Khan

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Arg of Karim Khan
Shiraz, Iran
Karim 881211.jpg
Type citadel
Site history
Built 1766-7

The Arg of Karim Khan (Persian: ارگ کریم خانArg-e Karim Khan) is a citadel located in the north-east of Shiraz, southern Iran. It was built as part of a complex during the Zand dynasty and is named after Karim Khan, and served as his living quarters. In shape it resembles a medieval fortress.

At times, the citadel was used as a prison. Today, it is a museum operated by Iran's Cultural Heritage Organization.


The Arg of Karim Khan is also known as Arge Karim Khan, Arge KarimKhani and Citadel of Karim Khan.


Arg-e-Karim Khan was built in 1180 AH (1766-7). Karim Khan invited the best architects and artists of the time and bought the best materials from other cities and abroad for the construction of the citadel of Karim Khan, which was quickly constructed. During the Zand dynasty it was used by the king as living quarters. During the Qajar period it was used as the governor's seat.

Prince Abdolhosein Mirza Farmanfarma, governor of Fars Province, ordered the miniatures in the citadel to be renovated.

After the fall of the Qajar Dynasty it was converted into a prison and the paintings were plastered over. In 1971 it was given to Iran's Cultural Heritage Organization. The renovation of the citadel started in 1977.

The Panorama of Arg of Karim Khan in Shiraz


Vakil Fortress

The Arg of Karim Khan is located at Shohada Square. It has a land area of 4,000 m2 and is in the centre of a 12,800 m2 compound.[1] The citadel of Karim Khan consists of four high walls connected by four 14 m round brick towers at a 90-degree angle. Each 12m wall is crenalized and is 3 metres thick at the base and 2.8 metres at the top.[1][2] The design of the citadel combines military and residential architecture, for it was the home of Karim Khan and the military centre of the dynasty.[2]

James Edward Alexander in 1827 described the citadel as being surrounded by a "deep wet ditch".[3]

Tile works depicting legendary tales were added at the entrance gate of the citadel during the Qajar period.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b retrieved 11 Feb 2008
  2. ^ a b محمد جواد مطلع. "شهرداری شیراز". Retrieved 2013-02-04. 
  3. ^ James Edward Alexander, Travels from India to England: Comprehending a Visit to the Burman Empire, Parbury, Allen (1827) p.125

External links[edit]

Coordinates: 29°37′03″N 52°32′41″E / 29.6174°N 52.5446°E / 29.6174; 52.5446