Sher Ali Khan

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Emir of Afghanistan
Sher Ali Khan of Afghanistan in 1869.jpg
Amir Sher Ali Khan in 1869
Emir of Afghanistan
Reign9 June 1863 – 21 February 1879
PredecessorDost Mohammad Khan
SuccessorMohammad Afzal Khan
Kabul, Afghanistan
Died21 February 1879 (age 53 or 54)
Kabul, Afghanistan
Full name
Sher Ali Khan Barakzai
DynastyBarakzai dynasty
FatherDost Mohammed Khan
MotherBibi Khadija Begum[1]
ReligionSunni Islam

Sher Ali Khan (Pashto: شېر علي خان‎)(c. 1825 – February 21, 1879) was Amir of Afghanistan from 1863 to 1866 and from 1868 until his death in 1879. He was the third[citation needed] son of Dost Mohammed Khan, founder of the Barakzai Dynasty in Afghanistan.

Sher Ali Khan initially seized power when his father died, but was quickly ousted by his older brother, Mohammad Afzal Khan. Internecine warfare followed until Sher Ali defeated his brother and regained the title of Emir. His rule was hindered by pressure from both Britain and Russia, though Sher Ali attempted to keep Afghanistan neutral during their conflict. In 1878, the neutrality fell apart and the Second Anglo-Afghan War erupted. As British forces marched on Kabul, Sher Ali Khan decided to leave Kabul to seek political asylum in Russia. He died in Mazar-e Sharif, leaving the throne to his son Mohammad Yaqub Khan.

Sher Ali was closely affiliated to the modern-day region of the Pothohar Plateau in Pakistan. He married one of his daughters to a prominent tribal chief of the Gakhars, Khan Bahadur Raja Jahandad Khan. After independence, the Gakhars tribe became part of Pakistan.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Vogelsang, Willem (2002). "16-War with Britain". The Afghans. LONDON: Willey-Blackwell, John Willey & SOns, Ltd, UK. p. 257. ISBN 978-1-4051-8243-0.

External links[edit]

Regnal titles
Preceded by
Dost Mohammad Khan
Barakzai dynasty
Emir of Afghanistan

9 June 1863 – 1866
Succeeded by
Mohammad Afzal Khan
Preceded by
Mohammad Azam Khan
Barakzai dynasty
Emir of Afghanistan

7 October 1868 – 21 February 1879
Succeeded by
Mohammad Yaqub Khan