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The curse of Amir Timur?

Inside the Gur-i Amir, Timur's final resting place is marked with a single slab of jade, said to be the largest in the world. Brought back by Ulug Beg from Mongolia in 1425, it is inscribed in Arabic calligraphy with the following words: 'When I rise, the World will Tremble.'

The first supposed victim of the curse was the Persian invader Nadir Shah, who carried it off to Persia in 1740 and sadly broke it in two. Nadir Shah's son fell gravely ill, and things started to go wrong to such an extent that his advisers demanded the jade be returned to the tomb. It was brought back, and the son recovered, though Nadir Shah himself met a sticky end just a few years later, assassinated with a sword.

On the night of 22 June 1941, a team of Russian scientists began to exhume Timur's remains. Within hours the Nazis had begun rolling into the Soviet Union. Many wondered if this was Timur's curse. The scientists found him to be a tall man, and as his name suggested, lame in the right leg. He had also suffered a wound to the right arm. Analysis complete, Timur's remains were reinterred with full Muslim burial rites, and the Nazis eventually left.