The BUYID DYNASTY or the BUYIDS (Persian : آل بویه Āl-e
Buye), also known as BUWAIHIDS, BOWAYHIDS, BUYAHIDS, or BUYYIDS, was
an Iranian Shia dynasty of Daylamite origin. Coupled with the rise
of other Iranian dynasties in the region, the approximate century of
Buyid rule represents the period in Iranian history sometimes called
Iranian Intermezzo ' since, after the
Muslim conquest of Persia ,
it was an interlude between the rule of the
Abbasid Caliphate and the
Seljuk Empire .
Buyid dynasty was founded by \'
Ali ibn Buya , who in 934
conquered Fars and made
Shiraz his capital, while his younger brother
Hasan ibn Buya conquered parts of
Jibal in the late 930s, and by 943
managed to capture Ray , which he made his capital. In 945, the
youngest brother, Ahmad ibn Buya , conquered
Iraq and made
capital, receiving the honorific title of "Mu'izz al-Dawla"
("Fortifier of the State"), while '
Ali was given the title of "'Imad
al-Dawla" ("Support of the State"), and Hasan was given the title of
"Rukn al-Dawla" ("Pillar of the State").
As Daylamite Iranians the Buyids consciously revived symbols and
practices of Persia's Sassānid dynasty. In fact, beginning with
Adud al-Dawla they used the ancient Sassānid title Shāhanshāh
(Persian : شاهنشاه), literally "king of kings".
At its greatest extent, the
Buyid dynasty encompassed most of today's
Kuwait , and
Syria , along with parts of
Oman , the UAE
Pakistan . During the 10th and 11th
centuries, just prior to the invasion of the Seljuq Turks , the Buyids
were the most influential dynasty in the
Middle East , and under king
Adud al-Dawla , became one of the most powerful Muslim dynasties.
* 1 Origins
* 2 History
* 2.1 Rise (934-945)
* 2.2 Height of power and Golden age (945-983)
* 2.3 Decline and fall (983–1048)
* 3 Government
* 3.1 Military
* 4 Religion
* 5 Buyid rulers
* 5.1 Major rulers
* 5.2 Minor rulers
* 6 Family tree
* 7 See also
* 8 References
* 9 Sources
* 10 External links
The word Būya (
Arabic Buwayh) is a
Middle Persian name ending in the
diminutive ـویه (
Middle Persian -ōē, modern Persian -ūya,
Arabic -uwayh). The Buyids were descendants of Panah-Khusrau, a
Daylam . He had a son named Buya, who was a fisherman
from Lahijan, and later left
Zoroastrianism and converted to
:274 Buya later had three sons named Ahmad , \'
Ali , and Hasan , who
would later carve the Buyid kingdom together. Most historians agree
that the Buyids were Daylamites. :251–52 The Buyids claimed
royal lineage from
Bahram V , 15th king of the
Sasanian Empire .
The founder of the dynasty, '
Ali ibn Buya, was originally a soldier
in the service of the Daylamite warlord
Makan ibn Kaki , but later
changed his adherence to the Iranian ruler
Mardavij , who had
Ziyarid dynasty , and was himself related to the
ruling dynasty of
Gilan , a region bordering Dailam. '
Ali was later
joined by his two younger brothers,
Hasan ibn Buya and Ahmad ibn Buya.
In 932, '
Ali was given
Karaj as his fief, and thus was able to enlist
Daylamites into his own army. However, 'Ali's independent
Mardavij plan to have him killed, but fortunately for
'Ali, he was informed of Mardavij's plan by the latter's own vizier .
The Buyids brother, with 400 of their Daylamite supporters, then fled
to Fars , where they managed to take control of
Arrajan . However,
the Buyids and the Abbasid general Yaqut shortly came into a struggle
for the control of Fars, which the Buyids eventually emerged
victorious in. This victory opened the way for the conquest of the
capital of Fars,
Ali also made an alliance with the landowners of Fars, which
Fasanjas family , which would later produce many
prominent statesmen for the Buyids. Furthermore, '
Ali also to enlist
more soldiers, which included the Turks , who were made part of
Ali then sent his brother Ahmad on an expedition to Kirman ,
but was forced to withdraw from them after opposition from the Baloch
people and the Qafs. However, Mardavij, who sought to depose the
Abbasid caliph of
Baghdad and recreate a Zoroastrian Iranian Empire,
shortly wrested Khuzestan from the Abbasids and forced '
recognize him as his suzerain.
Luckily for the Buyids,
Mardavij was shortly assassinated in 935,
which caused chaos in the Ziyarid territories, a perfect situation for
the Buyid brothers;
Ali and Ahmad conquered Khuzistan, while Hasan
captured the Ziyarid capital of
Isfahan , and in 943 captured Rey ,
which became his capital, thus conquering all of
Jibal . In 945, Ahmad
Iraq and made the Abbasid Caliph his vassal, at the same
receiving the laqab Mu'izz ad-Dawla ("Fortifier of the State"), while
Ali was given the laqab Imād ad-Dawla ("Support of the State"), and
Hasan was given the laqab Rukn ad-Dawla ("Pillar of the State").
HEIGHT OF POWER AND GOLDEN AGE (945-983)
In addition to the other territories the Buyids had conquered, Kirman
was conquered in 967,
Oman (967), the Jazira (979),
Gorgan (981). After this, however, the Buyids went into a slow
decline, with pieces of the confederation gradually breaking off and
local dynasties under their rule becoming de facto independent.
DECLINE AND FALL (983–1048)
The death of
Adud al-Dawla is considered the starting point of the
decline of the Buyid dynasty; his son
Abu Kalijar Marzuban , who was
Baghdad at the time of his death, first kept his death secret in
order to ensure his succession and avoid civil war. When he made the
death of his father public, he was given the title of "Samsam
al-Dawla". However, Adud's other son, Shirdil Abu\'l-Fawaris ,
challenged the authority of Samsam al-Dawla, resulting in a civil war.
Meanwhile, a Marwanid chieftain named Badh, seized Diyabakr and
Samsam al-Dawla to recognize him as the vassal ruler of the
Mu'ayyad al-Dawla also died during this period,
and he was succeeded by Fakhr al-Dawla, who with the aid of Mu'ayyad
al-Dawla's vizier Sahib ibn \'Abbad became the ruler of Mu'ayyad
al-Dawla's possessions. Another son of Adud al-Dawla, Abu Tahir
Firuzshah , established himself as the ruler of
Basra and took the
title of "Diya' al-Dawla", while another son, Abu\'l-Husain Ahmad ,
established himself as the ruler of Khuzistan, taking the title of
Shirdil Abu'l-Fawaris (known by his title of "Sharaf al-Dawla")
Oman from Samsam al-Dawla, and in 983, the Turkic
Samsam al-Dawla mutinied against him, and left
Fars, but most of them were persuaded by his relative Ziyar ibn
Shahrakawayh to stay in Iraq. However, unfortunately for Samsam
Iraq was in grim affairs, and several rebellions occurred,
which he however, managed to suppress, the most dangerous rebellion
Asfar ibn Kurdawayh , who tried to make Abu Nasr Firuz
Kharshadh (known by his title of "Baha' al-Dawla") the ruler of Iraq.
During the same period,
Samsam al-Dawla also managed to seize Basra
and Khuzistan, forcing his two brothers to flee to Fakhr al-Dawla's
During the mid-11th century, the Buyid amirates gradually fell to the
Ghaznavid and Seljuq Turks. In 1029, Majd al-Dawla, who was facing an
uprising by his Dailami troops in Ray , requested assistance from
Mahmud of Ghazna . When Sultan Mahmud arrived, he deposed Majd
al-Dawla, replaced him with a
Ghaznavid governor and ended the Buyid
dynasty in Ray .
Tughrul conquered Baghdad, the seat of the caliphate, and
ousted the last of the Buyid rulers. Like the Buyids, the Seljuqs
Abbasid caliphate as the titular ruler.
The Buyids established a confederation in
Iraq and western Iran. This
confederation formed three principalities - one in Fars, with Shiraz
as its capital - the second one in Jibal, with Ray as its capital -
and the last one in Iraq, with
Baghdad as its capital. However, during
their late period, more principalities formed in the Buyid
confederation. Succession of power was hereditary , with fathers
dividing their land among their sons.
The title used by the Buyid rulers was amir , meaning "governor" or
"prince". Generally one of the amirs would be recognized as having
seniority over the others; this individual would use the title of amir
al-umara , or senior amir. Although the senior amīr was the formal
head of the Būyids, he did not usually have any significant control
outside of his own personal amirate; each amir enjoyed a high degree
of autonomy within his own territories. As mentioned above, some of
the stronger amirs used the
Sassanid title of
Furthermore, several other titles such as malik ("king"), and malik
al-muluk ("king of kings"), were also used by the Buyids. On a smaller
scale, the Buyid territory was also be ruled by princes from other
families, such as the Hasanwayhids.
Artistic rendering of a Daylamite Buyid infantryman.
During the beginning of the Buyid dynasty, their army consisted
mainly of their fellow Daylamites, a warlike and brave people of
mostly peasant origin, who served as foot soldiers. The
a long history of military activity dating back to the Sasanian
period, and had been mercenaries in various places in
Iran and Iraq,
and even as far as
Egypt . The Daylamites, during a battle, normally
bore a sword, a shield, and three spears. Furthermore, they were also
known for their formidable shield formation, which was hard to break
But when the Buyid territories increased, they began recruiting Turks
into their cavalry, who had played a prominent role in the Abbasid
military. The Buyid army also consisted of
Kurds , who, along with
the Turks, were Sunnis , while the
Daylamites were Shi\'i Muslims .
However, the army of the Buyids of
Jibal mainly composed of
Daylamites and Turks often quarreled with each other in an
attempt to be the dominant force within the army. To compensate their
soldiers the Buyid amīrs often distributed iqtāʾs , or the rights
to a percentage of tax revenues from a province (tax farming ),
although the practice of payment in kind was also frequently used.
While the Turks were favored in Buyid Iraq, the
favored in Buyid Iran.
Daylamites at the time, the Buyids were Shia and have been
called Twelvers . However, it is more likely that they began as Zaydis
. As the reason of this turning from Zaydism to Twelverism, Moojen
Momen suggests that since the Buyids were not descendants of
Ali , the
first Shi'i Imam, Zaydism would have urged them to install an Imam
from Ali's family. For that reason Buyids tended toward Twelverism,
which has an occulted Imam , which was more politically attractive to
The Buyids rarely attempted to enforce a particular religious view
upon their subjects except when in matters where it would be
politically expedient. The Sunni Abbasids retained the caliphate but
were deprived of all secular power. In addition, in order to prevent
tensions between the Shia and the Sunnis from spreading to government
agencies, the Buyid amirs occasionally appointed Christians to high
offices instead of Muslims from either sect.
Generally, the three most powerful Buyid amirs at any given time were
those in control of Fars ,
Iraq . Sometimes a ruler would
come to rule more than one region, but no Buyid rulers ever exercised
direct control of all three regions.
BUYIDS IN FARS
Imad al-Dawla (934–949)
Adud al-Dawla (949–983)
Sharaf al-Dawla (983–989)
Samsam al-Dawla (989–998)
* Baha\' al-Dawla (998–1012)
Sultan al-Dawla (1012–1024)
Abu Kalijar (1024–1048)
Abu Mansur Fulad Sutun (1048–1051)
* Abu Sa\'d Khusrau
Abu Mansur Fulad Sutun (1051–1062)
Buyid era art: Painted, incised, and glazed earthenware. Dated
New York Metropolitan Museum of Art .
BUYIDS IN RAY
Rukn al-Dawla (935–976)
Fakhr al-Dawla (976–980)
* Mu\'ayyad al-Dawla (980–983)
Fakhr al-Dawla (restored) (984–997)
Majd al-Dawla (997–1029)
BUYIDS IN IRAQ
* Mu\'izz al-Dawla (945–967)
'Izz al-Dawla (966–978)
Adud al-Dawla (978–983)
Samsam al-Dawla (983–987)
Sharaf al-Dawla (987–989)
* Baha\' al-Dawla (989–1012)
Sultan al-Dawla (1012–1021)
Musharrif al-Dawla (1021–1025)
Jalal al-Dawla (1025–1044)
Abu Kalijar (1044–1048)
Malik al-Rahim (1048–1055)
It was not uncommon for younger sons to found collateral lines, or
for individual Buyid members to take control of a province and begin
ruling there. The following list is incomplete.
BUYIDS IN BASRA
* Diya\' al-Dawla (980s)
BUYIDS IN HAMADAN
* Mu\'ayyad al-Dawla (976–983)
Shams al-Dawla (997–1021)
* Sama\' al-Dawla (1021–1024)
BUYIDS IN KERMAN
Qawam al-Dawla (1012–1028)
BUYIDS OF KHUZISTAN
Taj al-Dawla (980s)
ABU ISHAQ IBRAHIM
ALI IBN KAMA
MARZUBAN IBN BAKHTIYAR
ABU MANSUR ALI
ABU ALI FANA-KHUSRAU
ABU MANSUR FULAD SUTUN
ABU SA\\'D KHUSRAU SHAH
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* List of Shi\'a Muslims dynasties
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