In Memoriam: Clifford Edmund Bosworth (1928–2015) and Berenike Walburg (1984–2012)

This volume is dedicated to the memory of two individuals, of very different ages and life stages, but who were both an integral part of the original conference and, in Edmund Bosworth’s case, this volume:

Clifford Edmund Bosworth was one of the most distinguished and prolific scholars of his time. After taking a 1st class degree in Modern History at St. John’s, Oxford, he completed an M.A. in Middle Eastern Languages (1956) and a PhD (1961) at the University of Edinburgh. Following a stint as a lecturer in Arabic at the University of St. Andrews (1956–1965), he joined the University of Manchester, in which he served as Professor of Arabic Studies from 1967–1990. During this time, he also joined the editorial board of, and composed an astonishing number of entries for, the second edition of the Encyclopaedia of Islam, overseeing the completion of the project. In many of the fields he researched, ranging from the Saffarids and Ghaznavids to the Ghurids, he was the trailblazer, whose work opened up that area of research to subsequent scholarly exploration. Characteristically, Edmund was the only contributor to this volume who had published research on every single dynastic period that falls within its purview. His work was invariably meticulous, comprehensively researched, and judicious, and will surely be read for many years to come. He was also a generous and courteous colleague, a good friend and correspondent, and a supportive mentor to younger scholars, whom he treated as full equals of his very eminent self. For the editors, he was an integral and essential participant in any conference, and his death is a blow to us personally. He is deeply missed, but we are grateful for the privilege of having known him.

Berenike Walburg was a graduate student of the University of St Andrews who was killed in a road traffic accident in Aberdeenshire on Saturday 1 December 2012.

At the time of her death, Berenike was a matter of months away from submitting her doctoral thesis, which was focused on the nature and development of international trade across Central Asia, the Near East and the Caucasus between 600 and 900 CE. Berenike was a very talented young scholar. Her research was characterised by great clarity of thought, a mastery of detail and a willingness to challenge long-held assumptions. While still a doctoral student, she had come to the attention of the wider scholarly community and impressed all who encountered her. Anyone prepared to undertake both a month of archaeological investigation at Merv in Turkmenistan and a week of intensive advanced Classical Armenian at the Welcome Library in London must have great resilience and total dedication to their field. In recognition of her scholarship and high standing in the academic world, the University of St Andrews awarded Berenike a posthumous doctorate in June 2013.

Berenike was known personally to many of those who attended the conference convened at the University of St Andrews in March 2013 under the title Eastern Iran and Transoxiana, 750–1150 from which this volume of essays stems. She contributed to its organisation and had been invited to deliver a paper. It is therefore appropriate that this volume should be co-dedicated to her memory.


This volume is based on discussions at a conference convened by the Institute of Iranian Studies at the University of St Andrews in March 2013 under the title Eastern Iran and Transoxiana, 750–1150. We are extremely grateful to those institutions whose financial support made the conference and the resulting volume possible: the British Institute of Persian Studies, the Iran Heritage Foundation, the Honeyman Foundation, the Medieval Institute of the University of Notre Dame, the School of History of the University of St Andrews, the Institute for Advanced Study, Princeton, and the National Endowment for the Humanities. The editors would also like to express their gratitude to Dr Paul Churchill for his assistance both in organising the conference and in editing the volume. We are also grateful to the British Institute of Persian Studies for agreeing to include this volume in its publication series and to Ali Ansari for his efforts to secure its passage through the press.

A.C.S. Peacock

D.G. Tor


EI 2 Encyclopaedia of Islam, second edition, 12 vols plus indices (Leiden, 1960–2005)

EI 3 Encyclopaedia of Islam, third edition (Leiden, 2007–)

EIr Encyclopaedia Iranica (London and Costa Mesa, 1982–; online edition


C. Edmund Bosworth (†2015) was Emeritus Professor of Arabic Studies, Manchester University. He was British editor of the Encyclopaedia of Islam, 2nd edition, editor of two volumes of the UNESCO History of the Civilizations of Central Asia, and contributor to the New Cambridge History of Islam and the Cambridge History of Iran. His books include works on pre-modern Arabic literature, on the history of the medieval Iranian world and Central Asia, and studies of European travellers, explorers and interpreters of the Middle Eastern lands and Inner Asia.

Carole Hillenbrand, OBE, FBA, FRSE, is Professor Emerita of Islamic History at the University of Edinburgh and Professor of Islamic History at the University of St Andrews. Her books include The Crusades: Islamic Perspectives (Edinburgh, 1999), and Turkish Myth and Muslim Symbol: The Battle of Manzikert (Edinburgh, 2007). Her new book, Islam: A Historical Introduction , was published by Thames and Hudson in January 2015.

Robert Hillenbrand, FBA, Professor Emeritus of Islamic Art, Edinburgh University, and currently Professor of Art History at St Andrews University, has published 9 books, co-authored, edited or co-edited a further 12 books, and published some 170 articles. He has been Slade Professor at Cambridge and has held visiting professorships at Princeton, UCLA, Bamberg, Dartmouth College, New York, Leiden, Cairo and Groningen. His interests focus on Islamic architecture (especially in Iran and Umayyad Syria), book painting and iconography.

Minoru Inaba is Professor of the Department of Oriental Studies, Institute for Research in Humanities, Kyoto University. He specialises in the pre- and early Islamic history of Afghanistan and adjacent regions. Recent publications include: Coins, Art and Chronology II: Indo-Iranian Borderlands, 2010 (co-editor); ‘Sedentary rulers on the move: The travels of the early Ghaznavid sultans’, in D. Durand-Guédy (ed.), Turko-Mongol Rulers, Cities and City Life, (2013); and ‘Arab soldiers in China at the time of An-Shi rebellion’, Memoirs of the Research Department of the Toyo Bunko, 68, (2011).

Louise Marlow teaches at Wellesley College in Massachusetts. She received her undergraduate degree from Cambridge University and her doctoral degree from Princeton University. Her research concentrates on Arabic and Persian mirrors for princes and the pre-modern history of western Asia and Iran. Her book Wisdom and Politics in Tenth-Century Iran is forthcoming with Edinburgh University Press.

Christopher Melchert has a bachelor’s degree from the University of California at Santa Cruz, a master’s from Princeton University, and a doctorate from the University of Pennsylvania, all in History. He has published two books, The Formation of the Sunni Schools of Law (1997) and Ahmad ibn Hanbal (2006), and close to fifty articles. Since 2000, he has taught at Oxford, currently covering the fields of hadith, Islamic law, and early Sufism. He aspires to be a scholar on the pattern of his master, George Makdisi.

Roy Parviz Mottahedeh is the Gurney Professor of History at Harvard University. He has written extensively on the history of the Middle East in the tenth and eleventh centuries C. E. His publications include Loyalty and Leadership in an Early Islamic Society, The Mantle of the Prophet, and Lessons in Islamic Jurisprudence. He has written numerous articles on the social, intellectual and political history of the Middle East from the 7th century to the present.

Jürgen Paul is Professor Emeritus of Islamic Studies, Martin-Luther-Universität Halle-Wittenberg. His research field is the medieval history of Iran and Central Asia, in particular the pre-Mongol period. He has a special interest in forms of local rule and in relations between local and imperial rule in Seljuq and post-Seljuq Iran. Recent publications include ‘Sanjar and Atsız: Independence, lordship, and literature’ in Jürgen Paul (ed.), Nomad Aristocrats in a World of Empires, (Wiesbaden, 2013), pp. 81–129; ‘Where did the dihqāns go?’, Eurasian Studies 11 (2013), pp. 1–34; ‘Khidma in the social history of pre-Mongol Iran’, Journal of the Economic and Social History of the Orient 57/3 (2014), pp. 390–420.

A.C.S. Peacock is Reader in Middle Eastern Studies at the School of History, University of St Andrews. His research focuses on the medieval history and historiography of the eastern Islamic lands. Main publications relevant to Central Asia include Mediaeval Islamic Historiography and Political Legitimacy: Bal‘amī’s Tārīkhnāma (London, 2007); Early Seljūq History: A New Interpretation (London, 2010); The Great Seljuk Empire (Edinburgh, 2015).

D.G. Tor is a member of the Department of History at the University of Notre Dame. Her research focuses on the history of the central and eastern Islamic lands from the Abbasid Revolution to the Mongol invasions. Current work pertaining to Khurasan and Persianate Central Asia includes ‘God’s Cleric: Fuḍayl b. ‘Iyāḍ and the transition from Caliphal to Prophetic Sunna’, in Islamic Cultures, Islamic Contexts: Essays in Honor of Professor Patricia Crone, ed. Behnam Sadeghi, Asad Q. Ahmed, Adam Silverstein, and Robert Hoyland (Leiden, 2014); ‘The political revival of the ‘Abbāsid Caliphate: al-Muqtafī and the Seljuqs’, (under review); ‘The religious history of Rayy in the Seljuq period’, Der Islam 94:1 (forthcoming 2017); and editing the Islamic and Near Eastern sections of the medieval volume of The Cambridge World History of Violence (Cambridge, forthcoming 2018).


Figure 0.1 The Iranian World, c. 388/998 (reproduced from C. E. Bosworth, ‘The political and dynastic history of the Iranian World, AD 1000–1217)’ in J.A. Boyle (ed.), The Cambridge History of Iran, Vol V: The Saljuq and Mongol Periods (Cambridge, 1968) p. 2 © Cambridge University Press, 1968, reproduced with permission)


Figure 0.2 The Ghaznavid Empire at its greatest extent, c. 421/1030 (reproduced from C. E. Bosworth, ‘The political and dynastic history of the Iranian World, AD 1000–1217)’ in J.A. Boyle (ed.), The Cambridge History of Iran, Vol V: The Saljuq and Mongol Periods (Cambridge, 1968) p. 21 © Cambridge University Press, 1968, reproduced with permission)


Figure 0.3 The Seljuq Empire at the death of Malikshah (485/1092) (reproduced from C. E. Bosworth, ‘The political and dynastic history of the Iranian World, AD 1000–1217)’ in J.A. Boyle (ed.), The Cambridge History of Iran, Vol V: The Saljuq and Mongol Periods (Cambridge, 1968) p. 104 © Cambridge University Press, 1968, reproduced with permission)

Preface, by A.C.S. Peacock and D.G.Tor

The ‘Iranian Intermezzo’ or ‘Persian Renaissance’ in the tenth century, when much of the eastern Islamic world was ruled by ethnically Persian dynasties, has long been recognised as a period of key importance for the formation of Islamic civilisation, both in political and cultural terms. Politically, it saw the effective break-up of the political control of the Abbasid Caliphate and the emergence of successor states such as the ethnically Iranian Samanids, Saffarids and Buyids. Culturally, it witnessed the emergence of New Persian as a literary and administrative language and an ever more explicit regard for the pre-Islamic Iranian past, most famously signalled by the composition of the masterpiece of Persian literature, Firdawsī’s Shāhnāma. Yet the origins of these phenomena remain little understood, and their influence on later, ethnically Turkish but culturally Persianate dynasties such as the Ghaznavids and Seljuqs has yet to be fully explored. Moreover, much of the research on this period has focussed specifically on Shi‘ism and the Buyid dynasty that ruled in Iraq and western Iran. Yet Islamic Central Asia – the provinces known as Khurasan and Transoxiana (Arabic Mā Warā’ al-Nahr), or collectively the mashriq, comprising, roughly speaking, modern eastern Iran, Afghanistan, Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan – constituted the bulwark of Sunnism, and were making their greatest contribution to its formation.

In short, the focus on tenth-century Shi‘ism has somewhat blinded historians to the larger significance and cultural continuity of the Persianate dynastic period in the eastern Islamic world; as a result, we still lack a broad understanding of why so many of the major cultural and religious developments of this period should have originated in Khurasan and Transoxiana, apparently so distant from the heartlands of both the Caliphate and the Sasanian Empire. This volume aims to explore the origins and nature of Sunni Iranian cultural and political florescence, and to shed led on one of the most formative yet unexplored eras of Islamic history.

The cultural and political developments in Khurasan and Transoxiana during this period had an impact upon a wide range of fields, and this is reflected in the essays in this book. The significance of the period can be found in virtually every area of historical inquiry. Geopolitically, the region first gave rise to the Abbasid Revolution, provided the troops for its success, and supplied the military slaves and auxiliaries that led to its political dissolution. From the second part of the ninth century, Persianate dynasties formed the mainstay of Islamic military might for the ensuing 400 years. During the period of Persianate dynastic hegemony, the Muslim religion spread into Turkic Central Asia and Muslim rule expanded deep into Central Asia and the Indian subcontinent. Militarily and politically, Persianspeaking dynasties held sway over the Islamic heartland, from India to Egypt. From the eleventh century, as a result of the political reunification of the Islamic heartlands under Persianate Seljuq rule, the traditional Islamic conception of the Caliphate as the sole legitimate universal political authority for Sunnis was challenged, thus leading to a sea change in Sunni political theory and the writing of the classic works of this genre, as well as to a deadly rivalry between the new Sultans and the Abbasid caliphs.

In the linguistic and literary sphere, the Sunni Persianate dynastic period was characterised by the cultural dominance of the Persian-speaking court, thus bringing about the literary flowering of the classical Persian language and its acceptance as the second primary Islamic language of high culture. This development in turn led to the writing of many of Islamic civilisation’s greatest works of poetry, philosophy, biography, history, belles-lettres, and religion in Persian. Culturally, these dynasties presided over, and in many cases helped further, the formation of much of classical Islamic civilisation. In the religious sphere, most of the normative Sunni religious developments and texts came into being during this period, ranging from the compilation and canonisation of the six Sunni books of ḥadīth to the fostering and spread of the madrasa, and the promulgation and mainstreaming of Sufism.

Despite its seminal importance, this period in the eastern Islamic world has remained one of the most obscure and neglected in Islamic history. The standard survey of political history remains Barthold’s Turkestan Down to the Mongol Invasion, published in English in 1928 but originally defended as a dissertation in St Petersburg in 1900.1 However, the work remains in print and is widely cited, signifying the sluggish pace of scholarship – or at least, the fact that even where Barthold’s conclusions have been superseded, revisionist scholarship in Russian has remained inaccessible to western audiences; and even in the west scholarship on specific aspects of the period has not always been widely disseminated.

Nonetheless, in many areas considerable progress has been made. Barthold can now usefully be supplemented by the History of Civilizations of Central Asia, vol. IV, the Age of Achievement (1998, 2000), edited by Asimov and Bosworth,2 which brings together more recent Russian, Central Asian and Western scholarship, and there are also important monographs on the Ghaznavid dynasty by Bosworth,3 and on the major Khurasani city of Nishapur by Bulliet,4 as well as an increasing volume of research on the Saffarids5 and the Seljuqs.6 Paul has also contributed an important study of the social, military and political dynamics of the period.7 However, research on the Islamic east has tended with these exceptions to focus primarily on the early Abbasid period, owing to the importance of Khurasan in the Abbasid state and the role of Khurasanis there.8 There exists only one previous volume of essays devoted to surveying some of the major features of the period of the Persian Renaissance, D. S. Richards’s Islamic Civilisation 950–1150.9 That volume, however, while it was a good beginning to the study of at least part of this period, adopted a different intellectual approach from the present work, in that it did not differentiate between the Shi‘ite ‘‘Irāqayn’ on the one hand, and the culturally cohesive world of Sunni Khurasan and Transoxiana on the other. The Richards volume, originally meant to be a promising beginning for further exploration of the period, has never been followed up; it has therefore remained an indispensable part of the literature for the past forty years, by default. Our aim in this volume is to produce a more up-to-date, fuller, and more comprehensive volume of essays by many of today’s leading scholars, focussed upon the Eastern Iranian world of Khurasan and Transoxiana, which formed intellectually and culturally the Sunni heartland, from the emergence of the first ethnically Iranian dynasties in the mid ninth century to the eve of the Mongol invasions. The volume explores a broad spectrum of subjects touching upon the religious, social, cultural and political history of the region during the relevant period, many of them never previously addressed.

One reason for the comparative lack of research on Khurasan and Transoxiana in this period is the problematic source base. While for the Ghaznavid dynasty – which has received the most detailed monograph treatment – we do have some contemporary Arabic and Persian chronicles, for most dynasties of the period we are reliant on scattered information in a disparate array of sources.10 There is no extant dynastic history of the Samanids, Saffarids, or Ghurids; and even for the Seljuqs, the works that have come down to us were composed in the west of their domains and often leave events in Central Asia in obscurity. Thus while scholars of the Buyids (for instance) have at their disposal detailed contemporary chronicles such as that of Miskawayh, for the eastern Islamic world the situation is much more challenging for the scholar. So poorly attested is the Qarakhanid dynasty that dominated Transoxiana in the twelfth century, for instance, that numismatics has been the major source for reconstructing its history and the sequence of its rulers.11

As a result, studies based purely on the fragmentary evidence of chronicles and focussing on political history are always likely to be of limited efficacy in improving our understanding of the period. A wider range of sources and approaches is needed, and this volume aims to give a sampling of these. Our contributors accordingly draw on sources ranging from Arabic biographical dictionaries to mirrors for princes, from local chronicles to poetry, and from hagiographies to art historical evidence such as ceramics, to shed light on the cultural, religious and political transformations of the period.

The volume opens with an essay by D.G. Tor which outlines in more detail the significance of Khurasan and Transoxiana in the medieval Islamic world and surveys the political history of the region in the period, providing a context for the following chapters. We then proceed to Christopher Melchert’s discussion of a formative aspect of the region’s Sunni character, the emergence in Central Asia of the Ḥanafi Sunni madhhab (law school). Melchert examines the relationship between the spread of Hanafism and Abbasid state sponsorship, and the local factors in Khurasan and Transoxiana that might account for its acceptance there.

The next two essays examine aspects of cultural history under the Samanids, the foremost of the ethnically Iranian dynasties to dominate the region after the dissolution of direct Abbasid rule. Louise Marlow’s chapter constitutes an in-depth exploration of what one mirror for princes, the Naṣīḥat al-Mulūk, reveals about rulership, social status, hierarchy, and function, and the means by which rulers ‘bridge[d] the chasm between the ruler and the population’ in the Samanid realms. Robert Hillenbrand then turns to examine Samanid epigraphic pottery, widely regarded as one of the high points of Islamic art as a whole. This article details the context of this pottery in other contemporary ceramics and metalwork, and problems of dating and authenticity; identifies the various ways in which these ceramics were revolutionary, how they relate to non-epigraphic wares and what heritage they bequeathed to later potters; and, finally, highlights the intentions behind the choice of texts and suggests what kinds of models might have inspired these wares. As such, it offers insights into Samanid social as well as artistic history.

With Minoru Inaba’s chapter, we turn to the origins of the first of the Turkish states that succeeded the Samanids – the Ghaznavids. Alptegin, the effective founder of the Ghaznavid state, had started his career as a soldier in Samanid service; Inaba examines the circumstances that allowed him to carve out his polity in Ghazna in the south of modern Afghanistan, exploiting the frontier status of the region in order to establish and expand political power and rule. Roy Mottahedeh’s contribution examines the Ghaznavids’ interpretation of the idea of Iran they had inherited from the Samanids, as illustrated by Ghaznavid court poetry. Mottahedeh considers the works of the panegyrists who served the Ghaznavid Sultans Maḥmūd (reg. 387/997 – 421/1030) and Mas‘ūd (reg. 421/1030 – 432/1040) in order to gain insight into the ideologies and the courts of both rulers. The essay focuses on two particular issues: how these poets understood the word ‘Iran’, and also how they themselves viewed the role of the panegyrist. It concludes with some general observations about Persian panegyric poetry.

The question of identity also forms the theme of A.C.S. Peacock’s chapter, which examines a recently discovered twelfth century local history of Herat that also incorporates significant sections of a lost Samanid history of Khurasan, the Akhbār Wulāt Khurāsān attributed to al-Sullāmī. Peacock argues that these texts suggest that for many, Khurasan in fact provided a more meaningful focus of identity than the idea of Iran, the popularity of which was restricted more to the elite court audience discussed by Mottahedeh.

Carole Hillenbrand’s essay, meanwhile, focuses on a key personality in the transition from Ghaznavid to Seljuq rule, the neglected figure of the first Seljuq Sultan Ṭughril’s vizier ‘Amīd al-Mulk Kundurī. Hillenbrand offers a reassessment of this important but overlooked character, showing how Kundurī, born into a Khurasani landowning family, was able to serve as both a cultural and political broker for the new Turkish ruler, facilitating the establishment of Seljuq rule not just in Khurasan, but further west in the Abbasid lands.

The Seljuq period also forms the focus of Jürgen Paul’s essay, an attempt to understand the social and political history of twelfth century Khurasan, which also sheds light on conditions under the Seljuqs’ successors in the east, the Khwarazmshāh dynasty. Paul examines the various functions of the individuals described in the sources by the term ra’īs (pl. ru’asā’ ). The ra’īs could be variously the head of the representatives of a particular school of law (madhhab) in a given locality (such as the ra’īs of the Shāfi‘īs at Marw); or, secondly, the effective governor of a larger town or city, who generally held an appointment deed from the regional or imperial ruler, and who tended to form regional dynasties of ru’asā’ ; or, thirdly, rural ru’asā’ and their attendant fiscal, military, and social functions. The article also examines the relations of the ru’asā’ to their overlords and to their constituencies in the villages or small towns; and their relations to other locally powerful figures. Thus the ra’īs also might play a role as a sort of power broker, negotiating relationships between local communities and imperial powers.

The volume concludes with an essay by Edmund Bosworth, examining the history of the Ghurid dynasty – which, together with that of the Khwarazmshāhs, was the last of the great eastern Sunni Persianate dynasties before the coming of the Mongols – under its two greatest rulers, the brothers Ghiyāth al-Dīn Muḥammad (r. 558–99/1163–1203), and Mu‘izz al-Dīn Muḥammad (r. 569–602/1173–1206). Bosworth shows how the Ghurids, originally from a remote region of Afghanistan, but founders of an empire that spread over much of Khurasan and northern India, propagated a strongly Sunni identity through inscriptions on their architectural monuments and through their support for the Abbasid Caliphs.

The essays in this volume illustrate both the progress that has been made in recent years and the amount that remains to be done. Our corpus of sources has expanded somewhat (although not dramatically) since Barthold was writing, especially as historians have learned to use a more diverse array of texts in a more sophisticated manner – Paul, for instance, shows the utility of combining archaeological evidence with materials drawn from hagiographies as well as chronicles to draw a picture of social life. With the end of the Soviet Union, modern archaeological methods have started to be applied to some of the major cities and sites of the period, in particular the great city of Marw, although the situation in Iran and Afghanistan is more problematic owing to the difficulty of conducting fieldwork.12 Closer collaboration among historians, scholars of literature and intellectual life, and specialists in material culture can shed unexpected light on many features of the age and to a degree compensate for the lack of chronicles. Yet there is still more that can be done in terms of publishing relevant written source materials. It is only very recently, in 2004, that the major Ghaznavid history, ‘Utbī’s al-Yamīnī, was published in an adequate edition.13 The collection of Seljuq chancery documents, the Aḥkām-i Salāṭīn-i Māḍī, used by Paul, is only partially accessible through the selections published by Barthold in the companion volume of texts which accompanied his Turkestan and still awaits full publication.14 The discovery of the fragments of the twelfth century history of Herat (at the time of writing still unedited and only available in facsimile) and the recent reconstruction of the Akhbār Wulāt Khurāsān, both discussed by Peacock, suggest there are more texts waiting to be discovered, edited, or reconstructed. And as Marlow shows, much can be done with a sophisticated analysis of those texts we do have: her evidence is based on a text wrongly thought to come from eleventh century Iraq, but which Marlow shows is tenth century Khurasani.

Moreover, despite considerable progress in individual areas, plenty of dynasties still await their historian – most egregiously the Samanids and the Khwarazmshahs, two major Khurasani states that have not yet been the subject of a satisfactory monograph in any western language.15 In time, we hope, this picture will change; and we hope that this volume will play a part in encouraging future research by presenting a picture of the state of the field at the current time, showing both the importance of Khurasan and Transoxiana in this period, and the possibilities their study offers to researchers for understanding more generally the Islamic world. The complex interplay between Iranian and Islamic elements that our contributors illustrate in the history of Khurasan in the period was to shape decisively the political and cultural contours of Islamic civilisation more generally.


1W. Barthold, Turkestan Down to the Mongol Invasion (London, 1928; 3rd ed. 1968).

2M.S. Asimov and C. E. Bosworth (eds), UNESCO History of Civilizations of Central Asia, vol: IV, The Age of Achievement, A.D. 750 to the End of the Fifteenth Century, Part One: The Historical, Social and Economic Setting (Paris, 1998); Part Two: The Achievements (Paris, 2000).

3C. E. Bosworth, The Ghaznavids: Their Empire in Afghanistan and Eastern Iran, 9941040 (Edinburgh, 1963).

4Richard Bulliet, The Patricians of Nishapur: A Study in Medieval Islamic Social History (Cambridge, MA, 1972); see also his ‘Medieval Nishapur: A topographic and demographic reconstruction’, Studia Iranica 5 (1976), pp. 67–89.

5D.G. Tor, Violent Order: Religious Warfare, Chivalry, and the ‘Ayyār Phenomenon in the Medieval Islamic World (Würzburg, 2007); C. E. Bosworth, The History of the Saffarids of Sistan and the Maliks of Nimruz (247/861 to 949/15423) (Costa Mesa, 1994).

6See A.C.S. Peacock, The Great Seljuk Empire (Edinburgh, 2015) for an overview of recent scholarship.

7Jürgen Paul, Herrscher, Gemeinwesen, Vermittler: Ostiran und Transoxanien in vormongolischer Zeit (Beirut, 1996).

8For example, Elton Daniel, The Political and Social History of Khurasan under Abbasid Rule 747820 (Minneapolis, 1979); Étienne de la Vaissière, Samarcande et Samarra. Elites d’Asie central dans l’empire Abbasside (Louvain, 2007); Étienne de la Vaissière (ed.), Islamisation de l’Asie central. Processus locaux d’acculturation du VIIe au XIe siècle (Louvain, 2008).

9D.S. Richards (ed.), Islamic Civilisation 9501150 (Oxford, 1973).

10For a survey of historiography in the period, see Julie Scott Meisami, Persian Historiography to the End of the Twelfth Century (Edinburgh, 1999); Charles Melville (ed.), Persian Historiography (London, 2012).

11Boris Kochnev, Numizmaticheskaya Istoriya Karakhanidskogo Kaganata (9911209) (Moscow, 2006).

12For an overview of recent archaeological work at Marw in our period see Tim Williams, ‘The city of Sultan Kala, Merv, Turkmenistan: Communities, neighbour-hoods and urban planning from the eighth to the thirteenth century’ in Amira K. Bennison and Alison L. Gascoigne (eds), Cities in the Pre-modern Islamic World: The Urban Impact of Religion, State and Society (London, 2007), pp. 42–62.

13al-‘Utbī, al-Yamīnī fī sharḥ Akhbār al-Sulṭān Yamīn al-Dawla, ed. Iḥsān Dhunūn al-Thāmirī (Beirut, 2004).

14Aḥkām-i Salāṭīn-i Māḍī. MS St Petersburg, Institute for Oriental Manuscripts, C-816; partially published in V.V. Bartol’d, (ed.), Turkestan v Epokhu Mongoloskogo Nashestviya. Chast’ 1: Teksty (St Petersburg, 1898).

15For the Samanids, the main work remains Luke Treadwell’s DPhil Thesis (‘The Political History of the Samanid State’, University of Oxford, 1991); for the Khwarazmshahs, see İbrahim Kafesoğlu, Harezmşahlar Devleti Tarihi (485618/10921221) (Ankara, 1956); Z.M. Buniyatov, Gosudarstvo Khorezmshakhov-Anushteginidov, 10971231 (Moscow, 1986).


Asimov, M. S. and C. E. Bosworth (eds), UNESCO History of Civilizations of Central Asia, Vol. IV: the Age of Achievement, A.D. 750 to the End of the Fifteenth Century, Part One: The Historical, Social and Economic Setting (Paris, 1998); Part Two: The Achievements (Paris, 2000).

Barthold, W., Turkestan Down to the Mongol Invasion (London, 1928; 3rd ed. 1968).

Bartol’d, V. V. (ed.), Turkestan v Epokhu Mongoloskogo Nashestviya. Chast’ 1: Teksty (St Petersburg, 1898).

Bosworth, C. E., The Ghaznavids: Their Empire in Afghanistan and Eastern Iran, 994–1040 (Edinburgh, 1963).

Bosworth, C. E., The History of the Saffarids of Sistan and the Maliks of Nimruz (247/861 to 949/1542–3) (Costa Mesa, 1994).

Bulliet, Richard, The Patricians of Nishapur: A Study in Nedieval Islamic Social History (Cambridge, MA, 1972).

Bulliet, Richard, ‘Medieval Nishapur: A topographic and demographic reconstruction’, Studia Iranica 5 (1976), 67–89.

Buniyatov, Z. M., Gosudarstvo Khorezmshakhov-Anushteginidov, 1097–1231 (Moscow, 1986).

Daniel, Elton, The Political and Social History of Khurasan under Abbasid Rule 747–820 (Minneapolis, 1979).

Kafesoğlu, İbrahim, Harezmşahlar Devleti Tarihi (485–618/1092–1221) (Ankara, 1956).

Kochnev, Boris, Numizmaticheskaya Istoriya Karakhanidskogo Kaganata (991–1209) (Moscow, 2006).

Meisami, Julie Scott, Persian Historiography to the End of the Twelfth Century (Edinburgh, 1999).

Melville, Charles (ed.), Persian Historiography (London, 2012).

Paul, Jürgen, Herrscher, Gemeinwesen, Vermittler: Ostiran und Transoxanien in vormongolischer Zeit (Beirut, 1996).

Peacock, A. C. S., The Great Seljuk Empire (Edinburgh, 2015).

Richards, D. S. (ed.), Islamic Civilisation 950–1150 (Oxford, 1973).

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