Rise Of The Seljuk Empire In English Free After bursting into the high-medieval Middle East, these fearsome conquerors created a vast.
This area became home to the so-called Oghuzyabghu state, in which nomads would migrate vast distances to secure optimal seasonal pasturage for their herds.
Though there were some sedentary settlements in this area, the ‘imperial legacy’ left by the Gokturks had been inherited by the Khazars, to whom the Oghuz appear to have been at least loosely subordinated. It is in the late tenth-century Khazar realm that we find our first references to the Oghuz Turkic warlords, known to history as Duqaqand his son, who we know as Seljuk Focus Keyword doesn’t appear at the beginning of SEO title
1.The Seljuk Empire Free History
According to records composed during the reigns of later Seljuk sultans, the ancestors of their dynasty served Khazaria’s khagan military commanders. This seems to imply that Seljuk and his father were active near Itil and might, like most other elite Khazars, have embraced Judaism. During the Khazar disintegration during the the960s, Seljuk migrated east with a small band.
The true reasons for this are shrouded under the historical veil, but range from court intrigues to rebellion by Seljuk himself. Modern scholars even argue that changing climate might have forced Seljuk and his group to migrate to escape pasture shortage. Seljuk led his band of 100 horsemen, 1,500camels, and 50,000 sheep to the town of Jand, located on the fringes of Islamic Khwarezm.
Jand was the first Muslim-ruled region through which Seljuk’s roving band passed, and it is there that Seljuk embraced the Islamic faith. This is a crucial moment in history, as it was a conversion that would have immense consequences. With that, Seljuk supposedly managed to gain more followers from ‘the Turks of that frontier who incline towards holy war’ – men who seem to have been ghāzī – warriors of Islam. This brings us to the reason for this increasing Islamisation of the Turks, outlined by Korean historian Kim Hodong Rise Of The Seljuk Empire In English Free.
Islam provided nomadic tribal people with the consciousness of a homogenous religious community and religious sanction for the expansion of the domain of Islam, becoming an ideology of unification as well as an ideology of expansion.” This is essentially all we know about Seljukhimself, who died in Jand in 1009, according to some sources at the age of 107. At that point, the region had been going through an upheaval for over a decade.
Two militant new realms – the Karakhanidsin Transoxiana, and the former Turkic slaves Ghaznavids in Khorasan and the Oxus – emerged, consuming vast tracts of the collapsing Samanid Emirate. Compounding this were events on the eastern steppe, where nomads known as the Khitans were disrupting matters in the process of their expansion into what the Chinese would call the ‘Great Liao’.
This pushed waves of refugees towards the Islamic world’s frontiers, right where Seljuk’s tribes were located. The Seljuks now began to gain strength rapidly, probably due to their ability to absorb many of these rowdy, disaffected nomadic warriors, many of whom converted to Islam and became ghāzī. After the progenitor’s death, his elder son Arslan Isra’il became the tribe’s chief, and we find him intervening in Transoxiana’spolitics, supporting a Karakhanid prince known as ‘Ali Tegin, who tried to establish himself as ruler of Bukhara in 1020 Rise Of The Seljuk Empire In English Free
Tegan was opposed by his own brother’s most powerful supporter Mahmud – Sultan of the Ghaznavids. It was in a military engagement on the stepped outside Bukhara that the Sultan of Ghazni first saw the Seljuks, and was somewhat awestruck with their numbers. No longer the small band of a hundred people, they were now an increasingly potent threat. Mahmud’s response was to seize and imprisonIsra’il – either in battle or by intrigue – hoping that this would simply dissolve the burgeoning Seljuks, but he was wrong Rise Of The Seljuk Empire In English Free.
2.Seljuk Empire Full History
They were assisted in this by a treacherousGhaznavid governor in Khwarezm known as Harun, who helped the nomads pass through his lands in return for their help in conquering Khurasan province from his sovereign. Despite Harun’s assassination at the hands of Ma’sud’s agents in 1035, the Seljuks continued south. Eventually, they arrived in a town known as Nasa, located in the mountains of Khurasan. Khurasan was an important province; it was one of the ‘jewels in the crown’ of Ghaznavid power, and now seemed very vulnerable Rise of the Seljuk Empire.
While the Seljuks were sorting themselves out, Mahmud’s 32-year reign came to an end and the sultanate was inherited by a son, Masud, in 1030. Despite resolving their leadership contest, the growing Seljuks were defeated in battle by the Karakhanids of ‘Ali Tegin. No longer safe where they were, the Seljuktriad decided to flee towards Khurasan.
Mahmud of Ghazna’s actions did lead to someSeljuks joining his Ghaznavid realm as soldiers, while some chose to flee west into Iran. However, most remained where they were, and the struggle for leadership began. By its end, three figures had taken their place at the top of the Seljuk hierarchy – Chaghrı and Tughrıl – who were the sons of Isra’il’sbrother Mika’il – and Musa, another relative of the inner clan Rise Of The Seljuk Empire In English Free
While nomadic life and reputation are often very ruthless, the Seljuks weren’t just wandering mass-killers hungry for conquest, they were people seeking more prosperous lives for themselves and their families. So rather than invading, the Seljuk chief authored a diplomatic proposal to the Ghaznavid governor, Suri, explaining their situation and exodus, and asking him to intercede with Sultan Ma’sud on their behalf Rise Of The Seljuk Empire In English Free
The Seljuks essentially pledged their service and homage to the sultan and his court, promising to ‘rest in his great shadow’, if only they were granted a small province of their own on Khurasan’s frontiers, where they could settle. Moreover, they also pledged to defend Ghaznavidterritories from other Turkic tribes. Seljuk leadership stated that “If god forbid, the sultan does not agree, we do not know what will happen, for we have nowhere else to go.
However, Masud, distrustful because of previous damage inflicted by Seljuks in his territory, declined the offer and prepared to march for war. This expedition was a total disaster that ended when the sultan’s army was hit by a cavalry ambush on the plains near Nasa in June 1035. While the sultan quickly acceded to the now seemingly quite modest Seljuk demands, the Seljuks, feeling in control of the situation, began sending even steeper demands.
When these were declined, Seljuk hordes swept through Khurasan, capturing all of it, including the great cities of Merv and Nishapur by 1038. The sole exception was Balkh, which remained in Ma’sud’s grip. War continued for the next two years, whichever more Ghaznavid forces were being poured into the defense of Khurasan against the Seljuks. Though we don’t know much about the campaigns, we have an idea of why the nomads eventually won.
Masud’s armies were incredibly powerful, having inherited traditions of Indian elephant use and possessing high quality, heavily armouredmamluk slave infantry. However, these tactics were not suited for extended steppe warfare, while the swift, lightly armored Seljuk Turks, mounted on their fast horses, had a little issue Rise Of The Seljuk Empire In English Free
The potential for Seljuk cavalry armies to attack anywhere allowed them to stretch and scatter Ma’sud’s armies thinly across the entire Khurasan area. Although sometimes successful in restoring their authority in some areas, the Ghaznavids failed to re-secure the province and were eventually met for the final battle at the small town of Dandanaqan near Merv in May 1040.
A massive Ghaznavid army, with many dozens of elephants in tow, marched from Nishapur towards Merv in search of the Seljuks, but its legions of troops were exhausted from the long desert road and a lack of supplies. When a brawl broke out between the sultan’selite guard and his regular soldier’s overuse of a water source, Chaghrı, who had been quietly shadowing Ma’sud’s lumbering army with his own units, pounced just as the Ghaznavidsquabbling was reaching its peak.
3.Rise Of The Seljuk Empire In English Free
Mounted Seljuk ghāzī, wielding their fearsome composite bows, swarmed the numerically superior but disorganized force that was arrayed in front of them, completely destroying the enemy army. Masud fled back towards India but quickly met his death in a palace coup. After the victory at Dandanaqan, the Seljuksseem to have been in a state of disbelief. They at first refused to believe Ma’sudhad been defeated, and it is said they kept themselves close to their horses in fear of being caught by surprise when the Ghaznavids returned.
When the leadership eventually did realize just how crushing their triumph had been, they set about securing Khurasan for themselves. Hostile sources emphasize devastation in the province caused by the Seljuks and their animals, but it can’t have been entirely their doing. After all, Masud’s giant army had also been placing a severe burden on the region during years of campaigning Rise Of The Seljuk Empire In English Free
Pro-Seljuk texts especially emphasize the role that Tughrıl played in restoring order and crushing the bandits which had arisen following the collapse of Ghaznavid’s authority. Rather than acting as a steppe warlord with his boot on the necks of those whom he had conquered, Tughrıl – who became the prominent Seljuk ‘triumvir’ at this point – began to act in the manner of a legitimate Islamic ruler. It is said that Tughrıl even went so far as to threaten suicide if his brother Chaghrı sacked the city of Nishapur.
Upon taking his seat on Ma’sud’s throne in the city, Tughrıl claimed the title of Sultan and asked for guidance from the Islamicjudges installed by the previous regime, proclaiming that: “We are new men and strangers, and we do not know the Persians’ customs.”. The Turks had accepted Islam but had done so on their own terms, with nomadic traditions, customs, and tribesmen still making up the majority of Seljuk strength. From this point, a Turkic flavor was added to the Islamic world which it still maintains to this day Rise Of The Seljuk Empire In English Free
It also seems that the first elements of Seljukstatehood began to appear, with coins being minted in the name of Tughrıl and the Caliph in Baghdad, who was still symbolically revered as the leader of Islam. Each Seljuk leader went on their own path about this time. Musa was given Herat to govern, while the two leading partners Chaghrı and Tughrıl were given the eastern and western areas respectively Rise Of The Seljuk Empire In English Free
The former repulsed a series of attemptedGhaznavid reconquests from India and began Seljuk raids on Sistan, while his brother prepared to advance west, deeper into the Islamic world. The areas of Iraq and Iran not yet under Seljukcontrol were, for the most part, ruled by a group of Shi’ite princes, known altogether as the Buyids. These regional sovereigns often squabble and jostled with one another for power.
Beginning in about 1050, through a mix of diplomacy, opportunistic backing of regional allies, and outright conquest, the militarily supreme Seljuks asserted sovereignty over the Iranian plateau. As nomads, the Seljuks largely concentrated on the countryside pasture for their animals and a few main cities – such as Ray and Hamadan- which served as bases.
Aside from these strategic settlements, Tughrılmade little effort to assert direct rule over urban areas. Therefore, many city-dwellers in the annexed lands experienced almost no change in the short term, and local princes were even allowed to continue their own feuding, as long as they did it under Seljuk auspices. In this period, we also have clear evidence of Seljuk administrative practices.
In the key cities under direct rule, ‘agents were installed, essentially Turkic governors who prioritized the raising of revenue from the cities they governed. As the realm’s governance matured though, it became more than just wealth extraction. After Isfahan was conquered in 1051, a system of tax exemptions was put into practice to tempt peasants back onto lands that they had previously abandoned.
Forts were also constructed in order to ensure the security of nearby roads from bandits, a measure intended to reassure merchants and boost trade activity. Tughrıl’s actions so far had attracted the attention of Baghdad’s Abbasid government, particularly Caliph al-Qa’im’s vizier- a man called Ibn Muslima. The greatest of Tughrıl’s achievements, however, was yet to come.
Abbasid rulers had largely lost political control over the peripheral regions of their formerly vast empire by the eleventh century, but there was an understanding that the caliph in Baghdad was the symbolic leader of Sunni Islam, and had to be respected as such. https://crimsoncactus.net/the-kingdom-of-heaven-saladin-full-history-free-in-english/
However, the Shi’ite Buyids occupying Iranbarely acknowledged his authority at all, leading to a Sunni reaction in the Round City, a reaction led by al-Qa’im’s aforementioned vizier, who was known for his fanatical hatred for the Shi’ites. He saw the potential of these increasingly powerful Sunni Turks as allies and, despite his caliph’s initial suspicion, convinced-Qa’im to establish good relations with Tughrıl.
In Muslima’s mind, the Seljuks would be a deadly sword for use against his rivals in the city, most prominently the commander of Baghdad’s Turkic slave troops – a Shi’ite general named al-Basasiri. The vizier and Tughrıl planned extensively for Seljuk intervention in the ‘City of Peace’.
Muslima had various religious titles granted to the Turk leader and, in 1053, proclaimed persecution of heretics in both Baghdad andTughrıl’s city of Nishapur simultaneously.
The intended symbolism was clear – Tughrıland the Abbasid caliph were allies, and al-Qa’im’s enemies were Tughrıl’s enemies, making the latter a legitimate sultan. With the road paved specifically for his advance, a nomadic Seljuk army advanced into Khuzistan on the borders of Iraq, its leader proclaiming that he intended to perform the Hajj – the traditional pilgrimage to Mecca – and to lead an expedition against the Shi’ite Fatimid Caliphate of Egypt afterward.
Whether or not Tughrıl actually intended to do this is irrelevant, it was another piece of deliberately engineered propaganda aimed at showing his credentials as a legitimate Sunni ruler. Seeing the writing on the wall, General al-Basasirifled Baghdad. Then, finally, Tughrıl and his Seljuks peacefully entered Baghdad in December of 1055, during the Islamic holy month of Ramadan.
They were welcomed by a procession of localnotables and crowds which had gathered to see what was happening. It is at this moment of Sultan Tughrıl’sgreatest achievement that we shall leave him and conclude by examining just how far the Seljuks had come and where they would go. In the later 900s, Seljuk and his tiny group of only a hundred Oghuz Turks had crossed into the Muslim world as irrelevant pastoralists.
Less than a century later, his grandson was riding into Islam’s most glorious city at the head of the massive Turkic army, tens of thousands strong, having received the formal backing of Islam’s most revered religious figure. Though this was likely the proudest moment of Tughrıl’s life, the apogee of the Great Seljuk Empire was yet to come, when it fought against the Fatimids and invaded Anatolia, eventually defeating the Romans at Manzikerta a few decades later.https://crimsoncactus.net/1071-malazgirt-history-in-english/