The Anushteginid dynasty (English: //, Persian: خاندان انوشتکین) also known as the Khwarazmian dynasty (Persian: خوارزمشاهیان) was a Persianate Sunni Muslim dynasty of Turkic mamluk origin. The Khwarazmian dynasty ruled large parts of present-day Central Asia, Afghanistan, and Iran in the approximate period of 1077 to 1231, first as vassals of the Seljuks and the Qara Khitai, and later as independent rulers, up until the Mongol conquest of the Khwarazmian Empire in the 13th century.
خاندان انوشتکین, Khānedāne Ānushtegin
|Parent house||Begdili or Qangli or other|
|Current region||Central Asia|
|Final ruler||Saif ad-Din Qutuz|
|Traditions||Sunni Islam (Hanafi)|
The dynasty was founded by commander Anushtegin Gharchai, a former Turkic slave of the Seljuq sultans, who was appointed as governor of Khwarazm. His son, Qutb ad-Din Muhammad I, became the first hereditary Shah of Khwarazm. Anush Tigin may have belonged to either the Begdili tribe of the Oghuz Turks or to Chigil, Khalaj, Qipchaq, Qangly, or Uyghurs.
The date of the founding of the Khwarazmian dynasty remains debatable. During a revolt in 1017, Khwarezmian rebels murdered Abu'l-Abbas Ma'mun and his wife, Hurra-ji, sister of the Ghaznavid sultan Mahmud. In response, Mahmud invaded and occupied the region of Khwarezm, which included Nasa and the ribat of Farawa. As a result, Khwarezm became a province of the Ghaznavid Empire from 1017 to 1034. In 1077, the governorship of the province, which since 1042/1043 belonged to the Seljuqs, fell into the hands of Anush Tigin Gharchai, a former Turkic slave of the Seljuq sultan. In 1141, the Seljuq Sultan Ahmed Sanjar was defeated by the Qara Khitai at the battle of Qatwan, and Anush Tigin's grandson Ala ad-Din Atsiz became a vassal to Yelü Dashi of the Qara Khitan.
Sultan Ahmed Sanjar died in 1156. As the Seljuk state fell into chaos, the Khwarezm-Shahs expanded their territories southward. In 1194, the last Sultan of the Great Seljuq Empire, Toghrul III, was defeated and killed by the Khwarezm ruler Ala ad-Din Tekish, who conquered parts of Khorasan and western Iran. In 1200, Tekish died and was succeeded by his son, Ala ad-Din Muhammad, who initiated a conflict with the Ghurids and was defeated by them at Amu Darya (1204). Following the sack of Khwarizm, Muhammad appealed for aid from his suzerain, the Qara Khitai who sent him an army. With this reinforcement, Muhammad won a victory over the Ghurids at Hezarasp (1204) and forced them out of Khwarizm.
Ala ad-Din Muhammad's alliance with his suzerain was short-lived. He again initiated a conflict, this time with the aid of the Kara-Khanids, and defeated a Qara-Khitai army at Talas (1210), but allowed Samarkand (1210) to be occupied by the Qara-Khitai. He overthrew the Karakhanids (1212) and Ghurids (1215). In 1212, he shifted his capital from Gurganj to Samarkand. Thus incorporating nearly the whole of Transoxania and present-day Afghanistan into his empire, which after further conquests in western Persia (by 1217) stretched from the Syr Darya to the Zagros Mountains, and from the northern parts of the Hindu Kush to the Caspian Sea. By 1218, the empire had a population of 5 million people.
|Titular Name||Personal Name||Reign|
|Shihna||Ekinchi ibn Qochqar
ایکینچی بن قوچار
Qutb ad-Din Abul-Fath
قطب الدین ابو الفتح
|Arslan Tigin Muhammad ibn Anush Tigin
ارسلان طگین محمد ابن أنوش طگین
Ala al-Dunya wa al-Din Abul-Muzaffar
علاء الدنیا و الدین، ابو المظفر
|Qizil Arslan Atsiz ibn Muhammad
قزل ارسلان أتسز بن محمد
Taj al-Dunya wa al-Din Abul-Fath
تاج الدنیا و الدین، ابو الفتح
|Il-Arslan ibn Qizil Arslan Atsiz
ایل ارسلان بن قزل ارسلان أتسز
Ala al-Dunya wa al-Din Abul-Muzaffar
علاء الدنیا و الدین، ابو المظفر
|Tekish ibn Il-Arslan
تکش بن ایل ارسلان
Jalal al-Dunya wa al-Din Abul-Qasim
جلال الدنیا و الدین، ابو القاسم
|Mahmud Sultan Shah ibn Il-Arslan
محمود سلطان شاہ ابن ایل ارسلان
Initially under regency of Turkan Khatun, his mother. He was a younger half-brother and rival of Tekish in Upper Khurasan
Ala al-Dunya wa al-Din Abul-Fath
علاء الدنیا و الدین، ابو الفتح
|Muhammad ibn Tekish
محمد بن تکش
|Jalal al-Dunya wa al-Din Abul-Muzaffar
جلال الدنیا و الدین، ابو المظفر
|Mingburnu ibn Muhammad
مِنکُبِرنی ابن محمد
Family tree of Anushtiginid Dynasty
Notes and references
- Fazlallakh, Rashid ad-Din (1987). Oghuznameh (in Russian). Baku.
Similarly, the most distant ancestor of Sultan Muhammad Khwarazmshah was Nushtekin Gharcha, who was a descendant of the Begdili tribe of the Oghuz family.
- C.E. Bosworth "Anuštigin Ĝarčāī", Encyclopaedia Iranica (reference to Turkish scholar Kafesoğlu), v, p. 140, Online Edition, (LINK)
- Amitai-Preiss, Reuven (1995). Mongols and Mamluks: The Mamluk-Ilkhanid War, 1260–1281. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. ISBN 978-0-521-46226-6.
- C. E. Bosworth: Khwarazmshahs i. Descendants of the line of Anuštigin. In Encyclopaedia Iranica, online ed., 2009: "Little specific is known about the internal functioning of the Khwarazmian state, but its bureaucracy, directed as it was by Persian officials, must have followed the Saljuq model. This is the impression gained from the various Khwarazmian chancery and financial documents preserved in the collections of enšāʾdocuments and epistles from this period. The authors of at least three of these collections—Rašid-al-Din Vaṭvāṭ (d. 1182-83 or 1187-88), with his two collections of rasāʾel, and Bahāʾ-al-Din Baḡdādi, compiler of the important Ketāb al-tawaṣṣol elā al-tarassol—were heads of the Khwarazmian chancery. The Khwarazmshahs had viziers as their chief executives, on the traditional pattern, and only as the dynasty approached its end did ʿAlāʾ-al-Din Moḥammad in ca. 615/1218 divide up the office amongst six commissioners (wakildārs; see Kafesoğlu, pp. 5-8, 17; Horst, pp. 10-12, 25, and passim). Nor is much specifically known of court life in Gorgānj under the Khwarazmshahs, but they had, like other rulers of their age, their court eulogists, and as well as being a noted stylist, Rašid-al-Din Vaṭvāṭ also had a considerable reputation as a poet in Persian."
- Homa Katouzian, "Iranian history and politics", Published by Routledge, 2003. pg 128: "Indeed, since the formation of the Ghaznavids state in the tenth century until the fall of Qajars at the beginning of the twentieth century, most parts of the Iranian cultural regions were ruled by Turkic-speaking dynasties most of the time. At the same time, the official language was Persian, the court literature was in Persian, and most of the chancellors, ministers, and mandarins were Persian speakers of the highest learning and ability"
- "Persian Prose Literature." World Eras. 2002. HighBeam Research. (3 September 2012);"Princes, although they were often tutored in Arabic and religious subjects, frequently did not feel as comfortable with the Arabic language and preferred literature in Persian, which was either their mother tongue—as in the case of dynasties such as the Saffarids (861–1003), Samanids (873–1005), and Buyids (945–1055)—or was a preferred lingua franca for them—as with the later Turkish dynasties such as the Ghaznawids (977–1187) and Saljuks (1037–1194)". 
- Bosworth in Camb. Hist. of Iran, Vol. V, pp. 66 & 93; B.G. Gafurov & D. Kaushik, "Central Asia: Pre-Historic to Pre-Modern Times"; Delhi, 2005; ISBN 81-7541-246-1
- C. E. Bosworth, "Chorasmia ii. In Islamic times" in: Encyclopaedia Iranica (reference to Turkish scholar Kafesoğlu), v, p. 140, Online Edition: "The governors were often Turkish slave commanders of the Saljuqs; one of them was Anūštigin Ḡaṛčaʾī, whose son Qoṭb-al-Dīn Moḥammad began in 490/1097 what became in effect a hereditary and largely independent line of ḵǰᵛārazmšāhs." (LINK)
- Rene Grousset, The Empire of the Steppes:A History of Central Asia, Transl. Naomi Walford, (Rutgers University Press, 1991), 159.
- Biran, Michel, The Empire of the Qara Khitai in Eurasian history, (Cambridge University Press, 2005), 44.
- Encyclopædia Britannica, "Khwarezm-Shah-Dynasty", (LINK)
- C.E. Bosworth, The Ghaznavids:994-1040, (Edinburgh University Press, 1963), 237.
- C.E. Bosworth, The Ghaznavids:994-1040, 237.
- Biran, Michel, The Empire of the Qara Khitai in Eurasian History, (Cambridge University Press, 2005), 44.
- Rene, Grousset, The Empire of the Steppes:A History of Central Asia, (Rutgers University Press, 1991), 168.
- Rene, Grousset, 168.
- Rene, Grousset, 169.
- Rene, Grousset, 234.
- Rene, Grousset, 237.
- John Man, "Genghis Khan: Life, Death, and Resurrection", 6 Feb. 2007. Page 180.
- M. Ismail Marcinkowski, Persian Historiography and Geography: Bertold Spuler on Major Works Produced in Iran, the Caucasus, Central Asia, India and Early Ottoman Turkey, with a foreword by Professor Clifford Edmund Bosworth, member of the British Academy, Singapore: Pustaka Nasional, 2003, ISBN 9971-77-488-7.