Saman Khuda (Saman Khoda, Saman-khudat) was an 8th-century Iranian noble whose descendants (the House of Saman) later became rulers of Persia (the Samanid Empire). He was a Dehqan from the village of Saman in Balkh province in present-day northern Afghanistan.[1] In the early 8th century, he came to Merv, seat of the Caliphal governor of Khorasan, Asad ibn 'Abd Allah al-Qasri (ruled 723-727). Saman was originally a Zoroastrian.[2] However, he was so impressed with the piety of Asad ibn 'Abd-Allah al-Qasri, that he converted to Islam.[3] He named his son Asad, allegedly in the governor's honor.

Caliph al-Mamun (786-833) subsequently appointed Asad's four sons – Saman Khuda's grandsons – as governors of Samarkand, Ferghana, Shash and Ustrushana, and Herat in recognition of their role in the suppression of a revolt.[4] This began the House of Saman; Saman Khuda's great-grandson Isma'il ibn Ahmad (849-907) became Amir of Transoxiana and Khorasan.

Saman was a 4th or 5th generation descendant of Bahram Chobin,[4][5] a noble of the ancient House of Mihran, who played an important role in the history of the later Sassanian Empire.[6]

The Samanabad neighborhood of Lahore, Pakistan was named after him.

Family treeEdit

Bahram Gushnasp
MardansinaUnknownBahram ChobinGorduyaGordiya
NoshradMihran Bahram-i ChubinShapur
Saman Khuda


  1. ^ Bosworth, Clifford Edmund. The New Islamic Dynasties: A Chronological and Genealogical Manual p. 162
  2. ^ Dhalla, M. N. History of Zoroastrianism (1938) Part 6, Chapter XLIII
  3. ^ Mohammad Taher, Encyclopaedic Survey of Islamic Culture, pg. 84
  4. ^ a b Shamsiddin Kamoliddin, "To the Question of the Origin of the Samanids", Transoxiana 10 (July 2005).
  5. ^ Narshaki (trans. R. N. Frye), History of Bukhara, Pg 79
  6. ^ R. N. Frye, The Golden Age of Persia, London: Butler & Tanner Ltd., 1996, p. 200.


  • Frye, R.N. (1975). "The Sāmānids". In Frye, R.N. (ed.). The Cambridge History of Iran, Volume 4: From the Arab Invasion to the Saljuqs. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. pp. 136–161. ISBN 0-521-20093-8.