ABU’L-FAŻL (in Jūzǰānī ABU’L-FATḤ) TĀJ-AL-DĪN NAṢR B. ṬĀHER, amir of the line of later Saffarids, sometimes called the third dynasty of Saffarids and, by a historian like Jūzǰānī, the “Maleks of Nīmrūz and Seǰestān.” He succeeded his father Bahāʾ-al-dawla Ṭāher b. Moḥammad in about 483/1090-91 and died, a centenarian, in 559/1164. The Tārīḵ-e Sīstān records various internecine struggles between him and his relatives and rivals before he could establish his authority and embark on his long reign. Sīstān had in the middle of the 5th/11th century passed under Saljuq suzerainty, and we hear of Amir Abu’l-Fażl, as a loyal tributary of the eastern Saljuq ruler Sanǰar, sending contingents of troops for the Saljuq campaigns. A conspicuous act of bravery by him against the battleline of Ghaznavid elephants is mentioned in the sources on Sanǰar’s expedition against Ḡazna in 510/1116-17 to dispossess Malek Arslan and place Bahrāmšāh on the throne; he was also one of the princes of the east summoned in 511/1156 by the Ḵᵛārazmšāh Atsïz to free Khorasan from the Oḡuz who had captured Sanǰar.
Tārīḵ-e Sīstān, pp. 389ff.
Jūzǰānī, Ṭabaqāt I, pp. 276-77; tr. Raverty, I, pp. 187-89, to be supplemented by brief mentions in the sources for Saljuq history.
These are utilized by C. E. Bosworth in Camb. Hist. Iran V, pp. 94, 146, 158; and idem, Later Ghaznavids, chap. 3.
(C. E. Bosworth)
Originally Published: December 15, 1983
Last Updated: December 15, 1983