BOḠRĀ KHAN, ABŪ MŪSĀ HĀRŪN or Ḥasan b. Solaymān, called Šehāb-al-Dawla and Ẓahīr-al-Daʿwa, the first Qarakhanid khan to invade the Samanid emirate from the steppes to the north and to deal a severe blow at its fabric.
He was the grandson of ʿAbd-al-Karīm Satūq Boḡrā Khan (d. 344/955), the first Qarakhanid to become a Muslim. In 380/990 Boḡrā Khan Hārūn occupied Esfījāb, and then two years later was invited into the heart of the Samanid lands by discontented local dehqāns, opposed to the amirs’ centralizing policies, and by the commander of the army in Khorasan, Abū ʿAlī Sīmjūrī, who secretly proposed a partition of the Samanid dominions, with himself taking Khorasan and Boḡrā Khan having Transoxania. The latter also apparently supported an ʿAbbasid descendant, ʿAbd-Allāh Wāṯeqī, who had dreams of ascending the caliphate throne. Bukhara was occupied by Boḡrā Khan in 382/992 with little opposition. He also started minting coins in Īlāq, the first known Qarakhanid ones, and adopted honorific titles in the traditional Islamic pattern. He was however taken ill and evacuated Bukhara, and the Samanid prince whom he had supported as his puppet, ʿAbd-al-ʿAzīz b. Nūḥ b. Naṣr, had to be abandoned in the face of the triumphant return of the Amir Nūḥ b. Naṣr; he himself died shortly afterwards at Qočqārbāšī en route for the Qarakhanid territories in Kashgharia.
Barthold, Turkestan2, pp. 254ff.
O. Pritsak, “Die Karachaniden,” Der Islam 31, 1953-54, pp. 25-26.
R. N. Frye, in Camb. Hist. Iran IV, pp. 157-58.
(C. Edmund Bosworth)
Originally Published: December 15, 1989
Last Updated: December 15, 1989
This article is available in print.
Vol. IV, Fasc. 3, pp. 318-319