AMĪRAK BAYHAQĪ, ABU’L-ḤASAN AḤMAD B. MOḤAMMAD ʿANBARĪ (d. 448/1056), intelligence officer (ṣāḥeb-barīd) in Khorasan under the early Ghaznavids. He stemmed from a prominent Bayhaq family of scholars and officials, the ʿAnbarīān (q.v.), who had shortly before produced the poet and vizier Abu’l-ʿAbbās ʿAnbarī. Abu’l-Ḥasan was a landowner in Bayhaq, where he built a madrasa; his main claim to fame was that he acted as castellan of the strategically important Oxus crossing point of Termeḏ for Sultan Mawdūd and defended it against Čaḡrı Beg Dāʾūd’s Turkmens. Ebn Fondoq (Tārīḵ-e Bayhaq, ed. A. Bahmanyār, Tehran, 1317 Š./1938, pp. 119-12) asserts that he held out there for fifteen years, which must be an exaggeration; at the most it was probably five years, until the mid-1040s. The Saljuq historian Ṣadr-al-dīn Ḥosaynī states that, after the failure of Mawdūd’s planned revanche in Khorasan against the Saljuqs (435/1043-44), Abu’l-Ḥasan realized that his position in Termeḏ was untenable. He surrendered honorably, made over his estates in Bayhaq to Čaḡrı Beg’s vizier Abū ʿAlī b. Šāḏān, and retired to Ḡazna (Aḵbār al-dawlat al-salǰūqīya, ed. M. Eqbāl, Lahore, 1933, p. 27). Ebn Fondoq says that he refused an offer to transfer his allegiance to the Saljuqs and subsequently headed the chancery (dīvān-e resālat) for Sultans Mawdūd and ʿAbd-al-Rašīd. He was a secretary under Farroḵżād and died in the latter’s reign (Šawwāl, 448/December, 1056). After him, his son Moḥammad continued to serve the Ghaznavids, living until the time of Bahrāmšāh’s succession.
See also Bosworth, Later Ghaznavids, pp. 10-11, 25-26.
(C. E. Bosworth)
Originally Published: December 15, 1989
Last Updated: August 3, 2011
This article is available in print.
Vol. I, Fasc. 9, p. 972
C. E. Bosworth, “AMĪRAK BAYHAQĪ,” Encyclopædia Iranica, I/9, p. 972, available online at http://www.iranicaonline.org/articles/amirak-bayhaqi-abul-hasan-ahmad-b (accessed on 30 December 2012).