ĀL-E MĀKŪLĀ, a Persian noble family prominent at Baghdad in the 5th/11th century, including:

1. Abū Saʿd (or Saʿīd) ʿAbd-al-Wāḥed b. Aḥmad b. Jaʿfar b. Mākūlā, vizier to the Buyid Jalāl-al-dawla, ruler of Baṣra, from whom Abū Saʿd received the name ʿAlam-al-dīn—the second man in Islam to have a laqab employing “dīn”; the father of Jalāl-al-dawla, Bahāʾ-al-dawla, was the first (Rokn-al-dīn). After the failure of Jalāl-al-dawla’s first attempt to reach Baghdad (416/1025) Abū Saʿd was arrested and remained in prison till his death in 417/1026.

2. Abu’l-Qāsem Hebatallāh b. ʿAlī b. Jaʿfar b. Mākūlā, born 365/976, succeeded his younger brother Abū ʿAlī (no. 3) as vizier to Jalāl-al-dawla in 423/1032. Having gone on a mission to the ʿUqailid ruler of Mosul he was detained for more than two years, and in 430/1038 was strangled in prison at Hīt. Abu’l-Qāsem b. Mākūlā is also said to have been vizier to the caliph Qāʾem.

3. Abū ʿAlī Ḥasan b. ʿAlī b. Jaʿfar b. Mākūlā, born 366/976-77, replaced his cousin Abū Saʿd (no. 1) as vizier to Jalāl-al-dawla. In 421/1030 he commanded an armada of 1,300 ships which descended the Tigris in an attempt to take Baṣra, then held by another Buyid. The expedition failed disastrously. Abū ʿAlī was captured, and though released, met his death at Ahvāz through a domestic intrigue in the following year (422/1031).

4. Abū ʿAbdallāh Ḥosayn b. ʿAlī b. Jaʿfar b. Mākūlā, born 368/978-79, Šāfeʿī jurist. Qāżī of Baṣra before 417/1026, he was qāżī-al-qożāt in Baghdad from 420/1029 till his death in 447/1055-56.

5. Abū Naṣr ʿAlī b. Hebatallāh b. ʿAlī b. Jaʿfar b. Mākūlā, called al-Amīr, son of no. 2, born 421/1030 or 422/1031 at ʿOkbarā near Baghdad, well-known traditionist and genealogist. He received instruction at home, and afterwards studied and traveled in Iraq, Khorasan, Syria, Egypt, etc. In later life he served on official missions, going in 467/1075 to Samarqand and Bokhara to take the oath of allegiance to the new caliph al-Moqtadī. Like others of his house his death was by violence: He was killed and robbed by his Turkish attendants while on another journey—the destination is variously stated as Ḵūzestān (al-Ahwāz) or Kermān—in 475/1082-83. He left the following works: 1. Ketāb al-ekmāl fī rafʿ ʿāreż al-ertīāb ʿan al-moʿtalef wa’l-moḵtalef men al-asmāʾ wa’l-konā wa’l-ansāb, on proper names, begun 464/1071-72, completed 467/1074-75. 2. Ketāb tahḏīb mostamerr al-awhām, left unfinished in 472/1079-80. A MS of the work (Institute of Arabic MSS, history no. 190) is noted by Yamānī (Ketāb al-ekmāl, intro., p. 37). Presumably earlier than these, and now lost, is 3. Mofāḵarat al-qalam wa’l-sayf wa’l-dīnār, mentioned by Kašf al-ẓonūn (Leipzig, VI, p. 8), and Taʾrīḵ al-wozarāʾ.


Ebn Ḵallekān, tr. de Slane, II, pp. 248-49.

Ebn al-Aṯīr, indices. Yāqūt, Odabāʾ V, pp. 435-40.

Ebn Taḡrīberdī, s. anno 416, etc. Ebn Kaṯīr, Ketāb al-bedāya wa’l-nehāya, Beirut-Riyadh, 1966, XII, pp. 18, 22, 24, 32, 46, 123.

Taʾrīḵ Baḡdād, Beirut, VIII, p. 80 (no. 4165).

Ebn Mākūlā, Ketāb al-ekmāl, ed. Shaikh ʿAbd-al-Raḥmān b. Yaḥyā al-Yamānī with a good introduction (I, pp. 1-61), Hyderabad, 1962-.

Brockelmann, GAL I, p. 435, S. I, p. 602.

EI2 III, pp. 860-61.


(D. M. Dunlop)

Originally Published: December 15, 1984

Last Updated: July 29, 2011

This article is available in print.
Vol. I, Fasc. 7, pp. 761-762

Cite this entry:

D. M. Dunlop, “ĀL-E MĀKŪLĀ,” Encyclopædia Iranica, I/7, pp. 761-762; an updated version is available online at http://www.iranicaonline.org/articles/al-e-makula (accessed on 14 May 2014).