ʿALĀʾ-AL-DAWLA ḤASAN B. ROSTAM B. ʿALĪ B. ŠAHRĪĀR, ŠARAF-AL-MOLŪK, Bavandid ruler of Māzandarān. According to the account of Ebn Esfandīār, he reigned from 558/1163 to 566/1171. For chronological reasons, it seems more likely that the date given by Ebn al-Aṯīr for his accession, 560/1165, is correct and that his reign lasted until 568 or 569/1173. He was the second son of Šāh-Ḡāzī Rostam, under whom the second branch of the Bavandid dynasty reached the peak of its power. Shortly after his father’s accession in 533/1139, he fell into disgrace as he fled to Ray before an invading Khorasanian army; after his return, he was imprisoned for twenty months. Although his elder brother Gerdbāzū, the heir apparent and favorite of his father, was killed a few years later by Ismaʿili assassins, ʿAlāʾ-al-dawla was apparently never appointed successor to the throne. In 550/1155-56 he distinguished himself in defeating a Khorasanian army that was invading Ṭabarestān under Moʾayyed Ayaba, but a few years later he suffered a crushing defeat at the hands of the Ostandār Kaykāʾūs of Rūyān; for a year he was again out of grace with his father and stripped of all his estates. During this time he and Kaykāʾūs established friendly relations, which continued throughout his own reign. After Šāh-Ḡāzī’s death the chiefs of Ṭabarestān raised him to the throne. At his order the brother and some intimates of his father were killed. He dismissed the army’s foot soldiers, mostly Gīlānīs, and built up a strong corps of Turkish and Persian horsemen. Ītāq, a former amir of the Saljuq Sanǰar, who with Šāh-Ḡāzī’s support had been ruling in Gorgān, immediately revolted against him and allied himself with Ayaba, ruler of Nīšāpūr. In 561/1165-66 Īnānǰ Sonqor, driven out of Ray by Atabeg Eldigüz and Sultan Arslān b. Toḡrel, found refuge in Ṭabarestān. ʿAlāʾ-al-dawla married his daughter and later aided him with troops in the reconquest of Ray. In 564/1169, however, Īnānǰ was murdered and Eldigüz, reoccupying Ray, demanded the cession of Lāreǰān from ʿAlāʾ-al-dawla who had just reasserted the Bavandid overlordship in this region. Since ʿAlāʾ-al-dawla refused, Eldigüz besieged the fortress of Fīrūzkūh but was unable to take it. His attempt to bring Lāreǰān under his control also soon ended in failure. In 568/1172-73 the Ḵᵛārazmšāh Solaymānšāh, expelled from Ḵᵛārazm by his brother Tekeš, requested asylum in Ṭabarestān. ʿAlāʾ-al-dawla prepared a royal reception for him; but, while Solaymānšāh was still in Dehestān, Moʾayyed Ayaba joined him and persuaded him to rely on his support. Together they invaded Ṭabarestān and ravaged Tamīša and Sārī. ʿAlāʾ-al-dawla eventually inflicted a defeat on the Khorasanian army in the mountains, and Ayaba quickly departed. ʿAlāʾ-al-dawla sent an army to work havoc in Khorasan but was murdered soon afterwards by his Turkish ḡolāms. He thus became the victim of a sanguinary vindictiveness which, contrasting with his great munificence, marked his whole reign; after the Khorasanian invasion, it became unbearable and drove his own bodyguard to conspire against him.


Ẓahīr-al-dīn Nīšāpūrī, Salǰūq-nāma, Tehran, 1332 Š./1953, pp. 79f.

Rāvandī, Rāḥat al-ṣodūr, ed. M. Iqbal, Leiden and London, 1921, pp. 292, 296.

Ebn Esfandīār, Tārīḵ-eṬabarestān, ed. ʿA. Eqbāl, Tehran, 1320 Š./1941, I, pp. 109, 114; II, pp. 82, 85, 91, 97ff., 106-18; An Abridged Translation of the History of Tabaristan, by E. G. Browne, Leiden and London, 1905, pp. 61, 67, 247-50.

Ebn al-Aṯīr, XI, pp. 207ff. Ẓahīr-al-dīn Maṛʿašī, Tārīḵ-eṬabarestān o Rūyān o Māzandarān, ed. ʿA. Šāyān, Tehran, 1333 Š./1954, pp. 174-79.

E. Mahīūrī, Tārīḵ-e Māzandarān, Sārī, 1342-45 Š,/1963-66, pp. 201-10.

(W. Madelung)

Originally Published: December 15, 1984

Last Updated: July 29, 2011

This article is available in print.
Vol. I, Fasc. 7, pp. 772-773

Cite this entry:

W. Madelung, “ʿALĀʾ-AL-DAWLA ḤASAN B. ROSTAM,” Encyclopædia Iranica, I/7, pp. 772-773; an updated version is available online at http://www.iranicaonline.org/articles/ala-al-dawla-hasan-b (accessed on 15 May 2014).