The Amír Násir-ad-dín was a Turk by origin, adorned by special favours of God, a mirror of royalty and authority, in the day of battle furious as a lion, then, liberal as the showers, he still distributed favours and kindnesses unto all. Like the wind he blew upon the strong and the weak, and like the sun he shone upon the humble and the noble. In mind he was like the sea, which, in its liberality, thinks not of its bounds, and in rage like the torrent-flood, which regards not ascent or descent. During dark events his counsel was like a path-directing star; his sword, in cutting through his enemies, was like the globe-disclosing fate. The marks of nobility and generosity were bright and brilliant in his disposition, and the evidences of good fortune and happiness were plain, whether they were at rest or in motion. Abúl Hasin Khazin says, the Amir Nasiraddín, during the time of the reign of Mansúr ’bn Núh Sámáni, came into the wardrobe (household) service of Abú Ishak ’bn Ileptagin, who was Commander of the Troops of Khurásán. He received the post of Chamberlain, and the binding and loosing (i. e., the whole direction) of the officers and servants, the attendants and the troops, was conferred upon him. The nobles and chiefs of that prince became acquainted with his high efficiency and ingenuity, and learnt and knew his enlightened guidance in transacting this affair; and when they sent Abú Ishak Alptagín, who was Commander of the Army, to Ghazna, and relinquished the rule of that territory unto him, they consigned the reins of the guidance and direction of the business thereof, and the disposal and settlement of the transactions thereof, to the weighty intellect and powerful understanding of Nasiraddín.

And when they sent Abú Ishak Aluptagin to Ghazna in a short space of time he was consigned (to the tomb) and answered the claim of (nature’s) debt, and there was no one of his family who pos­sessed a fitness for empire, and superiors and chiefs, free and bondmen, needed some one who should be apt and capable for their sovereignty, And whomsoever they preferred, when brought to the touchstone of estimation, possessed not the perfect standard, until all became of one associated mind and one conjoined voice in agreeing that in no one was there such worthiness, qualifications for rule, better or nobler specialities than in Násir-addín Sabaktagín. They gave their assent, therefore, to him, as ruler and governor. They covenanted to accept his sway and rule, and they inaugurated him, and Násir-ad-dín Sabaktagín took all under his protecting pastorate. He settled upon a firm basis the safety of the State and the prosperity of all, and every one by his powerful plans and happy arrangement obtained secure portions (fiefs) and arranged comforts. Then he turned his face unto the sacred warfare with the infidels and the humiliation of the ene­mies of the faith, and began to make war upon the country of Hindústán, whose inhabitants are universally enemies of Islám, and worshippers of images and idols. He turned then upon these regions and provinces, and extinguished, by the water of his sword-wounds, the sparks of idolatry struck from their fire-altars, and gave to the winds the temples and the meeting-places of those base ones, and in their room placed fabrics of mosques and shrines. He received those who believed into the protection of quarter, and caught the idolaters in the net of destruction, and between him and the rebellious contests of those cursed ones, and the resistance of those devils, lamentable affairs occurred, the record of which will remain upon the page of time until the last day; and the Amir, in enduring the difficulties of those weighty affairs and the intense stubbornness of those actions dis­played a front of patience and endurance under which human strength would have failed, unless the aid of the mercy and power of the Lord had provided an egress. These verses form a recital and picture of his words and deeds:—

“Virtue is my ancestor. Exertion is my father.
“My choice is fame, with her grand gains.
“My occupation is to do that which my inclination hateth.
“My ideal is a prince, heroic, zealous.
“My word is all that may be stirring and fervid;
“And my object is praise and complacency.”

At a time when he was compiling an account of the course of these expeditions and had com­manded a history of the transactions of those events, it fell into the fortunate (speech) phrase of the Sultan (to mention) that “once when I was, during those hostilities, in the ranks of the army, and the enemy had been reinforced in great and overflowing numbers, and we by a great propor­tion fewer than they, and that sacred war had been drawn out to a great length, and all the splendour and means which we possessed remained no longer, and the road of assistance or of seeking aid was stopped, and for long we had remained in the difficulties of that distress and the anguish of that affliction, and the captains of those troops and the chiefs of those people sought relief from their want of strength, and the means of sustaining life, and how they should discover the path of patience under that misery, and endurance under that hardship, I had no remedy except that there was a small remaining quantity of winnowed wheat, which I had for the delicacies of the kitchen: this I divided and shared amongst them all, and every day provided a little, according to their need, until God gave victory and fulfilled the promise con­tained in the exalted word of Truth, so that, of those accursed ones, some became the food of the sword, most were captive in the chains of captivity, and many took to flight in the robes of disgrace and shame.” And, in like manner, Abúl Hasan Khazin relates (from Hasan) his good order and management thus: When, upon two occasions, I held office under the Amír, he pos­sessed not ample means, and if he wished in the week to entertain as guests, once or twice, the lords of the empire, he provided liberally from his private allowance, that he might thus be enabled to adhere firmly to the rules whereby a good name and fame are preserved. But by all such means his fortunes were enlarged, until the extent of his territory and empire became wide, and he increased his expenditure in proportion to his rank and wealth, until his presence became the Kaaba of hope and the Kiblah of prosperity (Verse)

“His pure soul made him rule purely, and made him to know energy and diligence, and made him a king, a hero, until he exalted and dignified his people.”

The first victory which in his happy age appeared was the conquest of Bost.*