[Khwája Mas'úd bin Sa'd bin Salmán wrote poems in praise of the Ghaznivide sovereigns Mas'úd, Ibráhím, and Bahrám Sháh. A few facts respecting his life are to be gathered from his works. He suffered a long imprisonment, for he speaks of the nineteenth year of his incarceration. His writings throw some light upon the Ghaznivide period. He died in 525 H. (1131 A.D.) according to some, and in 520 H. (1126 A.D.) according to others. The following translations are the work of Sir H. M. Elliot.]

The conquest of Tabarhinda, Búría, and Ghor.
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As power and the strength of a lion was bestowed upon Ibráhím by the Almighty, he made over to him the well-populated country of Hindustán, and gave him 40,000 valiant horsemen to take the country, in which there were more than 1000 ráís. Its length extends from Lahore to the Euphrates, and its breadth from Kashmír to the borders of Sístán. * * * What enemy has held any fort in Hindustán who has not by the power of the Sultán been placed in chains? The rájás and ráís with their armies had raised that fort to the heaven of Saturn; but when the army of the Sháh turned his face towards it, all their joy was turned to sorrow, all their advan­tage to loss. * * * The good fortune of the King compelled the enemy to come out of the fort in a supplicating posture to plead for mercy. Tabarhinda is stronger than Núrsádna,* and no place is so strong as these two in the world. Imagination cannot conceive anything so strong, and its defenders were innumerable. No breath of Islám had blown in that region, nor any fragrance of the truth visited the land. * * * Almighty God gave him victory over the people, which had not been attained by any former kings. The army of the King destroyed at one time a thousand temples of idols, which had each been built for more than a thousand years. How can I describe the victories of the King? I am not able to sound all his praises. I will mention only a few, as I cannot recount them all.

One is the conquest of Búría. I will record it in verse, but it would require a thousand díwáns to do it justice. 'Udú* became greatly alarmed when he saw the soldiers of the King of the East. The sun and moon became dark from the dust raised by the horses. The fish and cow* felt the burden of his army heavy. He leaped into the water like a fish when he learnt that the King's sword was death, and there was no escape from it. The King had collected some wooden boats for the fight, which floated on the flowing stream like crocodiles. He placed on each two hundred horsemen. * * * 'Udú was drowned in the river with his army like Pharaoh, and the King became victorious like Moses. 'Udú was defeated, and his magic was of no avail against the dragon-like sword of the King of the World.

One hundred thousand tongues could not describe the conquest of Ghor, and the condition of Muhammad 'Abbás. The fort was strong and lofty, and as free from the chance of removal as the mountain of Síhlán (Ceylon).

The capture of Dhangán and Jálandhar.

The narratives of thy battles eclipse the stories of Rustam and Isfandiyár. Thou didst bring an army in one night from Dhangán to Jálandhar. The hills were alarmed, and the clouds astonished. The horses and camels stood ready. They galloped over the narrow road and floundered in the river through the dark­ness of the night. The clouds around formed thrones of ice, and rivulets of blood flowed in all the ravines. The standards were flying, and the spears had their heads as sharp as thorns; and the army of the Magog of mercy made firm his tents upon the hills, in a line like the wall of Alexander.* * * * Thou remainedst but a short time on the top of the hills, thou wert but a moment involved in the narrow defiles. Thou didst direct but one assault, and by that alone brought destruction upon the country. By the morning meal not one soldier, not one Bráhman, remained unkilled or uncaptured. Their heads were severed by the carriers of swords. Their houses were levelled with the ground by the flaming fire. * * * A fleet messenger came from Dhangán, announcing that ten thousand turbulent people, horse and foot, had collected. Thou didst take the road by night, and wast surrounded by gallant warriors. The enemy's heart quailed because of thy coming. Thou didst pass on without stopping with thy foot-soldiers like the wind. Thou didst proceed till the noise of the clarions of Sáír Sambrá arose, which might have been said to proclaim his despair, and was responded to by those of Bú Nasr Pársí, which announced thy victory to all quarters. * * * He fled unto the river Ráwa at dread of thy approach, and there he was drowned, and descended into the infernal regions; and well do I know that this end must have been less appalling than the daily fear which he entertained of the destruction which awaited him. Henceforth thou shouldst consider that the Ráwa had done thee service, and it should be reckoned as one devoted to thy will. If such a place be conquered during this winter, I will guarantee the conquest of every village near Jálandhar. I am the meanest of slaves, and hold but an exceedingly small office, but make thou over to me the accomplish­ment of this business. The ráís and soldiers will not dare to revolt, and rájás from fear of thee will proffer their allegiance. By the help of God, and by the force of thy prosperity, will I extirpate the practices of idolatry from this country. I will make the slain kiss the earth to the very gate of the fort. I will make a string of slaves kiss the earth to the banks of the Ráwa. * * * Thou hast secured victory to thy country and to religion, for amongst the Hindus this achievement will be remembered till the day of resurrection.*

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The author laments the condition of his family.

For sixty years this slave's father, Sa'd bin Salmán, served the State, sometimes in distant provinces and at others at the capital. I have a young daughter and a son and two sisters in the land of Hindustán. My daughter has become blind through her tears, and my son has no employment. There are forty-three members of my family who are dependent on thy mercy, and pray for thy prosperity and welfare. Oh, thou, who deliverest thy people from evil, relieve me also from my misfortunes. From the strictness and darkness of my imprisonment, my heart is oppressed and my disposition is blackened. Though my fault is exceeding great, yet a hundred faults would not be beyond the efficiency of thy mercy.

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The author complains of his imprisonment.

Arrows and swords pierce my heart, and my niece, my daughter, and son are in pain and sickness. Day and night my heart yearns towards them. My mother and father also are afflicted. No news reaches me from them, and none reaches them from me. I am imprisoned in the lofty fort of Náí, on the top of a hill. * * * Though heaven is against me, yet the King Ibráhím, whose praises I sing, is just, and I feel no grief.

Prince Mahmúd appointed Governor of Hind.

At the silver dawn of morn a zephyr reached me from the palace, whispering that Abú-l Muzaffar Sultán Ibráhím had bestowed honour upon Mahmúd Sháh, by appointing him to the government of Hind. The khutba was read throughout all Hind in his blessed name, and the diadem was placed upon his head. * * * A horse was bestowed upon him as a khil'at. May it be attended with prosperity for him, and may he be established firmly on the throne of the country! All the astrologers declared, after making their calculations, that it would not be long before the preachers should read from their pulpits the name of Saifu-d dawwál (Mahmúd), King of the Seven Climates. Bú Ríhán, five years previous to this, declared in the book called Tafhím, that a king, lord of the conjunctions, would exist upon the earth, when four hundred and sixty-nine* years had passed from the beginning of the Hijra. A thousand thanks every moment to God, that he has given us a puissant and merciful king!