|King of Ghazna|
|Birthplace||Balk, (modern-day Afghanistan)|
|Place of death||Ghazni, Afghanistan|
|Religious beliefs||Sunni Islam|
Alp Tigin, sometimes spelled as Alptigin, (Persian: الپتگین; Alp Tegīn, Turkic for brave prince) was King of Ghazni Province in what is now Afghanistan between 961 to 963 AD after replacing the Lawiks, a native ruling dynasty. A Turkic by origin or ethnicity, he is believed to have ruled this new territory as an extension of the Persian Samanids of Bukhara in the north. He laid the foundation of the Ghaznavid dynasty, which later ruled a vast territory stretching from the Oxus River (Amu Darya) to the Indus Valley and the Indian Ocean; and in the west it reached Rey and Hamadan (modern-day Iran).
Previously, Alp Tigin was a general from Balkh (modern-day Afghanistan) who had risen from a mercenary to a general of the Governor of Khorasan. In a political fallout over succession of the Samanids he crossed the Hindu Kush mountains southward and captured Ghazni, located strategically between Kabul and Kandahar in modern Afghanistan, and thereby establishing his own independent kingdom. He was succeeded by his son-in-law, Sabuktigin
Two military families arose from the Turkic guards of the Samanids — the Simjurids and the Ghaznavids — who ultimately a the Ghaznavid fortunes when he established himself at Ghazna (modern-day Ghazni, Afghanistan) in 962.
When the Samanid Emir 'Abd al-Malik I died in 961 CE, it created a succession crisis between 'Abd al-Malik I's brothers. He and Abu al-Hasan Simjuri, as Samanid generals, competed with each other for the governorship of Khorasan and control of the Samanid empire by placing on the throne emirs they could dominate. Abu al-Hasan died in 961, but a new rival Fa'iq rose and eventually Mansur I was elected by the court ministers, and having backed the wrong candidate Alp Tigin retired from Khorasan to Ghazni, where he dispossessed a local ruling family, thus starting the Ghaznavid list in 962 CE. Coins of the era however show that he still nominally acknowledged the Samanid authority.
Sultan Alp Tigin is the founder Ghazna (Ghazni Province). He was succeeded in 975 briefly by his son and then, upon his death in 977, by son-in-law Sabuktigin; who would become the founder of the Ghaznavid Empire.
See also 
- Encyclopædia Iranica, "Ghaznavids", by C. Edmund Bosworth. December 15, 2001. Accessed July 3, 2012.
- History of Iran: Ghaznavid Dynasty
- Ferishta, History of the Rise of Mohammedan Power in India, Volume 1: Section 15 
|King of Ghazna