Shams-ud-Din Shah Mir (Urdu: شَمسُ الدین شاہ میر) (reigned 1339–42) was a ruler of Kashmir; and the founder of the Shah Miri dynasty, which is named after him. Shah Mir is believed to have come to Kashmir during the rule of Suhadeva (1301–1320), where he rose to prominence. After the death of Suhadeva and his brother Udayanadeva, Shah Mir established his own kingship, founding the Shah Mir dynasty in 1339, which lasted till 1561.
There are two theories regarding Shah Mir's origin. Historian A. Q. Rafiqi states that some Persian chronicles of Kashmir describe Shah Mir as a descendent of the rulers of Swat.[a] He thinks it more likely that he was a descedent of Turkish or Persian immigrants to Swat. It has also been suggested that he belonged to a Sufi or Qadiri family.
On the other hand, the 15th century Kashmiri historian Jonaraja, writing in the court of Shah Mir's descendant Budshah, states that Shah Mir came to Kashmir along with his tribe from the country of Panchagahvara (identified as the Panjgabbar valley between Rajouri and Budhal). He was said to belong to the family of an ancestor called Partha, who was described as a second Partha (an allusion to the Mahabharata hero Arjuna). Some scholars state that the Panjgabbar valley was peopled by Khasas and so ascribe a Khasa ethnicity to Shah Mir.
Most modern historians accept the Swati origins of Shah Mir. Kashmiri scholar N. K. Zutshi, having critically examined the sources, reconciles the two versions by noting that the Persian chronicles mentions Swadgir rather than Swat, which he interprets as Swadgabar, meaning "suburbs of Gabar", which coincides with Jonaraja's description of Panchagahvara-Simani (on the borders of Panchagagvara).
A. Q. Rafiqi states:
Shah Mir arrived in Kashmir in 1313 along with his family, during the reign of Suhadeva (1301–1320), whose service he entered. In subsequent years, through his tact and ability Shah Mir rose to prominence and became one of the most important personalities of his time.
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During the reign of Suhadeva, a Tatar chief Dulucha invaded Kashmir and ravaged it. King Suhadeva fled the country and his general Ramachandra occupied the throne. In the confusion Rinchan (reigned 1320–23), the Ladhaki prince organized an internal rising and seized the throne. He married Kota Rani, the daughter of Ramachandra. The Hindu religious leaders of the time refused to admit into their fold. Rinchan embraced Islam and took Muslim name of Sultan Sadruddin. He was attacked by rebels and was badly wounded and died in 1323 A.D. Just before his death Sultan Sadruddin (Rinchan) summoned his trusted minister, Shah Mir, and entrusted his son, Hyder, and wife, Kotarani, to his care. He had a son, Haidar by his queen Kota Rani. After the death of Rinchan, who was assassinated, Kotarani married Udayanadeva, the brother of Suhadeva.
The last Hindu ruler of Kashmir was Udyanadeva. It was his chief Queen Kota Rani, who practically governed the state. She was a very brave, shrewd and an able ruler. Though she tried her best to save her kingdom, odds were too heavy for her. The Kashmir Valley was again invaded by a Mongol-Turk invader Achalla, and Udayanadeva fled to Tibet. But the Queen defeated (killed) Achalla and drove away all the foreign troops.
Finally in this age of chaos Shah Mir organized an uprising against Queen Kota Rani and defeated her at Jayapur (modern Sumbal). The defeat upset her and seeing the indifference of the Hindu grandees and general public, she stabbed herself to death, because Shah Mir wanted to marry her. Her death in 1339 paved the way for the establishment of Shah Mir dynasty rule in Kashmir.
Shah Mir worked to establish Islam in Kashmir and was aided by his descendant rulers, specially Sikandar Butshikan. He reigned for three years and five months from 1339–42. He was the ruler of Kashmir and the founder of the Shah Mir dynasty. He was followed by his two sons who became kings in succession.
As listed in the Rajataranginis he was succeeded by Jamshed 1342–1344, Alau-ud-Din 1344–1355, Shahab-ud-Din 1355–1373, Qutub-ud-Din 1373–1389, Sikandar Butshikan the book-burner 1389–1413, Alishah 1413–1419, Zain-ul-Abdin 1420–1470, Haidershah 1470–1472, Hassanshah 1472–1484, Mohammadshah 1484–1486, Fatehshah 1486–1495 Mohammadshah 1495–1496, Fatehshah 1496–1497, Mohammadshah 1497–1509, Ibrahimshah (s/o Mohammadshah) 1509 Nazukshah (s/o Fatehshah) 1529 (one year), Mohammadshah 1530–1535.
- The chronicles include those of Tahir, Haidar Malik, Rafiu'd Din Ahmad and Muhammad A'azam.
- Gull, Surayia (2003), Mir Saiyid Ali Hamadani And Kubraviya Sufi Order In Kashmir, Kanikshka Publishers, Distributors, p. 3, ISBN 978-81-7391-581-9
- Baloch & Rafiq 1998, pp. 311-312.
- Schimmel 1980, p. 44.
- Sharma, R. S. (1992), A Comprehensive History of India, Orient Longmans, p. 628, ISBN 978-81-7007-121-1,
Jonaraja records two events of Suhadeva's reign (1301-20), which were of far-reaching importance and virtually changed the course of the history of Kashmir. The first was the arrival of Shah Mir in 1313. He was a Muslim condottiere from the border of Panchagahvara, an area situated to the south of the Divasar pargana in the valley of river Ans, a tributary of the Chenab.
- Zutshi, N. K. (1976), Sultan Zain-ul-Abidin of Kashmir: an age of enlightenment, Nupur Prakashan, pp. 6–7
- Wani, Nizam-ud-Din (1987), Muslim rule in Kashmir, 1554 A.D. to 1586 A.D., Jay Kay Book House, p. 29,
Shamir was a Khasa by birth and descended from the chiefs of Panchagahvara.
- Saxena, Savitri (1995), Geographical Survey of the Purāṇas: The Purāṇas, a Geographical Survey, Nag Publishers, pp. 360–361, ISBN 978-81-7081-333-0,
In the Rajatarangini, the rulers of Rajapuri (modern Rajauri) are called the lord of Khasas and their troops as Khasas. They occupied the valleys of Ans river, now called Panjagabhar (Pancagahvara of Srivara IV 213).
- Zutshi, N. K. (1976), Sultan Zain-ul-Abidin of Kashmir: an age of enlightenment, Nupur Prakashan, p. 7,
"This area in which Panchagahvara was situated is mentioned as having been the place of habitation of the Khasa tribe. Shah Mir was, therefore, a Khasa by birth. This conclusion is further strengthened by references to the part of the Khasas increasingly played in the politics of Kashmir with which their connections became intimate after the occupation of Kashmir.
- Wink 2004, p. 140"The first Muslim dynasty of Kashmir was founded in 1324 by Shah Mìrzà, who was probably an Afghan warrior from Swat or a Qarauna Turk, possibly even a Tibetan..."
- Gupta, Jyoti Bhusan Das (6 December 2012), Jammu and Kashmir, Springer, pp. 19–, ISBN 978-94-011-9231-6
- Snedden, Christopher (2015), Understanding Kashmir and Kashmiris, Oxford University Press, pp. 28–, ISBN 978-1-84904-342-7
- Zutshi, N. K. (1976), Sultan Zain-ul-Abidin of Kashmir: an age of enlightenment, Nupur Prakashan, p. 7
- Baloch & Rafiq 1998, p. 312.
- Majumdar, R.C. (2006). The Delhi Sultanate, Mumbai: Bharatiya Vidya Bhavan, pp.372–80
- Kashmīr Under the Sultānsby Mohibbul Hasan, Aakar Books, 2005
- Baharistan-i-Shahi – Chapter 3 – EARLY SHAHMIRS
- Rājānaka Jonarāja, Jogesh Chandra Dutt, Shyam Lal Sadhu Medieval Kashmir – being a reprint of the Rajataranginis 1993 Volume 3 – Page 330/Page 331 Jamshed 1342–1344 3. Alau-ud-Din 1344–1355 4. Shahab-ud-Din 1355–1373 5. Qutub-ud-Din 1373–1389 6. Sikandar 1389–1413 7. Alishah 1413–1419 8. Zain-ul-Abdin 1420–1470 9. Haidershah 1470–1472 10. Hassanshah 1472–1484 11. Mohammadshah Apr.1484-Oct.1486, .....12. Fatehshah 1486–1495 13. Mohammadshah 1495–1496 14. Fatehshah 1496–1497 15. Mohammadshah 1497–1509 16. Ibrahimshah (s/o Mohammadshah) 1509 17. Nazukshah (s/o Fatehshah) 1529 (one year) 18. Mohammadshah 1530–1535 .
- Baloch, N. A.; Rafiq, A. Q. (1998), "The Regions of Sind, Baluchistan, Multan and Kashmir" (PDF), in M. S. Asimov; C. E. Bosworth, History of Civilizations of Central Asia, Vol. IV, Part 1 — The age of achievement: A.D. 750 to the end of the fifteenth century — The historical, social and economic setting, UNESCO, pp. 297–322, ISBN 978-92-3-103467-1
- Schimmel, Annemarie (1980), Islam in the Indian Subcontinent, BRILL, pp. 44–, ISBN 90-04-06117-7
- Wink, André (2004), Indo-Islamic society: 14th - 15th centuries, BRILL, ISBN 90-04-13561-8