Yusuf Adil Shah

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Yusuf Adil Shah
Adil Shahi
Reign 1489–1510
Successor Ismail Adil Shah
Died 1510–11
Gogi, Shahpur, District Gulbarga
Burial 1510
In the campus of Great Sufi Saint Chandah Husaini of Gogi, Shahpur, District Gulbarga
Spouse Baboojee Khatoon or Poonji Khatoon Daughter of Mukund Rao of Indapur (Maratha accepted Islam)
Issue 1)Ismail Adil Shah
2) Mariyam Sultana Wife of Burhan Nizam Shah-I
3) Khadeeja Sultana Wife of Shaikh Alauddin Imadul Mulq Berari
4) Bibi Sati Wife of Ahmed Shah Ibn Mehmood Shah Bahmani
Full name
Abul Muzaffar Yusuf Adil Khan Sawi
Dynasty Adil Shahi Empire
Religion Shia

Yusuf Adil Shah (1450–1511), referred as Adil Khan or Hidalcão by the Portuguese, was the founder of the Adil Shahi dynasty that ruled the Sultanate of Bijapur for nearly two centuries.[1] As the founder of the newly formed Bijapur dynasty (as the Adil Shahi dynasty is also known), Yusuf Adil Shah is credited with developing the town of Bijapur and elevating it to significant status.

Legend of origin[edit]

The founder of the dynasty,Yusuf Adil Shah, may have been a Georgian slave[2][3] who was purchased by Mahmud Gawan from Iran.

Yet, some historians state Yusuf was a son of the Ottoman Sultan Murad II.[4][5][6]

According to the historian Mir Rafi-uddin Ibrahim-i Shirazi, or Rafi', Yusuf's full name was Sultan Yusuf 'Adil Shah Sawa or Sawa-i of Saveh, the son of Mahmud Beg of Saveh in Iran, (Rafi' 36–38, vide Devare 67, fn 2). Rafi's history of the 'Adil Shahi dynasty was written at the request of Ibrahim Adil Shah II, and was completed and presented to the patron in AH 1017. The Indian scholar T.N. Devare mentioned that while Rafi's account of the Bahmani dynasty is filled with anachronisms, his account of the Adilshahi is "fairly accurate, exhaustive, and possesses such rich and valuable information about Ali I and Ibrahim II" (312). Rafi-uddin later became the governor of Bijapur for about 15 years (Devare 316).


Yusuf's bravery and personality raised him rapidly in the Bahmani sultan's favor, and resulted in his being appointed Governor of Bijapur.

In 1489, Yusuf took advantage of the decline of the Bahmani power to establish himself as an independent sultan at Bijapur. He waged war against the Vijayanagar empire, as also against Bijapur's Muslim neighbours. Yusuf invited Vijayanagara general Tuluva Narasa Nayaka for peace treaty and had him and his generals murdered. The Bijapur sultanate he founded was a formidable force for close to two centuries until it was finally defeated by Aurangzeb in 1686.[5]

Adil Shah is personally responsible for building the imposing Citadel or Arkilla and the palace named Faroukh Mahal. Yusuf was a man of culture and invited poets and artisans from Persia, Turkey and Rome to his court. He was also an accomplished musician and scholar that was reflected in art and architecture from this time.

Yusuf Adil Shah married Punji, the sister of a Maratha warrior.

Death at the hands of Krishna Deva Raya In 1501, the Bahmanid Sultan Mahmud Ghazi Mujahid passed a resolution in his darbar to conduct an annual Jihad on Vijayanagara till its extermination. He was able to gather a large army in Bidar which was led by Fathullah (Nizam Shah), Qasim Barid (the first Sultan of Bidar), and Yusuf Adil Shah, the Ottoman Turk and founder of the Adil Shahi kingdom by 1509.It marched into Vijayanagaran territory with the hope of Jihad and plunder, thinking that it was ripe for conquest after the death of vIra narasiMha. However, young Krishnadeva Raya was up to the task and decisively crushed the Bahmanid army and forced them to retreat. The Mohammedan armies beaten started retreating in separate divisions. kR^iShNadeva was the first Hindu king in many centuries, who decided to pursue the armies mercilessly hunting them down. Yusuf Adil Shah receiving reinforcements decided fight kR^iShNadeva from the fort of Kovilkonda. The Vijayanagaran army however marched rapidly and intercepted the Adil Khan before he could take the protection of the fort.After an intense battle Adil Shah was instantaneously struck by several arrows and killed right away. With the Sultan dead the rest of the Moslem army panicked and was completely destroyed. Thus, the fort of Kovilkonda was finally wrested by Vijayanagara [The great battle of Kovilkonda 1509].

He died in 1511, shortly after the loss of Goa to the Portuguese governor Afonso de Albuquerque, in 1510. Yusuf left behind a strong if small state, one which persisted through two relatively chaotic centuries in a region rife with political ferment. He was succeeded by his son Ismail, who being a minor, was aided in his rule by a certain Kamal Khan.


  1. ^ Sen, Sailendra (2013). A Textbook of Medieval Indian History. Primus Books. p. 119. ISBN 978-9-38060-734-4. 
  2. ^ Chaurasia, Radhey Shyam (2002). History of Medieval India: From 1000 A.D. to 1707 A.D. p. 101. 
  3. ^ Subrahmanyam, Sanjay (2012). Courtly Encounters: Translating Courtliness and Violence in Early Modern Eurasia. p. 101. 
  5. ^ a b Salma Ahmed Farooqui, A Comprehensive History of Medieval India: From Twelfth to the Mid-Eighteenth Century, (Dorling Kindersley, 2011), p.174. .
  6. ^ Bolar, Varija R (2012). "TURKS IN KARNATAKA": 423. 


  • India History
  • Wakiyate Mamlakate Bijapur by Basheeruddin Dehelvi.
  • Tareekhe Farishta by Kasim Farishta
  • External Relation of Bijapur Adil Shahis.
  • Devare, T. N. A short history of Persian literature; at the Bahmani, the Adilshahi, and the Qutbshahi courts. Poona: S. Devare, 1961.
  •  Chisholm, Hugh, ed. (1911). "Bijawar". Encyclopædia Britannica 3 (11th ed.). Cambridge University Press. p. 928. 
Preceded by
Founder of the Dynasty
Adil Shahi Rulers of Bijapur
Succeeded by
Ismail Adil Shah