The Slave Dynasty
The Indian slave dynasty lasted from 1206 to 1290. The slave dynasty was the first Muslim dynasty to rule India. It is said that Muhammad Ghori did not have a natural heir to the throne and he the habit of treating his slaves like his own children. Thus after the death of Ghori, one of the most able slaves by the name of Qutub-ud-din Aibak descended the throne. The history of the slave dynasty begins with the rule of Qutub-ud-din Aibak. He was succeeded by two more able rulers after which the slave dynasty vanished in no time due to lack of able rulers.
The first ruler of the slave dynasty was Qutub-ud-din Aibak who ruled from 1206 to 1210. He established his capital at two places, first at Lahore and then shifted it to Delhi. It was during his reign that the construction of the famous Qutub Minar was started. He was an able ruler and was very kind and generous with his people. Due to his good nature, he earned the title of "Lakh Baksh", which means giver of thousands. He could rule for a very short time as he died in an accident in 1210. He was succeeded by his son Aram Shah but due to his incompetence, he was defeated in just one year by Iltumish.
After Aram Shah, the next able ruler was Iltumish. He ruled from 1211 to 1236. Under his strong governance, the slave dynasty was able to find a strong footing and establish itself as an important kingdom. The army was organized efficiently under Iltumish and he also introduced a coin currency known as Tanka. It was in his reign that the construction of Qutub Minar was completed. After ruling successfully for a period of 25 years, he died, but nominated his daughter Raziya Sultan as the heir to the throne. She was an able ruler, but since she was a woman, she faced stern opposition from nobles who got her murdered.
The last effective emperor of the slave dynasty was Ghiyasuddin Balban. He ruled from 1266 to 1286. During his reign, the administration was strengthened and he paid much attention to governance in his empire. The army was trained effectively to use weapons and the production of arms and other war weaponry was at its peak. This is what helped them fight against attacks by the Mongols. He died in 1286 and after him the slave dynasty collapsed.