Picture: A coin of Muhammad bin Tughlaq
During the Delhi Sultanate, several Turkic and Afghan dynasties ruled from Delhi, including the Mamluk dynasty (1206–90), the Khilji dynasty (1290–1320), the Tughlaq dynasty (1320–1413), the Sayyid dynasty (1414–51), and the Lodi dynasty (1451–1526). In 1526 the Delhi Sultanate was absorbed by the emerging Mughal Empire.
The second Muslim invader, Muhammad of Ghor, had political ambitions. He fought the two Battles of Tarain with Prithviraj Chauhan and by winning the second battle and killing Prithviraj, established control. He appointed Qutubuddin Aibak, his slave, as his governor, who started an independent rule after the death of his master. The Mamluk dynasty is also known as the Slave Dynasty as Aibak was a former slave of Muhammad Ghori. Aibak began the construction of Qutub Minar, which was completed by Iltutmish, his successor and son-in-law. Aibek’s actual successor was his son Aramshah, but the nobles preferred Iltutmish, the Subedar of Badaun. Iltutmish was followed by Razia Sultana, his daughter, who was a good administrator and the first female ruler in the Muslim world. She was endowed with all qualities befitting a King, but she was not born of the right son. After the marriage with Altunia,(a noble of Bhatinda) her nobles revolted against her. They couldn’t accept this and she was killed by her nobles, after 3 and half years. Balban succeeded her and ruled until 1286 AD. Many infamous and inefficient rulers followed. Faced with revolts by conquered territories and rival families, the Mamluk dynasty came to an end in 1290.
Khalji: The Khalji or Khilji dynasty were Turko-Afghan, who had established themselves as rulers of Bengal in the time of Muhammad Ghori, took control of the empire in a coup which eliminated the last of the Mamluks. The Khaljis conquered Gujarat and Malwa, and sent the first expeditions south of the Narmada River, as far south as Tamil Nadu. Sultanate rule continued to extend into southern India, first by the Delhi Sultans, then by the breakaway Bahmani Sultanate of Gulbarga, and after the breakup of the Bahmani state in 1518, by the five independent Deccan Sultanates. The kingdom of Vijayanagar united southern India and arrested the Delhi Sultanate’s expansion for a time, until its eventual fall to the Deccan Sultanates in 1565.
Tughluq: The Tughlaq Dynasty lasted for close to a hundred years. It produced two powerful Sultans- Muhammad-Bin Tughlaq and Firoz Shah Tughlaq. Ghias-ud-din Tughlaq (1320–1325) was the first ruler of the dynasty. He was an efficient military commander. He was succeeded by Jauna Khan, who took the title of Muhammad bin Tughlaq. He was a very powerful ruler. He thought of many ambitious schemes and unique experiments, but could not implement his ideas properly. He shifted his capital in 1326,from delhi to devgiri.After that devgiri known as daulatabad. but that was a failure. So were the ideas of introduction of token currency, the Qarachil expedition, taxation in the Do-ab, and the Khurasan expedition. He became very unpopular because of his schemes. He lost control over the empire and died in 1351. He was succeeded by Firoz shah Tughlaq (1351–1388). He was very successful as a reformer. After his death, a war of succession took place. Soon the region was reduced to just Delhi and its surrounding areas. In 1398, Taimur invaded Delhi, massacred and looted the city. Before leaving Delhi, he appointed Khizr Khan as his deputy, who became the first Sayyid ruler.
Sayyid: The Sayyid dynasty ruled the Delhi Sultanate from 1414 to 1451, succeeding the Tughlaq dynasty. The dynasty was established by Khizr Khan, who was deputised by Timur to be the governor of Multan (Punjab). Khizr Khan took Delhi from Daulat Khan Lodi on May 28, 1414 and founded the Sayyid dynasty.
Lodi: Lodi Dynasty was a Ghilzai (Khilji) Afghan dynasty, who ruled over the Delhi Sultanate during its last phase, displacing the Sayyid dynasty. Founded by Bahlul Lodi, it ruled from 1451 to 1526. The last ruler of this dynasty, Ibrahim Lodi, was defeated and killed by Babur in the first Battle of Panipat on April 20, 1526. Sikander Lodi is considered the greatest rule of the dynasty.
Coinage: In the first half of the 14th century, the Sultanate introduced a monetary economy in the provinces (sarkars) and districts (parganas) that had been established and founded a network of market centers through which the traditional village economies were both exploited and stimulated and drawn into the wider culture. State revenues remained based on successful agriculture, which induced Sultan Muhammad bin Tughluq (1325–51) to have village wells dug, to offer seed to the peasants, and to encourage cash crops like sugarcane (Braudel 1984, pp 96f, 512ff).