Firoz Tughluq’s attempts to subdue him in 1359 after which Bengal was not
threatened by Delhi again for nearly two centuries. Sikandar also built several
notable monuments of architecture. Ghiyas-ud-din Azam Shan (1389–1409),
the next Sultan was an able and benevolent ruler. He sent an ambassador to
China, and carried on a flourishing trade with the Far East through the port of
    Under Ghiyas-ud-din’s successor, a Brahmin zamindar of Dinajpur (north
Bengal), named Raja Ganesh, became powerful and finally seized the throne
in 1415. Faced with Muslim opposition from within and without (from
Jaunpur), he converted his minor son Jadu Sen to Islam and ruled in his son’s
name. After Ganesh’s death in 1418, Jadu Sen ruled till 1431 under the title
of Jalal-ud-din. With the murder of Shams-ud-din Ahmad Shah, Jalal-ud-
din’s son and successor, in 1442, the dynasty of Raja Ganesh came to an end
the old I1yas Shahi dynasty was restored.
    Rukn-ud-din Barbak Shah (1459–74) fought successfully against the
Hindu rulers of Orissa and Kamarupa with the help of his newly organised
military of Abyssinian (Ethiopian) slaves. He was also famous for his
patronage of Bengal literature. In 1487 the Ilyas Shahi dynasty was again
overthrown by the Abyssinian slaves under the leadership of Shahzada Barak
Shah, the commander of the palace guards.
    Ala-ud-din Hussain Shah (1493–1519), regarded as the greatest
independent Muslim ruler of Bengal eventually deposed the Abyssinians and
revived the Ilyas Shahi dynasty. He replaced the Abyssinians by Bengali
Hindus and Muslims in both civil and military administration. Being an
indomitable warrior, he scored victories over all his neighbours including
Kamarupa (Kamata) Ahoms and Orissa. His generosity to both Hindus and
Muslims was legendary and it was during his reign that Chaitanya preached
Vaishnavism in Bengal and Orissa. Several celebrated Bengali writers
flourished during his benevolent rule.
    Nusrat Shah (1519–32), son and successor of Ala-ud-din, was also an
able and powerful ruler. He concluded peace with Babur when the latter was
campaigning in the east. Like his father, he adopted a tolerant religious policy
and patronised Bengali literature. It was during his reign that the Portuguese
made their appearance in Bengal.
    Ghiyas-ud-din Mahnud Shah’s         reign (1532–38) was marked by the