There was a race for the possession of the country between Nureddin's lieutenant Shirguh or Shirkuh and Amalric I., the brother and successor of Baldwin III.; and in the race Shirkuh proved the winner.
His father, Ayyub (Job), and his uncle Shirkuh, sons of a certain Shadhy of Ajdanakan near Dawin, were both generals in Zengi's army.
His pretext was the plea of an exiled vizier, and Shirkuh was ordered to Egypt in 1164, taking Saladin as his lieutenant.
They resulted in heavy Christian losses, the death of Shirkuh and the appointment of Saladin as vizir.
For some five years a contest was waged between Amalric and Shirguh (Shirkuh), the lieutenant of Nureddin, for the possession of Egypt.
In 1173 Nureddin died, and his kingdom was seized by Saladin (Salah ed-Din), a man of Kurdish origin, who had previously distinguished himself by capturing Egypt in company with Shirkuh, the general of Nureddin.