Genghis Khan & The Terrible Mongols
Genghis Khan before his fathers death.
Temujin had many skills.
He was taught to ride horses at a very early age.
He was an expert bow man and had great strength.
He was a natural leader among his peers.
Temujin had many duties as son of a Chieftain
He must fish streams for food.
He was in charge of the horse heads and had to chase after lost animals that had run away.
Had to watch the sky line for enemies and raiders.
Temujin learned of his tribe.
The tribe was the Yakka Mongols.
He learned of the great empire of Cathay and its civilization.
He was taught to be a warrior and told to have a fierce character.
Temujin family and family history.
His family line was a great one.
He was descendant from the grey-eyed men who were one of the greatest tribes of their time.
Kassar, the bowman.
Though a better bow handler he was scared o his brother.
His mother Houlun
Was carried of by his father on her wedding ride to the tent of her betrothed husband.
His father Yesukai
Chieftain of the Yakka Mongols or great Mongols. Who ruled 40K tents.
His fathers sworn brother was Toghrul, Chieftain of the Karaits which were the most powerful clan of the Gobi.
Life in the Gobi
Geography of the Gobi.
The Gobi is not a sand desert. Only 5% of it is covered in sand.
It is the coldest and most northern desert in the world.
It is above China in Northeastern Asia. It covers 500,000 square miles.
There is hardly any trees and the soil is dry and rock-like.
Surviving in the Gobi.
In the Mongolian community men and women got first priority over children when it came to food and a place by the fire.
In winter children had it harder because food was scarce and they couldnt kill animals of the herds they own.
During Spring wild animals were abundant and cattle and sheep gave lots of milk so there wasnt a shortage of food.
The Home of the Mongols: The Yurt
A tent made of felt stretched over wattled rods with an aperture at the top to let out smoke.
The tent could be carried by carts that were pulled by oxen.
Yurts of the Chieftains and their wives were decorated and carried treasures and family belongings.
The death of Yesukai
His fathers death
His father had spent the night at in the enemies tent and had been poisoned and was gravely sick. Temujin rode as fast as he could to get to his father before he died but did not arrive on time.
When the other leaders of the clan found out about Yesukais death they were concerned of how the inexperienced Temujin would handle the great leadership.They decided to separate and join other clans.
Temujin’s mother was able to convince a few families to stay with them.
His new wife
Before his father died Temujin and his father were visiting a strange warrior and Temujin took a liking to his daughter and asked his father for her hand in marriage. The warrior agreed to the request.
Temujin knew she was very young but he thought she would grow and mature as she became a woman.
His father controlled very good lands which were abundant with game and not as cold as other areas during the winter. As soon as word got around that Yesukai had died the Taijudts, who were enemies of the Yakka Mongols, came to conquer Temujin.
The Taidjuts overran his yurt and clan but Temujin and his family were able to escape. Temujin was captured alone and again escaped. Once he reconnected with his family they began to live alone off small animals and fish.
He could have gone to his fathers sworn brother Toghrul but he was too proud to come for aid because he thought his empty hands would arouse scorn not fellowship so he continued alone.
The Campaigns: How Genghis Khan built his empire.
The layout of Genghis Khans army.
Numerical regimentation of the Army went as follows. First there was the touman which was a group of 10,000 men. Under the touman were the gurans or units of 1,000 men. That was then divided into 10 companies each with 10 platoons in them. Therefore each platoon comprised of 10 men.
The basic groupings of his army was divided into two sections. The heavy cavalry and the light cavalry. The heavy cavalry was heavily armored and carried lances and javelins. The light cavalry relied not on armor but on his skills with the bow to fight. When it came to close combat, each soldier was equipped with a sword and ax.
Genghis Khan army was all mounted on horseback and this provided him with unprecedented mobility on the battlefield. He was able to quickly attack an opponent from the flank and confuse the enemy.
Uniting the clans
Genghis Khan was the name adopted by Temujin that meant Ruler of all who lived in felt tents. He earned his name by uniting all the clans of the Gobi desert.
Genghis Khan saw it in his destiny to rule all the Mongolian people. He began his task by traveling to Gobi and uniting weaker clans to form stronger ones. Slowly he formed a great clan and continued on to take over stronger more powerful clans such as the Karat and the Tartars. The Tartars were a fierce tribe from the lake Baykal in the Northern part of the Gobi desert. They were the clan responsible for the death Temujins father and Genghis Khan was relentless in his battle against them.
When he finally conquered the last of the clans he officially took the name of Genghis Khan and began to form the Mongol Empire. He went on to write the Yassa, the first set of Mongolian scriptures comprising of laws on how the Mongolians were to govern themselves. These rules were mostly aimed towards three things: obedience to Genghis Khan, permanent union of the clans and strong punishment for wrongdoing.
Genghis Khan invades Southern Asia.
Genghis Khan began his invasion not directly into Cathay but into another empire called, The Hsi Hsia Empire. This empire was originally not part of Cathay but many of its structures, its walls and its towns were similar, if not identical, to the towns and building in Cathay. Hsi Hsia had similar military tactics to Cathay.
Genghis Khan after conquering Hsi Hsia moved his forces northwards towards Cathay. The tactics he had learned in Hsi Hsia did not helped him conquer the large fortified towns of Cathay. Genghis Khan and his army were not used to laying siege to a town so he found it difficult to conquer the Chinese. He had to slowly develop new tactics of conquering these largely fortified towns.
As Genghis Khan proceeded through Cathay he laid waste to many cities and villages and utterly destroyed everything in his path. Animals were captured, treasures were stolen and the Cathayan citizens were left empty handed.
After many years of fierce fighting, Genghis Khan finally conquered the city of Peking which was the center of Cathay. With this accomplished he turned back to Mongolia.
Genghis Khan heads westwards.
He soon learned of the vast empires that laid to the West. Unknown until then, there were several empires such as Kara Kitai Empire, Khorezm Empire and the Empire of Islam. He soon set off with his army to conquer the vast lands to the West. The empire of Kara Kitai was easily crushed by him and his horde.
When he reached Khorezm Empire he encountered great walled cities similar to the ones in Cathay. He then employed his siege tactics learned in Cathay to the Muslim of Khorezm. He knew how to break down walls, his fearsome reputation preceded him and many towns would give up on sight of his army in fear of their lives if they resisted.
Genghis Khan finally destroyed Bukahara, Samarkand, and Gurgan which were at the time the centers of the Muslim-Persian civilization.
Genghis Khan returns to his homeland in the Gobi.
After his long campaign he returned to the Gobi carrying with him thousands of thousands of treasures and riches from his conquests. He brought spices from the Middle East and paper and writing from China.
Though an illiterate man himself, Genghis Khan learned much of reading and writing in China and he realized that this could help him rule the Mongol people. He had sages and scholars brought from China to serve in his court and to take notes of his meetings with his chiefs and to record tales of his conquests in faraway lands.
The effects of Mongol rule in Asia.
Connecting Western and Eastern Asia.
Until the time of Genghis Khan Western and Eastern Asia were not connected nor aware of their existence. Through his conquests two civilizations were connect however, at great loss of many lives. Many teachings of Cathay were spread throughout Asia and other cultures benefited from these teachings.
Through his conquest strong trade was established between these two civilizations. Spices and silks and other goods were traded openly.
There was a great spread of ideas through Asia of religion, sciences, literature and mathematics. This expanded both cultures and made them strong in their knowledge. The Mongols absorbed both cultures teachings and ideas into their own.
Life in the Mongol Empire.
After the conquest of the Empires they slowly began to rebuild their culture and their society. One the things that Mongolian rule was open to was religion. Mongol ruled allowed each and everyone to practice and belief their own religion unhindered.
Common citizens of the Mongol Empire, who were not Mongolian themselves, lived in fear for their lives due to the atrocities committed by the Mongol warrior during the campaigns. They were also forced to pay taxes to the Mongols.
h Mongolia after Genghis Khans death.
The Death of Genghis Khan.
Well into his old age, at approximately 60 years old, Genghis Khan died while in battle in India. His death was concealed for two years after his death and no one was allowed to speak of it while his body was being carried back to his birthplace, the Gobi desert.
On the journey from the place of his death back to his homeland, everyone who saw his casket was killed so that word would not spread.
Finally, when he was buried in an unknown spot, those who buried him were killed, so no one could find the treasures that were buried with him.
The next great Khan.
After his death there was no strong ruler until his grandson Kublai Khan ascended to the throne. Kublai Khan was the second most successful khan to rule the Mongolian Empire after Genghis Khan. He completed the conquest of China all the way South into Burma and Vietnam. He also twice attempted to conquer Japan but was defeated both times by the Japanese .
Kublai Khan founded the Yuan Dynasty which lasted from 1279 to 1368. He also established a new Mongol capital in Peking. During his rule Mongols were known to be somewhat tolerant to others.
He developed a newer political system for his Dynasty including some Mongol ideas as well as Confucius and Chinese ideas. He allowed for the first time Chinese scholars to be officials in his government.
After Kublai Khan declined and began to break apart. By the 1500s it had almost entirely integrated itself into the Asian communities.
Modern-day Mongolia looks back at its ancient history and rulers.
Nowadays Genghis Khan is revered as a national hero and his profile appears in Mongolias monetary system.
Mongols today still live in the plains in the very same Yurts that Genghis Khan lived many centuries ago.
Though many have searched for the tomb of Genghis Khan none have ever been successful.
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