Wednesday, December 23, 2009


Mongol Rule: From Terror and Destruction
to Law and Order
I. Rise of the Mongols
•Genghis Khan
A coalition of Mongol clans and tribes pronounced Temujin (b. 1167) “Genghis Khan” at a “quriltay” in 1206
•Almost immediately Genghis Khan launched campaigns aimed at lands beyond Mongolia
II. Genghis Khan and His Time
•The Mongolian Plateau had many tribes, probably more Turkic ones than Mongol ones
•An earlier group, the Khitans, had become a “Chinese” dynasty, Liao, ruling north China; it was replaced by a Tungus group, Jurchen, who originated from the Khingan Mountains, to the east of Mongolian Plateau, and established their own “Chinese” dynasty, Jin.
•The Gansu Corridor was no longer in the hands of the Uighurs, but controlled by a Tibeto-Burman group called Tangut; they also established a “Chinese” dynasty, West Xia (Xi Xia) which ruled the western part of north China
•Southern Sung Dynasty was experiencing a new phase of economic and intellectual growth
•In the southwest, Tibet was in retreat since it was forced out of Xinjiang and the Gansu Corridor in the 11th century
•In Xinjiang, the Turfan area saw Uighurs in firm control of a Buddhist kingdom, but many Turkic groups were Manicheans and Nestorian Christians
•Further west, a Khitan prince fled the Jurchen onslaught and established Karakhitay in the Chu River area, then expanding to most Central Asia
•An also expanding Khwarazm controlled Transoxania, Khurasan and Ferghana, attempting to make initial contact with the Mongols
•In Iran and Iraq, the Seljuks were still powerful and the Abbasid Caliph was under the sway first of the Seljuks and later the Khwarazmians.
•In Asia Minor, the Seljuks were firmly established as the dominating ethno-religious group
•The Byzantine, though weakened by the Seljuks and the Crusaders, still had considerable strength left
•In the Levant (Lebanon, Palestine, part of Syria), the crusaders and Muslims each controlled some cities and towns
•To the north, the Russian steppe saw many nomadic groups pass through
•The political grouping of the Slavs was centered around Kiev; Moscow was still just a small town
•The Poles and Hungarians, both belonging to the Latin church, had their own monarchs
•Western Europe was undergoing a slow revival from the Dark Ages with economic and cultural growth
III. Mongol Wars of Expansion
A.Phase One (1219-1223):
•Conquered Xi Xia in 1209, took Beijing in 1215 and entered Turfan
•The Turfan ruler surrendered voluntarily; many Uighurs thus entered Mongol service, enabling the latter to rule with more administrative skills
•A Naiman (hostile to Genghis Khan) prince worked from within Karakhitay to subvert it in secret collaboration with Khwarazm, thus making the latter in close contact with the Mongols
•Story of the Mongol embassy to Khwarazm—giving Genghis Khan a motivation for revenge and going farther west than he had planned
•Looting Bukhara, massacre in Samarkand and crushing Khwarazm
•Rounding the Caspian Sea, entering Caucasus, conquering Georgia and encountering Russia (Rus).
B. Phase Two (1237-1242):
•Led by Batu, the eldest son of Juchi, known as “Expedition of the Eldest Sons’,
•The Mongol forces penetrated deep in Russia, demolishing the Russian principalities;
•Sacking Kiev in 1240, indirectly contributing to the rise of Moscow
•Advancing to Poland and Hungary, then to the east coast of Adriatic Sea
•Upon hearing the death of Guyuk, Batu returned east and set up the Golden Horde (Kipchak) Khanate in Saray, in the middle Volga region
C. Third Phase (1253-1260):
•Once becoming the Great Khan, Monge ordered his brother Hulagu to lead another expedition force
•Hulagu in 1256 demolished the base of the Ismailist “Assasins” at Alamut, not far from Tehran to clear the way; then the Mongol forces took Baghdad in 1258, putting the Caliph to death and ransacking Baghdad, ending the 500-year Abbasid dynasty and changing the landscape of the Islamic world
•Taking Damascus in 1260 but defeated by the Mamluks to the north of Jerusalem; Mongol forces thwarted after this defeat
•On knowing that Kubilai had become the new Great Khan, Hulagu set up Ilkhanate, covering territories west of Amu Darya and east of the Tigris, with its capital in Tabriz
IV. The Mongol Empire
A.Yuan China (1279-1368)
B.Ulus Chaghatay (1225-1370)
C.Golden Horde (1243-1361)
D.Ilkhanate (1261-c.1400)
# Ulus Ogedey (1251-1310), divided by Golden Horde and Chaghatay
V. Forced and Unintended Globalization
A.Territories, Populations, Products and Trade
B.Roads and Postal System
C.Administrative Measures
D.Cultural Exchange

VI. Mongol Diplomacy
A.Mission of Carpini in 1245
•Pope Innocence IV wanted to stop the Mongol advance by diplomacy, in the hope that the Christians in the Mongol Court would offer help
•He sent a Franciscan priest, Carpini, to Saray with a letter; Batu sent him to see the Great Khan in Karakorum
•The mission ended in failure, with Carpini bringing back a letter in Mongolian rejecting the Pope’s appeal; he later wrote a book detailing his observations along the way.
B. Mission of De Rubrouck in 1253
•While in Cyprus during his crusade, King Louis IX sent a French priest to the Mongol Court, hoping to establish an alliance with the Mongols against the Muslims
•De Rubrouck was helped along the way by Christians and also saw many Christians in the Mongol capital, some were merchants, some served in the court, others were captives
•His mission also failed
C. With the French Court in 1289
•The Khan of Ilkhanate proposed, through a Greek merchant, to the French king, Philippe Le Bel, to join forces in attacking Jerusalem and split the spoils
•When the letter arrived in Paris, Philippe Le Bel had died; the merchant returned to report his mission, only to learn that the letter writer had also died
VII. Seafaring on Horseback
•The Mongols established extensive navigational routes once they conquered Southern Sung
•Trade via sea routes advanced greatly during Yuan dynasty
•The Mongols tried to invade Japan, but failed due to bad weather
•They also tried to attack Indonesia, again without success
•The commander of the Mongol navy was an Uyghur
VIII. The Winning Secrets of the Mongols
(Since these are secrets,they cannot be told here)

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