Mongol Mania!!!!!! 1200-1500 C.E. Love/Hate Relationship • Virtually all written accounts by those who were vanquished by the Mongols stressed their brutality, and barbarian contempt for civilized societies. • But the century and a half of Mongol dominance ushered in a revival of commerce and urban life, and manufacturing and commerce thrived. Origins • The Mongols (also known as Tatars, or Tartars) were a group of nomadic tribes from the steppes, or open plains, of East Asia. – They Herded Livestock and were excellent horsemen and archers. – They could ride for days, sleeping and eating in the saddle! Origins • Mongols proved to be adept at “cultural borrowing.” – Mongols adopted a law code, a written script, new religious practices, and better technology through borrowing from other cultures. • Before 1200 CE, the Mongols numbered between 1.5 and 3 million – Divided into thirty warring tribes. The Khan (or khagan • In 1206, Temujin, better known as Genghis Khan (or Chingiz, Jenghiz, or Chinggis) which means “ruler of limitless strength” was declared Khan (khagan) and unified the warring Mongol tribes. Mongol Conquests • 1206 - 1234 – Genghis Khan and his successors conquered all of North China. – Mongols were threatening Southern Song. • 1234-1265 – Mongol realms united as the khans of the Golden Horde, the Jagadai domains of Central Asia, and the Il-khans all recognized the authority of the Great Khan of Mongolia. The First Wave • Mongol conquest begins in 1211 – Targeted Northern China at first • Breached the Great Wall by 1215 – Targeted the Silk Road trading city of Samarkand • Upon Genghis Khan’s death in 1227, the Mongols controlled a huge state encompassing Mongolia, Central Asia, Northern, and Western China. Why were the Mongols so successful? • Numbers? – Not really…80,000 – 100,000 troops wouldn’t be enough to automatically overwhelm such a large territory. • Talented Cavalrymen and archers who could fire from horseback, galloping at full speed, firing forward or backward. • Used lancets, hatchets, and short bows. • Could hit a moving target up to 350 yards. • Mongol values were predicated on courage in battle. Deserters were executed. • Also, skilled warriors like Chinggis Khan formed alliances, strengthening their power base. GK appointed brave foes to high posts in Mongol army. G.K., a.k.a. the O.G. • Ghenghis Khan often spared the lives of famous scholars and artisans. Employed them as advisors and valued them for their skills. • Towns that resisted GK were sacked, and their people slaughtered. However, those who surrendered without a fight were spared this fate- only required to pay tribute. • Despite his aggressiveness as a conqueror, GK was a tolerant ruler. Open to new ideas and committed to building a world where the diverse people he conquered could coexist peacefully. Wave #2 • Genghis Khan’s heirs continued the wars of conquest – Third son, Ogodei, ruled the Mongols as the Great Khan until 1241. • Greatly expanded the empire and built new capital at Karakorum. • Ogodei’s armies moved farther into China threatening the Song Empire (which the Mongols defeated in the 1260s) • Conquered Kor3a Ogodei and the West… • 1236: He sent a large invasion force to conquer as much of the west as possible. • 1237-1240: Conquer most of Russia and Ukraine • 1240-1242: Took over parts of Bulgaria, Romania, and Hungary • 1241: Death of Ogodei – They were stretched too thin as evidenced by their failure in Poland and the Germanic lands. – Russia and Ukraine remain under Mongol rule for over 2 centuries. Mongols in the Middle East • Commanded by Hulegu, the Mongols advanced on the Middle East in the 1250s • Toppled the Abbasid Caliphate in 1258 by taking Baghdad. – Continued their advance until 1260 – Stopped by a Mamluk army How Big was the Mongolian Empire? • Ruled an empire from: – Poland in the West to Korea in the East. – Siberia in the North to Vietnam in the South. • Single political authority • Economic exchange – Silk Road flourished, especially trading cities like Samarkand. – Merchants, Missionaries, and travelers of all sorts passed through…including the Venetian merchant, Marco Polo • Made travel safer • Imposed legal order The Silk Road Pax Mongolica • Pax Mongolica, or Mongol Peace is used to describe the late 13th Century (1200’s CE) as the brief semi-unification of Eurasia was realized. – The Mongols engaged in high level administration by borrowing and engaging in cultural adaptation. • • • • Turkish written dialect Chinese law code Paper currency from China Religious beliefs like Buddhism and Islam. – They used their skill with horses to create one of the world’s fastest and most efficient postal systems (the yam) Breakup of the Mongolian Empire As the empire grew, it became spread too thin, and broke apart. • 1260: The last Khan of a united Mongolian Empire (Mongke) died. – The four largest units became independent states, or Khanates. Chinese Yuan Dynasty • The Chinese Khanate fell to Kublai Khan – Moved the capital from Mongolia to Beijing – Declared the Yuan Dynasty (1271-1368) – Conquered the rest of China including the Southern Song Dynasty in 1279. – Foreign rule in China Chinese Yuan Dynasty • Mongols adopted Buddhism • Adopted Mandarin Chinese as the official language. • Kublai Khan unified China as a single state. – Ruled until 1294 – Made China rich and powerful – Unable to conquer Japan (tried in 1274 and 1281) or Java (tried in 1293) Chinese Yuan Dynasty • Kublai Khan rebuilt China’s bureaucracy and economy. – Repaired roads and canals – Built new cities – Restored trade with the west – Venetian Merchant Marco Polo visited Kublai Khan’s court in the 1270s. • After Khan’s death, China did not enjoy such prosperity. Mongol Women • Mongol women refused to adopt footbinding, and they retained their rights to property and freedom of movement. • Mongol women rode horses and hunted. • The daughter of on of Kubilai Khan’s cousins went to war and refused to marry until one of her suitors was able to throw her in a wrestling match. Girl Power!!! Charming Chabi • Kubilai Khan’s wife Chabi was one of Kubilai’s most important confidants on political and diplomatic matters • She convinced him that the harsh treatment of the defeated Song imperial family would only anger enemies in north China and make them more difficult to rule. China after the Death of Kublai Khan • Tremendous population loss (30-40%) as a result of the bubonic plague • Economic decline • Civil wars throughout the 1340s and finally, the dynasty was overthrown by Zhu Yuanzhang in 1368. – Took the name Hongwu and established the Ming Dynasty (1368-1644) • Longest lasting and of the most famous dynasty in Chinese history Overland Trade • Mongol conquests opened overland trade routes. • Brought about an unprecedented commercial integration of Eurasia. • The growth of long-distance trade under the Mongols led to significant transfer of military and scientific knowledge between Europe, the Middle East, China, Iran, and Japan. Bubonic Plague • Plague and other diseases spread over the trade routes of the Mongol Empire. • Plague that had lingered in Yunnan was transferred to: – Central and north China. Then… – Central Asia. Then… – Kaffa. Then… – The rest of the Mediterranean world. The Other Khanates • The Golden Horde ruled over Russia and parts of Eastern Europe until the mid1400s. • Il-Khan Mongols converted to Islam and ruled much of the Middle East until the rise of the Ottoman Turks in the late 1300s. • The Jagadai Khanate ruled Central Asia well into the 1400s. – Also converted to Islam Russia and Rule from Afar • After defeating the Kievan Rus, the Mongols of the Golden Horde made a capital at the mouth of the Volga. – Volga was also the end of the overland caravan route from Central Asia. • Mongols ruled Russia “from afar.” – Orthodox church left in place – Russian princes were agents • Main goal = get as much tax revenue as possible from the Russians Prince Alexander of Novgorod • Assisted Mongols in conquest of Russia. – Mongols favored Novgorod and Moscow as a result • After Mongols destroyed Ukrainian countryside, Russian population shifted from Kiev to Novgorod and Russia. – Moscow became new center of Russian civilization. Mongol Rule – Good or Bad? • Some historians say the negative effects are because of economic depression and cultural isolation. • Others say Russian princes were responsible for over-taxation, they were isolated by the church, and that government did not change under Mongol rule. Ivan III • Prince of Moscow • Ended Mongol rule in 1480 • Adopted the title of Tsar. Timur • Later, from 1370 – 1405 the Jagadai Khan, “Timur,” also known as Tamerlane, rose up and attempted to repeat the military triumph of his ancestor Genghis Khan. • Quickly conquered Central Asia, Persia, Northern India (including Delhi), southern Russia, and parts of the Middle East. – Expansion ended with his death, but relatives ruled over the vast Timurid Empire, including Silk Road cities like Samarkand and Bukhara into the 1500s.