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Mongol Invasions, Napoleonic Wars, Diadochi Wars, Rome and the Cold War. Every part of your life -the words you speak, the ideas you share- can be traced to our history, but how well do you really know the stories? We’ll take you to the events, the times and the people that shaped our world. Hosted by David Schroder for Kings and Generals.
 
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For the final episode on the Mongol Empire, we take you, our dear listeners, in a quick survey of the final years of Chinggisid rule in Mongolia, after the Yuan Dynasty was forced from China in 1368, until the Manchu conquests in the seventeenth century. This will help bridge the gap with the next series in this podcast, and serve as an afterword t…
 
From the heart of the Mongolian steppe, to North China’s loess plateaus; from the rugged edges of Northern India, to the hot sands of Syria and the Levant, to humid jungles in southeastern Asia, rocky islands off the coast of Japan, the high peaks of the Caucasus, Himalayas, Altai, Tien Shan and Carpathian Mountains, to the frozen rivers in Rus’ gr…
 
With the devastating invasion of the Emir Temür, better known as Tamerlane, in 1395, the Golden Horde had suffered a grievous wound. Its armies were dealt crushing defeats; its Khan Toqtamish was sent fleeing for his life; and the major cities of the Horde had all been sacked by the Timurids. The Horde was now held together with a wish and prayer, …
 
After two decades of anarchy, one man appeared from the darkness to restore the Golden Horde to its might: this was Toqtamish. Just as the candle may spark up just before it goes out, Toqtamish seemed poised to right the wrongs of the previous decades, and reaffirm the power of the Golden Horde over its subjects, and thus bring about further centur…
 
“The impure and proud Mamai, Lord of the Volga Horde, ruled over the entire Horde, and he slew many lords and khans and he set up a khan according to his own will. He was, however, in great confusion, and everybody distrusted him because he killed many lords and nobles in his Horde. He even killed his own khan, and although he had a khan, this khan…
 
The death of Özbeg, Khan of the Golden Horde, in 1341 marked the end of an era for the Jochid Khanate. The thirty year reign of Özbeg had been one of relative internal stability; a stability his successors were not to enjoy. Bloody succession struggles, plague and economic woe were now to be the news of the day within the Horde. And it was Özbeg’s …
 
From 1313 to 1341, Özbeg Khan oversaw what is normally described as the Golden Horde’s Golden age. As our last episode on Özbeg discussed, things were not going quite so golden for old Özbeg. The appellation of golden age belies the troubles which were growing ready to rock the Golden Horde. As our last episode looked at Özbeg and the Golden Horde’…
 
Our previous episode took you through important transformations of the Golden Horde during the long-reign of Özbeg Khan; the islamization, and urbanization, of the khanate. Today we share the first part of our coverage of the political dimensions of Özbeg’s nearly thirty year reign, focusing on Özbeg’s interactions with the Ilkhanate and the Mamluk…
 
“Account of the exalted Sultan Muhammad Uzbak Khan. His name is Muhammad Uzbak, and Khan in their language means ‘sultan.’ This sultan is mighty in sovereignty, exceedingly powerful, great in dignity, lofty in station, victor over the enemies of God, the people of Constantinople the Great, and diligent in the jihad against them. His territories are…
 
With the death of Nogai by 1300, one man was now master of the Golden Horde; Toqta, son of Möngke-Temür Khan, great-grandson of Batu, great-great-grandson of Jochi, and great-great-great-grandson of Chinggis Khan. After the troubles of the 1290s, Toqta ushered in a new age of stability as rivals to power were snuffed out over his twenty year reign.…
 
“In [this year] Nogai sent his wife [Yaylaq] Khātūn to the king Țuqṭā with a missive she would carry to him, and advice she would give to him. When she arrived at the [Golden] Horde he greeted her with honor, and celebrated hospitality and gifts with her, and she stayed in the hospitality for days. Then he asked her as to the reason for her coming,…
 
“In [this year] Nogai sent his wife [Yaylaq] Khātūn to the king Țuqṭā with a missive she would carry to him, and advice she would give to him. When she arrived at the [Golden] Horde he greeted her with honor, and celebrated hospitality and gifts with her, and she stayed in the hospitality for days. Then he asked her as to the reason for her coming,…
 
Kings and Generals: Mongol Empire Podcast Episode 64: Golden Horde #4, Tele-Buqa and the Third Mongol Invasion of Poland Our previous episode saw a watershed moment in the normally stale politics of the Golden Horde: in the aftermath of the second Mongol invasion of Hungary, the reigning Khan, Töde-Möngke, was deposed by his nephew, Tele-Buqa. Accu…
 
Last week you heard the first part of the interview between our series researcher, Jack Wilson, and Dr. Stephen Pow on his theory regarding the death of the famous Mongol general, Jebe Noyan. Dr. Pow argues that Jebe died in a small skirmish in the days leading up to the Kalka River, and today they discuss some of the reaction to Pow’s theory, furt…
 
Any experience reading sources from the Mongol Empire will find a frustrating tendency for them to not mention the fates of some of the empire’s key figures. A recent theory by Dr. Stephen Pow, a frequent guest on our podcast, has sought to cast a light on the possible last days of one of the top generals of the early Mongol Empire, Jebe Noyan, the…
 
Perhaps no Khan of the Golden Horde in the thirteenth century has had his reputation so maligned as Töde-Möngke. This younger brother of Möngke-Temür ruled the Jochid ulus from around 1282 until he gave up the throne in 1287. His reign is, at the most charitably, usually described as Töde-Möngke being dedicated to religious pursuits, leaving real p…
 
Having taken you, our dear listeners, through the Yuan, Chagatayid and Ilkhanates, we now turn our attention to the northwestern corner of the Mongol Empire: the Jochid ulus, the Golden Horde. Ruled by the line of Chinggis’ eldest son Jochi, this single division of the Mongol Empire was larger than the maximum extent of most empires, dominating fro…
 
At the start of the twenty-first century, a study was released which brought the thirteenth century starkly into the present. A 2003 study led by Chris Tyler-Smith published in the American Journal of Human Genetics simply titled “The Genetic Legacy of the Mongols,” determined that an alarming number of men across Asia, from China to Uzbekistan, ca…
 
The Mongols were famous for their ultimatums of destruction and submission. No shortage of thirteenth century states received demands for their unconditional surrender to the Great Khan granted divine mandate to rule by Eternal Blue Heaven. Initially, the Mongol imperial ideology was extremely black and white: you could submit to Mongol rule, or fa…
 
November, 1335. The Khan of the Ilkhanate, Abu Sa’id Bahadur, is dead. Allegedly poisoned by a spurned wife, Baghdad Khatun, his death was the unravelling of the Ilkhanate. Facing an invasion by the mighty Ozbeg of the Golden Horde, and a succession crisis due to Abu Sa’id’s failure to produce an heir, the Ilkhanate rapidly, and violently, tore its…
 
“Ket Buqa Noyan kept attacking left and right with all zeal. Some encouraged him to flee, but he refused to listen and said, “Death is inevitable. It is better to die with a good name than to flee in disgrace. In the end, someone from this army, old or young, will reach the court and report that Ket Buqa, not wanting to return in shame, gave his li…
 
One of the most enduring images of the Mongolian Empire is that it was a model of religious tolerance, one where each of the Khan’s subjects were free to worship as they pleased. This is not a new belief; in the 18th century, Edward Gibbon presented Chinggis Khan as a forerunner of the enlightenment, and for modern audiences the notion was repopula…
 
It was this Khudhābandah who embraced Islam [...] when he died, there succeeded to the kingdom his son Abū Sa’īd Bahādur Khān. He was an excellent and a generous king. He became king while of tender age, and when I saw him in Baghdād he was still a youth, the most beautiful of God’s creatures in features, and without any growth on his cheeks. His v…
 
Our last episode dealt with the reign of Ghazan Khan, ruler of the Mongol Ilkhanate from 1295 to 1304. A powerful Muslim monarch, Ghazan’s reign reinvigorated the Khanate, greatly advancing the already underway islamization of the region’s Mongol population. With his death, we enter the final phase of the Ilkhanate’s history. First, we will look at…
 
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