1070AD-FIRE Gog & Magog

1070-REFORMATION: : Assyrians | Gog & Magog
1070-REFORMATION: Surrounded | Gog & Magog
1070-REFORMATION: Threat of Extinction | Gog & Magog
1070-REFORMATION: Kingdom Besieged | Gog & Magog
1070-REFORMATION: Surrounded | Gog & Magog
1070-REFORMATION: The Kingdom Besieged | Gog & Magog
1070-REFORMATION: Besieged | Gog & Magog
1070AD-REFORMATION: Kingdom Under Siege | Gog & Magog
1070AD-REFORMATION: Besieged by Satan's armies
1070-Reformation: Satan Released
REFORMATION: "Fire from Heaven" compared with divine deliverance of old Jerusalem by angel from Heaven during Hezekiah
1070AD-REFORMATION: Saints tested by Satan's release, Rev 20:7-10: Saints under seige like ancient Israel.

Revelation 20:7-9 ~foreseen around 63AD
Now when the thousand years have expired, Satan will be released from his prison 8 and will go out to deceive the nations which are in the four corners of the earth, Gog and Magog, to gather them together to battle, whose number is as the sand of the sea. 9 They went up on the breadth of the earth and surrounded the camp of the saints and the beloved city. And fire came down from God out of heaven and devoured them. ...

Saint Augustine explains early orthodox view of verses 20:7-9 of Revelation
The words, “And they went up on the breadth of the earth, and encompassed the camp of the saints and the beloved city,” do not mean that they have come, or shall come, to one place, as if the camp of the saints and the beloved city should be in some one place; for this camp is nothing else than the Church of Christ extending over the whole world. And consequently wherever the Church shall be,—and it shall be in all nations, as is signified by “the breadth of the earth,”—there also shall be the camp of the saints and the beloved city, and there it shall be encompassed by the savage persecution of all its enemies; for they too shall exist along with it in all nations,—that is, it shall be straitened, and hard pressed, and shut up in the straits of tribulation, but shall not desert its military duty, which is signified by the word “camp.”

The words, “And fire came down out of heaven and devoured them,” are not to be understood of the final punishment which shall be inflicted when it is said, “Depart from me, ye cursed, into everlasting fire;” (Matt 25:41), for then they shall be cast into the fire, not fire come down out of heaven upon them. In this place “fire out of heaven” is well understood of the firmness of the saints, wherewith they refuse to yield obedience to those who rage against them. For the firmament is “heaven,” by whose firmness these assailants shall be pained with blazing zeal, for they shall be impotent to draw away the saints to the party of Antichrist. This is the fire which shall devour them, and this is “from God;” for it is by God’s grace the saints become unconquerable, and so torment their enemies. For as in a good sense it is said, “The zeal of Thine house hath consumed me,” Ps. 119:9, so in a bad sense it is said, “Zeal hath possessed the uninstructed people, and now fire shall consume the enemies,” Isaiah 26:11. Saint Augustine's City of God and Christian Doctrine, pages 692-3

This period immediately following the 1000 Years Millennium answers to the Old Testament period of the scattering of the 10 Northern tribes and the siege of Jerusalem by the Assyrians during the reign of Hezekiah as reported by Isaiah. In analogous Christian history, Satan was released for a while to test and prove the New Jerusalem (Rev 20:7-9) in like manner as was the old Jerusalem. Historical accounts are given to reveal "the spirit of the age," that is, its telling marks & character, or "zeitgeist" of this period in Christian history reminiscent of that of ancient Israel under seige. On both occasions, heaven came to the rescue of the holy remnant of the Israel of God: the true believers, the saints.

It should be noted, however, that the king of Christians, the immortal King Jesus, will never err like King Hezekiah who later invited in the Babylonian spies, bequeathing His reign to heirs like Manasseh and Amon, and thereby losing the kingdom and Jerusalem to destruction again and again. So the analogy between Old Testament history and Christian history ends with the miraculous deliverance from seige under the reign of good King Hezekiah. Henceforth, Christian history is a blank page ready to be co-authored between God and Man: our Tomorrows are determined by what we do with Jesus Today and not by prophetic judgments upon generations long passed. There will never be a destruction of the Heavenly Jerusalem of which Christians are citizens; not by the Babylonians nor again and again by the Romans. The reign of Christ and His Kingdom, Christendom itself, endures forever and ever. Amen.

Assyrians | Gog & Magog

1070AD-REFORMATION Q+A: Satan's Release after the Millennium

PHILLIP: I want to take a look at Satan being released after the "thousand years" were completed. Above you assert that, Satan gathers the armies to surround the New Jerusalem to destroy it.
Let’s take a look why I say that. I’ve highlighted some things here in differing colors to help draw some connections about timing.
BROWN = people active BEFORE the time of the [NERO]Beast-Tribulation period (except for links).
RED = people active DURING the time of the [NERO]Beast-Tribulation period.
BLUE = (one group of people) AFTER the [NERO]Beast-Tribulaton period.
PURPLE = (another group of people) AFTER the [NERO]Beast-Tribulation period.
Rev 1:9-10 (penned circa 62-65AD at beginning of Tribulation to encourage rejection of the [NERO]Beast & his mark)
9 I, John, your brother and fellow partaker in the Tribulation and kingdom and perseverance which are in Jesus, was on the island called Patmos, because of the word of God and the testimony of Jesus. …
Rev 13:16-18 (penned circa 62-65AD at beginning of Tribulation to encourage rejection of the [NERO]Beast & his mark)
16 And he causes all, the small and the great, and the rich and the poor, and the free men and the slaves, to be given a mark on their right hand, or on their forehead, 17 and he provides that no one should be able to buy or to sell, except the one who has the mark, either the name of the [NERO]Beast or the number of his name. 18 Here is wisdom. Let him who has understanding calculate the number of the [NERO]Beast, for the number is that of a man; and his number is six hundred and sixty-six.
Rev 20:1-10 (penned circa 62-65AD at beginning of Tribulation to encourage rejection of the [NERO]Beast & his mark)
20:1 And I saw an angel coming down from heaven, having the key of the abyss and a great chain in his hand. 2 And he laid hold of the dragon, the serpent of old, who is the devil and Satan, and bound him for a thousand years, 3 and threw him into the abyss, and shut it and sealed it over him, so that he should not deceive the nations any longer, until the thousand years were completed; after these things he must be released for a short time.
4 And I saw thrones, and they sat upon them, and judgment was given to them. And I saw the souls of those who had been beheaded because of the testimony of Jesus and because of the word of God, and those who had not worshiped the [NERO]Beast or his image, and had not received the mark upon their forehead and upon their hand; and they came to life and reigned with Christ for a thousand years. 5 The rest of the dead did not come to life until the thousand years were completed. This is the first resurrection. 6 Blessed and holy is the one who has a part in the first resurrection; over these the second death has no power, but they will [future to 62AD] be priests of God and of Christ and will [future to 62AD] reign with Him for a thousand years.
7 And when the thousand years are completed, Satanwill be released from his prison, 8 and will come out to deceive the nations which are in the four corners of the earth, Gog and Magog, to gather them together for the war; the number of them is like the sand of the seashore. 9 And they came up on the broad plain of the earth and surrounded the Camp of the Saints and the Beloved City [the Wedded City of Rev 21-22, detailed in next vignettes], and fire came down from heaven and devoured them. 10 And the devil who deceived them was thrown into the lake of fire and brimstone, where the [NERO]Beast and the false prophet are also; and they will be tormented day and night forever and ever. NASB
You don't get a kingdom without a king, and you don't reign with Christ 'til Christ Returns with His Kingdom & Power to reign.
PHILLIP: Yet this is not in line with what is shown in Rev 20. In Rev 20:7-10, the New Jerusalem has not descended yet.
FALSE. What Scriptural support does anyone have that the New Jerusalem descends AFTER the Thousand Years end? Is it not just assumed? Assumed for scant other reason than Rev 21 comes after Rev 20? No, the New Jerusalem arrives as the old Jerusalem departs, at Christ’s Return, at the beginning of His Return to reign with His servants, at their resurrection at His Return, at the beginning of the Thousand Years.
Luke 19:11-20 (circa AD 30, just before entering Jerusalem on colt, ~ 1 week prior to the Crucifixion)
11 And while they were listening to these things, He went on to tell a parable, because He was near Jerusalem, and they supposed that the kingdom of God was going to appear immediately. 12 He said therefore, "A certain nobleman went to a distant country to receive a kingdom for himself, and then return. 13 "And he called ten of his slaves, and gave them ten minas, and said to them, 'Do business with this until I come back.' 14 "But his citizens hated him, and sent a delegation after him, saying, 'We do not want this man to reign over us.' 15 "And it came about that when he returned, after receiving the kingdom, he ordered that these slaves, to whom he had given the money, be called to him in order that he might know what business they had done. 16 "And the first appeared, saying, 'Master, your mina has made ten minas more.' 17 "And he said to him, 'Well done, good slave, because you have been faithful in a very little thing, be in authority over ten cities.' 18 "And the second came, saying, 'Your mina, master, has made five minas.' 19 "And he said to him also, 'And you are to be over five cities.'
Mat 25:14-23 (circa 30AD, days prior to Crucifixion, Olivet Discourse - Parables section)
Note again: the faithful servants were to be "made rulers over many things" AFTER their Lord Returns.

John 14:2-3 (circa 30AD, just days prior to Crucifixion)
2 In my Father's house are many mansions: if it were not so, I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you.
3 And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again, and receive you unto myself; that where I am, there ye may be also.
Rev 21:3 (penned circa 62-65AD at beginning of Tribulation to encourage rejection of the [NERO]Beast & his mark)
3 And I heard a great voice out of heaven saying, Behold, the Tabernacle of God is with men , and he will dwell with them, and they shall be his people, and God Himself shall be with them, and be their God.
Rev 22:3 (penned circa 62-65AD at beginning of Tribulation to encourage rejection of the [NERO]Beast & his mark)
3 the throne of God and of the Lamb shall be in it;
Mat 1:23 (circa 4 BC, months prior to Jesus’ birth into Creation)
they shall call his name Emmanuel, which being interpreted is, God with us .
PHILLIP: Rev 20:9 points out that Satan surrounded the beloved city. Now is this the earthly Jerusalem?
NO. ITS NOT THE OLD JERUSALEM. How can anyone refer to old Jerusalem, which the preceding chapters are devoted to describing Heaven and Saints rejoicing over its destruction, possibly be described here as “The Camp of the Saints, the BelovedCity” ? NO, SATAN IS BRIEFLY RELEASED AND SURROUNDS THE NEW JERUSALEM OVER A THOUSAND YEARS LATER, A THOUSAND YEARS AFTER CHRIST RETURNED TO REIGN WITH HIS SAINTS.
This event is given to show the contrast between how God makes a powerful distinction between His loathing of old Jerusalem and His eternal love of the New Jerusalem:
*OJ) God judged the old Jerusalem with armies and fire
*NJ) But God goes on to rescue and vindicate forever the New Jerusalem from armies by fire from Heaven.
QUESTION: Which gets destroyed here by the Fire from Heaven?
A) ”The Camp of the Saints, the BelovedCity” (described in further detail a few verses later in Rev 21-22), or
B) “Gog and Magog,” “them,” “they,” “them”
I say its B).
Here's the actual passage to which you refer, please recall my color code above to help keep track of the time,
7 And when the thousand years are completed, Satan will be released from his prison, 8 and will come out to deceive the nations which are in the four corners of the earth, Gog and Magog, to gather them together for the war; the number of them is like the sand of the seashore. 9 And they came up on the broad plain of the earth and surrounded the Camp of the Saints and the BelovedCity, and fire came down from heaven and devoured them. 10 And the devil who deceived them was thrown into the lake of fire and brimstone…
BROWN = people active BEFORE the time of the [NERO]Beast-Tribulation period (except for links).
RED = people active DURING the time of the [NERO]Beast-Tribulation period.
BLUE = (one group of people) AFTER the [NERO]Beast-Tribulaton period.
PURPLE = (another group of people) AFTER the [NERO]Beast-Tribulation period.
PHILLIP: John appears to be drawing specifically from Ezekiel 39 concerning this gathering of Gog and Magog.
I agree. John is drawing from the memory of that event much the way he draws from the memory of many Old Testament events and images. Ezekiel 39 is precisely why Rev 20':7-10's Gog and Magog CANNOT be describing the armies that surrounded old Jerusalem in 70AD as the 30-70AD Millennial View, (The Transmillennial View), would have it. The Roman armies were victorious, remember? It was old Jerusalem that was destroyed with fire, and made into a vast, Masada-style, suicidal bloodbath massacre, not the surrounding armies, remember? There is no way whatsoever that either Ezekiel 39 nor Rev 20:7-10's Gog & Magog could ever possibly be equated with the armies surrounding Jerusalem as 70AD approached: just actually look at what exactly happened to exactly whom.
1) Context BEGINS by considering the verses immediately surrounding the passage in question,
2) Context THEN proceeds to consider the chapters immediately surrounding the passage in question,
3) Context THEN proceeds to consider the entire book wherein is found the passage in question,
4) Context THEN proceeds to consider the entire Testament wherein is found the passage in question,
5) Context THEN proceeds to consider the entire Bible context as a whole.
PHILLIP: Secondly how are you attributing that "fire [that] came down from heaven," as being the Reformation? The Reformation for all its good had some of its dark times as well. Reformers were persecuting each other.(Zwingli, Calvin)
The "Fire from Heaven" would be the fire of the Holy Spirit that motivated the preachers (like Jer 20:9, Rev 11:3-5, Luke 3:16, Acts 2:3, Heb 12:29, Deut 9:3 , Deut 4:24). But said fire was not the preachers themselves who were also, at times, also subject to the passions of their times, as well. Satan, who -among many other things- effectively sowed discord among brethren, was very active once again causing "all Hell to break loose," so to speak all over again, just like times of old prior to Christ's 70AD Return; that is, from the perspective of godly, saintly people who just wanted to obey the Bible. (And I find it a bit comical, almost hysterical, that you would point out to me the need for external, historical collaboration with my view when your view reckons Ezekiel 39 and Rev 20:7-10's "Gog & Magog" descriptive of the historical fate of the armies that surrounded Jerusalem as 70AD approached. Even more hysterical is this call for external, historical support when your view has the Saints reigning with Christ, (before He Returned with His Kingdom & Power), and Satan bound/Abyssed/sealed and during the very period the Bible records more of Satan/Devil's activities among men than all other periods combined, 30-70AD, a time where God's apostles were literally being beheaded, (James, brother of John), hounded from town to town, treated like the scum of the earth, having messengers of Satan sent to buffet them, being stoned, receiving the 40 lashes minus 1, the appearrance of antichrists, ad nauseum).
PHILLIP: Lastly what I see being implied is that the New Heaven and New Earth of Rev 21 began in Rev 21, one thousand years after AD70.
Not from me, but from your misunderstanding. How many times do I have to post the bold, blue footnote at the bottom of this post before the simple message sinks in? And what evidence from the Bible, (besides the observation that Rev 21 comes after Rev 20), can you provide that supports the popularly ingrained notion that the New Heavens, New Earth and New Jerusalem as described in Rev 21-22 begin AFTER the Thousand Years END?
PHILLIP: Yet how does this square with , Hebrew 8, .2 Peter 3Isaiah 65:17-25
Your misunderstanding that the New Heavens, New Earth, New Jerusalem BEGINS
the Thousand Years and the "little season of Satan's release" ENDS
is, actually, what does not square with Isaiah 65:17-25, Hebrews 8, 2 Peter 3.
But my understanding DOES, INDEED, square with Isaiah 65:17-25, Hebrews 8, 2 Peter 3
My understanding is that the New Heavens, New Earth, New Jerusalem BEGAN
the BEGINNING of the Thousand Years reign of Christ with the Martyrs from the [NERO]Beast-Tribulation period, the 1st Resurrection, the binding/Abyssing/sealing of Satan
PHILLIP: As I understand it, the Old Covenant and New Covenant were running side by side, according to Hebrews 8:13
I agree. I understand it the same way, bro. And when we consider Hebrews 12:18-28, and trust that "The Heavenly Jerusalem" = "The New Jerusalem," we know that the New Jerusalem was arriving as the old Jerusalem was departing per Heb 10:9b.
PHILLIP: Now is the implication also that the Old Covenant was still decaying up until 1070?
NO. Not at all. The Old Covenant was still decaying up until 70AD when it was fully taken away to fully establish the New, again per Heb 10:9b. You have not grasped yet the timeline I have laid out and are arguing against your own faulty strawman.
PHILLIP: As you can see I approached this looking at the Millennium account purely sequentially.
Be careful. Some of the very people you are agreeing with are also the ones who, misunderstanding what I am saying, say things like, "I dont think that Revelation 20 is sequential."
PHILLIP: I am more in line with Sam Frost and others that see the book of Revelations as being "seven sections that run parallel.
I find many attractive features to that approach, as well. And they are incorporated into my overall approach with Revelation. I just don't try to stuff the "Thousand Years" that follow the resurrection of Christians at Christ's Return into the 40, (or less), years the precede it. The immediate context of Rev 20, the broader context of the entire book of Revelation, the still broader context of the New Testament, and the overarching context of the Bible just does not support the idea that Satan is bound and the Martyrs from the [NERO]Beast-Tribulation period reign for "1000 years" throughout the 40 years that precede the [NERO]Beast and his mark and the Tribulation he causes immediately prior to Christ's Return with Kingdom & Power to reign.
EXTRA NOTE: I find, actually, is that Phillip's last 2 comments appear curiously close to self-contradictory. Let's look at them again:
A) As you can see I approached this looking at the Millennium account purely sequentially.
B) I am more in line with Sam Frost and others that see the book of Revelations as being "seven sections that run parallel."
What he's really saying, though, is reasonable. And I do the same thing. We just differ slightly as to which exact points are running sequential or running parallel.
PHILLIP: "For more on this read Sam Frost "Essay on the Millennium of Revelations 20 at, www.thereignofchrist.com
I may take a look at it when I find some time. If it is anything like the approach that Max King laid out in the second half of his massive 784 page magnum opus, The Cross and the Parousia, I think I have more than done my share open-mindedness to that approach when I spent the better part of 2002 giving it a slow, meditative, respectful read. I tried and tried to cajole myself into going along with seductive pull of the word associations he made to sell his 30-70AD Millennial View, (The Transmillennial View), but could not overcome the loathsome sense of betrayal to the very Bible skills that deduce Christ's 70AD Return in the first place: time texts! Context! Date and audience and place! Jesus' Words the Cornerstone around which all sound doctrine is squared up!
PHILLIP: You have a lot of information that is very interesting and continues to shape the discussion.
That is generous of you. And I understand that it is difficult to cut a fresh trail of thought through the jungle one's mind can come to be from all the details of Revelation. And I believe it is disrespectful of the soils of another's heart to demand a harvest of understanding and agreement immediately following the sowing of the idea-seeds. I count it an honor to have your attention, and consider it wholesome for us to find ways to stimulate the contemplation of Holy Writ among us.
PHILLIP: I am of the opinion that preterism (label :) ) still needs to answering these questions to shape a real concise and systematic approach to the Bible, so thanks for your thoughts.
I trust you and the bulk of modern Preterism have reasons that appear very valid to your reasonable minds for presenting things as you do. I've just been trying to demonstrate that there is at least a few good reasons to disagree. This is to show that we are still in "The Manhattan Project" phase of Preterism's development and we have yet to see the explosive yield, "The Bomb," expected from the Preterist View within the greater Christian Community. This is because there are some very real elements within the Preterism's current configuration that are causing it to still be a bit of a "dud:" credibility problems, credibility problems that I am attempting to stimulate interest for us as a group to solve. But if we just want to separate into various echo chambers for our favorite points of view, favorite preacher-man, book author, etc., or worse, take a college football mentality to debating, we do ourselves and the surrounding community a disservice, no?
If Preterism is still in "The Manhattan Project" phase of its development as I see it, there really is no room for strict enforcement of a set view of things. What we actually need is to get the best and the brightest to humble their minds enough to earnestly work together, freely expressing themselves, honestlyidentifying those elements of our configuration that are producing a credibilty "dud" in place of "The Bomb." And there has to be room for the kinds of frank & pointed discussions such as those for which the Wright Brothers were known.
Work calleth,
Thanks for the congenial tone here,
May God bless you and me and everyone who reads,
In the name of Christ Jesus our Teacher,
the everlasting New Heavens, New Earth & New Jerusalem which all began with Christ's Return circa 70AD.
*Feel FREE to claim as your own anything I write while I retain the right to do the same with it*
And this is love, that we walk after Christ's commandments ~2 John 6

1070-REFORMATION History (external support)

The events of World History are listed in this section to illustrate the "spirit of the age" that characterised this dark period between the "Thousand Years" (Millennium) and modern times. This dark period from 1070AD to the Reformation is characterized as follows:

  • The New Jerusalem, (ie, the global community of the true Christians), was subjected to same test of Isaiah's day that took away all of Israel & Judah leaving the mother-city Jerusalem alone and surrounded by the horde of enemies on every side.  Under siege and threat of extinction, both old and new Jerusalem, (the camp of the saints, the beloved city), were rescued suddenly with divine deliverance that consumed all enemies:  old Jerusalem by an angel from heaven, new Jerusalem by fire from heaven.
  • God's People under siege on every side, Turks & Wars & Black Death Plagues without and heretics running rampant within, True Faithful Christians face the greatest challenge to their survival since the Roman Empire was overcome for Christ.
  • From early Reformers like John Wycliffe to later Reformers like Martin Luther, the period following 1070AD is considered a Dark Age, a challenging season in Christian history. And secular historians have similar words for the period of World history. [It should be mentioned here that I regard the Reformation fires to have begun with the likes of John Wycliffe and ending with the likes of Martin Luther & Jean Calvin. Thus, the Reformation beginning with Wycliffe gave rise to the Renaissance, "the rebirth" that followed. Progress is preceeded by preaching]. Relative to the 1000 year Millennium just finished and Eternity just ahead, this period of Satan's Release is a "short while."
  • World History is cited to demonstrate the "zeitgheist" or "spirit of the age" of this dark period before the Reformation fire came like "fire from Heaven" to rescue the faithful from enemies on every side. 

"Having given my Conjecture, that the Jewish Church, with their rulers, were the Antichrist mentioned by St. Paul; I proceed to shew, how their Apostasy, when they were thus deserted by God, resembled, and ran Parallel to the Apostasy of the Roman Church." (Additional comments on II Thess. 2). ~ Daniel Whitby (1710)

1070AD-REFORMATION Christianity's greatest trial since the 30-70AD Tribulation

Continued from: The MILLENNIUM = the Middle Age 70-1070AD = The Day of the Lord


I found that shortly after 1070AD, the seeds of discord planted in the 1054AD Schism between Western Catholic & Eastern Orthodox, germinated to produce a harvest of hell, worldwide, including the world-changing devastation of the Black Death Plague. It seemed reasonable to deduce that this period from apx 1070AD to the Reformation/Rennaissance equated to Satan's being loosed and that the "Fire from Heaven" (ie spritual fire) that rescues the Saintly Camp, the Beloved City (Christendom), is equated with The Reformation, the great return to the actual Text of Holy Writ. The blurring inklings of an accomplished Return of Christ began to more fully focus within me as the major puzzle pieces began to fit together. Studiies of Words of Jesus & the Apostles harmonized with the reports of Christians through history to deduce that Jesus must have Returned around the destruction of ancient Jerusalem in 70AD, precisely because the Text demands it at the beginning of the Millennium, the 1000 year reign of the saints; the saints that had been martyred during the Tribulation endured by the Apostle John & the rest; the Tribulation that culminated in same said destruction of Jerusalem in 70AD. This had to mark the Return of Christ/First Resurrection, the beginning of the 1000 year Millennium/Middle Age conquest-rule by Christendom.

The brief history provided below represents notable highlights from the, (relative to the 1,000 years before and eternity that follows), "brief loosing of Satan to rally the world again against God's saints" culminating in the "Heavenly Fire" that rescues the Camp of the Saints, the Beloved City, (the worldwide community of true Christians everywhere). Not a one of these highlights appear in Holy Writ but they are listed below to give the reader some idea of the “spirit of the age” throughout that dark age following the 70-1070AD period of world Christianization, that period described by John in Rev 20:7-10.
1070AD to the Reformation = The Brief Loosing of Satan ending with the Fire from Heaven
As shown previously under the heading 70-1070AD: The Millennium, the 1000 years starts at ancient Jerusalem/Babylon's Fall in 70AD: it is the first 1,000 years of the eternal New Heavens & New Earth reign, (perhaps analogous to the Old Testament period of the Judges). Satan is "crushed beneath their feet," when bound and cast into the abyss below, from circa 70ad to circa 1070ad. Upon temporary release circa 1070ad, Satan reprises his ancient role as the organizational head of evil spiritual influences. At the climax of his assault, heavenly fire comes to the rescue of God's Saintly People, forever vanquishing Satan to the Lake of Fire, (where the Beast & False Prophet had been cast over 1,000 years previously), leaving evil spiritual influences forever without the organizational genius with which they had tyrannized Mankind in ancient ages. Here's a sampling of notable events of that unusually tumultuous period, subsequently referred to as "The Dark Ages" (which followed The Middle Ages of circa 70-1070AD. Though not a one of these highlights appear in Holy Writ, they are listed below to give the reader some idea of the “spirit of the age” throughout that dark age immediately following the 70-1070AD period of world Christianization. Below are highlights from that period foreseen by John in Rev 20:7-10.
1073-1085ad Pope Gregory 7 (Hildebrandt): Touted by Roman Catholics as a "saint" for his comprehensive "reforms" which were characterized largely by a papal power grab for more and more authority in both "spiritual and temporal" matters. Gregory 7 was instrumental to greatly extending papal authority with claims of infallibility. "Because he found it difficult to work through the bishops, he tended to centralize authority. He used papal legates (representatives) freely and insisted on their precedence over local bishops." ~ Encyclopedia Britannica Christ's faithful would find themselves under a more and more tyrannical grip from the very ones they looked to for discipling. Kind of like the disciples of 1st Century had experienced under the Pharisees prior to John The Baptist and Jesus's arrivals.
1096-late1200's The Crusades: Further enmities between Eastern Orthodox Byzantium and the Roman Catholic West developed at the end of the 11th century. At that time a new Islamic group, the Seljuk Turks (see Seljuks), began to ravage the Byzantine Empire's eastern flank. The emperor asked for military help from the West, but he got more than he bargained for: The pope launched the First Crusade, a massive armed pilgrimage against the forces of Islam. See Crusades... (Microsoft ® Encarta ® Encyclopedia 2005 © 1993-2004 Microsoft Corporation. All rights reserved.)
1231ad Pope Gregory IX instituted the papal Inquisition for the apprehension and trial of heretics... ~Encyclopedia Britannica

1200's-1300's The Golden Hordes of Genghis Khan, one of the most famous conquerors of history, who consolidated tribes into a unified Mongolia and then extended his empire across Asia to the Adriatic Sea. Genghis Khan was a warrior and ruler of genius who, starting from obscure and insignificant beginnings, brought all the nomadic tribes of Mongolia under the rule of himself and his family in a rigidly disciplined military state. He then turned his attention toward the settled peoples beyond the borders of his nomadic realm and began the series of campaigns of plunder and conquest that eventually carried the Mongol armies as far as the Adriatic Sea in one direction and the Pacific coast of China in the other, leading to the establishment of the great Mongol Empire.~ Enclyclopedia Britannica More serious outside threats to Christendom's survival.
1100's-1453 The Hundred Years War: an intermittent struggle between England and France in the 14th–15th century over a series of disputes, including the question of the legitimate succession to the French crown. The struggle involved several generations of English and French claimants to the crown and actually occupied a period of more than 100 years. By convention it is said to have started in 1337 and ended in 1453, but there had been periodic fighting over the question of English fiefs in France going back to the 12th century.... " ~Encyclopedia Britannica. Christendom fraught with greater internal infighting. The devastation from this ongoing attack & seige is largely why The Black Death Plague found such great opportunity, as well.
Early 1300's Marco Polo: Venetian merchant and adventurer, who traveled from Europe to Asia in 1271–95, remaining in China for 17of those years, and whose Il milione ("The Million"), known in English as the Travels of Marco Polo, is a classic of travel literature.~Encyclopedia Britannica. Marco Polo's impact was to incite many away from Christian discipleship to a greedy pursuit of wealth & adventure with the Far East. "Greed is idolatry." Colossians 3:5 and "Idolatry is demon worship." 1 Cor 10:20.
1347-1351ad Black Death Plague: "Originating in China and Inner Asia, the plague was transmitted to Europeans (1347) when a Kipchak army, besieging a Genoese trading post in the Crimea, catapulted plague-infested corpses into the town. The disease spread from the Mediterranean ports (see Map), affecting Sicily (1347); North Africa, mainland Italy, Spain, England, and France (1348); Austria, Hungary, Switzerland, Germany, and the Low Countries (1349); and Scandinavia and the Baltic lands (1350). There were recurrences of the plague in 1361–63, 1369–71, 1374–75, 1390, and 1400. The rate of mortality from the Black Death varied from place to place: ...within the towns the monastic communities provided the highest incidence of victims. Even the great and powerful, who were more capable of flight, were struck down: among royalty, ... Canterbury lost two successive archbishops.... The papal court at Avignon was reduced by one-fourth. Whole communities and families were sometimes annihilated. The study of contemporary archives suggests a mortality varying in the different regions between one-eighth and two-thirds of the population, and the French chronicler Jean Froissart's statement that about one-third of Europe's population died in the epidemic may be fairly accurate. The population in England in 1400 was perhaps half what it had been 100 years earlier; in that country alone, the Black Death certainly caused the depopulation or total disappearance of about 1,000 villages. A rough estimate is that 25 million people in Europe died from plague during the Black Death. The population of western Europe did not again reach its pre-1348 level until the beginning of the 16th century.... ~Encyclopedia Britannica. So great was the devastation from the Black Death Plague upon the whole Earth, not just Europe, that is ranks as one of Histories greatest disasters, bar none, where the greatest proportion of the Mankind's population was eliminated in a comparatively, very short period. Many survivors gave themselves over to debauchery while others convinced themselves they had come into a new Hevanes & Earth, so much had changed. The Roman Catholic monolith hurriedly replaced her devastated priestly orders by filling their ranks with hastily prepared novices - from whom rampant doctrinal corruption rapidly spread. The true saints of God were surrounded now and under siege from within and without.
1478ad Pope Sixtus IV authorized the Spanish Inquisition. The first Spanish inquisitors, operating in Sevilla (Seville), proved so severe that Sixtus IV had to interfere. But the Spanish crown now had in its possession a weapon too precious to give up, and the efforts of the pope to limit the powers of the Inquisition were without avail. In 1483 he was induced to authorize the naming by the Spanish government of a grand inquisitor for Castile, and during the same year Aragon, Valencia, and Catalonia were placed under the power of the Inquisition. The first grand inquisitor was the Dominican Tomás de Torquemada, who has become the symbol of the inquisitorwho uses torture and confiscation to terrorize his victims. The number of burnings at the stake during his tenure has been exaggerated, but it was probably about 2,000. In general, the procedure of the Spanish Inquisition was much like the medieval Inquisition [of 1231ad under Pope Gregory IX]... ~Encyclopedia Britannica
1204 - 1453ad Sackings and Fall of Constantinople - Capitol of Christendom during the Middle Ages (Millenium) and Source of Most New Testament Texts - The home of St. John Chrysostom & origin point of Textus Receptus Greek manuscripts.Culturally, Constantinople fostered a fusion of Oriental and Occidental custom, art, and architecture. The religion was Christian, the organization Roman, and the language and outlook Greek. The concept of the divine right of kings, rulers who were defenders of the faith—as opposed to the king as divine himself—was evolved there. The gold solidus of Constantine retained its value and served as a monetary standard for more than a thousand years. As the centuries passed—the Christian empire lasted 1130 years—Constantinople, seat of empire, was to become as important as the empire itself; in the end, although the territories had virtually shrunk away, the capital endured. ... Constantine's new city ...contained ...several imposing churches..., There was, furthermore, a welcome for Christians, a tolerance of other beliefs, and benevolence toward Jews. Constantinople was also an ecclesiastical centre. In 381 it became the seat of a patriarch who was second only to the bishop of Rome; the patriarch of Constantinople is still the nominal head of the Orthodox church. Constantine inaugurated the first ecumenical councils; the first six were held in or near Constantinople. In the 5th and 6th centuries emperors were engaged in devising means to keep the Monophysites attached to the realm. In the 8th and 9th centuries Constantinople was the centre of the battle between iconoclasts and the defenders of icons. The matter was settled by the seventh ecumenical council against the iconoclasts, but not before much blood had been spilled and countless works of art destroyed. The Eastern and Western wings of the church drew further apart, and after centuries of doctrinal disagreement between Rome and Constantinople a schism occurred in the 11th century. The pope originally approved the sack of Constantinople in 1204, then decried it. Various attempts were made to heal the breach in the face of the Turkish threat to the city, but the divisive forces of suspicion and doctrinal divergence were too strong. In 1203 the armies of the Fourth Crusade, deflected from their objective in the Holy Land, appeared before Constantinople—ostensibly to restore the legitimate Byzantine emperor, Isaac II. Although the city fell, it remained under its own government for a year. On April 13, 1204, however, the Crusaders burst into the city to sack it. After a general massacre, the pillage went on for years. The Crusading knights installed one of themselves, Baldwin of Flanders, as emperor, and the Venetians—prime instigators of the Crusade—took control of the church. While the Latins divided the rest of the realm among themselves, the Byzantines entrenched themselves across the Bosporus at Nicaea (now Ä°znik) and at Epirus (now northwestern Greece). The period of Latin rule (1204 to 1261) was the most disastrous in the history of Constantinople. Even the bronze statues were melted down for coin; everything of value was taken. Sacred relics were torn from the sanctuaries and dispatched to religious establishments in western Europe. In 1261 Constantinople was retaken by Michael VIII (Palaeologus), Greek emperor of Nicaea. For the next two centuries the shrunken Byzantine Empire, threatened both from the West and by the rising power of the Ottoman Turks in Asia Minor, led a precarious existence. When the [militant Islamist muslim] Turks crossed into Europe in the mid-14th century, the fate of Constantinople was sealed. ... The siege of the city began in April 1453. The Turks had not only overwhelming numerical superiority but also cannon that breached the ancient walls. The last Byzantine emperor, Constantine XI (Palaeologus), was killed in battle. For three days the city was abandoned to pillage and massacre, after which order was restored by the sultan. When Constantinople was captured, it was almost deserted. .... Hagia Sophia and other Byzantine churches were transformed into mosques. The Greek patriarchate was retained, but moved to the Church of the Pammakaristos Virgin (Mosque of Fethiye), later to find a permanent home in the Fener (Phanar) quarter. The sultan built ... the Mosque of the Fatih on the site of the Basilica of the Holy Apostles. The capital of the Ottoman Empire was transferred to Constantinople from Adrianople (Edirne) in 1457. ~Encylopedia Britannica The fall of Christendom's first capitol city, this seat of Christian temporal power of the Middle Ages, Constantinople, this repository of the majority of surviving New Testament manuscripts, and metropolis of ancient Christian scholarship, caused many of its most erudite Bible scholars to flee for refuge in the West where they promptly began sharing their treasures of Christian Bible Text studies with the West, notably in Rome. Little surprise that the Rennaissance (French "Rebirth") marks its beginnings about this time & place. The Reformation fanning to full flame along with it.
So Christendom was under vigorous attack from both the inside with heresies, inquisitions, & persecutions as well as attacked from the outside. Islamic forces were making a dramatic resurgence that, if not stopped, would have wiped out Christendom from its greatest stronghold, Europe. True believers found themselves surrounded once again on all sides - fulfilling Rev. 19:9 "They [Satan's forces] marched across the breadth of the earth and surrounded the camp of God's people, The City He loves [i.e.-the hitherto described New Jerusalem]."
"BUT FIRE CAME DOWN FROM HEAVEN AND DEVOURED" THESE SURROUNDING ENEMIES, RESCUEING THE CAMP OF THE SAINTS, THE BELOVED CITY OF GOD: Many attribute the very first fires of The Reformation to John Wycliffe who came as one of the first forerunners in the 1300's. Following him came the likes of Jan Hus and Girolamo Savonarola who would keep the torch alive through the 1400's. And in 1517, Martin Luther saw the fires of The Reformation explode on the scene in a way that is still making history, dramatically devouring up the opposers of The Gospel fro within and without, starting with the religious tyrants from within the Christian Community. Jean Calvin would add logs to the wildly growing fire that many attribute to the re-inventing of modern, Christian democracy -adopted by John Knox's Presbyterians who would be influential in founding America via the ministries of the likes of John Witherspoon. Newly formed Christian, Protestant-Reformed governments took on militarily God's enemies without - dramatically driving the back and back. The Renaissance, (French, "The Rebirth"), was now in full swing along with The Age of Discovery and of The America's in 1492, the coming of age of "miracle-working" Modern Science, and the dawn of Government of The People, by The People, and for The People. The all-encompassing & organized evil of previous ages has been cast out forever - its head, Satan, having finally been cast forever into the Lake of Fire where the False Prophet and the ancient Beast of the Roman Empire had been thrown over a 1,000 years previously. All that remains are disjointed, disorganized underlings who will never successfully dominate the Earth again. There is neither Biblical evidence nor historical precedence that this trend will ever change: Since the last pagan world superpower, the Roman Empire, found it politically expedient to declare itself a Christian nation in the 4th century AD, the dominant religion of the dominant world powers has always been and will always be the Religion of Christ.
***These observations were a valuable part of my interest in accepting from the Scriptures the reality of Jesus' accomplished Return in 70AD. I offer them up here for consideration. They show that our Heavenly Father dwells not just in Bible stories we tell each other, but actively moves through the world of men, making history everyday - as He has always done and just like He said He would.


1049-1294AD Gregory VII to Boniface VIII: Papal Theocracy in Conflict with the Secular Power

A.D. 1049-1294

Introductory Survey.

The fifth period of general Church history, or the second period of mediaeval Church history, begins with the rise of Hildebrand, 1049, and ends with the elevation of Boniface VIII. to the papal dignity, 1294.

In this period the Church and the papacy ascend from the lowest state of weakness and corruption to the highest power and influence over the nations of Europe. It is the classical age of Latin Christianity: the age of the papal theocracy, aiming to control the German Empire and the kingdoms of France, Spain, and England. It witnessed the rise of the great Mendicant orders and the religious revival which followed. It beheld the full flower of chivalry and the progress of the crusades, with the heroic conquest and loss of the Holy Land. It saw the foundations laid of the great universities of Bologna, Paris, Oxford. It was the age of scholastic philosophy and theology, and their gigantic efforts to solve all conceivable problems and by dialectical skill to prove every article of faith. During its progress Norman and Gothic architecture began to rear the cathedrals. All the arts were made the handmaids of religion; and legendary poetry and romance flourished. Then the Inquisition was established, involving the theory of the persecution of Jews and heretics as a divine right, and carrying it into execution in awful scenes of torture and blood. It was an age of bright light and deep shadows, of strong faith and stronger superstition, of sublime heroism and wild passions, of ascetic self-denial and sensual indulgence, of Christian devotion and barbarous cruelty. Dante, in his Divina Commedia, which "heaven and earth" combined to produce, gives a poetic mirror of Christianity and civilization in the thirteenth and the opening years of the fourteenth century, when the Roman Church was at the summit of its power, and yet, by the abuse - of that power and its worldliness, was calling forth loud protests, and demands for a thorough reformation from all parts of Western Christendom.

A striking feature of the Middle Ages is the contrast and co-operation of the forces of extreme self-abnegation as represented in monasticism and extreme ambition for worldly dominion as represented in the papacy. The former gave moral support to the latter, and the latter utilized the former. The monks were the standing army of the pope, and fought his battles against the secular rulers of Western Europe.

The papal theocracy in conflict with the secular powers and at the height of its power is the leading topic. The weak and degenerate popes who ruled from 900-1046 are now succeeded by a line of vigorous minds, men of moral as well as intellectual strength. The world has had few rulers equal to Gregory VII. 1073-1085, Alexander III. 1159-1181, and Innocent III. 1198-1216, not to speak of other pontiffs scarcely second to these masters in the art of government and aspiring aims. The papacy was a necessity and a blessing in a barbarous age, as a check upon brute force, and as a school of moral discipline. The popes stood on a much higher plane than the princes of their time. The spirit has a right to rule over the body; the intellectual and moral interests are superior to the material and political. But the papal theocracy carried in it the temptation to secularization. By the abuse of opportunity it became a hindrance to pure religion and morals. Christ gave to Peter the keys of the kingdom of heaven, but he also said, "My kingdom is not of this world" (John 18:36). The pope coveted both kingdoms, and he got what he coveted. But he was not able to hold the power he claimed over the State, and aspiring after temporal authority lost spiritual power. Boniface VIII. marks the beginning of the decline and fall of the papal rule; and the seeds of this decline and fall were sown in the period when the hierarchy was in the pride of its worldly might and glory.

In this period also, and chiefly as the result of the crusades, the schism between the churches of the East and the West was completed. All attempts made at reconciliation by pope and council only ended in wider alienation.
The ruling nations during the Middle Ages were the Latin, who descended from the old Roman stock, but showed the mixture of barbaric blood and vigor, and the Teutonic. The Italians and French had the most learning and culture. Politically, the German nation, owing to its possession of the imperial crown and its connection with the papacy, was the most powerful, especially under the Hohenstaufen dynasty. England, favored by her insular isolation, developed the power of self-government and independent nationality, and begins to come into prominence in the papal administration. Western Europe is the scene of intellectual, ecclesiastical, and political activities of vast import, but its arms and devotion find their most conspicuous arena in Palestine and the East.

Finally this period of two centuries and a half is a period of imposing personalities. The names of the greatest of the popes have been mentioned, Gregory VII., Alexander III., and Innocent III. Its more notable sovereigns were William the Conqueror, Frederick Barbarossa, Frederick II., and St. Louis of France. Dante the poet illumines its last years. St. Bernard, Francis d'Assisi, and Dominic, the Spaniard, rise above a long array of famous monks. In the front rank of its Schoolmen were Anselm, Abelard, Albertus Magnus, Thomas Aquinas, Bonaventura, and Duns Scotus. Thomas à Becket and Grosseteste are prominent representatives of the body of episcopal statesmen. This combination of great figures and of great movements gives to this period a variety of interest such as belongs to few periods of Church history or the history of mankind.

(from Schaff's History of the Church, PC Study Bible formatted electronic database Copyright © 1999, 2003, 2005, 2006 by Biblesoft, Inc. All rights reserved.)

1037-1194AD The Great Seljuk Empire: brought to the Muslims "fighting spirit and fanatical aggression"

From: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Great_Seljuq_Empire

Great Seljuq Empire

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Great Seljuq Empire
Image:Kara-Khanid KhanateFlag.svg

Flag of Great Seljuq Empire


Location of Great Seljuq Empire
Great Seljuq Empire in its zenith
Political structureEmpire
- 1037-1063Tugrul Beg
- 1063-1072Alp Arslan
- 1072-1092Malik Shah I
- 1118-1157Ahmed Sanjar
- 1174-1194Tugrul III
- Tugrul Beg formed the state system1037
- Replaced by the Khwarezmian Empire1194

The Great Seljuq Empire was a medievalSunniMuslim empire established by the Qynyq branch of Oghuz Turks[1] that once controlled a vast area stretching from the Hindu Kush to eastern Anatolia and from Central Asia to the Persian Gulf. From their homelands near the Aral sea, the Seljuqs advanced first into Khorasan and then into mainland Persia before eventually conquering eastern Anatolia. Their advance marked the beginning of Turkic power in the Middle East.

The Seljuq empire was founded by Tugrul Beg in 1037 after the efforts by the founder of the Seljuq dynasty, Seljuq Beg, back in the first quarter of the 11th century. Seljuq Beg's father was in a higher position in the Oghuz Yabgu State, and gave his name both to the state and the dynasty. The Seljuqs united the fractured political scene of the Eastern Islamic world and played a key role in the first and second crusades. Highly Persianized[2][3] in culture[4] and language[5][6][7][8], the Seljuqs also played an important role in the development of the Turko-Persian tradition which "features Persian culture patronized by Turkic rulers"[9].



[edit] Founder of the Dynasty

Main article: Seljuk

The apical ancestor of the Seljuqs was their Beg, Seljuq, who was reputed to have served in the Khazar army, under whom, circa 950 CE they migrated to Khwarezm, near the city of Jend also called Khujand, where they converted to Islam.[10]

[edit] Great Seljuk

The Seljuqs were allied with the Persian Samanid Shahs against the Qarakhanids. The Samanids however fell to the Qarakhanids and the emergence of the Ghaznavids and were involved in the power struggle in the region before establishing their own independent base.

[edit] Tugrul and Chagri Beg

Main article: Toğrül

Togrul Beg was the grandson of Seljuk and Çagrı (Chagri) was his brother, under whom the Seljuks wrested an empire from the Ghaznavids. Initially the Seljuks were repulsed by Mahmud and retired to Khwarezm but Togrül and Çagrı led them to capture Merv and Nishapur (1028-1029). Later they repeatedly raided and traded territory with his successors across Khorasan and Balkh and even sacked Ghazni in 1037. In 1039 at the Battle of Dandanaqan, they decisively defeated Mas'ud I of the Ghaznavids resulting in him abandoning most of his western territories to the Seljuks. In 1055, Togrül captured Baghdad from the Shi'a Buyids under a commission from the Abbassids.

[edit] Alp Arslan

Main article: Alp Arslan

Alp Arslan was the son of Chagri Beg and expanded significantly upon Togrül's holdings by adding Armenia and Georgia in 1064 and invading the Byzantine Empire in 1068, from which he annexed almost all of Anatolia; Arslan's decisive victory at the Battle of Manzikert (in 1071) effectively neutralized the Byzantine [1st Christian Empire] threat.[11] He authorized his Turcoman generals to carve their own principalities out of formerly Byzantine Anatolia, as atabegs loyal to him. Within two years the Turcomans had established control as far as the Aegean Sea under numerous "beghliks" (modern Turkish beyliks): the Saltuqis in Northeastern Anatolia, Mengujeqs in Eastern Anatolia, Artuqids in Southeastern Anatolia, Danishmendis in Central Anatolia, Rum Seljuks (Beghlik of Suleyman, which later moved to Central Anatolia) in Western Anatolia and the Beghlik of Çaka Beg in İzmir (Smyrna).

[edit] Malik Shah I

Main article: Malik Shah I

Under Alp Arslan's successor Malik Shah and his two Persian viziers[12]Nizām al-Mulk and Tāj al-Mulk, the Seljuk state expanded in various directions, to former Iranian border before Arab invasion, so that it bordered China in the East and the Byzantines in the West. He moved the capital from Rayy to Isfahan. The Iqta military system and the Nizāmīyyah University at Baghdad were established by Nizām al-Mulk, and the reign of Malikshāh was reckoned the golden age of "Great Seljuk". The Abbasid Caliph titled him "The Sultan of the East and West" in 1087. The Assassins of Hassan-e Sabāh however started to become a force during his era and assassinated many leading figures in his administration.

[edit] Governance

Head of male royal figure, 12-13th century, found in Iran. Carved and drilled stone with Seljuq craftsmanship. Kept at the New York Metropolitan Museum of Art.
Head of male royal figure, 12-13th century, found in Iran. Carved and drilled stone with Seljuq craftsmanship. Kept at the New York Metropolitan Museum of Art.

The Seljuk power was at its zenith under Malikshāh I, and both the Qarakhanids and Ghaznavids had to acknowledge the overlordship of the Seljuks.[13]. The Seljuk dominion was established over the ancient Sassanid domains, in Iran and Iraq, and included Anatolia as well as parts of Central Asia and modern Afghanistan.[13] The Seljuk rule was modelled after the tribal organization brought in by the nomadic conquerors and resembled a 'family federation' or 'appanage state'.[13] Under this organization the leading member of the paramount family assigned family members portions of his domains as autonomous appanages.[13]

[edit] The First Crusade

Main article: First Crusade

The fractured states of the Seljuks were on the whole more concerned with consolidating their own territories and gaining control of their neighbours, than with cooperating against the crusaders when the First Crusade arrived in 1095 and successfully captured the Holy land to set up the Crusader States. The Seljuks had already lost Palestine to the Fatimids before their capture by the crusaders.

[edit] The Second Crusade

See also: Second Crusade, Zengi, Nur ad-Din

Ahmed Sanjar had to contend with the revolts of Qarakhanids in Transoxiana, Ghorids in Afghanistan and Qarluks in modern Kyrghyzstan, even as the nomadic Kara-Khitais invaded the East destroying the Seljuk vassal state of the Eastern Qarakhanids. At the Battle of Qatwan Sanjar 1141 and lost all his eastern provinces up to the Syr Darya.

During this time conflict with the Crusader States was also intermittent and after the First Crusade, increasingly independent atabegs would frequently ally with the crusader states against other atabegs as they vied with each other for territory. At Mosul Zengi succeeded Kerbogha as atabeg and successfully began the process of consolidating the atabegs of Syria. In 1144 Zengi captured Edessa, as the County of Edessa had allied itself with the Ortoqids against him. This event triggered the launch of the second crusade. Nur ad-Din, one of Zengi's sons who succeeded him as atabeg of Aleppo created an alliance in the region to oppose the second crusade which landed in 1147.

[edit] Division of empire

See also: Sultanate of Rum, Atabegs

When Malikshāh I died in 1092, the empire split as his brother and four sons quarrelled over the apportioning of the empire among themselves. In Anatolia, Malikshāh I was succeeded by Kilij Arslan I who founded the Sultanate of Rum and in Syria by his brother Tutush I. In Persia he was succeeded by his son Mahmud I whose reign was contested by his other three brothers Barkiyaruq in Iraq, Muhammad I in Baghdad and Ahmad Sanjar in Khorasan.

When Tutush I died his sons Radwan and Duqaq inherited Aleppo and Damascus respectively and contested with each other as well further dividing Syria amongst emirs antagonistic towards each other.

In 1118, the third son Ahmad Sanjar took over the empire. His nephew, the son of Muhammad I did not recognize his claim to the throne and Mahmud II proclaimed himself Sultan and established a capital in Baghdad, until 1131 when he was finally officially deposed by Ahmad Sanjar.

Elsewhere in nominal Seljuk territory were the Artuqids in northeastern Syria and northern Mesopotamia. They controlled Jerusalem until 1098. In eastern Anatolia and northern Syria a state was founded by the Dānišmand dynasty, and contested land with the Sultanate of Rum and Kerbogha exercised greeted independence as the atabeg of Mosul.

[edit] Legacy

The Seljuks were educated in the service of Muslim courts as slaves or mercenaries. The dynasty brought revival, energy, and reunion to the Islamic civilization hitherto dominated by Arabs and Persians. According to the Seljuks, they brought to the Muslims "fighting spirit and fanatical aggression". [14]

The Seljuks were also patrons of art and literature. Under the Seljuks universities were founded.[15] Their reign is characterized by astronomers such as Omar Khayyám, and the philosipher al-Ghazali.

[edit] List of Emperors of the Great Seljuq Empire

[edit] Conquest by Khwarezm and the Ayyubids

See also:Saladin, Ayyubid, Khwarezmid Empire

In 1153 the Oghuz Turks rebelled and captured Sanjar. He managed to escape three years later but died a year after that. Despite several attempts to reunite the Seljuks by his successors, the Crusades prevented them from regaining their former empire. The Atabegs such as Zengids and Artuqids were only nominally under the Seljuk Sultan, and generally controlled Syria independently. When Ahmed Sanjar died in 1156 it fractured the empire even further rendering the atabegs effectively independent.

  1. Khorasani Seljuks in Khorasan and Transoxiana. Capital: Merv
  2. Kermani Seljuks
  3. Sultanate of Rum. Capital: Iznik (Nicaea), later Konya (Iconium)
  4. Atabeghlik of Salgur in Iran
  5. Atabeghlik of Ildeniz in Iraq and Azerbaijan. Capital Hamadan
  6. Atabeghlik of Bori in Syria. Capital: Damascus
  7. Atabeghlik of Zangi in Al Jazira (Northern Mesopotamia). Capital: Mosul
  8. Turcoman Beghliks: Danishmendis, Artuqids, Saltuqis and Mengujegs in Asia Minor
  9. Khwarezmshahs in Transoxiana, Khwarezm. Capital: Urganch

After the Second Crusade Nur ad-Din's general Shirkuh, who had established himself in Egypt on Fatimid land, was succeeded by Saladin who rebelled against Nur ad-Din. Upon Nur ad-Dins death, Saladin married his widow and captured most of Syria creating the Ayyubid dynasty.

On other fronts the Kingdom of Georgia began to become a regional power and extended its borders at the expense of Great Seljuk as did the revival of the Armenian Kingdom of Cilicia under Leo II of Armenia in Anatolia. The Abbassid caliph An-Nasir also began to reassert the authority of the caliph and allied himself with the Khwarezmshah Ala ad-Din Tekish.

For a brief period Togrul III was the Sultan of all Seljuk except for Anatolia. In 1194 Togrul was defeated by Ala ad-Din Tekish, the Shah of Khwarezmid Empire, and the Seljuk finally collapsed. Of the former Seljuk Empire, only the Sultanate of Rüm in Anatolia remained. As the dynasty declined in the middle of the 13th century, the Mongols invaded Anatolia in the 1260s and divided it into small emirates called the Anatolian beyliks, one of which, the Ottoman, would rise to power and conquer the rest.

[edit] Notes

  1. ^
    • Jackson, P. (2002). Review: The History of the Seljuq Turks: The History of the Seljuq Turks.Journal of Islamic Studies 2002 13(1):75-76; doi:10.1093/jis/13.1.75.Oxford Centre for Islamic Studies.
    • Bosworth, C. E. (2001). Notes on Some Turkish Names in Abu 'l-Fadl Bayhaqi's Tarikh-i Mas'udi. Oriens, Vol. 36, 2001 (2001), pp. 299-313.
    • Dani, A. H., Masson, V. M. (Eds), Asimova, M. S. (Eds), Litvinsky, B. A. (Eds), Boaworth, C. E. (Eds). (1999). History of Civilizations of Central Asia. Motilal Banarsidass Publishers (Pvt. Ltd).
    • Hancock, I. (2006). ON ROMANI ORIGINS AND IDENTITY. The Romani Archives and Documentation Center. The University of Texas at Austin.
    • Asimov, M. S., Bosworth, C. E. (eds.). (1998). History of Civilizations of Central Asia, Vol. IV: The Age of Achievement: AD 750 to the End of the Fifteenth Century, Part One: The Historical, Social and Economic Setting. Multiple History Series. Paris: UNESCO Publishing.
    • Dani, A. H., Masson, V. M. (Eds), Asimova, M. S. (Eds), Litvinsky, B. A. (Eds), Boaworth, C. E. (Eds). (1999). History of Civilizations of Central Asia. Motilal Banarsidass Publishers (Pvt. Ltd).
  2. ^ M.A. Amir-Moezzi, "Shahrbanu", Encyclopaedia Iranica, Online Edition, (LINK): "... here one might bear in mind that non-Persian dynasties such as the Ghaznavids, Saljuqs and Ilkhanids were rapidly to adopt the Persian language and have their origins traced back to the ancient kings of Persia rather than to Turkish heroes or Muslim saints ..."
  3. ^
    • Josef W. Meri, "Medieval Islamic Civilization: An Encyclopedia", Routledge, 2005, p. 399
    • Michael Mandelbaum, "Central Asia and the World", Council on Foreign Relations (May 1994), p. 79
    • Jonathan Dewald, "Europe 1450 to 1789: Encyclopedia of the Early Modern World", Charles Scribner's Sons, 2004, p. 24: "Turcoman armies coming from the East had driven the Byzantines out of much of Asia Minor and established the Persianized sultanate of the Seljuks."
  4. ^
    • C.E. Bosworth, "Turkish Expansion towards the west" in UNESCO HISTORY OF HUMANITY, Volume IV, titled "From the Seventh to the Sixteenth Century", UNESCO Publishing / Routledge, p. 391: "While the Arabic language retained its primacy in such spheres as law, theology and science, the culture of the Seljuk court and secular literature within the sultanate became largely Persianized; this is seen in the early adoption of Persian epic names by the Seljuq Rulers (Qubad, Kay Khusraw and so on) and in the use of Persian as a literary language (Turkish must have been essentially a vehicle for every days speech at this time). The process of Persianization accelerated in the thirteenth century with the presence in Konya of two of the most distinguished refugees fleeing before the Mongols, Baha al-din Walad and his son Mawlana Jalal al-din Rumi, whose Mathnawi, composed in Konya, constitutes one of the crowing glories of classical Persian literature."
    • Mehmed Fuad Koprulu's, "Early Mystics in Turkish Literature", Translated by Gary Leiser and Robert Dankoff , Routledge, 2006, pg 149: "If we wish to sketch, in broad outline, the civilization created by the Seljuks of Anatolia, we must recognize that the local, i.e. non-Muslim, element was fairly insignificant compared to the Turkish and Arab-Persian elements, and that the Persian element was paramount. The Seljuk rulers, to be sure, who were in contact with not only Muslim Persian civilization, but also with the Arab civiliza­tions in al-jazlra and Syria - indeed, with all Muslim peoples as far as India — also had connections with {various} Byzantine courts. Some of these rulers, like the great 'Ala' al-Dln Kai-Qubad I himself, who married Byzantine princesses and thus strengthened relations with their neighbors to the west, lived for many years in Byzantium and became very familiar with the customs and ceremonial at the Byzantine court. Still, this close contact with the ancient Greco-Roman and Christian traditions only resulted in their adoption of a policy of tolerance toward art, aesthetic life, painting, music, independent thought - in short, toward those things that were frowned upon by the narrow and piously ascetic views {of their subjects}. The contact of the common people with the Greeks and Armenians had basically the same result. {Before coming to Anatolia,} the Turks had been in contact with many nations and had long shown their ability to synthesize the artistic elements that thev had adopted from these nations. When they settled in Anatolia, they encountered peoples with whom they had not yet been in contact and immediately established relations with them as well. Ala al-Din Kai-Qubad I established ties with the Genoese and, especially, the Venetians at the ports of Sinop and Antalya, which belonged to him, and granted them commercial and legal concessions. Mean­while, the Mongol invasion, which caused a great number of scholars and artisans to flee from Turkistan, Iran, and Khwarazm and settle within the Empire of the Seljuks of Anatolia, resulted in a reinforcing of Persian influence on the Anatolian Turks. Indeed, despite all claims to the contrary, there is no question that Persian influence was paramount among the Seljuks of Anatolia. This is clearly revealed by the fact that the sultans who ascended the throne after Ghiyath al-Din Kai-Khusraw I assumed titles taken from ancient Persian mythology, like Kai-Khusraw, Kai-Ka us, and Kai-Qubad; and that. Ala' al-Din Kai-Qubad I had some passages from the Shahname inscribed on the walls of Konya and Sivas. When we take into consideration domestic life in the Konya courts and the sincerity of the favor and attachment of the rulers to Persian poets and Persian literature, then this fact {i.e. the importance of Persian influence} is undeniable. With- regard to the private lives of the rulers, their amusements, and palace ceremonial, the most definite influence was also that of Iran, mixed with the early Turkish traditions, and not that of Byzantium."
    • Stephen P. Blake, "Shahjahanabad: The Sovereign City in Mughal India, 1639-1739". Cambridge University Press, 1991. pg 123: "For the Seljuks and Il-Khanids in Iran it was the rulers rather than the conquered who were "Pesianized and Islamicized"
  5. ^ O.Özgündenli, "Persian Manuscripts in Ottoman and Modern Turkish Libraries", Encyclopaedia Iranica, Online Edition, (LINK)
  6. ^ Encyclopaedia Britannica, "Seljuq", Online Edition, (LINK): "... Because the Turkish Seljuqs had no Islamic tradition or strong literary heritage of their own, they adopted the cultural language of their Persian instructors in Islam. Literary Persian thus spread to the whole of Iran, and the Arabic language disappeared in that country except in works of religious scholarship ..."
  7. ^ M. Ravandi, "The Seljuq court at Konya and the Persianisation of Anatolian Cities", in Mesogeios (Mediterranean Studies), vol. 25-6 (2005), pp. 157-69
  8. ^
    • M.A. Amir-Moezzi, "Shahrbanu", Encyclopaedia Iranica, Online Edition, (LINK): "... here one might bear in mind that non-Persian dynasties such as the Ghaznavids, Saljuqs and Ilkhanids were rapidly to adopt the Persian language and have their origins traced back to the ancient kings of Persia rather than to Turkish heroes or Muslim saints ..."
    • F. Daftary, Sectarian and National Movements in Iran, Khorasan, and Trasoxania during Umayyad and Early Abbasid Times, in History of Civilizations of Central Asia, Vol 4, pt. 1; edited by M.S. Asimov and C.E. Bosworth; UNESCO Publishing, Institute of Ismaili Studies: "... Not only did the inhabitants of Khurasan not succumb to the language of the nomadic invaders, but they imposed their own tongue on them. The region could even assimilate the Turkic Ghaznavids and Seljuks (eleventh and twelfth centuries), the Timurids (fourteenth–fifteenth centuries), and the Qajars (nineteenth–twentieth centuries) ..."
  9. ^ Daniel Pipes: "The Event of Our Era: Former Soviet Muslim Republics Change the Middle East" in Michael Mandelbaum,"Central Asia and the World: Kazakhstan, Uzbekistan, Tajikistan, Kyrgyzstan, Turkemenistan and the World", Council on Foreign Relations, pg 79. Exact statement: "In Short, the Turko-Persian tradition featured Persian culture patronized by Turcophone rulers."
  10. ^ Wink, Andre, Al Hind the Making of the Indo Islamic World, Brill Academic Publishers, Jan 1, 1996, ISBN 90-04-09249-8 pg.9
  11. ^ Dhu'l Qa'da 463/ August 1071 The Battle of Malazkirt (Manzikert), <http://www.princeton.edu/~humcomp/kemal/malazf.htm>. Retrieved on 8 September 2007
  12. ^ Encyclopaedia Britannica, "Nizam al-Mulk", Online Edition, (LINK)
  13. ^ a b c d Wink, Andre, Al Hind the Making of the Indo Islamic World, Brill Academic Publishers, Jan 1, 1996, ISBN 90-04-09249-8 pg 9-10
  14. ^ Previte-Orton (1971), vol.1, pg. 278-9
  15. ^ two examples are: the Nizamiyah universities of Baghdad and Nishapur

[edit] References

Faravahar background
History of Greater Iran
Empires of Persia · Kings of Persia

This box: view talk edit
  • Previte-Orton, C. W (1971). The Shorter Cambridge Medieval History. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.

[edit] See also

[edit] External links

1070AD Seljuk Turks take Jerusalem & threaten all Christendom

From: http://en.wikisource.org/wiki/Catholic_Encyclopedia_(1913)/Crusades


...Instead of diminishing, the enthusiasm of Western Christians for the pilgrimage to Jerusalem seemed rather to increase during the eleventh century. Not only princes, bishops, and knights, but even men and women of the humbler classes undertook the holy journey (Radulphus Glaber, IV, vi). Whole armies of pilgrims traversed Europe, and in the valley of the Danube hospices were established where they could replenish their provisions. In 1026 Richard, Abbot of Saint-Vannes, led 700 pilgrims into Palestine at the expense of Richard II, Duke of Normandy. In 1065 over 12,000 Germans who had crossed Europe under the command of Günther, Bishop of Bamberg, while on their way through Palestine had to seek shelter in a ruined fortress, where they defended themselves against a troop of Bedouins (Lambert of Hersfeld, in "Mon. Germ. Hist.: Script.", V, 168). Thus it is evident that at the close of the eleventh century the route to Palestine was familiar enough to Western Christians who looked upon the Holy Sepulchre as the most venerable of relics and were ready to brave any peril in order to visit it. The memory of Charlemagne's protectorate still lived, and a trace of it is to be found in the medieval legend of this emperor's journey to Palestine (Gaston Paris in "Romania", 1880, p. 23).

The rise of the Seljukian Turks, however, compromised the safety of pilgrims and even threatened the independence of the Byzantine Empire and of all Christendom. In 1070 Jerusalem was taken, and in 1091 Diogenes, the Greek emperor, was defeated and made captive at Mantzikert. Asia Minor and all of Syria became the prey of the Turks. Antioch succumbed in 1084, and by 1092 not one of the great metropolitan sees of Asia remained in the possession of the Christians. Although separated from the communion of Rome since the schism of Michael Cærularius (1054), the emperors of Constantinople implored the assistance of the popes; in 1073 letters were exchanged on the subject between Michael VII and Gregory VII. The pope seriously contemplated leading a force of 50,000 men to the East in order to re-establish Christian unity, repulse the Turks, and rescue the Holy Sepulchre. But the idea of the crusade constituted only a part of this magnificent plan. (The letters of Gregory VII are in P.L., CXLVIII, 300, 325, 329, 386; cf. Riant's critical discussion in Archives de l'Orient Latin, I, 56.) The conflict over the Investitures in 1076 compelled the pope to abandon his projects; the Emperors Nicephorus Botaniates and Alexius Comnenus were unfavourable to a religious union with Rome; finally war broke out between the Byzantine Empire and the Normans of the Two Sicilies....

1071AD Battle of Manzikert - Seljuk Turks begin destruction of Byzantine (1st Christian) Empire

From: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Battle_of_Manzikert

Battle of Manzikert

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Battle of Manzikert
Part of the Byzantine-Seljuk wars

In this 15th-century French miniature depicting the Battle of Manzikert, the combatants are clad in contemporary Western European armour.

DateAugust 26, 1071
LocationManzikert, Armenia (modern Malazgirt, Turkey)
ResultDecisive Seljuk victory
Byzantine Empire Great Seljuk Sultanate
Romanus IV #,
Nikephoros Bryennios,
Theodore Alyates,
Andronikos Doukas
Alp Arslan
~ 20,000 [2]
(40,000 initial)

Perhaps some 70,000[1][2]

~ 20,000 [3] - 70,000[3]
~ 8,000 [4]Unknown

The Battle of Manzikert, or Malazgirt was fought between the Byzantine Empire and Seljuq forces led by Alp Arslan on August 26, 1071 near Manzikert, Armenia (modern Malazgirt, Turkey) in the Basprakania [4] theme (province) of the Empire. It resulted in the defeat of the Byzantine Empire and the capture of Emperor Romanos IV Diogenes. The Battle of Manzikert played an important role in breaking the Byzantine resistance and preparing the way for the Turkish settlement in Anatolia.[5]



[edit] Background

Although the Byzantine Empire had remained a strong and powerful entity in the Middle Ages,[6] the Kingdom began to decline under the reign of the militarily incompetent Constantine IX and again under Constantine X - a brief two year rule of reform under Isaac I Komnenus only delaying the decay of the Byzantine military.[7] It was under Constantine IX's reign that the Byzantines first came into contact with the Seljuk Turks, the latter attempting to anex Ani in Armenia. Rather than deal with the problem by force of arms, Constantine IX signed a truce. The truce did not last; in 1063 the Great Seljuk Sultan Alp Arslan came to power and thus the invasion of Armenia, halted in 1045, began again.

During the 1060s, the Seljuk Sultan Alp Arslan allowed his Turkish allies (Turks and Turkmens), as well as the Kurds, to migrate towards Armenia and Asia Minor. In 1064, they conquered the Armenian capital at Ani.[6] Constantine X (successor to Isaac Komnenus) did much discredit to his predecessor - in 1067 Armenia was taken by the Turks, followed by Caesarea.[8] In 1068, Romanos IV took power and after a few speedy military reforms led an expedition against the Seljuks, allowing him to capture the city of Hierapolis Bambyce in Syria. A Turkic attack against Iconium was thwarted when a Byzantine counter from Syria ended in victory.[9] In 1070, Romanus led a second expedition towards Malazgirt (then known as Manzikert) in the eastern end of Anatolia (in today's Muş Province), where a Byzantine fortress had been captured by the Seljuks, and offered a treaty with Alp Arslan; Romanos would give back Hierapolis if Arslan gave up the siege of Edessa (Urfa). Romanos threatened war if Alp Arslan did not comply, and prepared his troops anyway, expecting the sultan to decline his offer, which he did.

[edit] Preparations

Accompanying Romanos was Andronikos Doukas, the co-regent and a direct rival. The army consisted of about 5,000 Byzantine troops from the western provinces and probably about the same number from the eastern provinces; 500 Frankish and Norman mercenaries under Roussel de Bailleul; some Turkish, Bulgarian, and Pecheneg mercenaries; infantry under the duke of Antioch; a contingent of Armenian troops; and some (but not all) of the Varangian Guard, to total around 60-70,000 troops.[10] The quality of the Byzantine Thematic (provincial) troops had declined in the years prior to the succession of Romanus as the central government diverted resources to the recruitment of mercenaries who were considered less likely to become involved in coups or factional fighting within the Empire. Even when mercenaries were used, they were disbanded after to save money.

The march across Asia Minor was long and difficult, and Romanos did not endear himself to his troops by bringing a luxurious baggage train along with him; the Byzantine population also suffered some plundering by Romanos' Frankish mercenaries, whom he was forced to dismiss. The expedition first rested at Sebasteia on the Halys, and reached Theodosiopolis in June 1071. There, some of his generals suggested continuing the march into Seljuk territory and catching Arslan before he was ready. Some of the other generals, including Nikephoros Bryennios, suggested they wait there and fortify their position. Eventually it was decided to continue the march.

Thinking that Alp Arslan was either further away or not coming at all, Romanos marched towards Lake Van expecting to retake Manzikert rather quickly, as well as the nearby fortress of Khliat if possible. However, Arslan was actually in Armenia, with 30,000 cavalry from Aleppo, Mosul, and his other allies. Arslan's spies knew exactly where Romanus was, while Romanos was completely unaware of his opponent's movements.

Romanos ordered his general Joseph Tarchaneiotes to take some of the Byzantine troops and Varangians and accompany the Pechenegs and Franks to Khliat, while Romanos and the rest of the army marched to Manzikert. This split the forces in half, each taking about 30,000 men.[10] It is unknown what happened to the army sent off with Joseph Tarchaneiotes - according to Islamic sources, Alp Arslan smashed his army; however Byzantine sources remain quiet of any such encounter,[10] whilst Attaleiates suggests that Tarchaneiotes fled at the sight of the Seljuk Sultan - an unlikely event considering the reputation of the Byzantine general. Either way, Romanus' army was reduced to less than half his planned 60-70,000.[10]

[edit] The battle

Byzantine territory (purple), Byzantine attacks (red) and Seljuk attacks (green).
Byzantine territory (purple), Byzantine attacks (red) and Seljuk attacks (green).

Romanus was unaware of the loss of Tarchaneiotes and continued to Manzikert, even thpugh he was, which he easily captured on August 23. The Seljuks responded with heavy incursions by bowmen The next day some foraging parties under Bryennios discovered the Seljuk force and were forced to retreat back to Manzikert. The Armenian general Basilaces was sent out with some cavalry, as Romanos did not believe this was Arslan's full army; the cavalry was destroyed and Basilaces taken prisoner. Romanos drew up his troops into formation and sent the left wing out under Bryennios, who was almost surrounded by the quickly approaching Turks and was forced to retreat once more. The Turks hid among the nearby hills for the night, making it nearly impossible for Romanus to send a counterattack.

On August 25, some of Romanos' Turkish mercenaries came into contact with their Seljuk relatives and deserted. Romanos then rejected a Seljuk peace embassy[11] as he wanted to settle the Turkish problem with a decisive military victory and understood that raising another army would be both difficult and expensive. The Emperor attempted to recall Tarchaneiotes, who was no longer in the area. There were no engagements that day, but on August 26 the Byzantine army gathered itself into a proper battle formation and began to march on the Turkish positions, with the left wing under Bryennios, the right wing under Theodore Alyates, and the centre under the emperor. Andronikos Doukas led the reserve forces in the rear - a foolish mistake, considering the loyalties of the Dukas. The Seljuks were organized into a crescent formation about four kilometres away,[11] with Arslan observing events from a safe distance. Seljuk archers attacked the Byzantines as they drew closer; the centre of their crescent continually moved backwards while the wings moved to surround the Byzantine troops.

The Byzantines held off the arrow attacks and captured Arslan's camp by the end of the afternoon. However, the right and left wings, where the arrows did most of their damage, almost broke up when individual units tried to force the Seljuks into a pitched battle; the Seljuk cavalry simply fled when challenged, the classic hit and run tactics of steppe warriors. With the Seljuks avoiding battle,[9] Romanos was forced to order a withdrawal by the time night fell.[9] However, the right wing misunderstood the order, and Doukas, as an enemy of Romanos, deliberately ignored the emperor and marched back to the camp outside Manzikert, rather than covering the emperor's retreat. Now that the Byzantines were thoroughly confused, the Seljuks seized the opportunity and attacked.[9] The Byzantine right wing was routed; the left under Bryennios held out a little longer but was soon routed as well.[12] The remnants of the Byzantine centre, including the Emperor and the Varangian Guard, were encircled by the Seljuks. Romanus was injured, and taken prisoner by the Seljuks. The survivors were the many who fled the field and were pursued throughout the night; by dawn, the professional core of the Byzantine army had been destroyed but many of the Peasant troops and levies who had been under the command of Andronikus fled.[12]

[edit] Captivity of Romanus Diogenes

When the Emperor Romanos IV was conducted into the presence of Alp Arslan, he refused to believe that the bloodied and tattered man covered in dirt was the mighty Emperor of the Romans. After discovering the identity of the Emperor, he treated him with considerable kindness, and again offered the terms of peace which he had offered previous to the battle - all of course, after the Seljuk Sultan had forced his neck to the ground, placed his boot upon it and made Romanus kiss the ground before him.[12] He was also loaded with presents and Alp Arslan had him respectfully escorted by a military guard to his own forces. But prior to that, when he first was brought to the Sultan, this famous conversation is reported to have taken place:

Alp Arslan: "What would you do if I were brought before you as a prisoner?"
Romanus: "Perhaps I'd kill you, or exhibit you in the streets of Constantinople."
Alp Arslan: "My punishment is far heavier. I forgive you, and set you free."

Romanus remained a captive of the Sultan for a week. During this time, the Sultan allowed Romanus to eat at his table whilst concessions were agreed upon; Antioch, Edessa, Hieropolis and Manzikert were to be surrendered.[13] A payment of 10 million golden pieces as a ransom was deemed as too high by Romanus so the Sultan reduced its short-term expense by instead asking for 1.5 million as an initial payment followed by an annual sum of 360,000 pieces of gold.[13] Finally, Romanus would marry one of his daughters to the Sultan. The Sultan then gave Romanus and escort of two emirs and a hundred Mamelukes to Constantinople. Shortly after his return to his subjects, Romanos found his rule in serious trouble. Despite attempts to raise loyal troops, he was defeated three times in battle against the Doukas family and was deposed, blinded and exiled to the island of Proti; soon after, he died as a result of an infection caused by an injury during his brutal blinding. Romanus' last events in the Anatolian heartland that he worked so hard to defend was a public humiliation on a donkey with a rotten face.[13]

[edit] Aftermath

Despite being a complete tactical disaster and a long-term strategic catastrophe for Byzantium, Manzikert was by no means the massacre that earlier historians presumed. Modern scholars estimate that Byzantine losses were relatively low, considering that many units survived the battle intact and were fighting elsewhere within a few months. Certainly, all the commanders in the Byzantine side (Doukas, Tarchaneiotes, Bryennios, de Bailleul, and, above all, the Emperor) survived and took part in later events.

Doukas had escaped with no casualties, and quickly marched back to Constantinople where he led the coup against Romanos. Bryennios also lost few men in the rout of his wing. The Seljuks did not pursue the fleeing Byzantines, nor did they recapture Manzikert itself at this point. The Byzantine army regrouped and marched to Dokeia, where they were joined by Romanos when he was released a week later. The most serious loss materially seems to have been the emperor's extravagant baggage train.

The disaster the battle caused for the Empire was, in simplest terms, the loss of its Anatolian heartland. John Julius Norwich says in his trilogy on the Byzantine Empire that the defeat was "its death blow, though centuries remained before the remnant fell. The themes in Anatolia were literally the heart of the empire, and within decades after Manzikert, they were gone." Or, as Anna Komnene puts it a few decades after the actual battle,

...the fortunes of the Roman Empire had sunk to their lowest ebb. For the armies of the East were dispersed in all directions, because the Turks had over-spread, and gained command of, countries between the Euxine Sea [Black Sea] and the Hellespont, and the Aegean Sea and Syrian Seas [Mediterranean Sea], and the various bays, especially those which wash Pamphylia, Cilicia, and empty themselves into the Egyptian Sea [Mediterranean Sea].[5]

Years and decades later, Manzikert came to be seen as a disaster for the Empire; later sources therefore greatly exaggerate the numbers of troops and the number of casualties. Byzantine historians would often look back and lament the "disaster" of that day, pinpointing it as the moment the decline of the Empire began. It was not an immediate disaster, but the defeat showed the Seljuks that the Byzantines were not invincible — they were not the unconquerable, millennium-old Roman Empire (as both the Byzantines and Seljuks still called it). The usurpation of Andronikos Doukas also politically destabilized the empire and it was difficult to organize resistance to the Turkish migrations that followed the battle. Within a decade almost all of Asia Minor was overrun. Finally, while intrigue and deposing of Emperors had taken place before, the fate of Romanos was particularly horrific, and the destabilization caused by it also rippled through the centuries.

What followed the battle was a chain of events - of which the battle was the first link - that undermined the Empire in the years to come. They included intrigues for the throne, the horrific fate of Romanos and Roussel de Bailleul attempting to carve himself an independent kingdom in Galatia with his 3,000 Frankish, Norman and German mercenaries. He defeated the Emperor's uncle John Doukas who had come to suppress him, advancing toward the capital to destroy Chrysopolis (Üsküdar) on the Asian coast of the Bosphorus. The Empire finally turned to the spreading Seljuks to crush de Bailleul (which they did, then delivering him over). These events all interacted to create a vacuum that the Turks filled. Their choice in establishing their capital in Nikaea (İznik) in 1077 could possibly be explained by a desire to see if the Empire's struggles could present new opportunities.

In hindsight, both Byzantine and contemporary historians are unanimous in dating the decline of Byzantine fortunes to this battle. It is interpreted as one of the root causes for the later Crusades, in that the First Crusade of 1095 was originally a western response to the Byzantine emperor's call for military assistance after the loss of Anatolia. From another perspective, the West saw Manzikert as a signal that Byzantium was no longer capable of being the protector of Eastern Christianity or Christian pilgrims to the Holy Places in the Middle East.

Delbruck considers that the importance of the battle has been exaggerated; but it is clear from the evidence that as a result of it, the Empire was unable to put an effective army into the field for many years to come.

The Battle of Myriokephalon, also known as the Myriocephalum, was 'also' compared to the Battle of Manikert, as a 'pivotal' point in the "decline' of the Byzantine Empire.

[edit] Notes

  1. ^ Konstam, Angus (2004). The Crusades. London: Mercury Books, p. 40.
  2. ^ Norwich, John Julius (1997). A Short History of Byzantium. New York: Vintage Books, p. 238.
  3. ^ David Eggenberger, An Encyclopedia of Battles, Dover Publications, 1985.
  4. ^ Hewsen, Robert H. (2001). Armenia: a historical atlas. The University of Chicago Press, p. 126. ISBN 0-226-33228-4.
  5. ^ Peter Malcolm Holt, Ann Katharine Swynford Lambton, Bernard Lewis The Cambridge History of Islam, 1977, p.231,232 [1]
  6. ^ a b Konstam, Angus (2004). The Crusades. London: Mercury Books, p. 40.
  7. ^ Norwich, John Julius (1997). A Short History of Byzantium. New York: Vintage Books, p. 236.
  8. ^ Norwich, John Julius (1997). A Short History of Byzantium. New York: Vintage Books, p. 237. - "The fate of Caesarea was well known"
  9. ^ a b c d Grant, R.G. (2005). Battle a Visual Journey Through 5000 Years of Combat. London: Dorling Kindersley, p. 77.
  10. ^ a b c d Norwich, John Julius (1997). A Short History of Byzantium. New York: Vintage Books, p. 298.
  11. ^ a b Norwich, John Julius (1997). A Short History of Byzantium. New York: Vintage Books, p. 239.
  12. ^ a b c Norwich, John Julius (1997). A Short History of Byzantium. New York: Vintage Books, p. 240.
  13. ^ a b c Norwich, John Julius (1997). A Short History of Byzantium. New York: Vintage Books, p. 241.

[edit] References

  • Haldon, John. The Byzantine Wars: Battles and Campaigns of the Byzantine Era, 2001. ISBN 0-7524-1795-9.
  • Treadgold, Warren. A History of the Byzantine State and Society, Stanford University Press, 1997. ISBN 0-8047-2421-0.
  • Runciman, Sir Steven. A History of the Crusades (Volume One), Harper & Row, 1951.
  • Norwich, John Julius. Byzantium: The Apogee, Viking, 1991. ISBN 0-670-80252-2.
  • Carey, Brian Todd; Allfree, Joshua B.; Cairns, John. Warfare in the Medieval World, Pen & Sword Books ltd, 2006. ISBN 1-84415-339-8
  • Konstam, Angus. Historical Atlas of The Crusades

[edit] External links

1073AD Hildebrand becomes Pope Gregory VII

From: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pope_Gregory_VII

Pope Gregory VII

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Jump to: navigation, search
Gregory VII
Pope Gregory VII, 11th Century
Birth nameHildebrand Bonizi
Papacy beganApril 22, 1073
Papacy endedMay 25, 1085
PredecessorAlexander II
SuccessorVictor III
Bornc. 1020
Sovana, Italy
DiedMay 25, 1085
Salerno, Italy
Other popes named Gregory
Styles of
Pope Gregory VII
Reference styleHis Holiness
Spoken styleYour Holiness
Religious styleHoly Father
Posthumous styleSaint

Pope Saint Gregory VII (c. 1020/1025May 25, 1085), born Hildebrand of Soana (Italian: Ildebrando di Soana), was pope from April 22, 1073, until his death. One of the great reforming popes, he is perhaps best known for the part he played in the Investiture Controversy, which pitted him against Holy Roman Emperor Henry IV. He was beatified by Gregory XIII in 1584, and canonized in 1728 by Benedict XIII.[1]



[edit] Biography

[edit] Early years

Hildebrand was born in Soana (modern Sovana), a small town in southern Tuscany. He belonged to the noble Aldobrandeschi family.

He was sent to Rome, where his uncle was abbot of the monastery of St. Mary on the Aventine hill, and his experience in the city was a formative influence on his character. Pope Gregory VI may have been among his instructors.

When Emperor Henry III deposed Gregory VI, Hildebrand followed him in exile to Germany. Though he initially had no desire to cross the Alps, his residence in Germany was of great educational value and significant in his later life. He pursued his studies in Cologne before eventually returning to Rome with Pope Leo IX. Under his guidance, Hildebrand first began work in the ecclesiastical service and became a subdeacon and steward in the Roman Catholic Church.

Upon the death of Leo IX, Hildebrand was sent as a Roman envoy to the German court to conduct negotiations regarding Leo's successor. Hildebrand encouraged the Emperor to support Gebhard of Calw, who, as Pope Victor II (served as the Pope from 1055-1057), employed Hildebrand as his legate to France. In France, Hildebrand addressed the question of Berengar of Tours, whose views on the Eucharist had caused controversy. When Pope Stephen IX was elected in 1057 without previous consultation with the German court, Hildebrand and Bishop Anselm of Lucca were sent to Germany to secure a belated recognition and succeeded in gaining the consent of the empress, Agnes de Poitou. Stephen, however, died early the next year, before Hildebrand's return to France.

In a desperate effort to recover their influence on the papal throne, the Roman aristocracy managed the hasty elevation of Bishop Johannes of Velletri as Pope Benedict X in 1058. This course of action was dangerous to the Church as it implied a renewal of the disastrous patrician régime; that the crisis was overcome was essentially the work of Hildebrand. With Hildebrand's support, Benedict was supplanted by Pope Nicholas II in 1059, a leader who strongly influenced the policy of the Curia during the next two decades, including the rapprochement with the Normans in the south of Italy and the alliance with the democratic and, subsequently, anti-German movement of the Patarenes in the north.

It was also under this pontificate that the law was enacted transferring the papal election to the College of Cardinals, thus withdrawing it from the nobility of Rome and diminishing German influence on the election. When Nicholas II died and was succeeded by Pope Alexander II in 1061, Hildebrand loomed larger in the eyes of his contemporaries as the soul of Curial policy, as the Archdeacon in charge of the routine administration of the Roman see during Alexander's frequent absences in Lucca, where he retained his see. The general political conditions, especially in Germany, were at that time very favorable to the Curia, but to use them with the wisdom actually shown was nevertheless a great achievement, and the position of Alexander at the end of his pontificate in 1073 was a brilliant justification of Hildebrandine statecraft.

[edit] Election to the Papacy

On the death of Alexander II (April 21, 1073), as the obsequies were being performed in the Lateran basilica, there arose a loud outcry from the whole multitude of clergy and people: "Let Hildebrand be pope!" "Blessed Peter has chosen Hildebrand the Archdeacon!" All remonstrances on the part of the archdeacon were vain, his protestations fruitless. Later, on the same day, Hildebrand was conducted to the church of San Pietro in Vincoli, and there elected in legal form by the assembled cardinals, with the due consent of the Roman clergy and amid the repeated acclamations of the people. That this extraordinary outburst on the part of the clergy and people in favour of Hildebrand could have been the result of some preconcerted arrangements, as is sometimes alleged, does not appear likely. Hildebrand became pope and took the name of Gregory VII. The mode of his election was highly criticized by his opponents. Many of the charges brought may have been expressions of personal dislike, liable to suspicion from the very fact that they were not raised to attack his promotion until several years later; but it is clear from his own account of the circumstances of his election that it was conducted in a very irregular fashion, and that the forms prescribed by the law of 1059 were not observed, namely, the command of Nicholas II that the German emperor be consulted in the matter. However, what ultimately turned the tide in favor of validity of Gregory's election was the fact that near universal acclaim of the populus Romanus was undeniable. In this sense, his election hearkened back to the earliest centuries of the Church of Rome, regardless of later canonical legislation. Gregory's earliest pontifical letters clearly acknowledge this fact, and thus helped defuse any doubt about his election as immensely popular. On May 22 he received sacerdotal ordination, and on June 30 episcopal consecration.

In the decree of election those who had chosen him as pontiff proclaimed him "a devout man, a man mighty in human and divine knowledge, a distinguished lover of equity and justice, a man firm in adversity and temperate in prosperity, a man, according to the saying of the Apostle, of good behaviour, blameless, modest, sober, chaste, given to hospitality, and one that ruleth well his own house; a man from his childhood generously brought up in the bosom of this Mother Church, and for the merit of his life already raised to the archidiaconal dignity". "We choose then", they said to the people, "our Archdeacon Hildebrand to be pope and successor to the Apostle, and to bear henceforward and forever the name of Gregory" (April 22, 1073).[2]

The focus of the ecclesiastico-political projects of Gregory VII is to be found in his relationship with Germany. Since the death of Henry III the strength of the German monarchy had been seriously weakened, and his son Henry IV had to contend with great internal difficulties. This state of affairs was of material assistance to the pope. His advantage was still further accentuated by the fact that in 1073 Henry was only twenty-three and inexperienced.

In the two following years Henry was forced by the Saxon rebellion to come to amicable terms with the pope at any cost. Consequently in May 1074 he did penance at Nuremberg in the presence of the papal legates to atone for his continued friendship with the members of his council who had been banned by Gregory, took an oath of obedience, and promised his support in the work of reforming the Church. This attitude, however, which at first won him the confidence of the pope, was abandoned as soon as he defeated the Saxons by his victory at the Battle of Hohenburg (June 9, 1075). He now tried to reassert his rights as the sovereign of northern Italy without delay.

He sent Count Eberhard to Lombardy to combat the Patarenes; nominated the cleric Tedaldo to the archbishopric of Milan, thus settling a prolonged and contentious question; and finally tried to establish relations with the Norman duke, Robert Guiscard. Gregory VII replied with a rough letter, dated December 8, in which, among other charges, he accused the German king of breaching his word and with his continued support of the excommunicated councillors; while at the same time he sent a verbal message suggesting that the enormous crimes which would be laid to his account rendered him liable, not only to the ban of the church, but to the deprivation of his crown. Gregory did this at a time when he himself was confronted by a reckless opponent in the person of Cencio I Frangipane, who on Christmas-night surprised him in church and carried him off as a prisoner, though on the following day Gregory was released.

[edit] Conflict with the Emperor

The reprimands of the pope, couched as they were in such an unprecedented form, infuriated Henry and his court, and their answer was the hastily convened national council in Worms, Germany (synod of Worms), which met on January 24, 1076. In the higher ranks of the German clergy Gregory had many enemies, and a Roman cardinal, Hugo Candidus, once on intimate terms with him but now his opponent, had hurried to Germany for the occasion and appeared at Worms. All the accusations with regard to the pope that Candidus could come up with were well received by the assembly, which committed itself to the resolution that Gregory had forfeited the papacy. In one document full of accusations, the bishops renounced their allegiance. In another King Henry pronounced him deposed, and the Romans were required to choose a new pope [1]. The council sent two bishops to Italy, and they procured a similar act of deposition from the Lombard bishops in the synod of Piacenza. Roland of Parma informed the pope of these decisions, and he was fortunate enough to gain an opportunity for speech in the synod, which had just assembled in the Lateran church, and he delivered his message there announcing the dethronement. For the moment the members were frightened, but soon such a storm of indignation was aroused that it was only

On the following day the pope pronounced the sentence of excommunication against the German king Henry IV with all due solemnity, divested him of his royal dignity and absolved his subjects from the oaths they had sworn to him. This sentence purported to eject the king from the church and to strip him of his crown. Whether it would produce this effect, or whether it would remain an idle threat, depended not so much on Gregory as on Henry's subjects, and, above all, on the German princes. Contemporary evidence suggests that the excommunication of the king made a profound impression both in Germany and Italy. Thirty years before, Henry III had deposed three popes, and thereby rendered an acknowledged service to the church. When Henry IV tried to copy this procedure he was less successful, as he lacked the support of the people. In Germany there was a rapid and general revulsion of feeling in favour of Gregory, and the princes took the opportunity to carry out their anti-regal policy under the cloak of respect for the papal decision. When at Whitsun the king proposed to discuss the measures to be taken against Gregory in a council of his nobles, only a few made their appearance; the Saxons snatched at the golden opportunity for renewing their rebellion, and the anti-royalist party grew in strength from month to month.

[edit] To Canswayla

The situation now became extremely critical for Henry. As a result of the agitation, which was zealously fostered by the papal legate Bishop Altmann of Passau, the princes met in October at Trebur to elect a new German king, and Henry, who was stationed at Oppenheim on the left bank of the Rhine, was only saved from the loss of his throne by the failure of the assembled princes to agree on the question of his successor. Their dissension, however, merely induced them to postpone the verdict. Henry, they declared, must make reparation to the pope and pledge himself to obedience; and they decided that, if, on the anniversary of his excommunication, he still lay under the ban, the throne should be considered vacant. At the same time they decided to invite Gregory to Augsburg to decide the conflict. These arrangements showed Henry the course to be pursued. It was imperative, under any circumstances and at any price, to secure his absolution from Gregory before the period named, otherwise he could scarcely foil his opponents in their intention to pursue their attack against him and justify their measures by an appeal to his excommunication. At first he attempted to attain his ends by an embassy, but when Gregory rejected his overtures he took the celebrated step of going to Italy in person.

The pope had already left Rome, and had intimated to the German princes that he would expect their escort for his journey on January 8 in Mantua. But this escort had not appeared when he received the news of the king's arrival. Henry, who had traveled through Burgundy, had been greeted with enthusiasm by the Lombards, but resisted the temptation to employ force against Gregory. He chose instead the unexpected course of forcing the pope to grant him absolution by doing penance before him at Canossa, where he had taken refuge. This event soon became legendary. The reconciliation was only effected after prolonged negotiations and definite pledges on the part of the king, and it was with reluctance that Gregory at length gave way, for, if he gave his absolution, the diet of princes in Augsburg, in which he might reasonably hope to act as arbitrator, would either become useless, or, if it met at all, would change completely in character. It was impossible, however, to deny the penitent re-entrance into the church, and his religious obligations overrode his political interests.

The removal of the ban did not imply a genuine reconciliation, and no basis was gained for a settlement of the great questions at issue: notably that of investiture. A new conflict was inevitable from the very fact that Henry IV naturally considered the sentence of deposition repealed along with that of excommunication; while Gregory on the other hand was intent on reserving his freedom of action and gave no hint on the subject at Canossa.

[edit] Second excommunication of Henry

That the excommunication of Henry IV was simply a pretext, not a motive, for the opposition of the rebellious German nobles is transparent. Not only did they persist in their policy after his absolution, but they took the more decided step of setting up a rival king in the person of Duke Rudolph of Swabia (Forchheim, March 1077). At the election the papal legates present observed the appearance of neutrality, and Gregory himself sought to maintain this attitude during the following years. His task was made easier in that the two parties were of fairly equal strength, each trying to gain the upper hand by getting the pope on their side. But the result of his non-committal policy was that he largely lost the confidence of both parties. Finally he decided for Rudolph of Swabia after his victory at Flarchheim (January 27, 1080). Under pressure from the Saxons, and misinformed as to the significance of this battle, Gregory abandoned his waiting policy and again pronounced the excommunication and deposition of King Henry (March 7, 1080).

But the papal censure now proved a very different thing from the papal censure four years before. It was widely felt to be an injustice, and people began to ask whether an excommunication pronounced on frivolous grounds was entitled to respect. To make matters worse, Rudolph of Swabia died on October 16 of the same year. A new claimant, Hermann of Luxembourg, was put forward in August 1081, but his personality was not suitable for a leader of the Gregorian party in Germany, and the power of Henry IV was at its peak. The king, now more experienced, took up the struggle with great vigour. He refused to acknowledge the ban on the ground of its illegality. A council had been summoned at Brixen, and on June 16 it pronounced Gregory deposed and nominated the archbishop Guibert of Ravenna as his successor. In 1081 Henry opened the conflict against Gregory in Italy. The latter had now become less powerful, and thirteen cardinals deserted him. Rome surrendered to the German king in 1084, and Gregory thereupon retired into the exile of Sant' Angelo, and refused to entertain Henry's overtures, although the latter promised to hand over Guibert as a prisoner, if the sovereign pontiff would only consent to crown him emperor. Gregory, however, insisted as a necessary preliminary that Henry should appear before a council and do penance. The emperor, while pretending to submit to these terms, tried hard to prevent the meeting of the bishops. A small number however assembled, and, in accordance with their wishes, Gregory again excommunicated Henry. Henry upon receipt of this news again entered Rome on March 21 to see that Guibert of Ravenna be enthroned as Clement III (March 24, 1084). Henry was crowned emperor by his creature, but Robert Guiscard, Duke of Normandy, with whom Gregory had formed an alliance, was already marching on the city, and Henry fled towards Citta Castellana. The pope was liberated, but, the people becoming incensed by the excesses of his Norman allies, he was compelled to withdraw to Monte Cassino, and later to the castle of Salerno by the sea, where he died in the following year. Three days before his death he withdrew all the censures of excommunication that he had pronounced, except those against the two chief offenders—Henry and Guibert.

[edit] Papal policy to the rest of Europe

The relationship of Gregory to other European states was strongly influenced by his German policy; as Germany, by taking up most of his powers, often forced him to show to other rulers the very moderation which he withheld from the German king. The attitude of the Normans brought him a rude awakening. The great concessions made to them under Nicholas II were not only powerless to stem their advance into central Italy but failed to secure even the expected protection for the papacy. When Gregory was hard pressed by Henry IV, Robert Guiscard left him to his fate, and only intervened when he himself was threatened with German arms. Then, on the capture of Rome, he abandoned the city to his troops, and the popular indignation evoked by his act brought about Gregory's exile.

In the case of several countries, Gregory tried to establish a claim of sovereignty on the part of the Papacy, and to secure the recognition of its self-asserted rights of possession. On the ground of "immemorial usage"; Corsica and Sardinia were assumed to belong to the Roman Church. Spain and Hungary were also claimed as her property, and an attempt was made to induce the king of Denmark to hold his realm as a fief from the pope. Philip I of France, by his practice of simony and the violence of his proceedings against the Church, provoked a threat of summary measures; and excommunication, deposition and the interdict appeared to be imminent in 1074. Gregory, however, refrained from translating his threats into actions, although the attitude of the king showed no change, for he wished to avoid a dispersion of his strength in the conflict soon to break out in Germany. In England, William the Conqueror also derived benefits from this state of affairs. He felt himself so safe that he interfered autocratically with the management of the church, forbade the bishops to visit Rome, made appointments to bishoprics and abbeys, and showed little anxiety when the pope lectured him on the different principles which he had as to the relationship of spiritual and temporal powers, or when he prohibited him from commerce or commanded him to acknowledge himself a vassal of the apostolic chair. Gregory had no power to compel the English king to an alteration in his ecclesiastical policy, so he chose to ignore what he could not approve, and even considered it advisable to assure him of his particular affection.

Gregory, in fact, established some sort of relations with every country in Christendom; though these relations did not invariably realize the ecclesiastico-political hopes connected with them. His correspondence extended to Poland, Russia and Bohemia. He wrote in friendly terms to the Saracen king of Mauretania in north Africa, and unsuccessfully tried to bring Armenia into closer contact with Rome. He was particularly concerned with the East. The schism between Rome and the Byzantine Empire was a severe blow to him, and he worked hard to restore the former amicable relationship. Gregory successfully tried to get in touch with the emperor Michael VII. When the news of the Arab attacks on the Christians in the East filtered through to Rome, and the political embarrassments of the Byzantine emperor increased, he conceived the project of a great military expedition and exhorted the faithful to participate in recovering the Church of the Holy Sepulchre. In his treatment of ecclesiastical policy and ecclesiastical reform, Gregory did not stand alone, but found powerful support: in England Archbishop Lanfranc of Canterbury stood closest to him; in France his champion was Bishop Hugo of Dié, who afterwards became Archbishop of Lyon.

[edit] Internal policy and reforms

Main article: Gregorian Reform

His life-work was based on his conviction that the Church was founded by God and entrusted with the task of embracing all mankind in a single society in which divine will is the only law; that, in her capacity as a divine institution, she is supreme over all human structures, especially the secular state; and that the pope, in his role as head of the Church, is the vice-regent of God on earth, so that disobedience to him implies disobedience to God: or, in other words, a defection from Christianity. But any attempt to interpret this in terms of action would have bound the Church to annihilate not merely a single state, but all states. Thus Gregory, as a politician wanting to achieve some result, was driven in practice to adopt a different standpoint. He acknowledged the existence of the state as a dispensation of Providence, described the coexistence of church and state as a divine ordinance, and emphasized the necessity of union between the sacerdotium and the imperium. But at no period would he have dreamed of putting the two powers on an equal footing; the superiority of church to state was to him a fact which admitted of no discussion and which he had never doubted.

He wished to see all important matters of dispute referred to Rome; appeals were to be addressed to himself; the centralization of ecclesiastical government in Rome naturally involved a curtailment of the powers of bishops. Since these refused to submit voluntarily and tried to assert their traditional independence, his papacy is full of struggles against the higher ranks of the clergy.

This battle for the foundation of papal supremacy is connected with his championship of compulsory celibacy among the clergy and his attack on simony. Gregory VII did not introduce the celibacy of the priesthood into the Church, but he took up the struggle with greater energy than his predecessors. In 1074 he published an encyclical, absolving the people from their obedience to bishops who allowed married priests. The next year he enjoined them to take action against married priests, and deprived these clerics of their revenues. Both the campaign against priestly marriage and that against simony provoked widespread resistance.

Wax funeral effigy of Gregory VII under glass, Salerno cathedral
Wax funeral effigy of Gregory VII under glass, Salerno cathedral

His writings treat mainly of the principles and practice of Church government. They may be found under the title "Gregorii VII registri sive epistolarum libri"[3].

[edit] Death

He died an exile in Salerno; his last words were: Amavi iustiam et odivi iniquitatem; propterea, morior in exilio [I have loved justice and hated iniquity; therefore, I die in exile]. The Romans and a number of his most trusted helpers had renounced him, and the faithful band in Germany had shrunk to small numbers. Curiously for more than 900 years, the people of Salerno have zealously guarded Gregory's mortal remains and refused to permit him to be taken back for burial in St. Peter's, the traditional resting place of an overwhelming number of popes. Today, his beautiful sarcophagus lies in perpetual testament to his struggles and sanctify in the cathedral church of Salerno, Italy.

[edit] References

  1. ^ Thomas Oestreich (1913). "|Pope St. Gregory VII]". Catholic Encyclopedia. New York: Robert Appleton Company. Retrieved on 2007-12-10.
  2. ^ Mansi, "Conciliorum Collectio", XX, 60.
  3. ^ Mansi, "Gregorii VII registri sive epistolarum libri." Sacrorum Conciliorum nova et amplissima collectio. Florence, 1759

[edit] Further reading

  • Cowdrey, H.E.J. (1998). Pope Gregory VII: 1073–1085. Oxford and New York: Clarendon Press.

Catholic Church titles
Preceded by
Alexander II
Succeeded by
Victor III

The Crusades - a synopsis

From:  http://www.equip.org/articles/hollywood-vs-history?msource=EC110225WKLY&tr=y&auid=7827902

Hollywood vs. History

The Kingdom of Heaven and the Real Crusades
Daniel Hoffman


This article first appeared in the Christian Research Journal, volume 29, number 3 (2006). For further information or to subscribe to the Christian Research Journal go to: http://www.equip.org



Kingdom of Heaven, a recent film set in the era of the Crusades, unfortunately perpetuates the false view that fanatical Christians brought war to an otherwise peaceful Muslim world. The film’s hero, Balian of Ibelin (played by Orlando Bloom) essentially represents a Hollywood version of what a Crusader should have been like: brave, concerned about the poor and underprivileged, tolerant, and not much interested in holy places in Jerusalem or in Christian doctrine—except to reject the extremism apparently caused by focusing on either one.

Real Crusaders were quite different, in that they were highly motivated by their Christian beliefs. By the late eleventh century, however, some of these beliefs had moved away from basic biblical and early church teachings. It was not their belief in absolute truth per se, but rather this mix of error with truth, along with the pressures of war, that led to some of the widely cited Crusader atrocities. Any proper attempt to evaluate the Crusades needs to measure their stated goals and actions against pertinent biblical criteria and the historical context at the time. Such an evaluation shows that the Crusades began with several noble and legitimate motives, but that these motives degenerated in practice at times. Even at their worst, however, the Crusades (only the first four are briefly considered) were little different than other wars conducted by Muslims before, during, and after the Crusades.



The recent film Kingdom of Heaven shows conflicts between Muslims and Christians in the twelfth century after the Second and before the Third Crusade, and dramatically culminates with the short siege and fall of Jerusalem to the Muslims in 1187. It is an amazing Hollywood version of the period, but it certainly is not factual history.

Among other things, it portrays Balian of Ibelin (played by Orlando Bloom) as a twenty-first-century, tolerant, sensitive hero who gained some kind of victory in the failed defense of Jerusalem, when, in fact, nearly all Christians at the time considered this loss to be a tremendous disaster.

More significantly, the film’s portrayal of Reynald of Chatillon, the French knight who controlled Karak castle and raided caravans that were going to Mecca, suggests that his actions were typical of most Crusaders who were trying to spread Christianity. The implication is that men like Reynald brought war to an otherwise peaceful, even idyllic, Muslim area. This cinematic image falls short of the truth in important ways, because wars were widespread throughout the Muslim world long before the Crusaders arrived and the Crusaders did not seek to convert Muslims by force.1

Such misconceptions, nevertheless, have contributed to the situation today in which “the Crusades” have become virtually synonymous with supposed Christian cruelty and intolerance. The Crusades actually were motivated in part by the desire of Christians in the West to help fellow Christians in the East. Those who went to the East suffered and often died in their attempts to help. Even if those attempts were misguided, unnecessary, or unsuccessful, there was little cruelty or intolerance in that aspect of the Crusades. Of course, the Crusades did involve warfare—often French, Norman, or other Christians against Turkish, Arab, or other Muslims—and that warfare brought death and destruction to all sides involved, as does war in any era. The Crusading era also included regrettable cases in which Christians and Muslims engaged in criminal, sinful, and wicked behavior apart from the fighting itself.

How can people begin to understand and evaluate this complex historical mix correctly? I believe that to conduct a proper evaluation of it, people should begin with the biblical and theological criteria for a legitimate war that were in use at the time, and then should consider whether the Crusades were conducted in harmony with such Christian teachings and with their own stated goals.


Church fathers such as Ambrose and Augustine argued that such biblical texts as John 18:26; Romans 13:3‑4; and 1 Peter 2:13‑14 provided justification for governments to use force, including war, as “an agent to bring punishment on the wrongdoer” (Rom. 13:4 NIV). These and other church leaders since the fourth century approved of Christians serving in the military and participating in war, at least under some circumstances, based on such passages as Matthew 8:5‑7, Luke 3:14; 6:15; 14:31; and Acts 10‑11. Various other views had existed among Christians, to be sure. The spectrum ranged from pacifism or nonresistance to offensive, preventive wars. By the time of the Crusades, however, many Christian writers and thinkers accepted a middle position in this spectrum, which was often called the just-war view. According to Augustine, this view argued that a war was legitimate if it (1) had a just cause (primarily that of defense); (2) had a just intention; (3) was a last resort; (4) was declared by a legal government or proper authority; (5) had limited objectives; (6) was fought with appropriate and proportionate means; and (7) ensured the protection of noncombatants and included proper treatment of the wounded and of prisoners.2 The first five criteria relate primarily to legitimate reasons for going to war in the first place while the last two provide standards for the proper conduct of those who are engaged in war. They can be applied fairly well to the stated motives for the Crusades and to the actual conduct of the Crusaders.


It is widely known that the Crusades were launched in November of 1095 when Pope Urban II called for a campaign to free the Holy Land from the control of the “Saracens” or “infidels” at the church council at Clermont in France. It is often wrongly assumed that Urban wanted to increase his own power, or that of the Roman Catholic Church, by ordering Christians to fight; however, the real motivations and circumstances behind Urban’s action are less widely known.

To Defend Christians in the East

Christians in the Middle East and Europe had needed to defend themselves against aggressive Muslim incursions ever since Islam began in the seventh century. Muslim groups, from the seventh through the tenth century, conquered Palestine, Egypt, North Africa, Spain, and many other areas that Christians had inhabited since the early church era. More immediately preceding the Crusades, in the late eleventh century (1070), the Seljuk Turks, who promoted the majority Sunni branch of Islam, overran much of the Near East and captured Jerusalem from the Fatimid dynasty, a Shi’a Islam group that had controlled Egypt and parts of the Middle East since the early tenth century. In 1071, these same Turks defeated the Byzantines in what today is eastern Turkey, and subsequently moved west into territory that was inhabited by Greek Christians.

This loss of territory and the continuing threat posed by the Muslim Turks prompted the Byzantine emperor, Alexius Comnenus (who ruled from 1081–1118), to request defensive aid from Christians in the West. This plea, in the form of a letter from Alexius, was what sparked Urban’s speech at Clermont. The text of his speech, unfortunately, has not been preserved. One eyewitness later mentioned, however, that Urban specifically cited the plight of the Byzantine Christians: “Your brethren who live to the east are in urgent need of your help…the Turks and the Arabs have attacked them and conquered…as far west as the shore of the Mediterranean and the Hellespont.”3

Various Turks looted, raped, and pillaged in Christian and Muslim areas in the eastern part of Turkey that comprised the Asia Minor peninsula rather indiscriminately between 1071 and 1095.4 The threat to Eastern Christians in Byzantine territory in the 1090s, therefore, was real. Defending from these Turkish attacks would fit many of the criteria of a just war, but, unfortunately, the hordes of peasants and the unruly groups of professional soldiers that later showed up at Constantinople proved to be little help for Alexius or for Byzantine Christians.

To Protect Pilgrims and Churches in the Holy Land

Also behind Urban’s action at Clermont was the harassment of pilgrims from the West in Asia Minor and Palestine, which started after the Seljuk conquests in the 1070s. The earlier Fatimid rulers of Egypt generally had placed few restrictions on travel to the holy sites in Palestine for Christians, and pilgrimages had become popular in the eleventh century. Securing continued safe passage of Christians was important to Urban: “Let the great suffering of those who desire to go to the holy places stir you up. Think of those who made pilgrimage across the sea!…Remember, I pray, the thousands who have perished vile deaths [in route], and strive for the holy places from which the beginnings of your faith have come.”5

The worst problem in the eleventh century for travelers from the West to Palestine, as well as Christians who were already in the East, was what actually had occurred some years prior to the Turkish conquests. The Fatimid Caliph al-Hakim (c. 996–1021) severely persecuted Christians and ordered the destruction of many churches throughout Egypt and Palestine. About 30,000 churches eventually were looted or burned, and equally large numbers of Christians and Jews were killed or forcibly converted to Islam.6 Al-Hakim even ordered the destruction of the Church of the Holy Sepulcher in Jerusalem. His men demolished the sacred tomb and chiseled away much of the rock of Golgotha. After his disappearance and presumed murder in 1021, however, relatively peaceful relations resumed between the Fatimid rulers and the Christians in Egypt and Palestine. Subsequent Byzantine emperors financed the rebuilding of the Church of the Holy Sepulcher and pilgrims came again, in increasing numbers, until the Seljuk attacks at the end of the eleventh century.7

Urban, or those who heard him, may have remembered al-Hakim’s actions and associated them with the more recent Seljuk attacks. One of the more sensational accounts says that Urban mentioned “an accursed race,” that was “utterly alienated from God,” which had depopulated the territory around Jerusalem “by the sword, pillage and fire” and “destroyed the churches of God or appropriated them for the rites of its own religion.”8 This description seems to match the actions of al-Hakim better than those of the Turks, but in either case, whether systematically or haphazardly, churches and Christians—as well as territory controlled by Christian rulers—had been attacked by aggressive Islamic forces in the years just before the First Crusade.

To Export Troublemakers?

Urban probably had other motives as well. He seems to have hoped to reduce warfare among Christians in Europe. Recently Christianized but still warlike groups, including former Vikings and Magyars, often were fighting, and Urban probably wanted to redirect their belligerent actions: “Let those who have been accustomed unjustly to wage private warfare against the faithful now go against the infidels.…Let those who have been fighting against their brothers and relatives now fight in a proper way against the barbarians [emphasis added].”9 On the whole, however, Urban made it clear that the sanctioned aggression was to defend Christians in the East, and to secure other limited objectives including safety for pilgrims who were traveling to the holy sites and for those already in the area. These goals were largely compatible with just-war teachings.


Urban’s call was widely heeded, probably more widely than he expected, because of the strongly religious character of western Europe in the Middle Ages. In that setting, he found the perfect way to motivate Christians to go to war, even if it meant death, by promising complete forgiveness of sins without the normal process of penance: “All who die by the way…or in battle against the pagans, shall have immediate remission of sins. This I grant them through the power of God with which I am vested.”10 If this was not enough, he seemed to pledge heaven itself to those who merely attempted the task: “Undertake this journey for the remission of your sins, with the assurance of the imperishable glory of the kingdom of heaven.”11 The decrees from the Council of Clermont confirmed these promises: “Whoever, out of pure devotion and not for the purpose of gaining honor or money, shall go to Jerusalem to liberate the church of God, let that journey be counted in lieu of all penance.”12

Crusade expert Jonathan Riley-Smith says Urban’s action was unprecedented; “Never before had a holy war been proclaimed by a pope on Christ’s behalf, the participants in which were treated as pilgrims, took vows, and enjoyed indulgences.”13 These indulgences for fighting were not just for the First Crusade, but became a feature of all later Crusades. For example, Bernard, the powerful speaker and most prominent proponent of the Second Crusade, also told people throughout France that those willing to fight would “likewise obtain the indulgence of all thou hast confessed with a contrite heart.”14 The response to these kinds of promises was amazing. Those who heard Urban at Clermont reported that the crowd broke into repeated shouts of “Deus le volt!” (“God wills it!”).15

It is highly doubtful biblically, however, that God willed men or women to seek spiritual forgiveness through external, often violent, actions.  Of course, the misconception implicit in the Kingdom of Heaven movie, that the Crusaders were charged with establishing a physical “kingdom of heaven” in or around Jerusalem apart from the actual second coming of Christ, does not reflect New Testament teaching (see, e.g., Matt. 5:38–44; 18:2–4; 26:52; John 3:3–7, 18:36; Rev. 21). In any event, Urban did not authorizea war against Islam in general, and did not call for the conversion of Muslims by force. The violence sanctioned to support Byzantine Christians and gain control of Jerusalem, “the navel of the world,”16 undoubtedly would involve killing, but this extension of Scripture was still far different than the command found in the Qur’an to “strike off the heads” of infidels (Sura 8:12).17


Within a few months of Urban’s call, without planning or proper provisions, more than 100,000 religiously motivated peasants, poorer soldiers, and churchmen from western Europe began to march—and things began to go wrong. Badly misguided mobs, apparently thinking that there was little reason to march thousands of miles to fight infidels when some lived much closer to home, attacked Jews in the German cities of Spier, Worms, Cologne, Mainz, and elsewhere. Jewish homes, businesses, and synagogues were looted and destroyed, and hundreds of Jews, even some who had fled to Christian homes or to the residences of local bishops for protection, were killed. Many Christians, including Pope Urban and the Holy Roman Emperor, condemned these attacks. Most of the people involved in these anti-Jewish actions eventually died along the way or were killed fighting fellow Christians in Hungary and never even reached Constantinople. Some thoughtful Christians wondered if God had judged them for their reprehensible behavior.18

The Peasants’ Crusade

Other peasant Crusaders—mainly French, German, and Italian—got a little farther along the way to Jerusalem, but were no more effective in advancing the cause of Christ than the early German groups. Inspired and led in part by a poor but charismatic monk, Peter the Hermit, tens of thousands of men, women, and children eventually reached Constantinople in 1096. Since they had subsisted by begging, foraging, and pillaging along the way, Alexius was quick to provide transportation for them across the Bosporus strait to get them away from the city and into mostly Turkish territory as soon as possible. Without experienced or effective leaders, petty rivalries and stresses soon led various contingents further to abandon the biblical principle that Christians should lay down their lives for their brothers (John 15:13)—and their raiding soon degenerated into the rape and slaughter of some local residents, mostly Greek Christians.

When the Turks did move against these “Christian” marauders, most were killed, but many were enslaved or forcibly converted to Islam.19 It is hard to see any link in principle between the activities of these peasant Crusaders and Urban’s stated goals, or with the precepts of a properly conducted just war.

The Princes’ Crusade

The first official Crusade was led by various French, German, and Italian nobles—princes and barons. These Crusaders were well-equipped professional soldiers, and, unlike the people in the Peasants’ Crusade, they arrived at Constantinople without much difficulty, in late 1096 and early 1097.

Led by such men as Raymond IV, count of Toulouse; Hugh of Vermandois, the brother of Philip I, the king of France; and Adhemar, the bishop of Le Puy and official papal legate, these Crusaders clearly represented legal governments or authorities. Personal rivalries among the various leaders and sporadic clashes between the Crusaders and Alexius’s own troops around Constantinople, however, caused difficulties. Moreover, as a condition for providing them with transportation and aid, Alexius expected the Crusade leaders to pledge loyalty to him and to promise that whatever territory they might win back from the Turks would belong to the Byzantine Empire. Most leaders made a pledge and were taken across the Bosporus into Turkish territory, but hard feelings already were present. This resentment soon intensified into an open split with Alexius after the Crusaders besieged Nicaea, the Turkish capital in the region. Alexius managed to get the town to surrender to him when the Crusaders were on the verge of capturing it themselves. The Crusaders then felt betrayed.20

After a couple of minor victories against Turkish forces in western Asia Minor, the Crusaders, essentially on their own politically, began a long and torturous march across Turkey toward Jerusalem. The hardships and deaths on this journey, along with the amazing preservation and extraordinary military success of those who survived—as evidenced by their capture of Antioch in 1098 and their defeat of the forces sent to relieve the city—transformed the nature and goals of the Crusade, according to Riley-Smith. After the papal representative, bishop Adhemar, died, and several other leaders died or left, the remaining forces were convinced that God was their personal and direct leader, and that they were His warriors and champions. Their warfare was now explicitly deemed holy and just, and those who died fighting were thought to be martyrs.21

The Siege of Jerusalem

The surviving Crusaders who finally reached Jerusalem in May of 1099 were equally convinced that God would deliver the city and the Holy Sepulcher to them. They didn’t know or care that the Fatimids already had taken back the city from the Turks during the previous year. An acceptable deal for free access to the city and its holy sites presumably could have been reached with these Muslims since they had generally practiced such a policy when they controlled the city before 1070. Continued war to gain unrestricted pilgrim access to Jerusalem—a major goal of the Crusades—was not justified, since it was not now a last resort; nevertheless, when its inhabitants did not surrender, the Crusaders besieged the city. Expecting a miracle, the Crusaders at one point marched barefoot around the city like the Israelites at Jericho, but the Jerusalem walls did not fall. Equally providential from the Crusader viewpoint, however, were siege towers, catapults, and a battering ram (which was built using equipment supplied from Genoese and English ships that had made a timely landing at Jaffa on the coast) that eventually led to a breach in the Jerusalem defenses on July 15, 1099.22

The crusading army, as any victorious army at the time would have, killed many of the defenders and sacked the city, but scholars debate the scope of the destruction they wreaked. Most historians now discount as hyperbole accounts of “rivers of blood” and “blood rising to the bridles of their horses.”23 The Crusaders certainly did kill Muslim defenders of the city that had fled to the al-Aqsa mosque, however, and they burned a synagogue with some Jews inside. Among the Jews probably were men who had helped in the defense of the city against the Crusaders, but neither action would be legitimate based on just-war principles (even if the losing defenders expected no better).24

French Crusade specialist Jean Richard concludes, however, that the killing in Jerusalem was not systematic. First, he argues that Hebrew letters discovered recently in a Jewish manuscript repository at Cairo show that some Jews were escorted to the seaport at Ascalon where they were ransomed by friends who came from Egypt. Richard observes that the letters also note with surprise that the Franks, the generic name for the Crusaders, respected women in Jerusalem. Next, he states that many Muslims simply were expelled from the city and not killed following the Crusader victory. Some of these Muslims apparently went to Damascus, since the Muslim leader Saladin later made an attempt to locate their descendants there and bring them back after he recaptured Jerusalem in 1187. Finally, Richard points out that most Christians had been expelled from Jerusalem by the Fatimid governor before the Crusaders took the city.25 It is possible that some of these Christians were killed in the general chaos, but careless descriptions of Crusaders indiscriminately killing thousands of Muslims, Christians, and Jews—men, women, and children—are not supported by the best evidence.26

After a celebration at the Church of the Holy Sepulcher and the defeat of a Fatimid army that belatedly had attempted to relieve Jerusalem, many of the surviving Crusaders went home. They had not come to colonize or to gain wealth, but to fulfill holy vows. Their actions clearly were not holy when they moved away from biblical teachings, but even in such cases they were little different in war than their contemporaries.27


The Second Crusade was launched to recapture the Christian stronghold of Edessa in Syria that had fallen to the Muslims in 1144. The Armenian Christian city had in essence married into the conflict at the time of the First Crusade and its loss seemed to mark a resurgence of Muslim aggression that needed to be countered. The results were dismal. Several German armies were annihilated in Turkey long before reaching Syria. Those Crusader forces that reached Palestine safely by sea, foolishly, treacherously, and unsuccessfully attacked their one significant Muslim ally in the region: the city of Damascus. That failed attack had the unintended consequence of strengthening the hard-line Muslims and preventing future accommodations with the remaining Franks.28


One of the most interesting characters in the whole Crusader era was Saladin (c. 1137–1193), the Muslim leader who finally united various factions, decisively defeated the Crusaders at the Horns of Hattin near the Sea of Galilee on July 4, 1187, and recaptured Jerusalem shortly afterwards. He was known for his chivalry and his military skill. The filmKingdom of Heaven portrays him very positively, as have many authors in the West since the English Romantic writer, Sir Walter Scott, wrote a flattering but now historically discredited book about him in the early nineteenth century. Saladin, prior to this, largely had been ignored in Muslim history according to crusade historian Jonathan Philips.29

Saladin, ironically, might never have been able to forge his decisive and victorious coalition in 1187 without the negative stimulus from the vicious and unprincipled Reynald. Operating from Karak in the years before Hattin, Reynald violated truces, tortured and killed Muslim captives, and at one point even tried to attack Mecca. His actions, though certainly conditioned by his own long imprisonment under Muslims, were still inexcusable and united Muslims against him and the Franks he seemed to represent. Christian survivors of Hattin probably were glad to be rid of Reynald when Saladin personally killed him after the battle, essentially as depicted in the Kingdom of Heaven film.30

On the other hand, such treacherous characters did not exist only among the Franks. The later Muslim sultan of Egypt, Baybars (c. 1223–77), for example, broke pledges, desecrated churches, and frequently poisoned or otherwise killed Christian civilians and Muslim enemies. The most infamous case was his sack of Antioch where the carnage horrified even the Muslim chroniclers. Baybars, moreover, sent his own taunting account of the massacres to the absent Christian ruler of Antioch, specifically detailing the killing of priests, deacons, monks, and many others in the city.31


The Third Crusade was designed to recapture Jerusalem after its fall to Saladin. It is often considered to have been the most chivalrous and romantic Crusade since it featured Richard “the Lionhearted” and the gracious Saladin. Both men were good military leaders, but after a few battles, political pressures and other concerns eventually led them to negotiate rather than continue fighting. Richard secured rights for pilgrims from the West to travel freely to Jerusalem and other holy sites throughout the region—a key reason for the Crusades in the first place—and the Franks retained control of several important coastal cities. Saladin and his successors, though, kept Jerusalem.32 While disappointing to many Christians in the era, the compromise generally fits with just-war theory.

The Fourth Crusade was far different. By nearly any measure it was a disaster, since it ended not at Jerusalem, but with the Crusaders sacking the Christian controlled city of Constantinople in 1204. The circumstances that led to this debacle hardly matter, as it was clearly not a just war. It was simply war; while little different in practice than many others, it nevertheless contributed quite negatively to subsequent views of the Crusades—and indirectly provided stimulus for the revisionism of the modernKingdom of Heaven.


        See Thomas F. Madden, “The Real History of the Crusades,” Crisis Magazine 20.4 (April 2002), reprinted online at ChristianityToday.com, http://www.christianitytoday.com/ct/ 2005/118/52.0.html. For some possible exceptions to this general rule, see Jonathan Riley-Smith, The First Crusade and the Idea of Crusading (Philadelphia: University of Pennsylvania Press, 1986), 109–11.

        See Arthur F. Holmes, “The Just War,” in War: Four Christian Views, ed. Robert G. Clouse (Downers Grove, IL: InterVarsity Press, 1991), 120–30; and Norman L. Geisler, Christian Ethics: Options and Issues (Grand Rapids: Baker Books, 1989), 215–37.

        Fulcher of Chartes, “Gesta Francorum Jerusalem Expugnantium” in Bongars, “Gesta Dei per Francos,” 1:382–83 in A Source Book for Medieval History, trans. and ed. Oliver J. Thatcher and Edgar Holmes McNeal (New York: Scribners, 1905), 515–16. Fulcher and the other medieval sources for Urban’s speech cited in this article are available online at “Urban II (1088-1099): Speech at Council of Clermont, 1095, Five versions of the Speech,” Internet Medieval Sourcebook (Fordham University), http://www.fordham.edu/ halsall/source/urban2-5vers.html.

        Steven Runciman, A History of the Crusades, 3 vols. (New York: Cambridge University Press, 1951), 1:64–79.

        Guibert de Nogent, “Historia quae dicitur Gesta Dei per Francos,” in August C. Krey, The First Crusade: The Accounts of Eyewitnesses and Participants (Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press, 1921), 36–40.

        Runciman, 1:35–37.


        Robert the Monk, “Historia Hierosolymitana,” in Dana C. Munro, “Urban and the Crusaders,” in Translations and Reprints from the Original Sources of European History (Philadelphia: University of Pennsylvania Press, 1895), 1:5–8.

        Fulcher of Chartres, in A Source Book for Medieval History, 516–17. Balderic of Dol recorded Urban saying, “You should shudder at raising a violent hand against Christians; it is less wicked to brandish the sword against Saracens. It is the only warfare that is righteous, for it is charity to risk your life for your brothers” (quoted in Krey, 35–36).

     Fulcher of Chartres, in A Source Book for Medieval History, 516–17.

     Robert the Monk, in Munro, 1:6–7.

     Canon 2, quoted in The Catholic Encyclopedia, s.v. “Indulgences” (by W. H. Kent), http://www.newadvent.org/cathen/07783a.htm, accessed October 22, 2005.

     Riley-Smith, 30.

     Epistles 322 and 362, quoted in The Catholic Encyclopedia, s.v. “Indulgences.”

     Robert the Monk, in Munro, 1:6–7. See also Runciman, 1:108.

     Robert the Monk, in Munro, 1:6–7.

     Norman L. Geisler and Abdul Saleeb, “Understanding and Reaching Muslims (Part Two),” Christian Research Journal 24, 4 (2002), 29–31; http://www.equip.org/free/ DM809.htm.

     Runciman, 1:137–41.

     Ibid., 1:121–33.

     Ibid., 1:161–71.

     Riley-Smith, 92–119.

     Runciman, 1:282–87; Jean Richard, The Crusades c. 1071—c. 1291, trans. Jean Birrell (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1999), 63–66.

     Richard, 66.

     Ibid. See also Runciman, 1:286–87, and William Hamblin and Thomas Madden, “Cross Purposes,” interview by Peter Robinson, Uncommon Knowledge, April 22, 2002, transcript available online at http://www.uncommonknowledge.org/700/706.html.

     Richard, 66.

     Former president Bill Clinton in 2001 gave a careless and inaccurate description of the sack of Jerusalem, according to crusade author Thomas F. Madden. (“Clinton’s Folly,” American Outlook [Fall 2001], http://www.americanoutlook.org/index.cfm?fuseaction= article_detail&id=1474.)

     Richard, 67–72, 474–82.

     Ibid., 155–69.

     Cited in Charlotte Edwardes, “Ridley Scott’s New Crusades Film ‘Panders to Osama Bin Laden,’” News Telegraph, January 1, 2004, http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/main.jhtml?xml=/news/2004/01/18/wcrus18.xml&sSheet=/news/2004/01/18/ixworld.html.

     Richard Warren Field, “Kingdom of Heaven: Sorting Fact from Fiction,” RichardWarrenField.com, http://www.richardwarrenfield.com/essay029.htm.

     Runciman, 3:315–26; Richard, 416–19.

     Runciman, 3:34–75. 

1096-1099AD The First Crusade

The Baker Atlas of Christian History

© 1997 by Angus Hudson Ltd./Tim Dowley & Peter Wyart trading as Three's Company

From: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/First_Crusade

First Crusade

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First Crusade
Part of the Crusades

The capture of Jerusalem marked the First Crusade's success
LocationNear East (Anatolia, Levant, Israel)
ResultDecisive Christian victory and land control
Anatolia and Levant captured for Christendom;
Kingdom of Jerusalem/crusader states created
Christendom, Catholicism
West European Christians, Armenian Kingdom of Cilicia
Arabs and other Muslims

The First Crusade was launched in 1095 by Pope Urban II with the dual goals of liberating the sacred city of Jerusalem and the Holy Land from Muslims and freeing the Eastern Christians from Muslim rule. What started as an appeal by Byzantine Emperor Alexios I Komnenos for western mercenaries to fight the Seljuk Turks in Anatolia quickly turned into a wholesale Western migration and conquest of territory outside of Europe. Both knights and peasants from many nations of Western Europe travelled over land and by sea towards Jerusalem and captured the city in July 1099, establishing the Kingdom of Jerusalem and other Crusader states. Although these gains lasted for less than two hundred years, the First Crusade was a major turning point in the expansion of Western power, as well as the first major step towards reopening international trade in the West since the fall of the Western Roman Empire.



[edit] Background

The origins of the Crusades in general, and of the First Crusade in particular, stem from events earlier in the Middle Ages. The breakdown of the Carolingian Empire in previous centuries, combined with the relative stability of European borders after the Christianization of the Vikings and Magyars, gave rise to an entire class of warriors who now had little to do but fight among themselves.

By the early 8th century, the Umayyad Caliphate had rapidly captured North Africa, Egypt, Palestine, Syria, and Spain from a predominantly Christian Byzantine Empire. During the 12th century, the Reconquista picked up an ideological potency that is considered to be the first example of a concerted "Christian" effort to recapture territory, seen as lost to Muslims, as part of the expansion efforts of the Christian kingdoms along the Bay of Biscay. Spanish kingdoms, knightly orders and mercenaries began to mobilize from across Europe for the fight against the surviving and predominantly Moorish Umayyad caliphate at Cordoba.

Other Muslim kingdoms emerging from the collapse of the Umayyads in the 8th century, such as the Aghlabics, had entered Italy in the 9th century. The Kalbid state that arose in the region, weakened by dynastic struggles, became prey to the Normans capturing Sicily by 1091. Pisa, Genoa, and Aragon began to battle other Muslim kingdoms for control of the Mediterranean, exemplified by the Mahdia campaign and battles at Mallorca and Sardinia.

The idea of a Holy War against the Muslims seemed acceptable to medieval European secular and religious powers, as well as the public in general, for a number of reasons, such as the recent military successes of European kingdoms along the Mediterranean. In addition there was the emerging political conception of Christendom, which saw the union of Christian kingdoms under Papal guidance for the first time (in the High Middle Ages) and the creation of a Christian army to fight the Muslims. Finally, Jerusalem, along with the surrounding lands including the places where Christ lived and died, was sacred to Christians.

In 1074, Pope Gregory VII called for the milites Christi ("soldiers of Christ") to go to the aid of the Byzantine Empire in the east. The Byzantines had suffered a serious defeat at the hands of the Seljuk Turks at the Battle of Manzikert three years previously. This call, while largely ignored and even opposed, combined with the large numbers of pilgrimages to the Holy Land in the 11th century, focused a great deal of attention on the east. Preaching by monks such as Peter the Hermit and Walter the Penniless, which spread reports of Muslims abusing Christian pilgrims travelling to Jerusalem and other Middle Eastern holy sites, further stoked the crusading zeal. It was Pope Urban II who first disseminated to the general public the idea of a Crusade to capture the Holy Land. Upon hearing his dramatic and inspiring speech, the nobles and clergy in attendance began to chant the famous words, Deus vult! ("God wills it!")

[edit] East in the late eleventh century

Umayyad Caliphate at its greatest extent.
Umayyad Caliphate at its greatest extent.

Western Europe's immediate neighbour to the southeast was the Byzantine Empire, fellow Christians but who had long followed a separate Orthodox rite. Under Emperor Alexios I Komnenos, the empire was largely confined to Europe and the western coast of Anatolia, and faced many enemies: the Normans in the west and the Seljuks in the east. Further east, Anatolia, Syria, Palestine, and Egypt were all under Muslim control, but were politically, and to some extent, culturally fragmented at the time of the First Crusade, which certainly contributed to the Crusade's success. Anatolia and Syria were controlled by the Sunni Seljuks, formerly in one large empire ("Great Seljuk") but by this point divided into many smaller states. Alp Arslan had defeated the Byzantine Empire at Manzikert in 1071 and incorporated much of Anatolia into Great Seljuk. However, this empire was split apart after the death of Alp Arslan in 1072. The same year, Malik Shah I succeeded Alp Arslan and would continue to reign until 1092. During this period, the Seljuk empire faced internal rebellion. In the Sultanate of Rüm in Anatolia, Malik Shah I was succeeded by Kilij Arslan I and in Syria by his brother Tutush I, who died in 1095. Tutush's sons Radwan and Duqaq inherited Aleppo and Damascus respectively, further dividing Syria amongst emirs antagonistic towards each other, as well as towards Kerbogha, the atabeg of Mosul. These states were on the whole more concerned with consolidating their own territories and gaining control of their neighbours, than with cooperating against the crusaders.

Elsewhere in nominal Seljuk territory were the Ortoqids in northeastern Syria and northern Mesopotamia. They controlled Jerusalem until 1098. In eastern Anatolia and northern Syria, a state was founded by Danishmend, a Seljuk mercenary; the crusaders did not have significant contact with either group until after the Crusade. The Hashshashin were also becoming important in Syrian affairs.

When Palestine was under Persian and early Islamic rule, Christian pilgrims to the Holy Land were generally treated well. The early Islamic ruler, Caliph Omar, allowed Christians to perform all of their rites – minus any overt pomp. But beginning in the early eleventh century, Sultan Hakim of Egypt began to persecute the Christians of Palestine. In 1009, he destroyed Christianity's holiest shrine the Holy Sepulcher. He eventually relented and instead of burning and killing, he implemented a toll tax for Christian pilgrims entering Jerusalem. The worst was yet to come. A group of Turkish Muslims, the Seljuks, very powerful, very aggressive and very stringent followers of Islam, began their rise to power. The Seljuks viewed Christian pilgrims negatively as pollutants and ‘cracked down’ on Christians in Palestine. Barbaric stories of persecution began to filter back to Latin Christendom; rather than having the effect of discouraging pilgrims, this made the pilgrimage to the Holy Land even that much more holy. Not even the changing of the pilgrimage stories of wondrous amazement to barbaric persecutions deterred Christians.

Egypt and much of Palestine were controlled by the Arab Shi'ite Fatimids, whose empire was significantly smaller since the arrival of the Seljuks; Alexius I had advised the crusaders to work with the Fatimids against their common Seljuk enemies. The Fatimids, at this time ruled by caliph al-Musta'li (although all actual power was held by the vizier al-Afdal Shahanshah), had lost Jerusalem to the Seljuks in 1076, but recaptured it from the Ortoqids in 1098 while the crusaders were on the march. The Fatimids did not, at first, consider the crusaders a threat, assuming they had been sent by the Byzantines and that they would be content with recapturing Syria, leaving Palestine alone; they did not send an army against the crusaders until they were already at Jerusalem.

[edit] Chronological sequence of the Crusade

[edit] Council of Clermont

Main article: Council of Clermont

In March 1095, Alexius I sent envoys to the Council of Piacenza to ask Pope Urban II for aid against the Turks. The emperor's request met with a favourable response from Urban, who hoped to heal the Great Schism of 40 years prior and re-unite the Church under papal primacy as "chief bishop and prelate over the whole world" (as he referred to himself at Clermont),[1] by helping the Eastern churches in their time of need.

The Council of Piacenza solidified the pope’s authority in Italy during a period of a papal crisis (over 3,000 clergy and approximately 30,000 laity showed up; as well as ambassadors of the East who implored all of the ‘aid of Christendom against the Unbelievers’). With Pope Urban II’s goal of reasserting his authority in Italy accomplished, he was now able to fully concentrate on addressing and laying a course of action for a Crusade which the Eastern ambassadors from the Byzantine Empire had primarily come for. Urban was also aware that Italy was not the land which would, “awaken to a burst of religious enthusiasm at the summons of a Pope; one, too, with a still contested title." His urges to persuade "many to promise, by taking an oath, to aid the emperor most faithfully as far as they were able against the pagans" came to little.

At the Council of Clermont, assembled in the heart of France on November 27, 1095, Urban gave an impassioned sermon to a large audience of French nobles and clergy. He summoned the audience to wrest control of Jerusalem from the hands of the Muslims. France, he said, was overcrowded and the land of Canaan was overflowing with milk and honey. He spoke of the problems of noble violence and the solution was to turn swords to God's own service: "Let robbers become knights".[1] He spoke of rewards both on earth and in heaven, where remission of sins was offered to any who might die in the undertaking. Urban promised this through the power of God that was invested into him. The crowd was stirred to frenzied enthusiasm and interrupted his speech with cries of Deus lo volt! ("It is God's will!").

Urban's sermon is among the most important speeches in European history. There are many versions of the speech on record, but all were written after Jerusalem had been captured, and it is difficult to know what was actually said and what was recreated in the aftermath of the successful crusade. However, it is clear that the response to the speech was much larger than expected. For the rest of 1095 and into 1096, Urban spread the message throughout France, and urged his bishops and legates to preach in their own dioceses elsewhere in France, Germany, and Italy as well. Urban tried to forbid certain people (including women, monks, and the sick) from joining the crusade, but found this to be nearly impossible. In the end the majority of those who took up the call were not knights, but peasants who were not wealthy and had little in the way of fighting skills, but whose millennial and apocalyptic yearnings found release from the daily oppression of their lives, in an outpouring of a new emotional and personal piety that was not easily harnessed by the ecclesiastical and lay aristocracy.

[edit] People's Crusade

Main article: People's Crusade

Urban planned the departure of the crusade for August 15, 1096, the Feast of the Assumption, but months before this a number of unexpected armies of peasants and lowly knights organized and set off for Jerusalem on their own. They were led by a charismatic monk and powerful orator named Peter the Hermit of Amiens. The response was beyond expectations: while Urban might have expected a few thousand knights, he ended up with a migration numbering up to 100,000 — albeit mostly unskilled fighters, including women and children.

Lacking military discipline, and in what likely seemed to the participants a strange land (eastern Europe) with strange customs, those first Crusaders quickly landed in trouble, in Christian territory. The problem faced was one of supply as well as culture: the people needed food and supplies, and they expected host cities to give them the foods and supplies — or at least sell them at prices they felt reasonable. Having left Western Europe early, they had missed out on the great harvest of that spring, following years of drought and bad harvest. Unfortunately for the Crusaders, the locals did not always agree, and this quickly led to fighting and skirmishing. On their way down the Danube, Peter's followers looted Hungarian territory and were attacked by the Hungarians, the Bulgarians, and even a Byzantine army near Nish. About a quarter of Peter's followers were killed, but the rest arrived largely intact at Constantinople in August. Constantinople was big for that time period in Europe, but so was Peter's "army", and cultural difference and a reluctance to supply such a large number of incoming people led to further tensions. In Constantinople, moreover, Peter's followers weren't the only band of crusaders — they joined with other crusading armies from France and Italy. Alexius, not knowing what else to do with such a large and unusual (and foreign) army, quickly ferried them across the Bosporus.

After crossing into Asia Minor, the Crusaders began to quarrel and the armies broke up into two separate camps. The Turks were experienced, savvy, and had local knowledge; most of the People's Crusade —a bunch of amateur warriors and unarmed women — were massacred upon entering Seljuk territory. Peter survived, however, and would later join the main Crusader army. Another army of Bohemians and Saxons did not make it past Hungary before splitting up.

[edit] German Crusade

Main article: German Crusade, 1096
1250 French Bible illustration depicts Jews (identifiable by Judenhut) being massacred by Crusaders
1250 French Bible illustration depicts Jews (identifiable by Judenhut) being massacred by Crusaders

The First Crusade ignited a long tradition of organized violence against Jews in European culture. While anti-Semitism had existed in Europe for centuries, the First Crusade marks the first mass organized violence against Jewish communities. In Germany, certain leaders understood this war against the infidels to be applicable not only to the Muslims in the Holy Land, but even against Jews within their own lands. Setting off in the early summer of 1096, a German army of around 10,000 soldiers led by Gottschalk, Volkmar, and Emicho, proceeded northward through the Rhine valley, in the opposite direction of Jerusalem, and began a series of pogroms which some historians call "the first Holocaust".[2] This understanding of the idea of a Crusade was not universal, however, and Jews found some refuge in sanctuaries, with one example being the Archbishop of Cologne's attempts to protect the Jews of the city from the slaughter carried on by the city's population.

The preaching of the crusade inspired further anti-Semitism. According to some preachers, Jews and Muslims were enemies of Christ, and enemies were to be fought or converted to Christianity. The general public apparently assumed that "fought" meant "fought to the death", or "killed". The Christian conquest of Jerusalem and the establishment of a Christian emperor there would supposedly instigate the End Times, during which the Jews were supposed to convert to Christianity. In parts of France and Germany, Jews were thought to be responsible for the crucifixion, and they were more immediately visible than the far-away Muslims. Many people wondered why they should travel thousands of miles to fight non-believers when there were already non-believers closer to home.

The crusaders moved north through the Rhine valley into well-known Jewish communities such as Cologne, and then southward. Jewish communities were given the option of converting to Christianity or being slaughtered. Most would not convert and, as news of the mass killings spread, many Jewish communities committed mass suicides in horrific scenes. Thousands of Jews were massacred, despite some attempts by local clergy and secular authorities to shelter them. The massacres were justified by the claim that Urban's speech at Clermont promised reward from God for killing non-Christians of any sort, not just Muslims. Although the papacy abhorred and preached against the purging of Muslim and Jewish inhabitants during this and future crusades, there were numerous attacks on Jews following every crusade movement.

[edit] Princes' Crusade

Route of the leaders of the first crusade
Route of the leaders of the first crusade

The Princes' Crusade, also known as the Barons' Crusade, set out later in 1096 in a more orderly manner, led by various nobles with bands of knights from different regions of Europe. The four most significant of these were Raymond IV of Toulouse, who represented the knights of Provence, accompanied by the papal legate Adhemar of Le Puy; Bohemond of Taranto, representing the Normans of southern Italy with his nephew Tancred; The Lorrainers under the brothers Godfrey of Bouillon, Eustace and Baldwin of Boulogne; and the Northern French led by Count Robert II of Flanders, Robert of Normandy (older brother of King William II of England), Stephen, Count of Blois, and Hugh of Vermandois the younger brother of King Philip I of France, who bore the papal banner [3]. King Philip himself was forbidden from participating in the campaign as he had been excommunicated.

[edit] March to Jerusalem

Leaving Europe around the appointed time in August, the various armies took different paths to Constantinople and gathered outside its city walls between November 1096 and May 1097, two months after the annihilation of the People's Crusade by the Turks. Accompanying the knights were many poor men (pauperes) who could afford basic clothing and perhaps an old weapon. Peter the Hermit, who joined the Princes' Crusade at Constantinople, was considered responsible for their well-being, and they were able to organize themselves into small groups, perhaps akin to military companies, often led by an impoverished knight. One of the largest of these groups, comprising of the survivors of the People's Crusade, named itself the "Tafurs".

The Princes arrived in Constantinople with little food and expected provisions and help from Alexius I. Alexius was understandably suspicious after his experiences with the People's Crusade, and also because the knights included his old Norman enemy, Bohemond. At the same time, Alexius harbored hopes of exercising control over the crusaders, who he seems to have regarded as having the potential to function as a Byzantine proxy. Thus, in return for food and supplies, Alexius requested the leaders to swear fealty to him and promise to return to the Byzantine Empire any land recovered from the Turks. Without food or provisions, they eventually had no choice but to take the oath, though not until all sides had agreed to various compromises, and only after warfare had almost broken out in the city. Only Raymond avoided swearing the oath, cleverly pledging himself to Alexius if the emperor would lead the crusade in person. Alexius refused, but the two became allies, sharing a common distrust of Bohemond.

Byzantine Empire Before First Crusade
Byzantine Empire Before First Crusade
Byzantine Empire and Crusader States after the First Crusade
Byzantine Empire and Crusader States after the First Crusade

Alexius agreed to send out a Byzantine army under the command of Taticius to accompany the crusaders through Asia Minor. Their first objective was Nicaea, an old Byzantine city, but now the capital of the Seljuk Sultanate of Rüm under Kilij Arslan I. The city was subjected to a lengthy siege, which was somewhat ineffectual as the crusaders could not blockade the lake on which the city was situated, and from which it could be provisioned. Arslan, from outside the city, advised the garrison to surrender if their situation became untenable. Alexius, fearing the crusaders would sack Nicaea and destroy its wealth, secretly accepted the surrender of the city; the crusaders awoke on the morning of June 19, 1097 to see Byzantine standards flying from the walls. The crusaders were forbidden to loot it, and were not allowed to enter the city except in small escorted bands. This caused a further rift between the Byzantines and the crusaders. The crusaders now began the journey to Jerusalem. Stephen of Blois wrote home, stating he believed it would take five weeks. In fact, the journey would take two years.

The crusaders, still accompanied by some Byzantine troops under Taticius, marched on towards Dorylaeum, where Bohemond was pinned down by Kilij Arslan. At the Battle of Dorylaeum on July 1, Godfrey broke through the Turkish lines, and with the help of the troops led by the legate Adhemar, defeated the Turks and looted their camp. Kilij Arslan withdrew and the crusaders marched almost unopposed through Asia Minor towards Antioch, except for a battle, in September, in which they again defeated the Turks. Along the way, the Crusaders were able to capture a number of cities such as Sozopolis, Iconium and Caesarea although most of these were lost to the Turks by 1101.[4]

The march through Asia was unpleasant. It was the middle of summer and the crusaders had very little food and water; many men died, as did many horses. Christians, in Asia as in Europe, sometimes gave them gifts of food and money, but more often the crusaders looted and pillaged whenever the opportunity presented itself. Individual leaders continued to dispute the overall leadership, although none of them were powerful enough to take command; still, Adhemar was always recognized as the spiritual leader. After passing through the Cilician Gates, Baldwin of Boulogne set off on his own towards the Armenian lands around the Euphrates. In Edessa early in 1098, he was adopted as heir by King Thoros, a Greek Orthodox ruler who was disliked by his Armenian subjects. Thoros was soon assassinated and Baldwin became the new ruler, thus creating the County of Edessa, the first of the crusader states.

[edit] Siege of Antioch

A mitred Adhémar de Monteil carrying the Holy Lance in one of the battles of the First Crusade
A mitred Adhémar de Monteil carrying the Holy Lance in one of the battles of the First Crusade
Main article: Siege of Antioch

The crusader army, meanwhile, marched on to Antioch, which lay about half way between Constantinople and Jerusalem. They arrived in October 1097 and set it to a siege which lasted almost eight months, during which time they also had to defeat two large relief armies under Duqaq of Damascus and Ridwan of Aleppo. Antioch was so large that the crusaders did not have enough troops to fully surround it, and thus it was able to stay partially supplied. As the siege dragged on it was clear that Bohemond wanted the city for himself.

In May 1098, Kerbogha of Mosul approached Antioch to relieve the siege. Bohemond bribed an Armenian guard of the city to surrender his tower, and in June the crusaders entered the city and killed most of the inhabitants. However, only a few days later the Muslims arrived, laying siege to the former besiegers. At this point a minor monk by the name of Peter Bartholomew claimed to have discovered the Holy Lance in the city, and although some were skeptical, this was seen as a sign that they would be victorious.

Bohemond of Taranto alone mounts the rampart of Antioch, in an engraving by Gustave Doré.
Bohemond of Taranto alone mounts the rampart of Antioch, in an engraving by Gustave Doré.

On June 28 the crusaders defeated Kerbogha in a pitched battle outside the city, as Kerbogha was unable to organize the different factions in his army. While the crusaders were marching towards the Muslims, the Fatimid section of the army deserted the Turkish contingent, as they feared Kerbogha would become too powerful if he were to defeat the Crusaders. According to legend, an army of Christian saints came to the aid of the crusaders during the battle and crippled Kerbogha's army.

Bohemond argued that Alexius had deserted the crusade and thus invalidated all of their oaths to him. Bohemond asserted his claim to Antioch, but not everyone agreed, and the crusade was delayed for the rest of the year while the nobles argued amongst themselves. It is a common historiographical assumption that the Franks of northern France, the Provençals of southern France, and the Normans of southern Italy considered themselves separate "nations" and that each wanted to increase its status. This may have had something to do with the disputes, but personal ambition was just as likely to blame.

Meanwhile, a plague (perhaps typhus) broke out, killing many, including the legate Adhemar. There were now even fewer horses than before, and Muslim peasants refused to give them food. In December, the capture of the Arab town of Ma'arrat al-Numan took place, and with it the first known incident of cannibalism by the crusaders. The minor knights and soldiers became restless and threatened to continue to Jerusalem without their squabbling leaders. Finally, at the beginning of 1099, the march was renewed, leaving Bohemond behind as the first Prince of Antioch.

[edit] Siege of Jerusalem

Proceeding down the coast of the Mediterranean, the crusaders encountered little resistance, as local rulers preferred to make peace with them and give them supplies rather than fight. On June 7 the crusaders reached Jerusalem, which had been recaptured from the Seljuks by the Fatimids of Egypt only the year before. Many Crusaders wept on seeing the city they had journeyed so long to reach.

As with Antioch, the crusaders put the city to a lengthy siege, in which the crusaders themselves suffered many casualties, due to the lack of food and water around Jerusalem. Of the estimated 7,000 knights who took part in the Princes' Crusade, only about 1,500 remained. Faced with a seemingly impossible task, their morale was raised when a priest, by the name of Peter Desiderius, claimed to have had a divine vision instructing them to fast and then march in a barefoot procession around the city walls, after which the city would fall in nine days, following the Biblical example of Joshua at the siege of Jericho. On July 8, 1099 the crusaders performed the procession as instructed by Desiderius. The Genoese troops, led by commander Guglielmo Embriaco, had previously dismantled the ships in which the Genoese came to the Holy Land; Embriaco, using the ship's wood, made some siege towers and seven days later on July 15, the crusaders were able to end the siege by breaking down sections of the walls and entering the city. Some Crusaders also entered through the former pilgrim's entrance.

Over the course of that afternoon, evening and next morning, the crusaders murdered almost every inhabitant of Jerusalem. Muslims, Jews, and even eastern Christians were all massacred. Although many Muslims sought shelter in Al-Aqsa Mosque and the Jews in their synagogue by the Western wall, the crusaders spared few lives. According to the anonymous Gesta Francorum, in what some believe to be an exaggerated account of the massacre which subsequently took place there, "...the slaughter was so great that our men waded in blood up to their ankles..."[5]. Other accounts of blood flowing up to the bridles of horses are reminiscent of a passage from the Book of Revelation (14:20). Tancred claimed the Temple quarter for himself and offered protection to some of the Muslims there, but he was unable to prevent their deaths at the hands of his fellow crusaders. According to Fulcher of Chartres: "Indeed, if you had been there you would have seen our feet coloured to our ankles with the blood of the slain. But what more shall I relate? None of them were left alive; neither women nor children were spared".[6]

However, the Gesta Francorum states some people managed to escape the siege unharmed. Its anonymous author wrote, "When the pagans had been overcome, our men seized great numbers, both men and women, either killing them or keeping them captive, as they wished".[7] Later it is written, "[Our leaders] also ordered all the Saracen dead to be cast outside because of the great stench, since the whole city was filled with their corpses; and so the living Saracens dragged the dead before the exits of the gates and arranged them in heaps, as if they were houses. No one ever saw or heard of such slaughter of pagan people, for funeral pyres were formed from them like pyramids, and no one knows their number except God alone".[8]

Godfrey of Bouillon as Protector of Jerusalem. His official title was Advocatus Sancti Sepulchri, "Protector of the Holy Sepulchre".
Godfrey of Bouillon as Protector of Jerusalem. His official title was Advocatus Sancti Sepulchri, "Protector of the Holy Sepulchre".

Raymond of Toulouse was offered the kingship of Jerusalem but refused, saying that he wouldn't wear "a crown of gold" where Christ had worn "a crown of thorns". In the days following the massacre, Godfrey of Bouillon was made Advocatus Sancti Sepulchri ("Protector of the Holy Sepulchre"). In the last action of the crusade, he led an army which defeated an invading Fatimid army at the Battle of Ascalon. Godfrey died in July 1100, and was succeeded by his brother, Baldwin of Edessa, who took the title King of Jerusalem.

[edit] Crusade of 1101 and the establishment of the kingdom

Main article: Crusade of 1101

Having captured Jerusalem and the Church of the Holy Sepulchre, the crusading vow was now fulfilled. However, there were many who had gone home before reaching Jerusalem, and many who had never left Europe at all. When the success of the crusade became known, these people were mocked and scorned by their families and threatened with excommunication by the clergy. Many crusaders who had remained with the crusade all the way to Jerusalem also went home; according to Fulcher of Chartres there were only a few hundred knights left in the newfound kingdom in 1100. In 1101, another crusade set out, including Stephen of Blois and Hugh of Vermandois, both of whom had returned home before reaching Jerusalem. This crusade was almost annihilated in Asia Minor by the Seljuks, but the survivors helped reinforce the kingdom when they arrived in Jerusalem. In the following years, assistance was also provided by Italian merchants who established themselves in the Syrian ports, and from the religious and military orders of the Knights Templars and the Knights Hospitaller which were created during Baldwin I's reign.

[edit] Analysis of the First Crusade

[edit] Aftermath

The success of the First Crusade was unprecedented. Newly achieved stability in the west left a warrior aristocracy in search of new conquests and patrimony, and the new prosperity of major towns also meant that money was available to equip expeditions. The Italian maritime city states, in particular Venice and Genoa, were interested in extending trade. The Papacy saw the Crusades as a way to assert Catholic influence as a unifying force, with war as a religious mission. This was a new attitude to religion: it brought religious discipline, previously applicable only to monks, to soldiery—the new concept of a religious warrior and the chivalric ethos.

The First Crusade succeeded in establishing the "Crusader States" of Edessa, Antioch, Jerusalem, and Tripoli in Palestine and Syria (as well as allies along the Crusaders' route, such as the Armenian Kingdom of Cilicia).

Back at home in western Europe, those who had survived to reach Jerusalem were treated as heroes. Robert of Flanders was nicknamed "Hierosolymitanus" thanks to his exploits. The life of Godfrey of Bouillon became legendary even within a few years of his death. In some cases, the political situation at home was greatly affected by crusader absences: while Robert Curthose was away, England had passed to his brother Henry I of England, and their conflict resulted in the Battle of Tinchebrai in 1106.

Meanwhile the establishment of the crusader states in the east helped ease Seljuk pressure on the Byzantine Empire, which had regained some of its Anatolian territory with crusader help, and experienced a period of relative peace and prosperity in the 12th century. The effect on the Muslim dynasties of the east was gradual but important. In the wake of the death of Malik Shah I in 1092 the political instability and the division of Great Seljuk, that had pressed the Byzantine call for aid to the Pope, meant that it had prevented a coherent defense against the aggressive and expansionist Latin states. Cooperation between them remained difficult for many decades, but from Egypt to Syria to Baghdad there were calls for the expulsion of the crusaders, culminating in the recapture of Jerusalem under Saladin later in the century when the Ayyubids had united the surrounding areas.

Pope Urban II’s reasons for calling for a Crusade to the Holy Land were to regain Papacy supreme spiritual authority in Latin Christendom while expanding his realpolitik power. He failed to bridge the growing schism between the East and West and inadvertently, with the sacking of Constantinople during the later crusades, actually solidified the schism. The Crusades also militarily assisted the weakening Byzantine Empire by repulsing the growing Seljuk menace from the Holy Lands and setting up small individual kingdoms.

[edit] Pilgrims

Although it is called the First Crusade, no one saw himself as a "crusader". The term crusade is an early 13th century term that first appears in Latin over 100 years after the first crusade. Nor did the crusaders see themselves as the first, since they did not know there would be more. They saw themselves simply as pilgrims (peregrinatores) on a journey (iter), and were referred to as such in contemporary accounts.

Taking an oath to the church to complete the journey, and punishment by excommunication if one failed to do so, were the solidifying factors of making the crusade an official pilgrimage. Crusaders were to swear that their journey would only be complete once they set foot inside the Holy Sepulchre in Jerusalem. Pilgrimages were open to all those who wished to take part, therefore undesirable candidates, women, the elderly and the infirm, were discouraged from joining but there was no way to stop them.

[edit] Popularity of the Crusade

The first Crusade attracted the largest number of peasants and what started as a minor call for military aid turned into a mass migration of peoples. The call to go on crusade was very popular. Two medieval roles, holy warrior and pilgrim, were merged into one. Like a holy warrior in a holy war, one would carry a weapon and fight for the Church with all its spiritual benefits, including the privilege of an indulgence or martyrdom if one died in battle.

Just like a pilgrim on a pilgrimage, a crusader would have the right to hospitality and personal protection of self and property by the Church. The benefits of the indulgence were therefore twofold, both for fighting as a warrior of the Church and for traveling as a pilgrim. Thus, an indulgence would be granted regardless of whether one lived or died. But the crusade was not an indulgence in the medieval sense, medieval indulgences were bought and sold. The crusade was not an easy absolution of sins but a form of penitence because it was undertaken voluntarily and was a type of self-inflicted punishment. This crucial difference separates the medieval indulgence and the original crusade idea.

In addition there were feudal obligations because many crusaders went because they were required to do so by their lord. The poorer classes looked to local nobility for guidance and if a powerful aristocrat could motivate others to join the cause as well. The connection to a wealthy leader allowed the average peasant to contribute and have some sort of protection on the journey, unlike those who undertook the vow alone. There were also family obligations, with many people joining the crusade in order to support relatives who had also taken the crusading vow. Some nobility, including several kings and heirs, were prohibited to join because of their position. All of these factors motivated different people for different reasons and contributed to the popularity of the crusade.

[edit] Spiritual versus earthly rewards

The call to crusade came at a time when years of good harvests had increased the Western European population allowing larger armies of Christendom to initiate the reconquista and this Crusade. Nonetheless, the attraction of trying to start a new life in the far more successful East caused many people to leave their lands. The expanding population meant that Europe was not a place of great opportunity anymore and the possibility of gaining something, whether spiritual, political or economic, was tempting to countless participants.

Older scholarship on this issue asserts that the bulk of the participants were likely younger sons of nobles who were dispossessed of land and influenced by the practise of primogeniture, and poorer knights who were looking for a new life in the wealthy east. Many had fought in order to drive out the Muslim armies in Southern Spain, or had relatives who had done so. The rumours of treasures that were discovered there may have been an attractive feature, for if there was such treasure in Spain there must have been even more in Jerusalem. Most didn't find this type of treasure, mostly insignificant relics were uncovered. While this is true in some respect it cannot be the only motivation for so many.

However, current research suggests that although Urban promised crusaders spiritual as well as material benefit, the primary aim of most crusaders was spiritual rather than material gain. Moreover, recent research by Jonathan Riley-Smith instead shows that the crusade was an immensely expensive undertaking, affordable only to those knights who were already fairly wealthy, such as Hugh of Vermandois and Robert Curthose, who were relatives of the French and English royal families, and Raymond of Toulouse, who ruled much of southern France. Even then, these wealthy knights had to sell much of their land to relatives or the church before they could afford to participate. Their relatives, too, often had to impoverish themselves in order to raise money for the crusade. As Riley-Smith says, "there really is no evidence to support the proposition that the crusade was an opportunity for spare sons to make themselves scarce in order to relieve their families of burdens".[9]

As an example of spiritual over earthly motivation, Godfrey of Bouillon and his brother Baldwin settled previous quarrels with the church by bequeathing their land to local clergy. The charters denoting these transactions were written by clergymen, not the knights themselves, and seem to idealize the knights as pious men seeking only to fulfill a vow of pilgrimage.

Further, poorer knights (minores, as opposed to the greater knights, the principes) could go on crusade only if they expected to survive off almsgiving, or if they could enter the service of a wealthier knight, as was the case with Tancred, who agreed to serve his uncle Bohemond. Later crusades would be organized by wealthy kings and emperors, or would be supported by special crusade taxes.

[edit] In arts and literature

The success of the crusade inspired the literary imagination of poets in France, who, in the 12th century, began to compose various chansons de geste celebrating the exploits of Godfrey of Bouillon and the other crusaders. Some of these, such as the most famous, the Chanson d'Antioche, are semi-historical, while others are completely fanciful, describing battles with a dragon or connecting Godfrey's ancestors to the legend of the Swan Knight. Together, the chansons are known as the crusade cycle.

The First Crusade was also an inspiration to artists in later centuries. In 1580, Torquato Tasso wrote Jerusalem Delivered, a largely fictionalized epic poem about the capture of Jerusalem. The 19th century poet Tommaso Grossi also wrote an epic poem, which was the basis of Giuseppe Verdi's opera I Lombardi alla prima crociata.

Gustave Doré made a number of engravings based on episodes from the First Crusade.

Stephen J Rivelle has written a largely fictional account of the First Crusade, in his book A Booke of Days.

According to Ming and Qing dynasty stone monuments, a Jewish community has existed in China since the Han Dynasty, but a majority of scholars cite the early Song Dynasty (roughly a century before the First Crusade).[10] A legend common among the modern-day descendants of the Kaifeng Jews states they reached China after fleeing Bodrum from the invading crusaders. A section of the legend reads, “The Jews became merchants and traders in the region, but new troubles came in the 1090's. Life became difficult and dangerous. The first bad news was heralded by a word they had never heard before: "Crusade," the so-called Holy War...Jews were warned; "Convert to Christianity or die!"[11]

[edit] References

[edit] Footnotes

  1. ^ a b Fulcher of Chartres, "Speech of Urban", Gesta Francorum Jerusalem Expugnantium
  2. ^ Riley-Smith, Jonathan, The First Crusade and the Idea of Crusading, 1986, p. 50.
  3. ^ God's War - Christopher Tyerman
  4. ^ Parker, Geoffrey. Compact History of the World. 4th ed. London: Times Books, 2005. 48-49.
  5. ^ Fulcher of Chartres, "The Fall of Jerusalem", Gesta Francorum Jerusalem Expugnantium
  6. ^ Fulcher of Chartres, "The Siege of the City of Jerusalem", Gesta Francorum Jerusalem Expugnantium
  7. ^ [1]
  8. ^ [2]
  9. ^ Riley-Smith, Jonathan, The First Crusade and the Idea of Crusading, pg. 47
  10. ^ Weisz, Tiberiu. The Kaifeng Stone Inscriptions: The Legacy of the Jewish Community in Ancient China. New York: iUniverse, 2006 (ISBN 0-595-37340-2)
  11. ^ Xu, Xin, Beverly Friend, and Cheng Ting. Legends of the Chinese Jews of Kaifeng. Hoboken, N.J.: KTAV Pub, 1995 (ISBN 0881255289)

[edit] Primary sources

[edit] Primary sources online

[edit] Secondary sources

[edit] Bibliographies

1145-1149AD The Second Crusade

From: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Second_crusade

Second Crusade

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The fall of Edessa, seen here on the right of this map (c.1140), was the proximate cause of the Second Crusade.
The fall of Edessa, seen here on the right of this map (c.1140), was the proximate cause of the Second Crusade.

The Second Crusade (11451149) was the second major crusade launched from Europe, called in 1145 in response to the fall of the County of Edessa the previous year. Edessa was the first of the Crusader states to have been founded during the First Crusade (1095–1099), and was the first to fall. The Second Crusade was announced by Pope Eugene III, and was the first of the crusades to be led by European kings, namely Louis VII of France and Conrad III of Germany, with help from a number of other important European nobles. The armies of the two kings marched separately across Europe and were somewhat hindered by Byzantine emperor Manuel I Comnenus; after crossing Byzantine territory into Anatolia, both armies were separately defeated by the Seljuk Turks. Louis and Conrad and the remnants of their armies reached Jerusalem and, in 1148, participated in an ill-advised attack on Damascus. The crusade in the east was a failure for the crusaders and a great victory for the Muslims. It would ultimately lead to the fall of Jerusalem and the Third Crusade at the end of the 12th century.

The only success came outside of the Mediterranean, where Flemish, Frisian, Norman, English, Scottish, and some German crusaders, on the way by ship to the Holy Land, fortuitously stopped and helped the Portuguese in the capture of Lisbon in 1147. Some of them, who had departed earlier, helped capture other Santarém earlier in the same year. Later they also helped to conquer Sintra, Almada, Palmela and Setúbal, and were allowed to stay in the conquered lands, where they had offspring. Meanwhile, in Eastern Europe, the first of the Northern Crusades began with the intent of forcibly converting pagan tribes to Christianity, and these crusades would go on for centuries.



[edit] Background

After the First Crusade and the minor Crusade of 1101 there were three crusader states established in the east: the Kingdom of Jerusalem, the Principality of Antioch, and the County of Edessa. A fourth, the County of Tripoli, was established in 1109. Edessa was the most northerly of these, and also the weakest and least populated; as such, it was subject to frequent attacks from the surrounding Muslim states ruled by the Ortoqids, Danishmends, and Seljuk Turks. Count Baldwin II and future count Joscelin of Courtenay were taken captive after their defeat at the Battle of Harran in 1104. Baldwin and Joscelin were both captured a second time in 1122, and although Edessa recovered somewhat after the Battle of Azaz in 1125, Joscelin was killed in battle in 1131. His successor Joscelin II was forced into an alliance with the Byzantine Empire, but in 1143 both the Byzantine emperor John II Comnenus and the King of Jerusalem Fulk of Anjou died. Joscelin had also quarreled with the Count of Tripoli and the Prince of Antioch, leaving Edessa with no powerful allies. Meanwhile, the Seljuk Zengi, Atabeg of Mosul, had added Aleppo to his rule in 1128. Aleppo was the key to power in Syria, contested between the rulers of Mosul and Damascus. Both Zengi and King Baldwin II turned their attention towards Damascus; Baldwin was defeated outside the city in 1129. Damascus, ruled by the Burid Dynasty, later allied with King Fulk when Zengi besieged the city in 1139 and 1140; the alliance was negotiated by the chronicler Usamah ibn Munqidh.

In late 1144, Joscelin II allied with the Ortoqids and marched out of Edessa with almost his entire army to support the Ortoqid Kara Aslan against Aleppo. Zengi, already seeking to take advantage of Fulk's death in 1143, hurried north to besiege Edessa, which fell to him after a month on December 24, 1144. Manasses of Hierges, Philip of Milly and others were sent from Jerusalem to assist, but arrived too late. Joscelin II continued to rule the remnants of the county from Turbessel, but little by little the rest of the territory was captured or sold to the Byzantines. Zengi himself was praised throughout Islam as "defender of the faith" and al-Malik al-Mansur, "the victorious king". He did not pursue an attack on the remaining territory of Edessa, or the Principality of Antioch, as was feared; events in Mosul compelled him to return home, and he once again set his sights on Damascus. However, he was assassinated by a slave in 1146 and was succeeded in Aleppo by his son Nur ad-Din. Joscelin attempted to take back Edessa following Zengi's murder, but Nur ad-Din defeated him in November of 1146.

[edit] Reaction in the west

The news of the fall of Edessa was brought back to Europe first by pilgrims early in 1145, and then by embassies from Antioch, Jerusalem, and Armenia. Bishop Hugh of Jabala reported the news to Pope Eugene III, who issued the bull Quantum praedecessores on December 1 of that year, calling for a second crusade. Hugh also told the Pope of an eastern Christian king, who, it was hoped, would bring relief to the crusader states: this is the first documented mention of Prester John. Eugene did not control Rome and lived instead at Viterbo, but nevertheless the crusade was meant to be more organized and centrally controlled than the First Crusade: certain preachers would be approved by the pope, the armies would be led by the strongest kings of Europe, and a route would be planned beforehand. The initial response to the new crusade bull was poor, and it in fact had to be reissued when it was clear that Louis VII would be taking part in the expedition. Louis VII of France had also been considering a new expedition independently of the Pope, which he announced to his Christmas court at Bourges in 1145. It is debatable whether Louis was planning a crusade of his own or in fact a pilgrimage, as he wanted to fulfil a vow made by his brother Philip to go to the Holy Land, as he had been prevented by death. It is probable that Louis had made this decision independently of hearing about Quantum Praedecessores.In any case, Abbot Suger and other nobles were not in favour of Louis' plans, as he would potentially be gone from the kingdom for several years. Louis consulted Bernard of Clairvaux, who referred him back to Eugene. Now Louis would have definitely heard about the papal bull, and Eugene enthusiastically supported Louis' crusade. The bull was reissued on March 1, 1146, and Eugene authorized Bernard to preach the news throughout France.

[edit] Bernard of Clairvaux preaches the crusade

There had been virtually no popular enthusiasm for the crusade as there had been in 1095 and 1096. However, St. Bernard, one of the most famous and respected men of Christendom at the time, found it expedient to dwell upon the taking of the cross as a potent means of gaining absolution for sin and attaining grace. On March 31, with Louis present, he preached to an enormous crowd in a field at Vézelay. Bernard, "the honey-tongued teacher" worked his magic of oration, men rose up and yelled "Crosses, give us Crosses!" and they supposedly ran out of cloth to make crosses; to make more Bernard is said to have given his own outer garments to be cut up. Unlike the First Crusade, the new venture attracted Royalty, such as Eleanor of Aquitaine, then Queen of France; Thierry of Alsace, Count of Flanders; Henry, the future Count of Champagne; Louis’ brother Robert I of Dreux; Alphonse I of Toulouse; William II of Nevers; William de Warenne, 3rd Earl of Surrey; Hugh VII of Lusignan; and numerous other nobles and bishops. But an even greater show of support came from the common people. St. Bernard wrote to the Pope a few days afterwards: "I opened my mouth; I spoke; and at once the Crusaders have multiplied to infinity. Villages and towns are now deserted. You will scarcely find one man for every seven women. Everywhere you see widows whose husbands are still alive".

Eleanor of Aquitaine
Eleanor of Aquitaine

It was decided that the crusaders would depart in one year, during which time they would make preparations and lay out a route to the Holy Land. Louis and Eugene received support from those rulers whose lands they would have to cross: Geza of Hungary, Roger II of Sicily, and Byzantine emperor Manuel I Comnenus, although Manuel wanted the crusaders to swear an oath of fealty to him, just as his grandfather Alexius I Comnenus had demanded.

Meanwhile St. Bernard continued to preach in Burgundy, Lorraine and Flanders. As in the First Crusade, the preaching inadvertently led to attacks on Jews; a fanatical French monk named Rudolf was apparently inspiring massacres of Jews in the Rhineland, Cologne, Mainz, Worms, and Speyer, with Rudolf claiming Jews were not contributing financially to the rescue of the Holy Land. St. Bernard, the Archbishop of Cologne and the Archbishop of Mainz were vehemently opposed to these attacks, and so St. Bernard traveled from Flanders to Germany to deal with the problem, and for the most part Bernard convinced Rudolf’s audience to follow him instead. Bernard then found Rudolf in Mainz and was able to silence him, returning him to his monastery.

While still in Germany, St. Bernard also preached to Conrad III of Germany in November of 1146, but as Conrad was not interested in participating himself, Bernard continued onwards to preach in southern Germany and Switzerland. However, on the way back in December, he stopped at Speyer, where, in the presence of Conrad, he delivered an emotional sermon in which he took the role of Christ and asked what more he could do for the emperor. "Man", he cried, "what ought I to have done for you that I have not done?" Conrad could no longer resist and joined the crusade with many of his nobles, including Frederick II, Duke of Swabia. Just as at Vézelay earlier, many common people also took up the cause in Germany.

The Pope also authorized a Crusade in Spain, although the war against the Moors had been going on for some time already. He granted Alfonso VII of Castile the same indulgence he had given to the French crusaders, and like Pope Urban II had done in 1095, urged the Spanish to fight on their own territory rather than joining the crusade to the east. He authorized Marseille, Pisa, Genoa, and other cities to fight in Spain as well, but elsewhere urged the Italians, such as Amadeus III of Savoy, to go to the east. Eugene did not want Conrad to participate, hoping instead that he would give imperial support to his own claims on the papacy, but he did not forbid him outright from leaving. As well as this, Eugene III also authorized a crusade in the Germanic lands against the Wends, who were pagan. Wars had been going on for some time between the Germans and Wends, and it took the persuasion of Bernard to allow indulgences to be issued for the Wendish Crusade. the expedition itself was not of traditional crusading nature, as it was an expansive one against pagans rather than Muslims, and was not related to the protection of the Holy Land. The Second Crusade therefore saw an interesting development in new arenas for crusading.

[edit] Preparations

On February 16, 1147, the French crusaders met at Étampes to discuss their route. The Germans had already decided to travel overland through Hungary, as Roger II was an enemy of Conrad and the sea route was politically impractical. Many of the French nobles distrusted the land route, which would take them through the Byzantine Empire, the reputation of which still suffered from the accounts of the First Crusaders. Nevertheless it was decided to follow Conrad, and to set out on June 15. Roger II was offended and refused to participate any longer. In France, Abbot Suger and Count William of Nevers were elected as regents while the king would be on crusade.

In Germany, further preaching was done by Adam of Ebrach, and Otto of Freising also took the cross. On March 13 at Frankfurt, Conrad’s son Frederick was elected king, under the regency of Henry, Archbishop of Mainz. The Germans planned to set out in May and meet the French in Constantinople. During this meeting, other German princes extended the idea of a crusade to the Slavic tribes living to the northeast of the Holy Roman Empire, and were authorized by Bernard to launch a crusade against them. On April 13 Eugene confirmed this crusade, comparing to the crusades in Spain and Palestine. Thus in 1147 the Wendish Crusade was also born.

[edit] The crusade in Spain and Portugal

Afonso I of Portugal. Note the anachronistic platemail.
Afonso I of Portugal. Note the anachronistic platemail.

In mid-May the first contingents left from England, consisting of Flemish, Frisian, Norman, English, Scottish, and some German crusaders. No prince or king led this part of the crusade; England at the time was in the midst of The Anarchy. They arrived at Porto at June, and were convinced by the bishop to continue to Lisbon, to which King Afonso I of Portugal had already gone when he heard a crusader fleet was on its way. Since the Iberian crusade was already sanctioned by the pope, and they would still be fighting Muslims, the crusaders agreed. The siege of Lisbon began on July 1 and lasted until October 24 when the city fell to the crusaders, who thoroughly plundered it before handing it over to King Afonso. Some of the crusaders settled in the newly captured city, and Gilbert of Hastings was elected bishop, but most of the fleet continued to the east in February 1148. Almost at the same time, the Spanish under Alfonso VII of Castile and Ramon Berenguer IV, Count of Barcelona and others captured Almería. In 1148 and 1149 they also captured Tortosa, Fraga, and Lerida.

[edit] German departure

The German crusaders, consisting of Franconians, Bavarians, and Swabians, left by land, also in May 1147, accompanied by the papal legate and cardinal Theodwin. Ottokar III of Styria joined Conrad at Vienna, and Conrad's enemy Geza II of Hungary was finally convinced to let them pass through unharmed. When the army arrived in Byzantine territory, Manuel feared they were going to attack him, and Byzantine troops were posted to ensure that there was no trouble. There was a brief skirmish with some of the more unruly Germans near Philippopolis and in Adrianople, where the Byzantine general Prosouch fought with Conrad’s nephew, the future emperor Frederick. To make things worse, some of the German soldiers were killed in a flood at the beginning of September. On September 10, however, they arrived at Constantinople, where relations with Manuel were poor and the Germans were convinced to cross into Asia Minor as quickly as possible. Manuel wanted Conrad to leave some of his troops behind, to assist Manuel in defending against attacks from Roger II, who had taken the opportunity to plunder the cities of Greece, but Conrad did not agree, despite being a fellow enemy of Roger.

Emperor Frederick I, duke of Swabia during the Second Crusade
Emperor Frederick I, duke of Swabia during the Second Crusade

In Asia Minor, Conrad decided not to wait for the French, and marched towards Iconium, capital of the Seljuk Sultanate of Rüm. Conrad split his army into two divisions, one of these was destroyed by the Seljuks on October 25, 1147 at the second battle of Dorylaeum. The Turks used their typical tactic of pretending to retreat, and then returning to attack the small force of German cavalry which had separated from the main army to chase them. Conrad began a slow retreat back to Constantinople, and his army was harassed daily by the Turks, who attacked stragglers and defeated the rearguard. Even Conrad was wounded in a skirmish with them. The other division, led by Otto of Freising, had marched south to the Mediterranean coast and was similarly defeated early in 1148.

[edit] French departure

Fresco of Emperor Manuel I
Fresco of Emperor Manuel I

The French crusaders departed from Metz in June, led by Louis, Thierry of Alsace, Renaut I of Bar, Amadeus III of Savoy and his half-brother William V of Montferrat, William VII of Auvergne, and others, along with armies from Lorraine, Brittany, Burgundy, and Aquitaine. A force from Provence, led by Alphonse of Toulouse, chose to wait until August, and to cross by sea. At Worms, Louis joined with crusaders from Normandy and England. They followed Conrad’s route fairly peacefully, although Louis came into conflict with Geza of Hungary when Geza discovered Louis had allowed an attempted Hungarian usurper to join his army.

Relations within Byzantine territory were also poor, and the Lorrainers, who had marched ahead of the rest of the French, also came into conflict with the slower Germans whom they met on the way. Since the original negotiations between Louis and Manuel, Manuel had broken off his military campaign against the Sultanate of Rüm, signing a truce with his enemy Sultan Mesud I. This was done so that Manuel would be free to concentrate on defending his empire from the Crusaders, who had gained a reputation for theft and treachery since the First Crusade and were widely suspected of harbouring sinister designs on Constantinople. Nevertheless, Manuel's relations with the French army were somewhat better than with the Germans, and Louis was entertained lavishly in Constantinople. Some of the French were outraged by Manuel's truce with the Seljuks and called for an attack on Constantinople, but they were restrained by the papal legates.

When the armies from Savoy, Auvergne, and Montferrat joined Louis in Constantinople, having taken the land route through Italy and crossing from Brindisi to Durazzo, the entire army was shipped across the Bosporus to Asia Minor. In the tradition set by his grandfather Alexios I, Manuel had the French swear to return to the Empire any territory they captured. They were encouraged by rumours that the Germans had captured Iconium, but Manuel refused to give Louis any Byzantine troops. Byzantium had just been invaded by Roger II of Sicily, and all of Manuel's army was needed in the Balkans. Both the Germans and French therefore entered Asia without any Byzantine assistance, unlike the armies of the First Crusade.

The French met the remnants of Conrad's army at Nicaea, and Conrad joined Louis' force. They followed Otto of Freising's route along the Mediterranean coast, and they arrived at Ephesus in December, where they learned that the Turks were preparing to attack them. Manuel also sent ambassadors complaining about the pillaging and plundering that Louis had done along the way, and there was no guarantee that the Byzantines would assist them against the Turks. Meanwhile Conrad fell sick and returned to Constantinople, where Manuel attended to him personally, and Louis, paying no attention to the warnings of a Turkish attack, marched out from Ephesus.

The Turks were indeed waiting to attack, but in a small battle outside Ephesus, the French were victorious. They reached Laodicea early in January 1148, only a few days after Otto of Freising’s army had been destroyed in the same area. Resuming the march, the vanguard under Amadeus of Savoy became separated from the rest of the army, and Louis’ troops were routed by the Turks. Louis himself, according to Odo of Deuil, climbed a rock and was ignored by the Turks, who did not recognize him. The Turks did not bother to attack further and the French marched on to Adalia, continually harassed from afar by the Turks, who had also burned the land to prevent the French from replenishing their food, both for themselves and their horses. Louis wanted to continue by land, and it was decided to gather a fleet at Adalia and sail for Antioch. After being delayed for a month by storms, most of the promised ships did not arrive at all. Louis and his associates claimed the ships for themselves, while the rest of the army had to resume the long march to Antioch. The army was almost entirely destroyed, either by the Turks or by sickness.

[edit] Journey to Jerusalem

Louis eventually arrived in Antioch on March 19, after being delayed by storms; Amadeus of Savoy had died on Cyprus along the way. Louis was welcomed by Eleanor’s uncle Raymond of Poitiers. Raymond expected him to help defend against the Turks and to accompany him on an expedition against Aleppo, but Louis refused, preferring instead to finish his pilgrimage to Jerusalem rather than focus on the military aspect of the crusade. Eleanor enjoyed her stay, but her uncle wanted her to remain behind and divorce Louis if the king refused to help him. Louis quickly left Antioch for Tripoli. Meanwhile, Otto of Freising and the remnant of his troops arrived in Jerusalem early in April, and Conrad soon after, and Fulk, Patriarch of Jerusalem, was sent to invite Louis to join them. The fleet that had stopped at Lisbon arrived around this time, as well as the Provencals under Alphonse of Toulouse. Alphonse himself had died on the way to Jerusalem, supposedly poisoned by Raymond II of Tripoli, his nephew who feared his political aspirations in the county.

[edit] Council of Acre

The Umayyad Mosque in the center of Damascus
The Umayyad Mosque in the center of Damascus

In Jerusalem the focus of the crusade quickly changed to Damascus, the preferred target of King Baldwin III and the Knights Templar. Conrad was persuaded to take part in this expedition. When Louis arrived, the Haute Cour met at Acre on June 24. This was the most spectacular meeting of the Cour in its existence: Conrad, Otto, Henry II of Austria, future emperor Frederick I Barbarossa (at the time Duke of Swabia), and William V of Montferrat represented the Holy Roman Empire; Louis, Alphonse's son Bertrand, Thierry of Alsace, and various other ecclesiastical and secular lords represented the French; and from Jerusalem King Baldwin, Queen Melisende, Patriarch Fulk, Robert of Craon (master of the Knights Templar), Raymond du Puy de Provence (master of the Knights Hospitaller), Manasses of Hierges (constable of Jerusalem), Humphrey II of Toron, Philip of Milly, Walter Grenier, and Barisan of Ibelin were among those present. Notably, no one from Antioch, Tripoli, or the former County of Edessa attended. Some of the French considered their pilgrimage completed, and wanted to return home; some of the barons native to Jerusalem pointed out that it would be unwise to attack Damascus, their ally against the Zengid dynasty. Conrad, Louis, and Baldwin insisted, however, and in July an army assembled at Tiberias.

[edit] Siege of Damascus

Main article: Siege of Damascus

The crusaders decided to attack Damascus from the west, where orchards would provide them with a constant food supply. They arrived on July 23, with the army of Jerusalem in the vanguard, followed by Louis and then Conrad in the rearguard. The Muslims were prepared for the attack and constantly attacked the army advancing through the orchards. The crusaders managed to fight their way through and chase the defenders back across the Barada River and into Damascus; having arrived outside the walls of the city, they immediately put it to siege. Damascus had sought help from Saif ad-Din Ghazi I of Aleppo and Nur ad-Din of Mosul, and the vizier, Mu'in ad-Din Unur, led an unsuccessful attack on the crusader camp. There were conflicts in both camps: Unur could not trust Saif ad-Din or Nur ad-Din from conquering the city entirely if they offered help; and the crusaders could not agree about who would receive the city if they captured it. On July 27 the crusaders decided to move to the eastern side of the city, which was less heavily fortified but had much less food and water. Nur ad-Din had by now arrived and it was impossible to return to their better position. First Conrad, then the rest of the army, decided to retreat back to Jerusalem.

[edit] Aftermath

The Mediterranean world after the Second Crusade
The Mediterranean world after the Second Crusade

All sides felt betrayed by the others. A new plan was made to attack Ascalon, and Conrad took his troops there, but no further help arrived, due to the lack of trust that had resulted from the failed siege. The expedition to Ascalon was abandoned, and Conrad returned to Constantinople to further his alliance with Manuel, while Louis remained behind in Jerusalem until 1149. Back in Europe, Bernard of Clairvaux was also humiliated, and when his attempt to call a new crusade failed, he tried to disassociate himself from the fiasco of the Second Crusade altogether. He died in 1153.

The siege of Damascus had disastrous long-term consequences for Jerusalem: Damascus no longer trusted the crusader kingdom, and the city was handed over to Nur ad-Din in 1154. Baldwin III finally seized Ascalon in 1153, which brought Egypt into the sphere of conflict. Jerusalem was able to make further advances into Egypt, briefly occupying Cairo in the 1160s. However, relations with the Byzantine Empire were mixed, and reinforcements from the west were sparse after the disaster of the Second Crusade. King Amalric I of Jerusalem allied with the Byzantines and participated in a combined invasion of Egypt in 1169, but the expedition ultimately failed. In 1171, Saladin, nephew of one of Nur ad-Din's generals, was proclaimed Sultan of Egypt, uniting Egypt and Syria and completely surrounding the crusader kingdom. Meanwhile the Byzantine alliance ended with the death of emperor Manuel I in 1180, and in 1187 Jerusalem capitulated to Saladin. His forces then spread north to capture all but the capital cities of the Crusader States, precipitating the Third Crusade.

[edit] References

Primary sources
  • Anonymous. De expugniatione Lyxbonensi. The Conquest of Lisbon. Edited and translated by Charles Wendell David. Columbia University Press, 1936.
  • Odo of Deuil. De profectione Ludovici VII in orientem. Edited and translated by Virginia Gingerick Berry. Columbia University Press, 1948.
  • Otto of Freising. Gesta Friderici I Imperatoris. The Deeds of Frederick Barbarossa. Edited and translated by Charles Christopher Mierow. Columbia University Press, 1953.
  • The Damascus Chronicle of the Crusaders, extracted and translated from the Chronicle of Ibn al-Qalanisi. Edited and translated by H. A. R. Gibb. London, 1932.
  • William of Tyre. A History of Deeds Done Beyond the Sea. Edited and translated by E. A. Babcock and A. C. Krey. Columbia University Press, 1943.
  • O City of Byzantium, Annals of Niketas Choniatēs, trans. Harry J. Magoulias. Wayne State University Press, 1984.
  • John Cinnamus, Deeds of John and Manuel Comnenus, trans. Charles M. Brand. Columbia University Press, 1976.
Secondary sources
  • Michael Gervers, ed. The Second Crusade and the Cistercians. St. Martin's Press, 1992.
  • Jonathan Phillips and Martin Hoch, eds. The Second Crusade: Scope and Consequences. Manchester University Press, 2001.
  • Steven Runciman, A History of the Crusades, vol. II: The Kingdom of Jerusalem and the Frankish East, 1100–1187. Cambridge University Press, 1952.
  • Kenneth Setton, ed. A History of the Crusades, vol. I. University of Pennsylvania Press, 1958 (available online).

[edit] External links

1162-1227AD Ghengis Khan

Revelation 20:7-9

7 Now when the thousand years have expired, Satan will be released from his prison 8 and will go out to deceive the nations which are in the four corners of the earth, Gog and Magog, to gather them together to battle, whose number is as the sand of the sea. 9 They went up on the breadth of the earth...

From: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Genghis_Khan

Genghis Khan

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Genghis Khan
Khagan of the Mongol Empire
(Khan of the Mongols)
Reign120618 August 1227
Coronation1206 during khurultai at Khentii Province, Mongolia
Full nameGenghis Khan
(birth name: Temüjin)
TitlesKhan, Khagan
Bornca. 1162
Khentii Province, Mongolia
Died18 August 1227
(location uncertain)
Predecessor(title created)
SuccessorÖgedei Khan
ConsortBörte Ujin
Royal HouseBorjigin

Genghis Khan (IPA: [ʧiŋgɪs χaːŋ]; Mongolian: Чингис Хаан; classic Mongolian: (properly transliterated "Chinggis Khaγan", see below for alternative spellings); ca. 1162[1]August 18, 1227) born Temujin was the founder, Khan (ruler) and posthumously declared Khagan (emperor[2]) of the Mongol Empire, the largest contiguous empire in history.

Temujin came to power by uniting many of the nomadic tribes of north-east Asia and Central Asia. After founding the Mongol Nation and being proclaimed "Genghis Khan", he pursued an aggressive foreign policy by starting the Mongol invasion of East Asia and Central Asia. During his life, the Mongol Empire eventually occupied most of Asia.

Temujin died of unknown causes in 1227 after a campaign to subjugate the Xi Xia and Jin dynasties in China. He was buried in an unmarked grave somewhere in his native Mongolia. His descendants went on to stretch the Mongol Empire across most of Eurasia, conquering all of modern-day China and Mongolia, as well as substantial portions of modern Russia, southern Asia, Eastern Europe and the Middle East.



[edit] Early life

[edit] Birth

The Onon River, Mongolia in fall, a site where Temüjin was born and grew up.
The Onon River, Mongolia in fall, a site where Temüjin was born and grew up.

Due to the lack of contemporary written records, there is very little factual information about the early life of Temüjin. The few sources that provide insight into this period are often conflicting.

Temüjin was born around 1162 in a Mongol tribe near Mount Burkhan Khaldun and the Onon and Kherlen rivers, not far from the current capital of Mongolia, Ulaanbaatar. Popular legend recorded in The Secret History of the Mongols purports that Temüjin was born with a blood clot grasped in his fist, an indication in the traditional Mongolian folklore that he was destined to become a great leader. He was the eldest son of Yesükhei, a minor tribal chief of the Kiyad and a nöker (vassal) of Ong Khan of the Kerait tribe,[3] and was named after a Tartar chieftain that his father had just captured, according to the Secret History. The name also suggests that they may have descended from a family of blacksmiths (see section Name and title below).

Yesükhei's clan was called Borjigin (Боржигин), and Temüjin's mother, Hoelun, was from the Olkhunut tribe. Like other tribes, they were nomads. Because his father was a chieftain, as were his predecessors, Temüjin was of a royal or noble background. This relatively higher social standing made it easier to solicit help from and eventually consolidate the other Mongol tribes.

No accurate portraits of Genghis exist today, and any surviving depictions are considered to be artistic interpretations. The physical descriptions of Genghis Khan from contemporary historians are quite different than what is found in the portraits. Muslim historian Rashid al-Din, foremost contemporary historian on Genghis Khan.[citation needed], recorded in his "Chronicles" that the legendary "glittering" ancestor of Genghis was tall, long-bearded, red-haired, and green-eyed. Rashid al-Din also described the first meeting of Genghis and Kublai Khan, when Genghis was shocked to find Kublai had not inherited his red hair.[4] Genghis's Borjigid clan, al-Din also revealed, had a legend involving their clan: it began as the result of an affair (technically an immaculate conception) between Alan-ko and a stranger to her land, a glittering man [an "angel of light" ~jwr] who happened to have red hair and bluish-green eyes. Modern historian Paul Ratchnevsky has suggested in his Genghis biography that the "glittering man" may have been from the Kyrgyz people, who historically displayed these same characteristics. Controversies aside, the closest depiction generally accepted by most historians is the portrait currently in the National Palace Museum in Taipei, Taiwan (see above).

[edit] Family and lineage

Temüjin was related on his father's side to Qabul Khan, Ambaghai and Qutula Khan who had headed the Mongol confederation. When the Jin dynasty switched support from the Mongols to the Tatars in 1161 they destroyed Qabul Khan.[5] Genghis' father, Yesükhei (leader of the Borjigin and nephew to Ambaghai and Qutula Khan) emerged as the head of the ruling clan of the Mongols, but this position was contested by the rival Tayichi’ud clan, who descended directly from Ambaghai. When the Tatars grew too powerful after 1161, the Jin moved their support from the Tatars to the Kerait.

[edit] Childhood and Family

[edit] Early life

Temüjin had three brothers, Khasar (or Qasar), Khajiun, and Temüge, and one sister, Temülen (or Temülin), as well as two half-brothers, Bekhter and Belgutei.

Like many of the nomads of Mongolia, Temüjin's early life was difficult. At nine years old, as part of the marriage arrangement, he was delivered by his father to the family of his future wife Börte, who were members of the Onggirat tribe. He was to live there in service to Deisechen, the head of the household, until he reached the marriageable age of 12. At this time, none of the tribal confederations of Mongolia were united politically, and arranged marriages were often used to solidify temporary alliances. Temujin grew up observing the tough political climate of Mongolia, surrounded by tribal warfare, thievery, raids, and continuing acts of revenge carried out between the various confederations, all compounded by interference from foreign forces such as the Chinese dynasties to the south.

While heading home, his father was poisoned during a meal with the neighbouring Tatars, who had long been enemies of the Mongols. Temüjin had to return home to claim the position of clan chief. However, his father's clan refused to be led by a boy so young. They abandoned him and his family, including his mother Hoelun, leaving them without protection.

For the next several years, Temüjin and his family lived in poverty, surviving primarily on wild fruits, marmots, and other small game hunted by Temüjin and his brothers. It was during one of these hunting incidents that 13 year old Temüjin murdered his half-brother, Bekhter, in a dispute over hunting spoils.[6] This incident cemented his position as head of the household.

In another incident in 1182 he was captured in a raid and held prisoner by his father's former allies, the Ta'yichiut. The Ta'yichiut enslaved Temüjin (reportedly with a cangue), but he escaped with the help of a sympathetic watcher, the father of Chilaun (who would later become general of Genghis Khan), by escaping from the ger and hiding in a river crevice. It was around this time that Jelme and Bo'orchu, two of Genghis Khan's future generals, joined forces with him. Along with his brothers, they provided the manpower needed for early expansion. Temüjin's reputation also became relatively widespread after his escape from the Ta'yichiut.

[edit] Family

His mother Hoelun taught him many lessons about survival in the harsh landscape, and the even more grim political climate of Mongolia, especially the need for alliances with others, a lesson which would shape his understanding in his later years.

Börte Ujin, wife of Genghis Khan
Börte Ujin, wife of Genghis Khan

As previously arranged by his father, Temüjin married Börte of the Konkirat tribe around when he was 16 in order to cement alliances between their respective tribes. Börte had four sons, Jochi (1185–1226), Chagatai (?—1241), Ögedei (?—1241), and Tolui (1190–1232). Genghis Khan also had many other children with his other wives, but they were excluded from the succession, and records of daughters are nonexistent. Soon after Börte's marriage to Temüjin, she was kidnapped by the Merkits, and reportedly given away as a wife. Temüjin rescued her with the help of his friend and future rival, Jamuka, and his protector, Ong Khan of the Kerait tribe. She gave birth to a son, Jochi, nine months later, clouding the issue of his parentage. Despite speculation over Jochi, Börte would be his only empress, though Temujin did follow tradition by taking several morganatic wives.

According to traditional historical accounts, the issue over Jochi's paternity was voiced most strongly by Chagatai. In The Secret History of the Mongols, just before the invasion of the Khwarezmid Empire by Genghis Khan, Chagatai declares before his father and brothers that he would never accept Jochi as Genghis Khan's successor. In response to this tension[7] and possibly for other reasons, it was Ögedei who was appointed as successor. He subsequently ruled as Khagan after Genghis Khan's death.

Jochi died in 1226, during his father's lifetime. Some scholars, notably Ratchnevsky, have commented on the possibility that Jochi was secretly poisoned by an order from Genghis Khan. Rashid al-Din reports that the great Khan sent for his sons in the spring of 1223, and while his brothers heeded the order, Jochi remained in Khorasan. Juzjani suggests that the disagreement arose from a quarrel between Jochi and his brothers in the siege of Urgench. Jochi had attempted to protect Urgench from destruction, as it belonged to territory allocated to him as a fief. He concludes his story with the clearly apocryphal statement by Jochi: "Genghis Khan is mad to have massacred so many people and laid waste so many lands. I would be doing a service if I killed my father when he is hunting, made an alliance with Sultan Muhammad, brought this land to life and gave assistance and support to the Muslims." Juzjani claims that it was in response to hearing of these plans that Genghis Khan ordered his son secretly poisoned; however, as Sultan Muhammad was already dead in 1223, the accuracy of this story is questionable. [8]

Temüjin put absolute trust in generals, such as Muqali, Jebe and Subutai, and regarded them as brothers, often extending them the same privileges and trust normally reserved for close family members. He allowed them to make decisions on their own when they embarked on campaigns far from the Mongol Empire capital Karakorum. Temüjin also became blood brother (anda) with Jamuka, and they vowed to remain eternally faithful.

[edit] Religion

Genghis Khan's religion is widely speculated to be Shamanism, which was very likely among nomadic Mongol-Turkic tribes of Central Asia. Later, Genghis Khan would become interested in the ancient Buddhism and Taoism religion from China. One Taoist monk, Ch'ang Ch'un, who had rejected invitations from Song and Jin leaders, travelled more than 5000 kilometres to meet Genghis Khan near the Afghanistan border. Genghis Khan asked if the monk had secret medicine that could make him immortal. The monk's negative answer disheartened Genghis Khan, and he lost interest in the monk thereafter.

[edit] Uniting the confederations

Eurasia in c. 1200. including Naimans, Merkits, Uyghurs, Mongols, and Keraits
Eurasia in c. 1200. including Naimans, Merkits, Uyghurs, Mongols, and Keraits

The Central Asian plateau (north of China) around the time of Temüjin was divided into several tribes or confederations, among them Naimans, Merkits, Uyghurs, Tatars, Mongols, Keraits that were all prominent in their own right and often unfriendly toward each other as evidenced by random raids, revenges, and plundering.

Temüjin began his slow ascent to power by offering himself as an ally (or, according to others sources, a vassal) to his father's anda (sworn brother or blood brother) Toghrul, who was Khan of the Kerait, and is better known by the Chinese title Ong Khan (or "Wang Khan"), which the Jin Empire granted him in 1197. This relationship was first reinforced when Börte was captured by the Merkits; it was to Toghrul that Temüjin turned for support. In response, Toghrul offered his vassal 20,000 of his Kerait warriors and suggested that he also involve his childhood friend Jamuka, who had himself become Khan (ruler) of his own tribe, the Jadaran.[9] Although the campaign was successful and led to the recapture of Börte and utter defeat of the Merkits, it also paved the way for the split between the childhood friends, Temüjin and Jamuka.

The main opponents of the Mongol confederation (traditionally the "Mongols") circa 1200 were the Naimans to the west, the Merkits to the north, Tanguts to the south, the Jin and Tatars to the east. By 1190, Temüjin, his followers and advisors united the smaller Mongol confederation only. As an incentive for absolute obedience and following his rule of law, the Yassa code, Temüjin promised civilians and soldiers a wealth from future possible war spoils.

Toghrul's (Wang Khan) son Senggum was jealous of Temüjin's growing power, and his affinity with his father. He allegedly planned to assassinate Temüjin. Toghrul, though allegedly saved on multiple occasions by Temüjin, gave in to his son[10] and became uncooperative with Temüjin. Temüjin learned of Senggum's intentions and eventually defeated him and his loyalists. One of the later ruptures between Toghrul and Temüjin was Toghrul's refusal to give his daughter in marriage to Jochi, the eldest son of Temüjin, a sign of disrespect in the Mongolian culture. This act led to the split between both factions, and was a prelude to war. Toghrul allied himself with Jamuka, who already opposed Temüjin's forces; however the internal dispute between Toghrul and Jamuka, plus the desertion of a number of their allies to Temüjin, led to Toghrul's defeat. Jamuka escaped during the conflict. This defeat was a catalyst for the fall and eventual dissemination of the Kerait tribe.

Genghis Khan

The next direct threat to Temüjin was the Naimans (Naiman Mongols), with whom Jamuka and his followers took refuge. The Naimans did not surrender, although enough sectors again voluntarily sided with Temüjin. In 1201, a kurultai elected Jamuka as Gur Khan, universal ruler, a title used by the rulers of the Kara-Khitan Khanate. Jamuka's assumption of this title was the final breach with Temüjin, and Jamuka formed a coalition of tribes to oppose him. Before the conflict, however, several generals abandoned Jamuka, including Subutai, Jelme's well-known younger brother. After several battles, Jamuka was finally turned over to Temüjin by his own men in 1206.

According to the Secret History, Temüjin again offered his friendship to Jamuka, asking him to return to his side. Temüjin had killed the men who betrayed Jamuka, stating that he did not want disloyal men in his army. Jamuka refused the offer of friendship and reunion, saying that there can only be one Sun in the sky, and he asked for a noble death. The custom is to die without spilling blood, which is granted by breaking the back. Jamuka requested this form of death, despite the fact that in the past Jamuka had been infamously known to have boiled his opponent's generals alive. The rest of the Merkit clan that sided with the Naimans were defeated by Subutai, a member of Temüjin's personal guard who would later become one of the successful commanders of Genghis Khan. The Naimans' defeat left Genghis Khan as the sole ruler of the Mongol plains, which means all the prominent confederations fell and/or united under Temüjin's Mongol confederation. Accounts of Genghis Khan's life are marked by claims of a series of betrayals and conspiracies. These include rifts with his early allies such as Jamuka (who also wanted to be a ruler of Mongol tribes) and Wang Khan (his and his father's ally), his son Jochi, and problems with the most important Shaman who was allegedly trying break him up with brother Qasar who was serving Genghis Khan loyally. Many modern scholars doubt that all of the conspiracies existed and suggest that Genghis Khan was probably inclined towards paranoia as a result of his experiences.[citation needed]

His military strategies showed a deep interest in gathering good intelligence and understanding the motivations of his rivals as exemplified by his extensive spy network and Yam route systems. He seemed to be a quick student, adopting new technologies and ideas that he encountered, such as siege warfare from the Chinese. Many legends claim that Genghis Khan always was in the front in battles, but these may not be historically accurate.

As a result by 1206 Temüjin had managed to unite the Merkits, Naimans, Mongols, Uyghurs, Keraits, Tatars and disparate other smaller tribes under his rule. It was a monumental feat for the "Mongols" (as they became known collectively), who had a long history of internecine dispute, economic hardship, and pressure from Chinese dynasties and empires. At a Kurultai, a council of Mongol chiefs, he was acknowledged as "Khan" of the consolidated tribes and took the new title "Genghis Khan". The title Khagan was not conferred on Genghis until after his death, when his son and successor, Ögedei took the title for himself and extended it posthumously to his father (as he was also to be posthumously declared the founder of the Yuan Dynasty). This unification of all confederations by Genghis Khan established peace between previously warring tribes and a single political and military force under Genghis Khan.

See also: Mongols before Genghis Khan and Mongols

[edit] Expansion and military campaigns

See also: Mongol invasions

[edit] Conquest of the Western Xia Dynasty

Main article: Mongol Nation

During the 1206 political rise for Genghis Khan, the Mongol nation or Mongol Empire created by Genghis Khan and his allies was neighboured to the west by the Tanguts' Western Xia Dynasty. To its east and south was the Jin Dynasty, founded by the Manchurian Jurchens, who ruled northern China as well as being the traditional overlord of the Mongolian tribes for centuries.

Temüjin organised his people, army, and his state to first prepare for war with Western Xia, or Xi Xia, which was closer to the Mongolian lands. He correctly believed that the more powerful Jin Dynasty's young ruler would not come to the aid of Xi Xia. When the Tanguts requested help from the Jin Dynasty, they were flatly refused.[11] Despite initial difficulties in capturing its well-defended cities, Genghis Khan forced the surrender of Western Xia by 1209.

[edit] Conquest of the Jin Dynasty

In 1211, after the conquest of Western Xia, Genghis Khan planned again to conquer the Jin Dynasty. The commander of the Jin Dynasty army made a tactical mistake in not attacking the Mongols at the first opportunity. Instead, the Jin commander sent a messenger, Ming-Tan, to the Mongol side, who promptly defected and told the Mongols that the Jin army was waiting on the other side of the pass. At this engagement fought at Badger Pass the Mongols massacred thousands of Jin troops. In 1215 Genghis besieged, captured, and sacked the Jin capital of Yanjing (later known as Beijing). This forced the Emperor Xuanzong to move his capital south to Kaifeng, abandoning the northern half of his kingdom to the Mongols.

[edit] Defeat of the Kara-Khitan Khanate

Main article: Kara-Khitan Khanate
Map of part Kara-Khitan Khanate on top right
Map of part Kara-Khitan Khanate on top right

Meanwhile, Kuchlug, the deposed Khan of the Naiman confederation that Temüjin defeated and folded into the Mongol nation, fled west and usurped the khanate of Kara-Khitan (also known as Kara Kitay). Genghis Khan decided to conquer the Kara-Khitan khanate and defeat Kuchlug possibly to take him out of power. By this time the Mongol army was exhausted from ten years of continuous campaigning in China against the Western Xia and Jin Dynasty. Therefore, Genghis sent only two tumen (20,000 soldiers) against Kuchlug, under his younger general, Jebe, known as "The Arrow".

With such a small force, the invading Mongols were forced to change strategies and resort to inciting internal revolt among Kuchlug's supporters, leaving the Khara-Khitan khanate more vulnurable to Mongol conquest. As a result Kuchlug's army was defeated in west of Kashgar. Kuchlug fled again, but was soon hunted down by Jebe's army and executed. By 1218 as a result of defeat of Kara-Khitan khanate, the Mongol Empire and its control extended as far west as Lake Balkhash, which bordered the Khwarezmia (Khwarezmid Empire), a Muslim state that reached the Caspian Sea to the west and Persian Gulf and the Arabian Sea to the south.

[edit] Destruction of the Khwarezmid Empire

Khwarezmid Empire (1190–1220)
Khwarezmid Empire (1190–1220)

At this time the Khwarezmian Dynasty was governed by Shah Ala ad-Din Muhammad. Genghis Khan saw the potential advantage in Khwarezmia as a commercial trading partner, and, instead of sending an invasion force, he initially sent a 500-man caravan to establish trade ties with the empire. However, Inalchuq, the governor of the Khwarezmian city of Otrar, attacked the caravan that came from Mongolia, claiming that the caravan was a conspiracy against Khwarezmia. The situation became more complicated as the governor later refused to make repayments for the looting of the caravan and murder of its members. Genghis Khan then sent again a second group of ambassadors to meet the Shah himself. The Shah had all the men shaved and all but one beheaded. This was seen as an affront and insult to Genghis Khan. Outraged, Genghis Khan planned one of his largest invasion campaigns by organising together around 200,000 soldiers (20 tumens), his most capable generals and some of his sons.

The Mongol army under personal command of Genghis Khan, generals and son(s) crossed the Tien Shan mountains by entering the area controlled by the Khwarezmid Empire. After compiling intelligence from many sources Genghis Khan carefully prepared his army, which was divided into three groups. His son Jochi led the first division into the northeast of Khwarezmia. The second division under Jebe marched secretly to the southeast part of Khwarzemia to form, with the first division, a pincer attack on Samarkand. The third division under Genghis Khan and Tolui marched to the northwest and attacked Khwarzemia from that direction.

The Shah's army was split by diverse internal disquisitions and by the Shah's decision to divide his army into small groups concentrated in various cities This fragmentation was decisive in Khwarezmia's defeats, as it allowed the Mongols, although exhausted from the long journey, to immediately set about defeating small fractions of the Khwarzemi forces instead of facing a unified defense. The Mongol army quickly seized the town of Otrar, relying on superior strategy and tactics. Genghis Khan ordered the execution of many of the inhabitants and executed Inalchuq by pouring molten silver into his ears and eyes, as retribution for his actions. Near the end of the battle the Shah fled rather than surrender. Genghis Khan charged Subutai and Jebe with hunting him down, giving them two years and 20,000 men. The Shah died under mysterious circumstances on a small island within his empire.

The Mongols' conquest, even by their own standards, was relatively brutal. After the capital Samarkand fell, the capital was moved to Bukhara by the remaining men, and Genghis Khan dedicated two of his generals and their forces to completely destroying the remnants of the Khwarezmid Empire, including not only royal buildings, but entire towns and even vast swaths of farmland. According to stories, Genghis Khan even went so far as to divert a river through the Khwarezmid emperor's birthplace, erasing it from the map.

The heir Shah Jalal Al-Din, who was supported by a nearby town, battled the Mongols several times with his father's armies. However, internal disputes once again split his forces apart, and they were forced to flee Bukhara after yet another devastating defeat, effectively bringing the Khwarezmid Empire to an end.

In the meantime, Genghis Khan selected his third son Ögedei as his successor before his army set out, and specified that subsequent Khans should be his direct descendants. Genghis Khan also left Muqali, one of his most trusted generals, as the supreme commander of all Mongol forces in Jin China while he was out battling the Khwarezmid Empire to the west.

[edit] Attacks on Georgia and Volga Bulgaria

Georgia at the eve of reconnaissance by Subutai and Jebe generals
Georgia at the eve of reconnaissance by Subutai and Jebe generals

After the complete defeat of the Khwarezmid Empire in 1220, the Mongol army was split into two component forces. Genghis Khan led a division on a raid through Afghanistan and northern India, while another contingent marched through the Caucasus and into Russia. As Genghis Khan gathered his forces in Persia and Armenia to return to the Mongolian steppes, the second force of 20,000 troops (two tumen), commanded by generals Jebe and Subutai, pushed deep into Armenia and Azerbaijan. The Mongols destroyed Georgia, sacked the Genoese trade-fortress of Caffain Crimea, and overwintered near the Black Sea. Heading home, Subutai's forces attacked the Kipchaks and were intercepted by the allied but poorly coordinated troops of Mstislav the Bold of Halych and Mstislav III of Kiev, along with about 80,000 Kievan Rus' to stop their actions. Subutai sent emissaries to the Slavic princes calling for a separate peace, but the emissaries were executed. At the Battle of Kalka River in 1223, Subutai's forces defeated the larger Kievan force, while losing the battle of Samara Bend against the neighboring Volga Bulgars.[12].

The Mongols learned from captives of the abundant green pastures beyond the Bulgar territory, allowing for the planning for conquest of Hungary and Europe. The Russian princes then sued for peace. Subutai agreed but was in no mood to pardon the princes. As was customary in Mongol society for nobility, the Russian princes were given a bloodless death. Subutai had a large wooden platform constructed on which he ate his meals along with his other generals. Six Russian princes, including Mstislav of Kiev, were put under this platform and crushed to death.

Genghis Khan recalled Subutai back to Mongolia soon afterwards, and Jebe died on the road back to Samarkand. Subutai and Jebe's famous cavalry expedition, in which they encircled the entire Caspian Sea defeating all armies in their path, except for that of the Volga Bulgars, remains unparalleled to this day, and word of the Mongol triumphs began to trickle to other nations, particularly Europe.

These two campaigns are generally regarded as reconnaissance campaigns that tried to get the feel of the political and cultural elements of the regions. In 1225 both divisions returned to Mongolia. These invasions ultimately added Transoxiana and Persia to an already formidable empire while destroying any resistance along the way.

Under Genghis Khan's grandson Batu and Golden Horde, the Mongols returned to definitively conquer Volga Bulgaria and the Kievan Rus in 1237, concluding the campaign in 1240.

[edit] Second war with the Western Xia and Jin Dynasty coalition

The vassal emperor of the Tanguts (Western Xia) had refused to take part in the war against the Khwarezmid Empire. While most of the Mongol forces under Genghis Khan and his generals were out on campaign against the Khwarezmid Empire, the Western Xia and defeated Jin Dynasty formed a coalition to resist the Mongols, counting on the campaign against the Khwarezmids to drain the Mongols' ability to respond effectively. Their cause was further emboldened by the Khan's expeditions further East, which had drawn the bulk of his army off into prolonged campaigns in Persia and Eastern Europe.

In 1226, immediately after returning from the east, Genghis Khan began a retaliatory attack on the Tanguts. His armies quickly took Heisui, Ganzhou and Suzhou (not the Suzhou in Jiangsu province), and in the autumn he took Xiliang-fu. One of the Tangut generals challenged the Mongols to a battle near Helanshan, but were soundly defeated. In November, Genghis laid siege to the Tangut city Lingzhou, and crossed the Yellow River, defeating the Tangut relief army. According to legend, it was here that Genghis Khan reportedly saw a line of five stars arranged in the sky, and interpreted it as an omen of his victory.

In 1227, Genghis Khan's army attacked and destroyed the Tangut capital of Ning Hia, and continued to advance, seizing Lintiao-fu, Xining province, Xindu-fu, and Deshun province in quick succession in the Spring. At Deshun, the Tangut general Ma Jianlong put up a fierce resistance for several days and personally led charges against the invaders outside the city gate. Ma Jianlong later died from wounds received from arrows in battle. Genghis Khan, after conquering Deshun, went to Liupanshan (Qingshui County, Gansu Province) to escape the severe summer. The new Tangut emperor quickly surrendered to the Mongols, and the rest of the Tanguts officially surrendered soon after. Not happy with their betrayal and resistance, Genghis Khan ordered the entire imperial family to be executed, effectively ending the Tangut lineage.

[edit] Death and burial

Main article: Tomb of Genghis Khan
Mongol Empire in 1227 at Genghis Khan's death
Mongol Empire in 1227 at Genghis Khan's death

On August 18, 1227, during his last campaign against the coalition of Jin Dynasty and Western Xia, Genghis Khan died. The reason for his death is uncertain and speculations abound. Some histories maintain that he fell off his horse due to old age and physical fatigue, ultimately dying of his injuries. Others contend that he was felled by a protracted illness such as pneumonia. The Galician-Volhynian Chronicle alleges he was killed by the Tanguts in battle. There are persistent folktales that a Tangut princess, to avenge her people and prevent her rape, castrated him with a knife hidden inside her vagina and that he never recovered.

Genghis Khan asked to be buried without markings, according the customs of his tribe. After he died, his body was returned to Mongolia and presumably to his birthplace in Khentii Aimag, where many assume he is buried somewhere close to the Onon River and the Burkhan Khaldun mountain (part of the Kentii mountain range). According to legend, the funeral escort killed anyone and anything across their path to conceal where he was finally buried. The Genghis Khan Mausoleum, constructed many years after his death, is his memorial, but not his burial site.

On October 6, 2004, A joint Japanese-Mongolian archaeological dig uncovered what is believed to be Genghis Khan's palace in rural Mongolia, which raises the possibility of actually locating the ruler's long-lost burial site.[13] Folklore says that a river was diverted over his grave to make it impossible to find (the same manner of burial of Sumerian King Gilgamesh of Uruk.) Other tales state that his grave was stampeded over by many horses, over which trees were then planted, and the permafrost also did its bit in hiding the burial site.

Genghis Khan left behind an army of more than 129,000 men; 28,000 were given to his various brothers and his sons. Tolui, his youngest son, inherited more than 100,000 men. This force contained the bulk of the elite Mongolian cavalry. By tradition, the youngest son inherits his father's property. Jochi, Chagatai, Ögedei Khan, and Kulan's son Gelejian received armies of 4,000 men each. His mother and the descendants of his three brothers received 3,000 men each.

[edit] Mongol Empire under Genghis

Main article: Mongol Empire

[edit] Politics and economics

The Mongol Empire was governed by a civilian and military code, called the Yassa, created by Genghis Khan.

The Mongol Empire did not emphasize the importance of ethnicity and race in the administrative realm, instead adopting an approach grounded in meritocracy. The exception was the role of Genghis Khan and his family. The Mongol Empire was one of the most ethnically and culturally diverse empires in history, as befitted its size. Many of the empire's nomadic inhabitants considered themselves Mongols in military and civilian life, including Turks, Mongols, and others and included many diverse Khans of various ethnicities as part of the Mongol Empire such as Muhammad Khan.

There were tax exemptions for religious figures and, to some extent, teachers and doctors. The Mongol Empire practiced religious tolerance to a large degree because Mongol tradition had long held that religion was a very personal concept, and not subject to law or interference. Sometime before the rise of Genghis Khan, Ong Khan, his mentor and eventual rival, had converted to Nestorian Christianity. Various Mongol tribes were Buddhist, Muslim, shamanist or Christian. Religious tolerance was a well established concept on the Asian steppe.

Modern Mongolian historians say that towards the end of his life, Genghis Khan attempted to create a civil state under the Great Yassa that would have established the legal equality of all individuals, including women.[14] However, there is no contemporary evidence of this, or of the lifting of discriminatory policies towards sedentary peoples such as the Chinese. Women played a relatively important role in Mongol Empire and in family, for example Torogene Khatun was briefly in charge of the Mongol Empire when next male Khagan was being chosen. Modern scholars refer to the alleged policy of encouraging trade and communication as the Pax Mongolica (Mongol Peace).

Genghis Khan realized that he needed people who could govern cities and states conquered by him. He also realised that such administrators could not be found among his Mongol people because they were nomads and thus had no experience governing cities. For this purpose Genghis Khan invited a Khitan prince, Chu'Tsai, who worked for the Jin and had been captured by Mongol army after the Jin Dynasty were defeated. Jin had captured power by displacing Khitan. Genghis told Chu'Tsai, who was a lineal descendant of Khitan rulers, that he had avenged Chu'Tsai's forefathers. Chu'Tsai responded that his father served the Jin Dynasty honestly and so did he; he did not consider his own father his enemy, so the question of revenge did not apply. Genghis Khan was very impressed by this reply. Chu'Tsai administered parts of the Mongol Empire and became a confidant of the successive Mongol Khans.

Reenactment of Mongol military movement.
Reenactment of Mongol military movement.

Genghis Khan expected unwavering loyalty from his generals, and granted them a great deal of autonomy in making command decisions. Muqali, a trusted general, was given command of the Mongol forces against the Jin Dynasty while Genghis Khan was fighting in Central Asia, and Subutai and Jebe were allowed to pursue the Great Raid into the Caucausus and Kievan Rus, an idea they had presented to the Khagan on their own initiative. The Mongol military also was successful in siege warfare, cutting off resources for cities and towns by diverting certain rivers, taking enemy prisoners and driving them in front of the army, and adopting new ideas, techniques and tools from the people they conquered, particularly in employing Muslim and Chinese siege engines and engineers to aid the Mongol cavalry in capturing cities. Also one of the standard tactics of Mongol military was the commonly practiced feigned retreat to break enemy formations and to lure small enemy groups away from larger group and defended position for ambush and counterattack.

Another important aspect of the military organization of Genghis Khan was the communications and supply route or Yam, adapted from previous Chinese models. Genghis Khan dedicated special attention to this in order to speed up the gathering of military intelligence and official communications. To this end, Yam waystations were established all over the empire.

[edit] Division of the Empire into Khanates

Before his death, Genghis Khan divided his empire among his sons Ögedei, Chagatai, Tolui, and Jochi (Jochi's death several months before Genghis Khan meant that his lands were instead split between his sons, Batu and Orda) into several Khanates designed as sub-territories: their Khans were expected to follow the Great Khan, who was, initially, Ögedei.

Modern day location of capital Kharakhorum
Modern day location of capital Kharakhorum

Following are the Khanates in the way in which Genghis Khan assigned after his death:

See also: List of Mongol Khans

[edit] After Genghis Khan

Next Khagan, Ögedei Khan, son of Genghis Khan
Next Khagan, Ögedei Khan, son of Genghis Khan

Contrary to popular belief, Genghis Khan did not conquer all of the areas of Mongol Empire. At the time of his death, the Mongol Empire stretched from the Caspian Sea to the Sea of Japan. The empire's expansion continued for a generation or more after Genghis's death in 1227. Under Genghis's successor Ögedei Khan the speed of expansion reached its peak. Mongol armies pushed into Persia, finished off the Xi Xia and the remnants of the Khwarezmids, and came into conflict with the imperial Song Dynasty of China, starting a war that would last until 1279 and that would conclude with the Mongols gaining control of all of China.

[edit] Controversy

Like other notable conquerors, such as Hernán Cortés, Genghis Khan's portrayal differs from those he conquered, as opposed to those who conquered with him. Additionally, unlike Hitler, whose regime was overthrown, and Napoleon I of France, who was defeated, Genghis Khan was never completely vanquished, and created an empire that evolved into a modern nation. Therefore, there is an entire culture that identifies with Khan as a leader and founder, much as George Washington, Benjamin Franklin, and others are viewed as the “founding fathers” of The United States of America. Genghis Khan is undisputedly both the creator and destroyer of nations, and remains a debatable figure, even to modern scholars.

[edit] Positive perception of Genghis Khan

Negative views of Genghis Khan are very persistent with histories written by many different cultures, from various different geographical regions. They often cite the cruelties and destructions brought upon by Mongol armies. However, other authors cite positive aspects of Genghis Khan's conquests. Genghis Khan is credited with bringing the Silk Road under one cohesive political environment. This allowed increased communication and trade between the West, Middle East and Asia by expanding the horizon of all three areas. Some historians have noted that Genghis Khan instituted certain levels of meritocracy in his rule, and was tolerant of different religions.[citations needed] In much of modern-day Turkey, Genghis Khan is looked on as a great military leader, and it is popular for male children to carry his title as name.

[edit] Genghis Khan as an icon in Mongolia

Statue of Genghis Khan in front of the government building in Sukhbaatar Square in Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia
Statue of Genghis Khan in front of the government building in Sukhbaatar Square in Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia
Monument of Genghis Khaan, the biggest in the world, near Ulaanbaatar city, Mongolia. There is a lift in the tail of the horse and stairs along its neck leading to the head where the surroundings are observed
Monument of Genghis Khaan, the biggest in the world, near Ulaanbaatar city, Mongolia. There is a lift in the tail of the horse and stairs along its neck leading to the head where the surroundings are observed

Traditionally Genghis Khan had been revered for centuries among the Mongols, and also among other ethnic groups like the Turks, largely because of his association with Mongol statehood, political and military organization, and his historic victories in war. He eventually evolved into a larger-than-life figure chiefly among the Mongols.

During the communist period, Genghis Khan was often described as reactionary, and positive statements on him were generally avoided.[15] In 1962, the erection of a monument at his birthplace and a conference held in commemoration of his 800th birthday led to criticism from the Soviet Union, and resulted in the dismissal of Tömör-Ochir, a secretary of the ruling Mongolian People's Revolutionary Party Central Committee. In the early 1990s, when democracy was established in Mongolia, the memory of Genghis Khan with the Mongolian traditional national identity has had a powerful revival. Genghis Khan became the central figure of the national identity. He is now a source of pride for Mongolians with ties to their historic roots. For example, it is not uncommon for Mongolians to refer to Mongolia as "Genghis Khan's Mongolia," to themselves as "Genghis Khan's children," and to Genghis Khan as "father of the Mongols" especially among the younger generation. His name and likeness are endorsed on products, streets, buildings, and other places. His face can be found on everyday commodities, from liquors to the largest denominations of 500, 1000, 5000 and 10,000 Mongolian tögrög (₮). Mongolia's main international airport in the capital Ulaanbaatar has been renamed Chinggis Khaan International Airport, and major Genghis Khan statues have been erected before the parliament[16] and near Ulaanbaatar. There have been repeated discussions about regulating the use of his name and image to avoid trivialization[17]. In summary, Mongolians see him as the fundamental figure in the founding of the Mongol nation, and therefore the basis for Mongolia as a country.

Genghis Khan on 1,000 Mongolian tögrög, official currency of Mongolia
Genghis Khan on 1,000 Mongolian tögrög, official currency of Mongolia
Portrait on a hillside in Ulaanbaatar, 2006 Naadam festival
Portrait on a hillside in Ulaanbaatar, 2006 Naadam festival

Genghis Khan is now widely regarded as one of Mongolia's greatest and most legendary leaders[18]. He is responsible for the emergence of the Mongols as a political and ethnic identity. He reinforced many Mongol traditions and provided stability and unity during a time of great uncertainty, due to both internal and external factors. He is also given credit for the introduction of the traditional Mongolian script and the creation of the Ikh Zasag, the first written Mongolian law.[citations needed] There is a chasm in the perception of his brutality - Mongolians maintain that the historical records written by non-Mongolians are unfairly biased against Genghis Khan; and that his butchery is exaggerated, while his positive role is underrated[19].

[edit] In China

The People's Republic of China considers Genghis Khan to be an ethnic minority hero. The rationale for this claim is the fact that there are more ethnic Mongols living inside the PRC than outside, including Mongolia. While Genghis Khan never conquered all of China, his grandson Kublai Khan completed that conquest[20], and established the Yuan Dynasty that is often credited with re-uniting China . There has also been much artwork and literature praising Genghis as a great military leader and political genius. The years of the Mongol-established Yuan Dynasty left an indelible imprint on Chinese political and social structures for subsequent generations[citations needed]. However, the legacy of Genghis Khan and his successors, who completed the conquest of China after 65 years of struggle, remains a mixed topic, even to this day.

[edit] Recognitions in publications

Genghis Khan is recognized in number of large and popular publications and by other authors, which include the following:

[edit] Negative perceptions of Genghis Khan

In Iraq and Iran, he is looked on as a destructive and genocidal warlord who caused enormous damage and destruction.[21] Similarly, in Afghanistan (along with other non-Turkic Muslim countries) he is viewed unfavorably. It is believed that the Hazara of Afghanistan are descendants of a large Mongol garrison stationed therein.[citations needed] The invasions of Baghdad and Samarkand caused mass murders, such as when portions of southern Khuzestan was completely destroyed. His descendant Hulagu Khan destroyed much of Iran's northern part. Among the Iranian peoples he is regarded as one of the most despised conquerors of Iran, along with Alexander and Tamerlane.[22][23] In much of Russia, Ukraine, Poland and Hungary, Genghis Khan and his regime are credited with considerable damage and destruction. Presently Genghis Khan, his descendants, his generals, and the Mongol people are remembered for their ferocious and destructive conquests by the region's history books.

[edit] Claimed descendants study

Zerjal et al [2003][24] identified a Y-chromosomal lineage present in about 8% of the men in a large region of Asia (about 0.5% of the men in the world). The paper suggests that the pattern of variation within the lineage is consistent with a hypothesis that it originated in Mongolia about 1,000 years ago. Such a spread would be too rapid to have occurred by genetic drift, and must therefore be the result of natural selection. The authors propose that the lineage is carried by likely male-line descendants of Genghis Khan, and that it has spread through social selection.

In addition to the Khanates and other descendants, the Mughal emperor Babur's mother was a descendant. Timur (also known as Tamerlane), the 14th century military leader, claimed descent from Genghis Khan.

[edit] Name and title

There are many theories about the origins of Temüjin's title. Since people of the Mongol nation later associated the name with ching (Mongolian for strength), such confusion is obvious, though it does not follow etymology.

One theory suggests the name stems from a palatalised version of the Mongolian and Turkic word tenggiz, meaning "ocean", "oceanic" or "wide-spreading". (Lake Baikal and ocean were called tenggiz by the Mongols. However, it seems that if they had meant to call Genghis tenggiz they could have said (and written) "Tenggiz Khan", which they did not. Zhèng (Chinese: 正) meaning "right", "just", or "true", would have received the Mongolian adjectival modifier -s, creating "Jenggis", which in medieval romanization would be written "Genghis"[citation needed]. It is likely that the 13th century Mongolian pronunciation would have closely matched "Chinggis". See Lister and Ratchnevsky, referenced below, for further reading.

"Genghis" as popularly spelled and pronounced in Western media and text is supposedly derived from the original Persian reports of an invading army, led by a man in 1219 against the Khwarezmid Empire. The Persian people pronounced the man's name "Genghis", as there was no "ch" sound in the Persian tongue. Henceforth, the Persian version of the name of the leader of the Mongol Empire became known and widespread in the Western hemisphere as "Genghis".[citation needed]

According to to the Secret History, Temüjin was named after a powerful warrior of a rival tribe that his father Yesükhei had taken prisoner. The name "Temüjin" is believed to derive from the Turkic word temur, meaning iron (modern Mongolian: төмөр, tömör). This name would imply skill as a blacksmith.

More likely, as no evidence has survived to indicate that Genghis Khan had any exceptional training or reputation as a blacksmith, the name indicated an implied lineage in a family once known as blacksmiths. The latter interpretation is supported by the names of Genghis Khan's siblings, Temülin and Temüge, which are derived from the same root word.

[edit] Name and spelling variations

Genghis Khan's name is spelled in variety of ways in different languages such as Chinese: 成吉思汗; pinyin: Chéngjísī Hán, Turkic: Cengiz Han, Chengez Khan, Chinggis Khan, Chinggis Xaan, Chingis Khan, Jenghis Khan, Chinggis Qan, Djingis Kahn etc. Temüjin is written in Chinese as simplified Chinese: 铁木真; traditional Chinese: 鐵木眞; pinyin: Tiěmùzhēn.

[edit] Short timeline

c. 1155-1167—Temüjin born in Hentiy, Mongolia.
at the age of nine—Temüjin's father Yesükhei poisoned by the Tatars, leaving him and his family destitute
c. 1184—Temüjin's wife Börte kidnapped by Merkits; calls on blood brother Jamuka and Wang Khan (Ong Khan) for aid, and they rescued her.
c. 1185—First son Jochi born, leading to doubt about his paternity later among Genghis' children, because he was born shortly after Börte's rescue from the Merkits.
1190—Temüjin unites the Mongol tribes, becomes leader, and devises code of law Yassa.
1201—Wins victory over Jamuka's Jadarans.
1202—Adopted as Ong Khan's heir after successful campaigns against Tatars.
1203—Wins victory over Ong Khan's Keraits. Ong Khan himself is killed by accident by allied Naimans.
1204—Wins victory over Naimans (all these confederations are united and become the Mongols).
1206—Jamuka is killed. Temüjin given the title Genghis Khan by his followers in Kurultai (around 40 years of age).
1207-1210—Genghis leads operations against the Western Xia, which comprises much of northwestern China and parts of Tibet. Western Xia ruler submits to Genghis Khan. During this period, the Uyghurs also submit peacefully to the Mongols and became valued administrators throughout the empire.
1211—After kurultai, Genghis leads his armies against the Jin Dynasty that ruled northern China.
1215Beijing falls, Genghis Khan turns to west and the Khara-Kitan Khanate.
1219-1222—Conquers Khwarezmid Empire.
1226—Starts the campaign against the Western Xia for forming coalition against the Mongols, being the second battle with the Western Xia.
1227—Genghis Khan dies leading fight against Western Xia. How he died is uncertain, although legend states that he was thrown off his horse in the battle, and contracted a deadly fever soon after.

[edit] Notes

  1. ^ Rashid al-Din asserts that Genghis Khan lived to the age of 72, placing his year of birth at 1155. The Yuanshi (元史, History of the Yuan dynasty, not to be confused with the era name of the Han Dynasty), records his year of birth as 1165. According to Ratchnevsky, accepting a birth in 1155 would render Genghis Khan a father at the age of 30 and would imply that he personally commanded the expedition against the Tanguts at the age of 72. Also, according to the Altan Tobci, Genghis Khan's sister, Temülin, was nine years younger than he; but the Secret History relates that Temülin was an infant during the attack by the Merkits, during which Genghis Khan would have been 18, had he been born in 1155. Zhao Hong reports in his travelogue that the Mongols he questioned did not know and had never known their ages.
  2. ^ Conferred posthumously by his son Ögedei Khan when he took the new title
  3. ^ Morgan, David, The Mongols (Peoples of Europe), 1990, p.58.
  4. ^ http://www.republicanchina.org/Mongols.html
  5. ^ Ratchnevsky, Paul (1991). Genghis Khan: His Life and Legacy. Blackwell Publishing, 9-10. ISBN 0-631-16785-4.
  6. ^ http://www.csuchico.edu/~cheinz/syllabi/fall99/kong/Index1.htm
  7. ^ Ratchnevsky, Paul. Genghis Khan: His Life and Legacy, 1991, p. 126.
  8. ^ (Ratchnevsky, p. 136-7)
  9. ^ Grousset, Rene. Conqueror of the World: The Life of Chingis-khan (New York: The Viking Press, 1944) SBN 670-00343-3.
  10. ^ Man, John. Genghis Khan : Life, Death and Resurrection (London; New York : Bantam Press, 2004) ISBN 0-593-05044-4.
  11. ^ Man, John. Genghis Khan: Life, Death and Resurrection (London; New York: Bantam Press, 2004) ISBN 0-593-05044-4.
  12. ^ De Hartog, Leo (1988). Genghis Khan: Conqueror of the World. London, UK: I.B. Tauris & Co. Ltd., 122-123.
  13. ^ Palace of Genghis Khan unearthed
  14. ^ Mongolia sees Genghis Khan's good side
  15. ^ Christopher Kaplonski: The case of the disappearing Chinggis Khaan
  16. ^ Once Shunned, Genghis Khan Conquers Mongolia Again
  17. ^ http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/business/5412410.stm
  18. ^ http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/asia-pacific/1967201.stm
  19. ^ http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/asia-pacific/6252741.stm?lsf
  20. ^ Inner Mongolia Travel Guide
  21. ^ "The Legacy of Genghis Khan" at Los Angeles County Museum of Art--again
  22. ^ Phoenix From the Ashes: A Tale of the Book in Iran
  23. ^ Civilizations: How we see others, how others see us
  24. ^ Zerjal et. al, (2003) The Genetic Legacy of the Mongols. American Journal of Human Genetics 72(3):717-721 (PubMed)

[edit] External links

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[edit] References

  • Brent, Peter. The Mongol Empire: Genghis Khan: His Triumph and his Legacy. Book Club Associates, London. 1976.
  • Weatherford, Jack. Genghis Khan and the Making of the Modern World (New York : Crown, 2004) ISBN 0-609-61062-7.
  • Kennedy, Hugh. Mongols, Huns & Vikings (London : Cassell, 2002) ISBN 0-304-35292-6.
  • Genghis Khan and the Mongols. Genghis Khan and the Mongols. Retrieved on June 30, 2005.
  • Man, John. Genghis Khan : Life, Death and Resurrection (London; New York : Bantam Press, 2004) ISBN 0-593-05044-4.
  • Lister, R. P. Genghis Khan (Lanham, Md. : Cooper Square Press, 2000 [c1969]) ISBN 0-8154-1052-2.
  • Eric Jameson professeur of ancient Asian rulers at Harvard
  • Mongol Arms. Mongol Arms. Retrieved on June 24, 2003.
  • Heirs to Discord: The Supratribal Aspirations of Jamuka, Toghrul, and TemüjinPDF (72.1 KiB)
  • Ratchnevsky, Paul. Genghis Khan: His Life and Legacy [Čingis-Khan: sein Leben und Wirken] (Oxford, UK ; Cambridge, Mass., USA : B. Blackwell, 1992, c1991) tr. & ed. Thomas Nivison Haining, ISBN 0-631-16785-4.
  • Bretschneider, Emilii. Mediæval Researches from Eastern Asiatic Sources. London: K. Paul, Trench, Trübner & Co. ISBN 81-215-1003-1.
  • History of the Mongol Conquests, JJ Saunders, U. Pennsylvania Press, 1972
  • Genocide: A Critical Bibliographic Review edited by Israel W Charney, 1994
  • Final Solutions: Mass Killing and Genocide in the Twentieth Century by Benjamin A Valentino
  • Zerjal, Xue, Bertorelle, Wells, Bao, Zhu, Qamar, Ayub, Mohyuddin, Fu, Li, Yuldasheva, Ruzibakiev, Xu, Shu, Du, Yang, Hurles, Robinson, Gerelsaikhan, Dashnyam, Mehdi, Tyler-Smith (2003). "The Genetic Legacy of the Mongols". The American Journal of Human Genetics (72): 717-721;.
  • De Hartog, Leo (1988). Genghis Khan: Conqueror of the World. London, UK: I.B. Tauris & Co. Ltd..
  • Morgan, David (1986). The Mongols (Peoples of Europe). Blackwell Publishing. ISBN 0-631-17563-6.

[edit] Primary sources

  • Juvaynī, Alā al-Dīn Atā Malik, 1226-1283. Genghis Khan: The History of the World-Conqueror [Tarīkh-i jahāngushā. English] (Seattle : UWashington Press, 1997) tr. John Andrew Boyle, ISBN 0-295-97654-3.
  • The Secret History of the Mongols (Leiden; Boston : Brill, 2004) tr. Igor De Rachewiltz, Brill's Inner Asian Library. v.7, ISBN 90-04-13159-0.
  • A Compendium of Chronicles: Rashid al-Din's Illustrated History of the World Jami' al-Tawarikh (Oxford : Oxford University Press, 1995) The Nasser D. Khalili Collection of Islamic Art, Vol. XXVII, ed. Sheila S. Blair, ISBN 0-19-727627-X.
  • Tabib, Rashid al-Din. The Successors of Genghis Khan (New York : Columbia University Press, 1971) tr. from the Persian by John Andrew Boyle, [extracts from Jami’ Al-Tawarikh], UNESCO collection of representative works: Persian heritage series, ISBN 0-231-03351-6.http://www.questia.com/PM.qst?a=o&d=109217551

[edit] Further reading

  • Weatherford, Jack. Genghis Khan and the Making of the Modern World (2005).
  • Cable, Mildred and Francesca French. The Gobi Desert (London: Landsborough Publications, 1943).
  • Lamb, Harold, Genghis Khan: The Emperor of All Men, 1927.
  • Man, John. Gobi : Tracking the Desert (London : Weidenfeld & Nicolson, 1997) hardbound; (London : Weidenfeld & Nicolson, 1998) paperbound, ISBN 0-7538-0161-2; (New Haven: Yale, 1999) hardbound.
  • Stewart, Stanley. In the Empire of Genghis Khan: A Journey among Nomads (London: Harper Collins, 2001) ISBN 0-00-653027-3.
  • History Channel's biography of Genghis Khan
  • Secret History of the Mongols: The Origin of Chingis Khan (expanded edition) (Boston: Cheng & Tsui Asian Culture Series, 1998) adapted by Paul Kahn, ISBN 0-88727-299-1.
Genghis Khan
Born: 1162 Died: 1227
Regnal titles
Preceded by
Position Established
Khagan of Mongol Empire
Succeeded by
The Ögedei Khan
editKhagans of Mongol Empire
Genghis Khan (1215-1227) | Tolui Khan (regent) (1227-1229) | Ögedei Khan (1229-1241) | Töregene Khatun (regent) (1241-1245) | Güyük Khan (1246-1248) | Möngke Khan (1251-1259) | Khublai Khan (1260-1294)

NAMEGenghis Khan
SHORT DESCRIPTIONFounder of the Mongol Empire
PLACE OF BIRTHin Khentii Province in Mongolia
DATE OF DEATHAugust 18, 1227

1240AD ---> The Golden Horde: surrounded eastern Christendom with idolatry & Islam

Revelation 20:7-9

And when the thousand years are completed, Satan will be released from his prison, 8 and will come out to deceive the nations which are in the four corners of the earth, Gog and Magog, to gather them together for the war; the number of them is like the sand of the seashore. 9 And they came up on the broad plain of the earth and surrounded the camp of the saints...

From: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Golden_Horde

Golden Horde

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This article refers to the medieval Turkic state. For the Irish rock band, see The Golden Horde (band).

The Golden Horde (Mongolian: Алтан Ордын улс Altan Ordyn Uls; Tatar: Altın Urda; Russian: Золотая Орда, Zolotaya Orda; Turkish: Altın Ordu) is a Russian designation for the Mongol[1][2][3] — later Turkicized[4]khanate established in the western part of the Mongol Empire after the Mongol invasion of Rus in the 1240s: present-day Russia, Ukraine, Moldova, Kazakhstan, and the Caucasus. At its peak the Golden Horde's territory included most of Eastern Europe from the Urals to the right banks of the Dniper River, extending east deep into Siberia. On the south the Horde's lands bordered on the Black Sea, the Caucasus Mountains, and the territories of the Mongol dynasty known as the Il-Khans.[4]



[edit] Name

History of Mongolia
Before Genghis Khan
Mongol Empire
- Chagatai Khanate
- Golden Horde
- Ilkhanate
- Yuan Dynasty
- Timurid Empire
- Mughal Empire
Crimean Khanate
Khanate of Sibir
Qing Dynasty (Outer Mongolia, Mongolia during Qing)
Mongolian People's Republic
Modern Mongolia
Inner Mongolia
Buryat Mongolia
Kalmyk Mongolia
Hazara Mongols
Aimak Mongols
edit box

The name Golden is believed to have come from the steppe colour system for the cardinal directions: black — north, blue — east, red — south, white — west, and yellow (or gold) — center.

According to another version, the name was derived from the Russian designation Zolotaya Orda, a magnificent golden tent camp along the Volga River that Batu Khan established to mark a place of his future capital on the Volga[5]. In Mongolian, Golden Horde (Altan Orda) means Golden Camp, or palace.[3]

Also, the Mongol ruling clan referred to themselves as the "Golden Family", which could be the origins for "The Golden Horde."[citation needed]

There are no written records dated prior to 17th century (well after the destruction) that refer to the state as Golden Horde. Earlier documents allude to this polity as Ulus of Jochi.

Some scholars prefer to use an alternative name, Kipchak Khanate (Russian designation for the Ulus Juchi), because various derivatives of Kipchak were also applied to this state in medieval documents.

[edit] Mongol origins

At his death, Genghis Khan divided the Mongol Empire amongst his four sons. Jochi was the eldest, but he was dead and his paternity was in doubt, so the westernmost lands trodden by the Mongol hoof, then southern Russia and Kazakhstan, were given to his eldest sons, Batu who eventually became the ruler of the Blue Horde; and Orda, who became the leader of the White Horde.[6][7]

Destruction of Suzdal by the Mongol armies. From the medieval Russian annals.
Destruction of Suzdal by the Mongol armies. From the medieval Russian annals.

In 1235, Batu (being the eldest son) with the great general Subedei began an invasion westwards, first conquering the Bashkirs and then moving on Volga Bulgaria in 1236. From here, in 1237 he conquered the southern steppes of the Ukraine, forcing the Cumans to flee westwards. Moving north, Batu began the Mongol invasion of Rus and for three years subjugated the Russian principalities, whilst his cousins Kadan and Guyuk moved southwards into Alania.

Blaming the migration of the Cumans as his Casus belli, Batu's Horde with an assortment of brothers and cousins including Shiban, Orda, Kadan and Mongke Khan continued west, raiding Poland and Hungaryand culminating in the Battles of Legnica and Muhi. In 1241, however, the Great Khan Ogedei died in Mongolia, and Batu turned back from his siege of Viennato take part in disputing the succession. The Mongol armies would never again travel so far west.

In 1242, after retreating through Hungary (And destroying Pest in the process), and subjugating Bulgaria.[8], Batu established his capital at Sarai, commanding the lower stretch of the Volga River, on the site of the Khazarian capital of Atil. Shortly before that, Batu and Orda's younger brother Shiban left Batu's army and was given his own enormous ulus east of the Ural Mountains along the Ob and Irtysh Rivers.

[edit] Golden Age

The people of the Golden Horde were mostly a mixture of Turks and Mongols. The Horde was gradually Turkified and lost its Mongol identity, while the descendants of Batu's original Mongol warriors constituted the upper class of the society.[9] Most of the Horde's population were Kypchaks, Bulgar Tatars, Kyrgyz, Khwarezmians, and other Turkic peoples. They were commonly named the Tatars by the Russians and Europeans. Russians preserved this common name for this peoples down to the 20th century, whereas the most of these peoples identified themselves with their ethnic or tribal names, some also considered themselves as simply Muslims. The most of the Muslim population, both agricultural and nomadic, adopted the Kypchak language, developed to the regional languages of Kypchak group after the Horde disintegrated.

The descendents of Batu ruled the Golden Horde from Sarai Batu and later Sarai Berke, controlling an area ranging from the Volga river to the Carpathian mountains and the mouth of the Danube, whilst the descendents of Orda ruled the area from the Ural River to Lake Balkhash.

History of Belarus,
History of Russia,
History of Ukraine
Early East Slavs
Rus' Khaganate
Kievan Rus’
Mongol invasion
Golden Horde
Grand Duchy of Lithuania
Grand Duchy of Moscow
Tsardom of Russia
The Hetmanate
Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth
Imperial Russia
Revolution of 1917
Russian Civil War
Soviet Union
Russian Federation

[edit] Internal organization

A 13th-century cup produced in the Golden Horde.
A 13th-century cup produced in the Golden Horde.

The Horde's supreme ruler was the khan, chosen by the kurultai among Batu Khan's descendants. The prime minister, also ethnically Mongol, was known as "prince of princes", or beklare-bek. The ministers were called viziers. Local governors, or basqaqs, were responsible for levying tribute and extinguishing popular discontent. Civil and military administration, as a rule, was not separated.

The Horde developed as a settled rather than nomadic culture, with Sarai evolving into a populous and prosperous metropolis. In the early 14th century, the capital was moved considerably upstream to Sarai Berqe, which became one of the largest cities of the medieval world, with 600,000 inhabitants.[10]

Despite Russian efforts at proselytizing in Sarai, the Mongols clung to their traditional animist or shamanist beliefs until Uzbeg Khan (1312-41) adopted Islam as a state religion. Several Russian rulers - Mikhail of Chernigov and Mikhail of Tver among them - were reportedly assassinated in Sarai for their refusal to worship pagan idols, but the khans were generally tolerant and even freed the Russian Orthodox Church of taxes.

[edit] Vassals and allies

The Horde exacted tribute from its subject peoples - Russians, Armenians, Georgians, Circassians, Alans, Crimean Greeks, Crimean Goths, and others. The territories of Christian subjects were regarded as peripheral areas of little interest as long as they continued to pay tribute. These vassal states were never incorporated into the Horde, and Russian rulers early obtained the privilege of collecting the Tatar tribute themselves. To maintain control over Russia, Tatar warlords carried out regular punitive raids to Russian principalities (most dangerous in 1252, 1293, 1382).

There is a point of view, much propagated by Lev Gumilev, that the Horde and Russian polities concluded a defensive alliance against the fanatical Teutonic knights and pagan Lithuanians. Enthusiasts point to the fact that the Mongol court was frequented by Russian princes, notably Yaroslavl's Feodor the Black, who boasted his own ulus near Sarai, and Novgorod's Alexander Nevsky, the sworn brother of Batu's successor Sartaq Khan. Although Novgorod never acknowledged the Horde's ascendancy, a Mongol contingent supported Novgorodians in the Battle of the Ice.

Sarai carried on a brisk trade with the Genoese trade emporiums on the Black Sea littoral - Soldaia, Caffa, and Azak. Mamluk Egypt was the khans' long-standing trade partner and ally in the Mediterranean. Berke, the khan of Kipchak had drawn up an alliance with the Mamluk Sultan Baibars in 1261.[11]

[edit] Political evolution

Metropolitan Alexis healing Jani Beg's wife from blindness.
Metropolitan Alexis healing Jani Beg's wife from blindness.

After Batu's death in 1255, the prosperity of his empire lasted for a full century, until the assassination of Jani Beg in 1357, though the intrigues of Nogai did invoke a partial civil war in the late 1290's. The Horde's military clout peaked during the reign of Uzbeg (1312-41), whose army exceeded 300,000 warriors.

Their Russian policy was one of constantly switching alliances in an attempt to keep Russia weak and divided. In the 14th century the rise of Lithuania in North East Europe posed a challenge to Tatar control over Russia. Thus Uzbeg Khan began backing Moscow as the leading Russian state. Ivan I Kalita was granted the title of grand prince and given the right to collect taxes from other Russian potentates.

[edit] Disintegration and fall

Tokhtamysh's invasion of Russia in 1382.
Tokhtamysh's invasion of Russia in 1382.

The Black Death of the 1340s was a major factor contributing to the Golden Horde's eventual downfall. Following the disastrous rule of Jani Beg and his subsequent assassination, the empire fell into a long civil war, averaging one new Khan per annum for the next few decades (Though Orda's white horde carried on generally free from trouble until the late 1370's). By the 1380s, Khwarezm, Astrakhan, and Muscovy attempted to break free of the Horde's power, while the lower reaches of the Dnieper were annexed by Lithuania and Poland in 1368 (Whilst the eastern principalities were generally annexed with little resistance).

Mamai, a Tatar general who did not formally hold the throne, attempted to reassert Tatar authority over Russia. His army was defeated by Dmitri Donskoi at the Battle of Kulikovo in his second consecutive victory over the Tatars. Mamai soon fell from power, and in 1378, Tokhtamysh, a descendant of Orda Khan and ruler of the White Horde, invaded and annexed the territory of the Blue Horde, briefly reestablishing the Golden Horde as a dominant regional power.

After Mamai's defeat, Tokhtamysh tried to restore the dominance of the Golden Horde over Russia by attacking Russian lands in 1382. He besieged Moscow on August 23, but Muscovites beat off his storm, using firearms for the first time in Russian history.[12] On August 26, two sons of Tokhtamysh's supporter Dmitry of Suzdal, dukes of Suzdal and Nizhny Novgorod Vasily and Semyon, who were present in Tokhtamysh's forces, persuaded Muscovites to open the city gates, promising that forces would not harm the city in this case.[13] This allowed Tokhtamysh's troops to burst in and destroy Moscow, killing 24,000 people.[14]

The domains of the Golden Horde in 1389 before the Tokhtamysh-Timur war, with modern international boundaries in light brown.  The Principality of Moscow is shown as a dependency, in light yellow.
The domains of the Golden Horde in 1389 before the Tokhtamysh-Timur war, with modern international boundaries in light brown. The Principality of Moscow is shown as a dependency, in light yellow.

A fatal blow to the Horde was dealt by Tamerlane, who annihilated Tokhtamysh's army, destroyed his capital, looted the Crimean trade centers, and deported the most skillful craftsmen to his own capital in Samarkand.

In the first decades of the 15th century, power was wielded by Edigu, a vizier who routed Vytautas of Lithuania in the great Battle of the Vorskla River and established the Nogai Horde as his personal demesne.

In the 1440s, the Horde was again wracked by civil war. This time it broke up into separate Khanates: Qasim Khanate, Khanate of Kazan, Khanate of Astrakhan, Kazakh Khanate, Uzbek Khanate, and Khanate of Crimea all seceding from the last remnant of the Golden Horde - the Great or Big Horde.

None of these new Khanates was stronger than Muscovite Russia, which finally broke free of Tatar control by 1480. Each Khanate was eventually annexed by it, starting with Kazan and Astrakhan in the 1550s. By the end of the century the Siberia Khanate was also part of Russia, and descendants of its ruling khans entered Russian service.

The Crimean Khanate became a vassal state of the Ottoman Empire in 1475 and subjugated what remained of the Great Horde by 1502. Crimean Tatars wreaked havoc in southern Russia, Ukraine and even Poland in the course of the 16th and early 17th centuries but they were not able to defeat Russia or take Moscow. Under Ottoman protection, the Khanate of Crimea continued its precarious existence until Catherine the Great annexed it on April 8, 1783. It was by far the longest-lived of the successor states to the Golden Horde.

[edit] Reference and notes

  1. ^ G. Vernadsky, M. Karpovich: "The Mongols and Russia", Yale University Press, 1953
  2. ^ "Empire of the Golden Horde", The Columbia Encyclopedia, Sixth Edition, 2001-05.
  3. ^ a b T. May, "Khanate of the Golden Horde", North Georgia College and State University.
  4. ^ a b "Golden Horde", in Encyclopaedia Britannica, 2007. Quotation: "also called Kipchak Khanate Russian designation for the Ulus Juchi, the western part of the Mongol Empire, which flourished from the mid-13th century to the end of the 14th century. The people of the Golden Horde were a mixture of Turks and Mongols, with the latter generally constituting the aristocracy."
  5. ^ The Columbia Encyclopedia, Sixth Edition. 2001-05.
  6. ^ Edward L. Keenan, Encyclopedia Americana article
  7. ^ B.D. Grekov and A.Y. Yakubovski "The Golden Horde and its Downfall"
  8. ^ Denis Sinor, "The Mongols in the West", Journal of Asian History v.33 n.1 (1999).
  9. ^ Encyclopædia Britannica
  10. ^ Encyclopædia Britannica
  11. ^ Mantran, Robert (Fossier, Robert, ed.) "A Turkish or Mongolian Islam" in The Cambridge Illustrated History of the Middle Ages: 1250-1520, p. 298
  12. ^ (Russian) Dmitri Donskoi Epoch
  13. ^ (Russian) History of Moscow settlements - Suchevo
  14. ^ Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd edition, entry on "Московское восстание 1382", available online here

[edit] Further reading

[edit] See also

[edit] External links

1206–1405AD Mongol Empire

1070AD-REFORMATION: Satan's Release

Revelation 20:7-9

7 Now when the thousand years have expired, Satan will be released from his prison 8 and will go out to deceive the nations which are in the four corners of the earth, Gog and Magog, to gather them together to battle, whose number is as the sand of the sea. 9 They went up on the breadth of the earth...

From: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mongol_Empire

Mongol Empire

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Jump to: navigation, search
Expansion of the Mongol Empire
Expansion of the Mongol Empire
Historical map of the Mongol Empire (1300~1405), the gray area is Timurid dynasty.
Historical map of the Mongol Empire (1300~1405), the gray area is Timurid dynasty.

The Mongol Empire, also known as the Mongolian Empire (Mongolian: Монголын Эзэнт Гүрэн, Mongolyn Ezent Güren; 12061405) was the largest contiguous empire in history and for sometime was the most feared in Eurasia. It was the product of Mongol unification and Mongol invasions, which began with Temujin being proclaimed ruler in 1206, eventually sparking the conquests.

By 1279, the Mongol Empire covered over 33,000,000 km² (12,741,000 sq mi),[1]up to 22% of Earth's total land area. It held sway over a population of over 100 million people.

During the beginning of the 14th century, most of the khanates of the Empire gradually broke off. They went on to be absorbed and defeated.



[edit] Formation

Genghis Khan, through political manipulation and military might, united the nomadic, previously ever-rivaling Mongol-Turkic tribes under his rule by 1206. He quickly came into conflict with the Jin Dynasty empire of the Jurchens and the Western Xia of the Tanguts in northern China. Under the provocation of the Muslim Khwarezmid Empire, he moved into Central Asia as well, devastating Transoxiana and eastern Persia, then raiding into Kievan Rus' (a predecessor state of Russia, Belarus and Ukraine) and the Caucasus. Before dying, Genghis Khan divided his empire among his sons and immediate family, but as custom made clear, it remained the joint property of the entire imperial family who, along with the Mongol aristocracy, constituted the ruling class.

[edit] Major events in the Early Mongol Empire

Eurasia on the eve of the Mongol invasions, c. 1200.
Eurasia on the eve of the Mongol invasions, c. 1200.
Mongol Empire in 1227 at Genghis' death
Mongol Empire in 1227 at Genghis' death
  • 1206: Upon domination of Mongolia, Temüjin from the Orkhon Valley received the title Genghis Khan, thought to mean Oceanic Ruler or Firm, Resolute Ruler
  • 1207: The Mongols began operations against the Western Xia, which comprised much of northwestern China and parts of Tibet. This campaign lasted until 1210 with the Western Xia ruler submitting to Genghis Khan. During this period, the Uyghur Turks also submitted peacefully to the Mongols and became valued administrators throughout the empire.
  • 1211: Genghis Khan led his armies across the Gobi desert against the Jin Dynasty of northern China.
  • 1218: The Mongols captured Zhetysu and the Tarim Basin, occupying Kashgar.
  • 1218: The execution of Mongol envoys by the Khwarezmian Shah Muhammad set in motion the first Mongol westward thrust.
  • 1219: The Mongols crossed the Jaxartes (Syr Darya) and begin their invasion of Transoxiana.
  • 1219–1221: While the campaign in northern China was still in progress, the Mongols waged a war in central Asia and destroyed the Khwarezmid Empire. One notable feature was that the campaign was launched from several directions at once. In addition, it was notable for special units assigned by Genghis Khan personally to find and kill Ala al-Din Muhammad II, the Khwarazmshah who fled from them, and ultimately ended up hiding on an island in the Caspian Sea.
  • 1223: The Mongols gained a decisive victory at the Battle of the Kalka River, the first engagement between the Mongols and the East Slavic warriors.
  • 1227: Genghis Khan's death; Mongol leaders returned to Mongolia for kuriltai. The empire at this point covered nearly 26 million km², about four times the size of the Roman or Macedonian Empires.
  • 1237: Under the leadership of Batu Khan, the Mongols returned to the West and began their campaign to subjugate Kievan Rus'
  • 1240: Mongols sacked Kiev.
  • 1241: Mongols defeated Hungarians and Croatians at the Battle of Sajo and Poles, Templars and Teutonic Knights at the Battle of Legnica.
  • 1241 and 1242 Mongols under Batu and Khadan invaded Bulgaria and forced them to pay annual tribute as vassal.
  • 1246 Guyuk elected as great khan.

[edit] Organization

[edit] Military setup

History of Mongolia
Before Genghis Khan
Mongol Empire
- Chagatai Khanate
- Golden Horde
- Ilkhanate
- Yuan Dynasty
- Timurid Empire
- Mughal Empire
Crimean Khanate
Khanate of Sibir
Qing Dynasty (Outer Mongolia, Mongolia during Qing)
Mongolian People's Republic
Modern Mongolia
Inner Mongolia
Buryat Mongolia
Kalmyk Mongolia
Hazara Mongols
Aimak Mongols
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The Mongol military organization was simple, but effective. It was based on an old tradition of the steppe, which was a decimal system known in Iranian cultures since Achaemenid Persia, and later: the army was built up from squads of ten men each, called an arban; ten arbans constituted a company of a hundred, called a jaghun; ten jaghuns made a regiment of a thousand called mingghan and ten mingghans would then constitute a regiment of ten thousand (tumen), which is the equivalent of a modern division.

Unlike other mobile-only warriors, such as the Xiongnu/Huns or the Vikings, the Mongols were very comfortable in the art of the siege. They were very careful to recruit artisans and military talents from the cities they conquered, and along with a group of experienced Chinese engineers and bombardier corps, they were experts in building the trebuchet, Xuanfeng catapults and other machines to which they can lay siege to fortified positions. These were effectively used in the successful European campaigns under General Subutai. These weapons may be built on the spot using immediate local resources such as nearby trees.

Within a battle Mongol forces used extensive coordination of combined arms forces. Though they were famous for their horse archers, their lance forces were equally skilled and just as essential to their success. Mongol forces also used their engineers in battle. They used siege engines and rockets to disrupt enemy formations, confused enemy forces with smoke, and used smoke to isolate portions of an enemy force while destroying that force to prevent their allies from sending aid.

The army's discipline distinguished Mongol soldiers from their peers. The forces under the command of the Mongol Empire were generally trained, organized, and equipped for mobility and speed. To maximize mobility, Mongol soldiers were relatively lightly armored compared to many of the armies they faced. In addition, soldiers of the Mongol army functioned independently of supply lines, considerably speeding up army movement. Skillful use of couriers enabled these armies to maintain contact with each other and with their higher leaders. Discipline was inculcated in nerge (traditional hunts), as reported by Juvayni. These hunts were distinct from hunts in other cultures which were the equivalent to small unit actions. Mongol forces would spread out on line, surrounding an entire region and drive all of the game within that area together. The goal was to let none of the animals escape and to slaughter them all.

All military campaigns were preceded by careful planning, reconnaissance and gathering of sensitive information relating to the enemy territories and forces. The success, organization and mobility of the Mongol armies permitted them to fight on several fronts at once. All males aged from 15 to 60 and capable of undergoing rigorous training were eligible for conscription into the army, the source of honor in the tribal warrior tradition.

Another advantage of the Mongols was their ability to traverse large distances even in debilitatingly cold winters; in particular, frozen rivers led them like highways to large urban conurbations on their banks. In addition to siege engineering, the Mongols were also adept at river-work, crossing the river Sajó in spring flood conditions with thirty thousand cavalry in a single night during the battle of Mohi (April, 1241), defeating the Hungarian king Bela IV. Similarly, in the attack against the Muslim Khwarezmshah, a flotilla of barges was used to prevent escape on the river.

[edit] Law and governance

See also: Organization of state under Genghis Khan.

The Mongol Empire was governed by a code of law devised by Genghis, called Yassa, meaning "order" or "decree". A particular canon of this code was that the nobility shared much of the same hardship as the common man. It also imposed severe penalties – e.g., the death penalty was decreed if the mounted soldier following another did not pick up something dropped from the mount in front. On the whole, the tight discipline made the Mongol Empire extremely safe and well-run; European travelers were amazed by the organization and strict discipline of the people within the Mongol Empire.

Under Yassa, chiefs and generals were selected based on merit, religious tolerance was guaranteed, and thievery and vandalizing of civilian property was strictly forbidden. According to legend, a woman carrying a sack of gold could travel safely from one end of the Empire to another.

The empire was governed by a non-democratic parliamentary-style central assembly, called Kurultai, in which the Mongol chiefs met with the Great Khan to discuss domestic and foreign policies.

Genghis also demonstrated a rather liberal and tolerant attitude to the beliefs of others, and never persecuted people on religious grounds. This proved to be good military strategy, as when he was at war with Sultan Muhammad of Khwarezm, other Islamic leaders did not join the fight against Genghis — it was instead seen as a non-holy war between two individuals.

Throughout the empire, trade routes and an extensive postal system (yam) were created. Many merchants, messengers and travelers from China, the Middle East and Europe used the system. Genghis Khan also created a national seal, encouraged the use of a written alphabet in Mongolia, and exempted teachers, lawyers, and artists from taxes, although taxes were heavy on all other subjects of the empire.

At the same time, any resistance to Mongol rule was met with massive collective punishment. Cities were destroyed and their inhabitants slaughtered if they defied Mongol orders.

[edit] Religions

Mongols were highly tolerant of most religions, and typically sponsored several at the same time. At the time of Genghis Khan, virtually every religion had found converts, from Buddhism to Christianity and Manichaeanism to Islam. To avoid strife, Genghis Khan set up an institution that ensured complete religious freedom, though he himself was a shamanist. Under his administration, all religious leaders were exempt from taxation, and from public service.[2]

Initially there were few formal places of worship, because of the nomadic lifestyle. However, under Ögedei, several building projects were undertaken in Karakorum. Along with palaces, Ogodei built houses of worship for the Buddhist, Muslim, Christian, and Taoist followers. The dominant religion at that time was Shamanism and Buddhism, although Ogodei's wife was a Christian.[3]

[edit] Christianity

Nestorian tombstone found in Issyk Kul, dated 1312.
Nestorian tombstone found in Issyk Kul, dated 1312.

Some Mongols had been proselytized by Christian Nestorians since about the 7th century, and a few Mongols were converted to Catholicism, esp. by John of Montecorvino.[4]

Some of the major Christian figures among the Mongols were: Sorghaghtani Beki, daughter in law of Genghis Khan, and mother of the Great Khans Möngke, Kublai, Hulagu and Ariq Boke; Sartaq, khan of Golden Horde; Oroqina Khatun, the mother of the ruler Abaqa; Kitbuqa, general of Mongol forces in the Levant, who fought in alliance with Christians. Marital alliances with Western powers also occurred, as in the 1265 marriage of Maria Despina Palaiologina, daughter of Emperor Michael VIII Palaeologus, with Abaqa.

The 13th century saw attempts at a Franco-Mongol alliance with exchange of ambassadors and even military collaboration with European Christians in the Holy Land. The Nestorian Mongol Rabban Bar Sauma visited some European courts in 1287-1288.

[edit] Trade networks

Mongols prized their commercial and trade relationships with neighboring economies and this policy they continued during the process of their conquests and during the expansion of their empire. All merchants and ambassadors, having proper documentation and authorization, traveling through their realms were protected. This greatly increased overland trade.

During the thirteenth and early fourteenth centuries, European merchants, numbering hundreds, perhaps thousands, made their way from Europe to the distant land of China — Marco Polo is only one of the best known of these. Well-traveled and relatively well-maintained roads linked lands from the Mediterranean basin to China. The Mongol Empire had negligible influence on seaborne trade.

[edit] Mail System

Letter of Oljeitu to Philippe le Bel, 1305. The huge roll measures 302x50 cm.
Letter of Oljeitu to Philippe le Bel, 1305. The huge roll measures 302x50 cm.

The Mongol Empire had an ingenious and efficient mail system for the time, often referred to by scholars as the Yam, which had lavishly furnished and well guarded relay posts known as örtöö set up all over the Mongol Empire. The yam system would be replicated later in the U.S. in form of the Pony Express.[5] A messenger would typically travel 25 miles (40 km) from one ordu to the next, and he would either receive a fresh, rested horse or relay the mail to the next rider to ensure the speediest possible delivery. The Mongol riders regularly covered 125 miles per day, which is faster than the fastest record set by the Pony Express some 600 years later.

[edit] Military conquests

[edit] Central Asia

Mongol invasion of Central Asia initially was composed of Genghis Khan's victory and unification over the Mongol central Asian confederations such as Merkits, Mongols, Uighurs that eventually created the Mongol nation and founding of the Mongol Empire. It then continued with invasion of Khwarezmid Empire in Persia.

[edit] Middle East

Mongol invasion of the Middle East consists of the destruction of Iraq, Iran, parts of Kuwait and eventually reaching into Palestine regions. Please see also Battle of Baghdad.

[edit] East Asia

Mongol invasion of East Asia refers to the Mongols 13th and 14th century conquests under Genghis Khan and his descendants of Mongol invasion of China, Korea, and attempted Mongol invasion of Japan, and it also can include Mongols attempted invasion of Vietnam. The biggest conquest was the total invasion of China in the end.

[edit] Europe

Mongol invasion of Europe largely constitute of their invasion and conquest of Kievan Rus, much of Russia, invasion of Poland and Hungary among others.

Pope’s envoy to Mongol Khan Giovanni de Plano Carpini, who passed through Kiev in February 1246, wrote:

"They [the Mongols] attacked Russia, where they made great havoc, destroying cities and fortresses and slaughtering men; and they laid siege to Kiev, the capital of Russia; after they had besieged the city for a long time, they took it and put the inhabitants to death. When we were journeying through that land we came across countless skulls and bones of dead men lying about on the ground. Kiev had been a very large and thickly populated town, but now it has been reduced almost to nothing, for there are at the present time scarce two hundred houses there and the inhabitants are kept in complete slavery."[6]

[edit] After Genghis Khan

Ögedei Khan, Genghis Khan's son and successor
Ögedei Khan, Genghis Khan's son and successor
Kublai Khan, Genghis Khan's grandson and founder of the Yuan Dynasty
Kublai Khan, Genghis Khan's grandson and founder of the Yuan Dynasty
Hulagu, Genghis Khan's grandson and founder of the il-Khan
Hulagu, Genghis Khan's grandson and founder of the il-Khan

At first, the Mongol Empire was ruled by Ögedei Khan, Genghis Khan's third son and designated heir, but after his death in 1241, the fractures which would ultimately crack the Empire began to show. Enmity between the grandchildren of Genghis Khan resulted in a five year regency by Ögedei's widow until she finally got her son Guyuk Khan confirmed as Great Khan. But he only ruled two years, and following his death -- he was on his way to confront his cousin Batu Khan, who had never accepted his authority -- another regency followed, until finally a period of stability came with the reign of Mongke Khan, from 1251-1259. The last universally accepted Great Khan was his brother Arigboh (aka. Arigbuga, or Arigbuha), his elder brother Kublai Khan dethroned him with his own supporters after some extensive battles. Kublai Khan ruled from 1260-1294. Despite his recognition as Great Khan, he was unable to keep his brother Hulagu and their cousin Berke from open warfare in 1263, and after Kublai's death there was not an accepted Great Khan, so the Mongol Empire was fragmented for good.

Genghis Khan divided his realm into four Khanates, subdivisions of a single empire under the Great Khan (Khan of Khans). The following Khanates emerged after the regency following Ögedei Khan's death, and became formally independent after Kublai Khan's death:

The Mongol Empire and its successor khanates
The Mongol Empire and its successor khanates

The empire's expansion continued for a generation or more after Genghis's death in 1227. Under Genghis's successor Ögedei Khan, the speed of expansion reached its peak. Mongol armies pushed into Persia, finished off the Xia and the remnants of the Khwarezmids, and came into conflict with the Song Dynasty of China, starting a war that concluded in 1279 with the conquest of populous China, which then constituted the majority of the world's economic production.

In the late 1230s, the Mongols under Batu Khan invaded Russia and Volga Bulgaria, reducing most of its principalities to vassalage, and pressed on into Eastern Europe. In 1241 the Mongols may have been ready to invade Western Europe as well, having defeated the last Polish-German and Hungarian armies at the Battle of Legnica and the Battle of Mohi. Batu Khan and Subutai were preparing to start with a winter campaign against Austria and Germany, and finish with Italy. However news of Ögedei's death spared Western Europe as Batu had to turn his attentions to the election of the next Great Khan. It is often speculated that this was one of the great turning points in history and that Europe may well have fallen to the Mongols had the invasion gone ahead. During the 1250s, Genghis's grandson Hulegu Khan, operating from the Mongol base in Persia, destroyed the Abbasid Caliphate in Baghdad and destroyed the cult of the Assassins, moving into Palestine towards Egypt. The Great Khan Möngke having died, however, he hastened to return for the election, and the force that remained in Palestine was destroyed by the Mamluks under Saif ad-Din Qutuz in 1261 at Ayn Jalut.

[edit] Areas that Avoided Mongol Conquest

Essentially, only six areas accessible to the Mongols avoided conquest by them -- Indochina, South Asia, Vietnam, Japan, Western Europe and Arabia. Also, two important cities that evaded the Mongol Conquest were Vienna and Jerusalem. Both evaded the conquest because of the death of a Great Khan.

[edit] Western Europe

While the Mongolian Empire extended into Poland and threatening present day Austria, the Mongols were not able to push into Western Europe. The most popular explanation was the fact that on 11 December 1241, during pre-emptive operations by Mongol reconnaissance forces inside Austria for the invasion of Vienna, news came that Ogedei Khan died, and bound by Mongol tradition, all Mongol commanders and princes had to report back to the capital of Karakorum to elect a new Khan. It was believed that the Mongol abandonment of the European campaign was only temporary, but in fact, the Mongols had committed no further campaigns into Europe in earnest.[citations needed]Some western historians attribute European survival to Mongol unwillingness to fight in the more densely populated German principalities, where the wetter weather affected their bows.[citations needed] But the same weather did not stop them from devastating Russia or the campaigns against the Southern Song, and Europe was less densely populated than China.[5]

The probable answer for the Mongol's stopping after the Mohi River, and the destruction of the Hungarian army, was that they never intended to advance further at that time.[7]

Batu Khan had made his Russian conquests safe for the next 10 generations, and when the Great Khan died, he rushed back to Mongolia to put in his claim for power. Upon his return, relations with his cousin Guyuk Khan had deteriorated to the point that open warfare between them came shortly after Guyuk's death. The point is that the Mongols were unable to bring a unified army to bear on either Europe, or Egypt, after 1260. Batu Khan was in fact planning invasion of Europe all the way to the "Great Sea" — the Atlantic Ocean, when he died in 1255.[7][5]

His son inherited the Khanate, but also died in a short time, and Batu's brother Berke became Khan of the Kipchak Khanate. He was far more interested in fighting with his cousin Hulagu than invading the remainder of Europe, which was no threat to him.

[edit] Vietnam and Japan

Another area that wasn't conquered by Mongols was Vietnam, which repelled Mongol attacks in 1257, 1285 and 1287/1288. Japan also repelled massive Mongol invasions in 1274 and 1281. Japan's ruler Hojo Tokimune first sent back the emissaries time and time again without audience in Kamakura, and then after the first invasion was so bold as to behead Kubilai's emissaries, twice.[8] In both Japan and Vietnam, Kubilai sent part of the Mongol armies, instead of concentrating on Vietnam first, and then Japan. Furthermore, the splitting of resources left the Mongols with a fleet that was not readily equipped for the storms that plagued the Sea of Japan. A great storm sank the primary invasion fleet and killed most of the Mongol army during the 1281 invasion. Nonetheless, Kublai Khan continued to attempt to gather forces for another invasion while simultaneously attacking Vietnam. The end result was Japan was able to repel Mongol assaults, but Vietnam was not.[7]

[edit] Indochina

Not only Vietnam and Japan, but there are many countries of Indochina which can avoid the Mongol invasion. The most remarkable one is the Maoluang kingdom (or the Kingdom of Mong Mao) which is the empire of Tai people at Northern Thailand, Shan and Kachin state of present Burma of Northern and Northeastern Burma , Assam of Eastern India and Southwestern China. Sa Khaan Pha (or Si Ke Fa), the king of Maoluang kingdom can get the threaty after he wins the Mongols three times during the period of Kublai Ghan. He gets the authority on any lands beyond Southern to the Sang city which is now the Kun Ming city of Yunnan province of China. Lanna and Sibsongpanna at the Northern Thailand, Northern Laos and Southern China, Lan Xang at Laos, Champa at Southern Vietnam and Cambodia, Siamese kingdoms of Chiang Saen (or Chieng Saeng), Lavo, Haripunjai, Phyao and Sukhotai, and the Khmer empire are never been touched by the Mongols because of the Maoluang - the Mongol theaty, Malaria disease and the unbeatable terrains. But Burmese Pagan dynasty was destroyed in 1287 by Kublai Khan as well as Northern Vietnamese empire of Viet. Mongol was try to send the fleet to Khmer, Java, Siam, Srivijai and Malay but the Mongol army was never got win in such battles.

[edit] South Asia

South Asia was also able to withstand the advance of the Mongols. At this time, Northern India was under the rule of the Delhi sultanate. Though the Mongols raided into the Punjab and invaded Delhi itself (unsuccessfully), the Sultans--mostly notably Ghiyasuddin Balban--were able to keep them at bay and roll them back. Historian John Keay credited the successful combination of the Indian elephant phalanx and maneuverable central Asian cavalry operated by the rulers of Northern India. Ironically, 300 years later, Babar, a Timurid scion who claimed descent from Genghis Khan, would go on to conquer northern India and found the Mughal Empire. The difficult terrain, and other natural obstacles, such as those that plagued the Mongol empire in its attempt to conquer Japan also played a fair role in aiding the southern Asiatic "nations" to repel the Mongols.

[edit] Arabia and Egypt

The final area which would withstand the Mongols was the Levant. The Mamluks successfully defended the Holy Land with the aid of Berke Khan who allied himself with them after his cousin enraged him by sacking Baghdad, (Berke was a Muslim, and sent word to the Great Khan that he would "call him to account (Hulagu Khan), for he has murdered the Caliph in Baghdad, and killed all the faithful.")[9] This Mongol against Mongol fighting, after the Mamluks defeated the Mongols at Ain Jalut in 1260 ultimately brought down the Mongol Empire. Mamluks also repelled Mongol attacks in Syria in 1271, 1281, 1299/1300, 1303/1304 and 1312.

See also: Franco-Mongol alliance

[edit] Disintegration

When Genghis Khan died, a major potential weakness of the system he had set up manifested itself. It took many months to summon the kurultai, as many of its most important members were leading military campaigns thousands of miles from the Mongol heartland. And then it took months more for the kurultai to come to the decision that had been almost inevitable from the start — that Genghis's choice as successor, his third son Ögedei, should become Great Khan. Ögedei was a rather passive ruler and personally self-indulgent, but he was intelligent, charming and a good decision-maker whose authority was respected throughout his reign by apparently stronger-willed relatives and generals whom he had inherited from Genghis.

After the initial massive campaigns at the beginning of the conquest of Europe, where the Mongol war machine handily defeated the Hungarian and Polish armies, the Hospitallers, the Teutonic Knights, as well as the slaughtering of countless many civilians, Ögedei Khan suddenly died in 1241; just as the Mongol forces under General Subutai were preparing an all out assault on Vienna, Austria. This sudden vacuum of power is seen as the beginning of the events that led to the decline of the Mongol Empire. As customary to Mongol military tradition, all generals and princes, and thus the tumens, had to report back to the capital Karakorum thousands of miles away (the relocation of the capital to Dadu would add to this difficulty under Kublai Khan), for the election of a successor to the throne. Pending a kurultai to elect Ögedei's successor, his widow Toregene Khatun assumed power and proceeded to ensure the election of her son Guyuk by the kurultai. Batu, bitterly disappointed by the postponement of the European campaign, was unwilling to accept Guyuk as Great Khan, but lacked the influence in the kurultai to procure his own election. Therefore, while moving no further west, he simultaneously insisted that the situation in Europe was too precarious for him to come east and that he could not accept the result of any kurultai held in his absence. The resulting stalemate lasted four years. In 1246 Batu eventually agreed to send a representative to the kurultai but never acknowledged the resulting election of Guyuk as Great Khan. Toregene Khatun and Guyuk were also less in favor of the Mandarin officials instilled by Genghis Khan himself, most notably Chancellor Yeh-Lu Ch'u-Ts'ai, whom were so instrumental in the successful administration of Mongol conquests, choosing instead, to place Muslim administrators from the new domains to help run Mongol politics[5].

Guyuk died in 1248, only two years after his election, on his way west, apparently to force Batu to acknowledge his authority, and his widow Oghul Ghaymish assumed the regency pending the meeting of the kurultai; unfortunately for her, she could not keep the power. Batu remained in the west but this time gave his support to his and Guyuk's cousin, Möngke, who was duly elected Great Khan in 1251.

Möngke Khan unwittingly provided his brother Kublai, or Qubilai, with a chance to become Khan in 1260, assigning Kublai to a province in North China. (Note: This information is questioned, since Möngke died on July 21st 1259.)

Kublai expanded the Mongol empire and became a favorite of Möngke. Kublai's conquest of China is estimated by Holworth, based on census figures, to have killed over 18 million people as seen on the following webpage: [2]

Later, though, when Kublai began to adopt many Chinese laws and customs, his brother was persuaded by his advisors that Kublai was becoming too sinicized and would be considered treasonous. Möngke kept a closer watch on Kublai from then on but died campaigning against Southern Song China at the Fishing Town in Chongqing. After his older brother's death, Kublai placed himself in the running for a new khan against his younger brother, and, although his younger brother won the election, Kublai defeated him in battle, and Kublai became the last true Great Khan. Note, among historians there is no consensus who was the last great Khan. Many scholars believe that Möngke was the last, because after his death, the great empire fell apart into 4 khanates.

He proved to be a strong warrior, but his critics still accused him of being too closely tied to Chinese culture. When he moved his headquarters to Beijing, there was an uprising in the old capital that he barely staunched. He focused mostly on foreign alliances, and opened trade routes. He dined with a large court every day, and met with many ambassadors, foreign merchants, and even offered to convert to Christianity if this religion was proved to be correct by 100 priests.

By the reign of Kublai Khan, the empire was already in the process of splitting into a number of smaller khanates. After Kublai died in 1294, his heirs failed to maintain the Pax Mongolica and the Silk Road closed[citations needed]. Inter-family rivalry compounded by the complicated politics of succession, which twice paralyzed military operations as far off as Hungary and the borders of Egypt (crippling their chances of success), and the tendencies of some of the khans to drink themselves to death fairly young (causing the aforementioned succession crises), hastened the disintegration of the empire.

Another factor which contributed to the disintegration was the difficulty of the potential two-weeks extra transit time of officials and messengers and a general decline of morale when the capital was moved from Karakorum to Dadu, the Yuan name for the modern day city of Beijing by Kublai Khan; as Kublai Khan associated more closely to Chinese culture. Kublai concentrated on the war with the Song Dynasty, assuming the mantle of ruler of China, while the khanates to the west gradually drifted away.

The four descendant empires were the Mongol-founded Yuan Dynasty in China, the Chagatai Khanate, the Golden Horde that controlled Central Asia and Russia, and the Ilkhans who ruled Persia from 1256 to 1353. Of the latter, their ruler Ilkhan Ghazan was converted to Islam in 1295 and actively supported the expansion of this religion in his empire.

[edit] Silk Road

Main article: Silk Road

The Mongol expansion throughout the Asian continent from around 1215 to 1360 helped bring political stability and re-establish the Silk Road vis-à-vis Karakorum. The 13th century saw a Franco-Mongol alliance with exchange of ambassadors and even military collaboration in the Holy Land. The Chinese Mongol Rabban Bar Sauma visited the courts of Europe in 1287-1288. With rare exceptions such as Marco Polo or Christian missionaries such as William of Rubruck, few Europeans traveled the entire length of the Silk Road. Instead traders moved products much like a bucket brigade, with luxury goods being traded from one middleman to another, from China to the West, and resulting in extravagant prices for the trade goods.

The disintegration of the Mongol Empire led to the collapse of the Silk Road's political unity. Also falling victim were the cultural and economic aspects of its unity. Turkic tribes seized the western end of the Silk Road from the decaying Byzantine Empire, and sowed the seeds of a Turkic culture that would later crystallize into the Ottoman Empire under the Sunni faith. Turkic-Mongol military bands in Iran, after some years of chaos were united under the Saffavid tribe, under whom the modern Iranian nation took shape under the Shiite faith. Meanwhile Mongol princes in Central Asia were content with Sunni orthodoxy with decentralized princedoms of the Chagatay, Timurid and Uzbek houses. In the Kypchak-Tatar zone, Mongol khanates all but crumbled under the assaults of the Black Death and the rising power of Muscovy. In the east end, the Chinese Ming Dynasty overthrew the Mongol yoke and pursued a policy of economic isolationism[citations needed]. Yet another force, the Kalmyk-Oyrats pushed out of the Baikal area in central Siberia, but failed to deliver much impact beyond Turkestan. Some Kalmyk tribes did manage to migrate into the Volga-North Caucasus region, but their impact was limited.

After the Mongol Empire, the great political powers along the Silk Road became economically and culturally separated. Accompanying the crystallization of regional states was the decline of nomad power, partly due to the devastation of the Black Death and partly due to the encroachment of sedentary civilizations equipped with gunpowder.

Ironically, as a footnote, the effect of gunpowder and early modernity on Europe was the integration of territorial states and increasing mercantilism. Whereas along the Silk Road, it was quite the opposite: failure to maintain the level of integration of the Mongol Empire and decline in trade, partly due to European maritime trade. The Silk Road stopped serving as a shipping route for silk around 1400.

[edit] Legacy

The Mongol Empire was the largest contiguous empire in human history. The 13th and 14th century, when the empire came to power, is often called the "Age of the Mongols". The Mongol armies during that time were extremely well organized. The death toll (by battle, massacre, flooding, and famine) of the Mongol wars of conquest is placed at about 40 million according to some sources.

Many ancient sources described Genghis Khan's conquests as wholesale destruction on an unprecedented scale in their certain geographical regions, and therefore probably causing great changes in the demographics of Asia. For example, over much of Central Asia speakers of Iranian languages were replaced by speakers of Turkic languages. The eastern part of the Islamic world experienced the terrifying holocaust of the Mongol invasion, which turned northern and eastern Iran into a desert. Between 1220 and 1260, the total population of Persia may have dropped from 2,500,000 to 250,000 as a result of mass extermination and famine.[10]

Non-military achievements of the Mongol Empire include the introduction of a writing system, based on the Uyghur script, that is still used in Inner Mongolia. The Empire unified all the tribes of Mongolia, which made possible the emergence of a Mongol nation and culture. Modern Mongolians are generally proud of the empire and the sense of identity that it gave to them.

Some of the long-term consequences of the Mongol Empire include:

  • The Mongol empire is traditionally given credit for reuniting China and expanding its frontiers.
  • The language Chagatai, widely spoken among a group of Turks, is named after a son of Genghis Khan. It was once widely spoken, and had a literature, but eventually became extinct in Russia.
  • Moscow rose to prominence during the Mongol-Tatar yoke, some time after Russian rulers were accorded the status of tax collectors for Mongols (which meant that the Mongols themselves would rarely visit the lands that they owned). The Russian ruler Ivan III overthrew the Mongols completely to form the Russian Tsardom, after the Great stand on the Ugra river proved the Mongols vulnerable, and led to the independence of the Grand Duke of Moscow.
  • Europe’s knowledge of the known world was immensely expanded by the information brought back by ambassadors and merchants. When Columbus sailed in 1492, his missions were to reach Cathay, the land of the Genghis Khan. Some research studies indicate that the Black Death, which devastated Europe in the late 1340s, may have reached from China to Europe along the trade routes of the Mongol Empire. In 1347, the Genoese possession of Caffa, a great trade emporium on the Crimean peninsula, came under siege by an army of Mongol warriors under the command of Janibeg. After a protracted siege during which the Mongol army was reportedly withering from the disease, they decided to use the infected corpses as a biological weapon. The corpses were catapulted over the city walls, infecting the inhabitants.[11] The Genoese traders fled, transferring the plague via their ships into the south of Europe, whence it rapidly spread. The total number of deaths worldwide from the pandemic is estimated at 75 million people, there were an estimated 20 million deaths in Europe alone. It is estimated that between one-quarter and two-thirds of the of Europe's population died from the outbreak of the plague between 1348 and 1350.
  • Among the Western accounts, R. J. Rummel estimated that 30 million people were killed under the rule of the Mongol Empire. The population of China fell by half in fifty years of Mongol rule. Before the Mongol invasion, Chinese dynasties reportedly had approximately 120 million inhabitants; after the conquest was completed in 1279, the 1300 census reported roughly 60 million people.[12] David Nicole states in The Mongol Warlords, "terror and mass extermination of anyone opposing them was a well tested Mongol tactic." [13] About half of the Russian population died during the invasion.[14] Historians estimate that up to half of Hungary's two million population at that time were victims of the Mongol invasion.[15]
Genghis Khan, founder of the Mongol Empire and Mongol Nation.
Genghis Khan, founder of the Mongol Empire and Mongol Nation.

One of the more successful tactics employed by the Mongols was to wipe out urban populations that had refused to surrender. In the invasion of Kievan Rus', almost all major cities were destroyed. If they chose to submit, the people were spared and treated as slaves, which meant most of them would be driven to die quickly by hard work, with the exception that war prisoners became part of their army to aid in future conquests[16]. In addition to intimidation tactics, the rapid expansion of the Empire was facilitated by military hardiness (especially during bitterly cold winters), military skill, meritocracy, and discipline. Subutai, in particular among the Mongol Commanders, viewed winter as the best time for war — while less hardy people hid from the elements, the Mongols were able to use frozen lakes and rivers as highways for their horsemen, a strategy he used with great effect in Russia.

The Mongol Empire is also responsible for many technological achievements that are in wide use today. In addition, they discovered a unique way to increase the population of fish in a given body of water.

The Mongol Empire had a lasting impact, unifying large regions, some of which (such as eastern and western Russia and the western parts of China) remain unified today, albeit under different rulership. The Mongols themselves were assimilated into local populations after the fall of the empire, and many of these descendants adopted local religions — for example, the eastern Khanates largely adopted Buddhism, and the western Khanates adopted Islam, largely under Sufi influence. The last Khan who was the ruler of South Asia, Bahadur Shah Zafar was deposed by the British after the collapse of the 1857 uprising and exiled to Rangoon where he lies buried. His sons were killed by the British in Humayun's tomb, the burial place of their ancestor in Delhi.

The influence of the Mongol Empire may prove to be even more direct — Zerjal et al [2003][17] identify a Y-chromosomal lineage present in about 8% of the men in a large region of Asia (or about 0.5% of the men in the world). The paper suggests that the pattern of variation within the lineage is consistent with a hypothesis that it originated in Mongolia about 1,000 years ago. Such a spread would be too rapid to have occurred by diffusion, and must therefore be the result of selection. The authors propose that the lineage is carried by likely male line descendants of Genghis Khan, and that it has spread through social selection.

Mongolia today
Mongolia today

In addition to the Khanates and other descendants, the Mughal royal family of South Asia are also descended from Genghis Khan: Babur's mother was a descendant — whereas his father was directly descended from Timur (Tamerlane). At the time of Genghis Khan's death in 1227, the empire was divided among his four sons, with his third son as the supreme Khan, and by the 1350s, the khanates were in a state of fracture and had lost the order brought to them by Genghis Khan. Eventually the separate khanates drifted away from each other, becoming the Il-Khans Dynasty based in Iran, the Chagatai Khanate in Central Asia, the Yuan Dynasty in China, and what would become the Golden Horde in present day Russia.

[edit] See also

[edit] Notes

  1. ^ http://www.hostkingdom.net/earthrul.html
  2. ^ Weatherford, p. 69
  3. ^ Weatherford, p. 135
  4. ^ Foltz "Religions of the Silk Road"
  5. ^ a b c d Chambers, James, The Devil's Horsemen Atheneum, 1979, ISBN 0-689-10942-3
  6. ^ The Destruction of Kiev
  7. ^ a b c Saunders, J. J. (1971). The History of the Mongol Conquests, Routledge & Kegan Paul Ltd. ISBN 0-8122-1766-7
  8. ^ [1]
  9. ^ Nicolle, David, The Mongol Warlords Brockhampton Press, 1998, ISBN 978-1853141041.
  10. ^ Battuta's Travels: Part Three - Persia and Iraq
  11. ^ Svat Soucek. A History of Inner Asia. Cambridge University Press, 2000. ISBN 0-521-65704-0. P. 116.
  12. ^ Ping-ti Ho, "An Estimate of the Total Population of Sung-Chin China", in Études Song, Series 1, No 1, (1970) pp. 33-53.
  13. ^ Mongol Conquests
  14. ^ History of Russia, Early Slavs history, Kievan Rus, Mongol invasion
  15. ^ The Mongol invasion: the last Arpad kings
  16. ^ The Story of the Mongols Whom We Call the Tartars= Historia Mongalorum Quo s Nos Tartaros Appellamus: Friar Giovanni Di Plano Carpini's Account of His Embassy to the Court of the Mongol Khan by Da Pian Del Carpine Giovanni and Erik Hildinger (Branden BooksApril 1996 ISBN-13: 978-0828320177)
  17. ^ Zerjal, Xue, Bertolle, Wells, Bao, Zhu, Qamar, Ayub, Mohyuddin, Fu, Li, Yuldasheva, Ruzibakiev, Xu, Shu, Du, Yang, Hurles, Robinson, Gerelsaikhan, Dashnyam, Mehdi, Tyler-Smith (2003). "The Genetic Legacy of the Mongols". American Journal of Human Genetics (72): 717–721.

[edit] References

  • Brent, Peter. The Mongol Empire: Genghis Khan: His Triumph and his Legacy. Book Club Associates, London. 1976.
  • Buell, Paul D. (2003), Historical Dictionary of the Mongol World Empire, The Scarecrow Press, Inc., ISBN 0-8108-4571-7
  • Howorth, Henry H. History of the Mongols from the 9th to the 19th Century: Part I: The Mongols Proper and the Kalmuks. New York: Burt Frankin, 1965 (reprint of London edition, 1876).
  • May, Timothy. "The Mongol Art of War." [3] Westholme Publishing, Yardley. 2007.
  • Weatherford, Jack (2004). Genghis Khan and the Making of the Modern World. Three Rivers Press. ISBN 0-609-80964-4.

[edit] External links

editKhagans of Mongol Empire
Genghis Khan (1215-1227) | Tolui Khan (regent) (1227-1229) | Ögedei Khan (1229-1241) | Töregene Khatun (regent) (1241-1245) | Güyük Khan (1246-1248) | Möngke Khan (1251-1259) | Khublai Khan (1260-1294)

1206-1405AD Daily Life in the Mongol Empire

1070AD-REFORMATION: Satan's Release

Revelation 20:7-9

7 Now when the thousand years have expired, Satan will be released from his prison 8 and will go out to deceive the nations which are in the four corners of the earth, Gog and Magog, to gather them together to battle, whose number is as the sand of the sea. 9 They went up on the breadth of the earth...

From: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Daily_Life_in_the_Mongol_Empire

Daily Life in the Mongol Empire

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The expansion of the Mongol Empire over time.
The expansion of the Mongol Empire over time.



[edit] Food in the Mongolian Empire

During the Mongolian Empire there were two different groups of food, “white foods” and “red foods”. “White foods” were usually dairy products and were the main food source during the summer. The main dairy product that Mongols lived on during the summer was “Koumiss” or fermented mare’s milk which is still widely drunk today. The Mongolians rarely drank milk fresh but often used it to create other foods, including cheese and yogurt. “Red foods” were usually meat and were the main food source during the winter. Anytime meat was served in the Empire it was usually boiled and served with wild garlic or onions. The Mongols had a unique way of slaughtering their animals to get meat. The animal was laid on its back and restrained. Then the butcher would cut its chest open and rip open the aorta, which would cause deadly internal bleeding. Animals would be slaughtered in this fashion because it would keep all of the blood inside of the carcass. Once all of the internal organs were removed the blood was then drained out and used for sausages.[1]

The Mongols also hunted animals as a food source. Some of these animals included rabbit, deer, wild boar, and even wild rodents such as squirrels and marmots. During the winter the Mongols would also get fish via ice fishing. The Mongols rarely slaughtered animals during the summer but if an animal died of natural causes they made sure to carefully preserve it. This was done by cutting the meat into strips and then letting it dry by the sun and the wind. During the winter sheep were the only domestic animal slaughtered, but horses were occasionally slaughtered for ceremonies.[2]

Meal etiquette existed only during large gatherings and ceremonies. The meal, usually meat, was cut up into small pieces. Guests were served their meat on skewers and the host determined the order of serving. People of different social classes were assigned to different parts of the meat and it was the responsibility of the server or the “ba’urchis” to know who was in each social class. The meat was eaten with fingers and the grease was wiped on the ground or on clothing. The most commonly imported fare was liquor. Most popular was Chinese rice wine and Turkestani grape wine. Genghis Khan was first presented grape wine in 1204 but he dismissed it as dangerously strong. Drunkenness was common at festivals and gatherings. Singing and dancing were also common after the consumption of alcohol. Due to Turkestani and Middle Eastern influences noodles started to appear in Mongolian food. Spices such as cardamom and other food such as chickpeas and fenugreek seeds also became part of the diet due to these external influences.[3][4]

[edit] Money in the Mongolian Empire

One of the most impressive discoveries that Marco Polo made on his visit to Mongolia is how the empire’s monetary system worked. He was not impressed by the silver Akçe that the empire used for a unified currency, or that some realms of the empire still used local currency, but he was most surprised by the fact that in some parts of the empire the people used paper currency.[5]

Marco Polo considered the use of paper currency in the Mongolian Empire one of the marvels of the world. Paper currency wasn’t used in all of the empire. The Chinese silver ingot was accepted as universal currency throughout the empire and other local coins were used in the western part of the kingdom. Paper currency was used in what was China before the Mongols conquered it. The Chinese had mastered the technology of printmaking and therefore it was relatively simple for them to print bills. Paper currency was used in China because in 960 A.D. the Song Dynasty started replacing their copper coinage with paper currency. When the Mongols invaded the Song Dynasty they started issuing their own Mongolian bills in 1227. This first attempt by the Mongols did not last long because the paper currency was not unified throughout China and they expired after a couple of years. In 1260 Qubilai Khan created China’s first unified paper currency with bills that did not have any expiration date. To validate the currency it was fully exchangeable to silver and gold and was accepted as tax payments. Currency distribution was small at first but the war against the Song in South China and Japan made the distribution of the currency increase by 14 fold. With the defeat of the Song, their bills were taken out of circulation and could be exchanged with the current currency with an extraordinary value of 50 to 1. Being the first government to have any sort of paper currency, foreigners understood nothing about it, and some even considered it a form of magic. Regardless of persistent inflation after 1272 paper currency backed by limited releases of coins remained as the standard means of currency until 1345. Around 1345 rebellions, economic crisis and financial mismanagement of the paper currency destroyed the public’s confidence in the bills.[6]

Paper money wasn’t extremely easy to adopt because it was a foreign concept in the beginning and it wasn’t a precious metal, it was just a piece of paper. To initiate the transition from other forms of compensation to paper currency the government made refusing to accept the bill punishable by death. To avoid devaluation the penalty for forging or counterfeiting was death as well.[7][8]

[edit] Domestic Animals in the Mongolian Empire

The five domestic animals most important in the Mongolian Empire were horses (most important), cattle, camels, sheep, and goats. All of these animals were valued for their milk and all of the animals’ hides were used for clothing and shelter. Though often considered unattractive by other cultures, Mongolian domestic animals were well adapted to cold weather as well as shortages of food and water. These animals were and still are known to survive under these conditions while animals from other regions perish.

[edit] Horses

Horses were by far the most important animal to the ancient Mongols. Not only were they fairly self sufficient, but they were hardy and fast. Smaller than most, these animals could travel long distances without fatigue. They were also well adapted to the harsh winters and dug through the snow looking for grass to feed off of. Almost every family possessed at least one horse, and some cases, horses were buried with their owners to serve with them in the next life. Mongolian horses were probably the most important factor of the Mongolian Empire. Without the extremely skilled, not to mention famous, cavalry, the Mongols would not have been able to raid and capture the huge area they did and the Mongols would not be known, even today, as skilled horsemen. It also served as an animal that Mongols could drink blood from, by cutting into vein of a horse and drinking it, especially on harsh, long rides from place to place. Also, these horses allowed the Mogols to travel thirteen miles per hour which is great for ancient times. [9]. Horse dairy can be made into liquor.

[edit] Cattle

Cattle were used mainly as beasts of burden but they were also valued for their milk, though not as much so for their meat. They lived on the open range and were fairly easy to maintain. They were released early in the morning to graze without a herder or overseer and wandered back on their own in the afternoon. Though they were a part of the domestic animal population, they were not that common in the early empire. In the early time period, only nine percent of all domestic animals were cattle.[10]

[edit] Camels

Camels, along with cattle, were also used as beasts of burden. As they were domesticated (between 4000-3000 BC), they became one of the most important animals for land based trade in Asia. The reasons for this were that they did not require roads to travel on, they could carry up to 500 pounds of goods and supplies, and they did not require much water for long journeys. Besides being beasts of burden, camels’ hair was used as a main fiber in Mongolian textiles. [11]

[edit] Sheep/Goats

Sheep and goats were most valued for their milk, meat, and wool. The wool of sheep in particular was very valuable. The shearing was usually done in the spring before the herds were moved to mountain pastures. Most importantly, it was used for making felt to insulate Mongolian homes called yurts, however it was also used for rugs, saddle blankets, and clothing. Ideal herd numbers were usually about 1000. To reach this quota, groups of people would combine their herds and travel together with their sheep and goats.[12]

[edit] Traditional Mongolian Clothing

During the Mongolian Empire, there was a uniform type of Mongol dress though variations according to wealth, status, and gender did occur. These differences included the design, color, cut, and elaborateness of the outfit. The first layer consisted of a long, ankle length robe called a caftan. Some caftans had a square collar but the majority overlapped in the front to fasten under the arm creating a slanting collar. The skirt of the caftan was sewn on separately, and sometimes ruffles were added depending on the purpose and class of the person wearing it. Men and unmarried women tied their caftans with two belts, one thin, leather one beneath a large, broad sash that covered the stomach. Once a woman became married, she stopped wearing the sash. Instead she wore a very full caftan and some had a short-sleeved jacket that opened in the front. For women of higher rank, the overlapping collar of their caftan was decorated with elaborate brocade and they wore full sleeves and a train that servants had to carry. For both genders, trousers were worn under the caftan probably because of the nomadic traditions of the Mongol people.

The materials used to create caftans varied according to status and wealth. They ranged anywhere from silk, brocade, cotton, and valuable furs for richer groups, to leather, wool, and felt for those less well off. Season also dictated the type of fabric worn, especially for those that could afford it. In the summer, Middle Eastern silk and brocades were favored whereas in the winter furs were used to add additional warmth. During the Mongolian Empire, people did not believe in washing their clothes, or themselves. They refrained from doing this because it was their traditional belief that by washing, they would pollute the water and anger the dragons that controlled the water cycle. Therefore, clothes were often not changed until they fell off or fell apart, except for holidays when specialized robes were worn. Because of this, the smell of the outfit was seen as an important aspect of the wearer. For example, if the Great Khan were to give his previously worn clothing (with his smell on it) to a loyal subject, it would be considered a great honor to have not only the clothing, but the smell as well.

Color was also an important characteristic of clothing because it had important symbolic meaning. During large festivities held by the Khan, he would give his important diplomats special robes to wear with specific colors according to what was being celebrated. These were worn only during the specific festival, and if one was caught wearing it at other times, punishments were extremely severe.

The footwear of the traditional Mongolian Empire consisted mainly of boots. Both the left foot and the right foot were identical and they were made of leather, cotton, or silk. Many layers were sewn together to create the sole of the boot then separately made uppers were attached. The upper sections of the boots were usually dark in color and the soles were light. Light strips of fabric were sewn over the seams to make them more durable. Boots usually had a pointed or upturned toe but lacked a heel.[13][14][15] [16]

[edit] Tools of Warfare

From 1206 to 1405 the Mongolian Empire displayed their military strength by conquering land between the Yellow Sea and the Eastern European border. This would not have been possible without their specialized horses, bows and arrows, and swords. They conquered numerous neighboring territories, which eventually led to history’s largest continuous land-based empire.

The Mongolian Empire utilized the swiftness and strength of the horses to their advantage. Despite being only 12 to 13 hands high, the Mongols respected these small animals. At a young age, boys trained with the horses by hunting and herding with them. Eventually they became experienced riders, which prepared them for the military life that awaited them when they turned fifteen years old. Once these boys become soldiers, four to seven horses were given to them to alternate between. This large number of horses ensured that some were always rested and ready to fight. Because of this, a soldier had little excuse to fall behind in his tasks. Overall, the Mongol Society adored these animals because of their gentleness and loyalty to its master. Anyone who abused or neglected to feed these horses properly was subjected to punishment by the government.

The Mongol Empire considered horses as an important factor to its success and tailored other weapons to them. The bow and arrow was created to be light enough to attack enemies while on horseback. The Mongols used composite bows made from birch, sinew and the horns of sheep. This made a sturdy but light bows. Three types of arrows were created for different purposes. The most common arrow used for warfare was the pointed iron head, which could travel as far as 200 metres. If a soldier wanted to slice the flesh of the opposing member, the v-shaped point was used. In times of war, soldiers would shoot the third form of arrow with holes, used for signalling. By listening to the whistling sounds that was produced from this arrow, soldiers were able to march in a required direction.

Soldiers primarily used horses and the bow and arrow in times of war, but the military took extra precautions. They prepared for any close range combat by supplying the soldiers with swords, axes, spears, and forks. Halberds, a pole with a two sided blade, were given to those of wealth and the remaining members of the military carried clubs or maces. Along with these necessities, the military provided their soldiers with leather sacks and files. The leather sacks were used to carry and keep items such as weapons dry also they could be inflated and used as floats during river crossings, while the files were for sharpening the arrows. If any soldier was found missing his weapons, he would be punished.

Even though the military of the Mongol Empire provided weapons for every soldier, armor was available only to the wealthier soldiers. These individuals wore iron chains or scales, protected their arms and legs with leather strips, wore iron helmets, and used iron shields. The horses of the more well to do were also protected to their knees with iron armor and a head plate. Unfortunately, majority of the soldiers in the Mongol Empire were poor. Therefore, many walked into battle with minimal protection in comparison to the lucky few although all of the soldiers had very little armor compared to the knights in armor of [Christian] Europe.[17] [18] [19] [20] [21]

[edit] Females of the Mongolian Empire

Females of the Mongol Empire were inferior in status to the males. In “The Travels”, Marco Polo recounts his visit to the Mongol Empire. He was amazed by the “open-handed fashion which husbands [dealt] with their wives”. When a stranger entered his home, the husband ordered her to obey the orders of this individual and left the house. For the duration of his stay, she was to obey the stranger’s commands until he left. Once the stranger left the house, the husband returned home. [Adulterers and fornicators God will judge].

Compared to other civilizations, Mongol females had the power to influence society. Even though males were dominant in society, many turned to the females in their lives for advice. While developing organizations within the Mongol Empire, Genghis Khan asked for assistance from his mother. He honored the advices the females in his life offered. Genghis Khan permitted his wives to sit with him and encouraged them to voice their opinions. Because of their help, Genghis was able to choose his successor.

The Mongols considered marriage as the passage into adulthood. Before marriages could proceed, the bride’s family was required to offer “a dowry of clothing or household ornaments” to the groom’s mother. To avoid paying the dowry, families could exchange daughters or the groom could work for his future father-in-law. Once the dowry was settled, the bride’s family presented her with an inheritance to the livestock or to the servants. Typically, married females of the Mongol Empire wore headdresses and sat in lavish carts to distinguish themselves from the unmarried females. Marriages in the Mongol Empire were arranged, but males were permitted to practice polygamy. Since each wife had their own yurt, the husband had the opportunity to choose where he wanted to sleep each night. Visitors to this region found it remarkable that marital complications did not arise. The location of the yurts between the wives differed depending on who married first. The first wife placed her yurt to the east and the other wives placed their yurts to the west. Even though a husband remained attached to his first wife, the women were “docile, diligent, and lacked jealousy” towards one another.

After the husband has slept with one of his wives, the others congregated to her yurt to share drinks with the couple. The wives of the Mongol Empire were not bothered by the presence of the other females in their household. As a married woman, she displayed her “maturity and independence from her father” to society. The Females devoted their lives to their daily tasks, which included physical work outside the household. Females worked by loading the yurts, herding and milking all the livestock, and making felt for the yurt. Along with these chores, she was expected to cook and sew for her husband, her children, and her elders.

A wife’s devotion to her husband continued after his death. Remarriages during the Mongol Empire did not occur often. Instead, her youngest son or her youngest brother took care of her.[22] [23] [24] [25] [26]

[edit] Mongol Dwellings

A camp of a Mongolian tribe
A camp of a Mongolian tribe

Mongols have been living in virtually the same dwellings since at least the 6th century A.D. These dwellings are called yurts and during the Mongol Empire, they consisted of a round, collapsible wooden frame covered in felt. The roof was formed from about 80 wooden rods attached at one end to the wall frame and at the other to an iron ring in the center, providing a sturdy base for the felt roof. Without the roof in place, this frame would have resembled a large wooden wheel with the wooden spokes converging at the iron ring. The top of the roof was usually about five feet higher than the walls so precipitation would run to the ground. The ring at the peak of the yurt could be left open as a vent for smoke and a window for sunlight, or it could be closed with a piece of felt. Doors were made from a felt flap or, for richer families, out of wood.

The word yurt means “homeland” in Turkish and it was probably never used to describe the tent. When the dwelling made its way to Mongolia, it adopted the name “ger” which means “home” in Mongolian. Yurts were always set up with the door facing the south and tended to have an altar across from the door whether the inhabitant were Buddhist or shamanist. The floors were dirt, but richer families were able to cover the floors with felt rugs. Sometimes beds were used, but most people slept on the floor between hides, around the fire pit that was in the center of the dwelling.

The first known yurt was seen engraved on a bronze bowl that was found in Zagros Mountains of southern Iran, dating back to 600 B.C., but the felt tent probably did not arrive in Mongolia for another thousand years. When the yurt did arrive, however, it quickly came into widespread use because of its ability to act in concert with the nomadic lifestyle of the Mongols. Most of the Mongol people were herders and moved constantly from southern regions in the winter months to the northern steppes in summer as well as moving periodically to fresh pastures. The yurts size and the felt walls made them relatively cool in the summers and warm in the winters allowing the Mongols to live in the same dwelling year-round. Disassembling the yurts only took about an hour, as did putting them back up in a new location. As explorer Marco Polo observed, the yurts were pulled in carts by oxen from camp to camp. “They [the Mongols] have circular houses made of wood and covered with felt, which they carry about with them on four wheeled wagons wherever they go. For the framework of rods is so neatly constructed that it is light to carry.” (Polo, 97) Yurts could be heated with cow pies, found in abundance with the traveling herds, so no timber was needed. The felt for the covering was made from wool that was taken from sheep also present in most Mongol’s herds. The wooden frame was handed down from one generation to the next and seldom had to be replaced.

Today, yurts follow the same basic design though they are usually covered in canvas, use an iron stove and stovepipe, and use a collapsible lattice work frame for the walls. They are still used in parts of rural China, central Mongolia, and by the Kyrgyz of Kyrgyzstan.[27][28][29][30]

[edit] References

  1. ^ Allsen, Thomas T. Culture and Conquest in Mongol Eurasia. Cambridge: Cambridge UP, 2001. 128-129
  2. ^ Amitai-Preiss, Reuven, and David O. Morgan, eds. The Mongol Empire and Its Legacy. Leiden: Brill, 1999. 200-222
  3. ^ Atwood, Christopher P. "Daily Food in the Mongol Empire." The Encyclopedia of The Mongols and the Mongolian Empire. 1 vols. New York: Facts on File, 2004
  4. ^ Atwood, Christopher P. "Food and Drink." The Encyclopedia of The Mongols and the Mongolian Empire. 1 vols. New York: Facts on File, 2004.
  5. ^ Allsen, Thomas T. Culture and Conquest in Mongol Eurasia. Cambridge: Cambridge UP, 2001. 177-179.
  6. ^ Amitai-Preiss, Reuven, and David O. Morgan, eds. The Mongol Empire and Its Legacy. Leiden: Brill, 1999. 200-222.
  7. ^ Atwood, Christopher P. "Paper Currency in the Mongol Empire." The Encyclopedia of The Mongols and the Mongolian Empire. 1 vols. New York: Facts on File, 2004.
  8. ^ Atwood, Christopher P. "Money in the Mongol Empire." The Encyclopedia of The Mongols and the Mongolian Empire. 1 vols. New York: Facts on File, 2004.
  9. ^ Atwood, Christopher P. “Cattle”. The Encyclopedia of Mongolia and the Mongol Empire. 1 vol. New York: Facts on File, 2004.
  10. ^ Polo, Marco. The Travels. Ed. Ronald Latham London: Penguin Books, 1598.
  11. ^ Central Asian Nomads. University of Washington Web Page. 19 Sept. 2006. [depts.washington.edu/silkroad/culture/animals/animals.edu]
  12. ^ Atwood, Christopher P. “Sheep”. The Encyclopedia of Mongolia and the Mongol Empire. 1 vol. New York: Facts on File, 2004.
  13. ^ Allsen, Thomas T. Commodity and Trade in the Mongol Empire: A Cultural History of Islamic Textiles. Massachusetts. Cambridge University Press, 1997.
  14. ^ Atwood, Christopher P. “Clothing”. The Encyclopedia of Mongolia and the Mongol Empire. 1 vol. New York: Facts on File, 2004.
  15. ^ Atwood, Christopher P. “Footwear”. The Encyclopedia of Mongolia and the Mongol Empire. 1 vol. New York: Facts on File, 2004.
  16. ^ Polo, Marco. The Travels. Ed. Ronald Latham London: Penguin Books, 1598.
  17. ^ Atwood, Christopher P. “The Soldiers:Weaponry, Training, Rewards.” The Encyclopedia of Mongolia and the Mongol Empire. 1 vol. New York: Facts on File, 2004.
  18. ^ Howorth, Sir Henry H. History of the Mongols:Part IV. Taipei: Ch’eng Wen Publishing Company, 1970.
  19. ^ Hyer, Paul, and Sechin Jagchid. Mongolia’s Culture and Society. Boulder: Westview Press, 1979.
  20. ^ Lamb, Harold. The March of the Barbarians. New York: Doubleday, Doran & Company, Inc, 1940.
  21. ^ Phillips, E.D. Ancient Peoples and Placed: The Mongols. 64 vols. London: Thames and Hudson, 1969.
  22. ^ Atwood, Christopher P. “The Mongol Empire.” The Encyclopedia of Mongolia and the Mongol Empire. 1 vol. New York: Facts on File, 2004.
  23. ^ Howorth, Sir Henry H. History of the Mongols:Part IV. Taipei: Ch’eng Wen Publishing Company, 1970.
  24. ^ Hyer, Paul, and Sechin Jagchid. Mongolia’s Culture and Society. Boulder: Westview Press, 1979.
  25. ^ Lamb, Harold. The March of the Barbarians. New York: Doubleday, Doran & Company, Inc, 1940.
  26. ^ Polo, Marco. The Travels. Ed. Ronald Latham London: Penguin Books, 1958
  27. ^ Atwood, Christopher P. Encyclopidia of Mongolia and the Mongol Empire. New York, NY: Facts on File, 2004.
  28. ^ Howorth, Henry H. History of the Mongols. Vol. 4. New York, NY: Longmans, Green, and Co, 1927.
  29. ^ Polo, Marco. The Travels. Trans. Ronald Latham. England: Penguin Books, 1958.
  30. ^ "UlaanTaij - Bringing Mongolia to the World." UlaanTaij. 19 Sept. 2006 [1]

1254-1324AD Marco Polo incites greed throughout Christian Europe for the riches of the Mongol Empire

1 Timothy 6:9-10
Those who desire to be rich fall into temptation and a snare, and into many foolish and harmful lusts which drown men in destruction and perdition. 10 For the love of money is a root of all kinds of evil, for which some have strayed from the faith in their greediness, and pierced themselves through with many sorrows.

Colossians 3:5
Greed, which is idolatry

1 Corinthians 10:19-20
What am I saying then? That an idol is anything, or what is offered to idols is anything? 20 Rather, that the things which the Gentiles sacrifice they sacrifice to demons.

Matthew 6:24
"No one can serve two masters. Either he will hate the one and love the other, or he will be devoted to the one and despise the other. You cannot serve both God and Money.

From: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Marco_Polo

Marco Polo

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This article is about the trader and explorer. For other uses, see Marco Polo (disambiguation)
Marco Polo