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Cfte JLiftrarg 

of the 

ajnitiersitg of iQortb Carolina 

The Sylvester Hassell Collection 


Sylvester Hassell, D. D. 



UNlVfeftCi . Y OF 

S«fc««i pi Library 


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aSTO 3Eusrabfnfl&. 



187 3. 

Entered, according to Act of Congress, in the year one thousand eight 
hundred and sixty, by 


In the Clerk's Office of the District Court of the Southern District of 
New York. 


The word khan is not a name, but a title. 
It means chieftain or king. It is a word used 
in various forms by the different tribes and na- 
tions that from time immemorial have inhabit- 
ed central Asia, and has been applied to a great 
number of potentates and rulers that have from 
time to time arisen among them. Genghis 
Khan was the greatest of these princes. He 
was, in fact, one of the most renowned conquer- 
ors whose exploits history records. 

As in all other cases occurring in the series 
of histories to which this work belongs, where 
the events narrated took place at such a period 
or in such a part of the world that positively 
reliable and authentic information in respect to 
them can now no longer be obtained, the au- 
thor is not responsible for the actual truth of 
the narrative which he offers, but only for the 
honesty and fidelity with which he has com- 
piled it from the best sources of information 
now within reach. 


Chapter Pa S e 


11. THE MONGULS ....... - 23 



V. VANG KHAN - 68 
































Chapter I. 

Pastoral Life in Asia. 


Four different modes of life enumerated. 

THEEE are four several methods by which 
the various communities into which the 
human race is divided obtain their subsistence 
from the productions of the earth, each of which 
leads to its own peculiar system of social organ- 
ization, distinct in its leading characteristics 
from those of all the rest. Each tends to its 
own peculiar form of government, gives rise to 
its own manners and customs, and forms, in a 
word, a distinctive and characteristic type of 

These methods are the following-: 

1. By hunting wild animals in a state of na- 

2. By rearing tame animals in pasturages. 

3. By gathering fruits and vegetables which 
grow spontaneously in a state of nature. 

4. By rearing fruits and grains and other veg- 
etables by artificial tillage in cultivated ground. 

14 Genghis Khan. 

Northern and southern climes. Animal food in arctic regions. 

By the two former methods man subsists on 
animal food. By the two latter on vegetable 

As we go north, from the temperate regions 
toward the poles, man is found to subsist more 
and more on animal food. This seems to be 
the intention of Providence. In the arctic 
regions scarcely any vegetables grow that are 
fit for human food, but animals whose flesh is 
nutritious and adapted to the use of man are 

As we go south, from temperate regions to- 
ward the equator, man is found to subsist more 
and more on vegetable food. This, too, seems 
to be the intention of nature. Within the 
tropics scarcely any animals live that are fit 
for human food ; while fruits, roots, and other 
vegetable productions which are nutritious and 
adapted to the use of man are abundant. 

In accordance with this difference in the pro- 
ductions of the different regions of the earth, 
there seems to be a difference in the constitu- 
tions of the races of men formed to inhabit 
them. The tribes that inhabit Greenland and 
Kamtschatka can not preserve their accustom- 
ed health and vigor on any other than animal 
food. If put upon a diet of vegetables they 
soon begin to pine away. The reverse is true 

Pastoral Life in Asia. 15 

Tropical regions. Appetite changes with climate. 

of the vegetable-eaters of the tropics. They 
preserve their health and strength well on a diet 
of rice, or bread-fruit, or bananas, and would un- 
doubtedly be made sick by being fed on the 
flesh of walruses, seals, and white bears. 

In the temperate regions the productions of 
the above-mentioned extremes are mingled. 
Here many animals whose flesh is fit for hu- 
man food live and thrive, and here grows', too, 
a vast variety of nutritious fruits, and roots, and 
seeds. The physical constitution of the various 
races of men that inhabit these regions is modi- 
fied accordingly. In the temperate climes men 
can live on vegetable food, or on animal food, 
or on both. The constitution differs, too, in 
different individuals, and it changes at differ- 
ent periods of the year. Some persons require 
more of animal, and others more of vegetable 
food, to preserve their bodily and mental pow- 
ers in the best condition, and each one observes 
a change in himself in passing from winter to 
summer. In the summer the desire for a diet 
of fruits and vegetables seems to come north- 
ward with the sun, and in the winter the appe- 
tite for flesh comes southward from the arctic 
regions with the cold. 

When we consider the different conditions 
in which the different regions of the earth are 


First steps toward civilization. 

placed in respect to their capacity of produc- 
tion for animal and vegetable food, we shall see 
that this adjustment of the constitution of man, 
both to the differences of climate and to the 
changes of the seasons, is a very wise and be- 
neficent arrangement of Divine Providence. To 
confine man absolutely either to animal or veg- 
etable food would be to depopulate a large part 
of the earth. 

It results from these general facts in respect 
to the distribution of the supplies of animal and 
vegetable food for man in different latitudes 
that, in all northern climes in our hemisphere, 
men living in a savage state must be hunters, 
while those tliat live near the equator must de- 
pend for their subsistence on fruits and roots 
growing wild. When, moreover, any tribe or 
race of men in either of these localities take the 
first steps toward civilization, they begin, in the 
one case, by taming animals, and rearing them in 
flocks and herds ; and, in the other case, by sav- 
ing the seeds of food-producing plants, and cul- 
tivating them by artificial tillage in inclosed and 
private fields. This last is the condition of all 
the half-civilized tribes of the tropical regions of 
the earth, whereas the former prevails in all the 
northern temperate and arctic regions, as far to 
the northward as domesticated animals can live. 

Pastoral Life in Asia. 17 

Interior of Asia. Pastoral habits of the people. 

From time immemorial, the whole interior of 
the continent of Asia has been inhabited by 
tribes and nations that have taken this one step 
in the advance toward civilization, but have 
gone no farther. They live, not, like the In- 
dians in North America, by hunting wild beasts, 
but by rearing and pasturing flocks and herds 
of animals that they have tamed. These ani- 
mals feed, of course, on grass and herbage ; and, 
as grass and herbage can only grow on open 
ground, the forests have gradually disappeared, 
and the country has for ages consisted of great 
grassy plains, or of smooth hill-sides covered 
with verdure. Over these plains, or along the 
river valleys, wander the different tribes of 
which these pastoral nations are composed, liv- 
ing in tents, or in frail huts almost equally mov- 
able, and driving their flocks and herds before 
them from one pasture-ground to another, ac- 
cording as the condition of the grass, or that of 
the springs and streams of water, may require. 

We obtain a pretty distinct idea of the na- 
ture of this pastoral life, and of the manners and 
customs, and the domestic constitution to which 
it gives rise, in the accounts given us in the Old 
Testament of Abraham and Lot, and of their 
wanderings with their flocks and herds over the 
country lying between the Euphrates and the 

18 Genghis Khan. 

Picture of pastoral life. Large families accumulated. 

Mediterranean Sea. They lived in tents, in or- 
der that they might remove their habitations 
the more easily from place to place in follow- 
ing their flocks and herds to different pasture- 
grounds. Their wealth consisted almost whol- 
ly in these flocks and herds, the land being al- 
most every where common. Sometimes, when 
two parties traveling together came to a fertile 
and well- watered district, their herdsmen and 
followers were disposed to contend for the priv- 
ilege of feeding their flocks upon it, and the 
contention would often lead to a quarrel and 
combat, if it had not been settled by an amica- 
ble agreement on the part of the chieftains. 

The father of a family was the legislator and 
ruler of it, and his sons, with their wives, and 
his son's sons, remained with him, sometimes 
for many years, sharing his means of subsist- 
ence, submiting to Ins authority, and going with 
him from place to place, with all his flocks and 
herds. They employed, too, so many herds- 
men, and other servants and followers, as to 
form, in many cases, quite an extended com- 
munity, and sometimes, in case of hostilities 
with any other wandering tribe, a single patri- 
arch could send forth from his own domestic- 
circle a force of several hundred armed men. 
Such a company as this, when moving across 

Pastoral Life in Asia. 21 

Rise of patriarchal governments. 

the country on its way from one region of pas- 
turage to another, appeared like an immense 
caravan on its march, and when settled at an en- 
campment the tents formed quite a little town. 

Whenever the head of one of these wander- 
ing families died, the tendency was not for the 
members of the community to separate, but to 
keep together, and allow the oldest son to take 
the father's place as chieftain and ruler. This 
was necessary for defense, as, of course, such 
communities as these were in perpetual danger 
of coming into collision with other communi- 
ties roaming about like themselves over the 
same regions. It would necessarily result, too, 
from the circumstances of the case, that a strong 
and well-mauaged party, with an able and saga- 
cious chieftain at the head of it, would attract 
other and weaker parties to join it ; or, on the 
arising of some pretext for a quarrel, would 
make war upon it and conquer it. Thus, in 
process of time, small nations, as it were, would 
be formed, which would continue united and 
strong as long as the able leadership continued ; 
and then they would separate into their orig- 
inal elements, which elements would be formed 
again into other combinations. 

Such, substantially, was pastoral life in the 
beginning. In process of time, of course, the 

22 Genghis Khan. 

Origin of the towns. Great chieftains. Genghis Khan. 

tribes banded together became larger and larger. 
Some few towns and cities were built as places 
for the manufacture of implements and arms, 
or as resting-places for the caravans of mer- 
chants in conveying from place to place such 
articles as were bought and sold. But these 
places were comparatively few and unimport- 
ant. A pastoral and roaming life continued to 
be the destiny of the great mass of the people. 
And this state of things, which was commenced 
on the banks of the Euphrates before the time 
of Abraham, spread through the whole breadth 
of Asia, from the Mediterranean Sea to the Pa- 
cific Ocean, and has continued with very little 
change from those early periods to the present 

Of the various chieftains that have from 
time to time risen to command among these 
shepherd nations but little is known, for very 
few and very scanty records have been kept 
of the history of any of them. Some of them 
have been famous as conquerors, and have ac- 
quired very extended dominions. The most 
celebrated of all is perhaps Genghis Khan, the 
hero of this history. He came upon the stage 
more than three thousand years after the time 
of the great prototype of his class, the Patriarch 

The Monguls. 23 

Monguls. Origin of the name. A Mongul family. 

Chapter II. 
The Monguls. 

THREE thousand years is a period of time 
long enough to produce great changes, 
and in the course of that time a great many 
different nations and congeries of nations were 
formed in the regions of Central Asia. The 
term Tartars has been employed generically to 
denote almost the whole face. The Monguls 
are a portion of this people, who are said to de- 
rive their name from Mongol Khan, one of their 
earliest and most powerful chieftains. The de- 
scendants of this khan called themselves by his 
name, just as the descendants of the twelve sons 
of Jacob called themselves Israelites, or children 
of Israel, from the name Israel, which was one 
of the, designations of the great patriarch from 
whose twelve sons the twelve tribes of the Jews 
descended. The country inhabited by the Mon- 
guls was called Mongolia. 

To obtain a clear conception of a single Mon- 
gul family, you must imagine, first, a rather 
small, short, thick-set man, with long black 

24 Genghis Khan. 

Their occupations. Animals of the Monguls. 

hair, a flat face, and a dark olive complexion. 
His wife, if her face were not so flat and her 
nose so broad, would be quite a brilliant little 
beauty, her eyes are so black and sparkling. 
The children have much the appearance of 
young Indians as they run shouting among the 
cattle on the hill-sides, or, if young, playing 
half-naked about the door of the hut, their long 
black hair streaming in the wind. 

Like all the rest of the inhabitants of Central 
Asia, these people depended almost entirely for 
their subsistence on the products of their flocks 
and herds. Of course, their great occupation 
consisted in watching their animals while feed- 
ing by day, and in putting them in places of 
security by night, in taking care of and rearing 
the young, in making butter and cheese from 
the milk, and clothing from the skins, in driv- 
ing the cattle to and fro in search of pasturage, 
and, finally, in making war on the people of 
other tribes to settle disputes arising out of con- 
flicting claims to territory, or to replenish their 
stock of sheep and oxen by seizing and driving 
off the flocks of their neighbors. 

The animals which the Monguls most prized 
were camels, oxen and cows, sheep, goats, and 
horses. They were very proud of their horses, 
and they rode them with great courage and 

The Monguls. 25 

Their towns and villages. Mode of building their tents. 

spirit. They always went mounted in going to 
war. Their arms were bows and arrows, pikes 
or spears, and a sort of sword or sabre, which 
was manufactured in some of the towns toward 
the west, and supplied to them in the course of 
trade by great traveling caravans. 

Although the mass of the people lived in the 
open country with their flocks and herds, there 
were, notwithstanding, a great many towns and 
villages, though such centres of population were 
much fewer and less important among them 
than they are in countries the inhabitants of 
which live by tilling the ground. Some of 
these towns were the residences of the khans 
and of the heads of tribes. Others were places 
of manufacture or centres of commerce, and 
many of them were fortified with embankments 
of earth or walls of stone. 

The habitations of the common people, even 
those built in the towns, were rude huts made 
so as to .be easily taken down and removed. 
The tents were made by means of poles set in 
a circle in the ground, and brought nearly to- 
gether at the top, so as to form a frame similar 
to that of an Indian wigwam. A hoop was 
placed near the top of these poles, so as to pre- 
serve a round opening there for the smoke to 
go out. The frame was then covered with 

26 . Genghis Khan. 

Bad fuel. Comfortless homes. 

sheets of a sort of thick gray felt, so placed as 
to leave the opening within the hoop free. The 
felt, too, was arranged below in such a manner 
that the corner of one of the sheets could be 
raised and let down again to form a sort of 
door. The edges of the sheets in other places 
were fastened together very carefully, especially 
in winter, to keep out the cold air. 

Within the tent, on the ground in the centre, 
the family built their fire, which was made of 
sticks, leaves, grass, and dried droppings of all 
sorts, gathered from the ground, for the coun- 
try produced scarcely any wood. Countries 
roamed over by sherds of animals that gain 
their living by pasturing on the grass and 
herbage are almost always destitute of trees. 
Trees in such a case have no opportunity to 

The tents of the Monguls thus made were, 
of course, very comfortless homes. They could 
not be kept warm, there was so much cold air 
coming continually in through the crevices, 
notwithstanding all the people's contrivances 
to make them tight. The smoke, too, did not 
all escape through the hoop-hole above. Much 
of it remained in the tent and mingled with the 
atmosphere. This evil was aggravated by the 
kind of fuel which they used, which was of such 

The Monguls. 27 

Movable houses built at last. 

a nature that it made only a sort of smoulder- 
ing fire instead of burning, like good dry wood, 
with a bright and clear flame. 

The discomforts of these huts and tents were 
increased by the custom which prevailed among 
the people of allowing the animals to come into 
them, especially those that were young and 
feeble, and to live there with the family. 

In process of time, as the people increased in 
riches and in mechanical skill, some of the 
more wealthy chieftains began to build houses 
so large and so handsome that they could not 
be conveniently taken down to be removed, and 
then they contrived a way of mounting them 
upon trucks placed at the four corners, and 
moving them bodily in this way across the 
plains, as a table is moved across a floor upon 
its castors. It was necessary, of course, that 
the houses should be made very light in order 
to be managed in this way. They were, in 
fact, still tents rather than houses, being made 
of the same materials, only they were put to- 
gether in a more substantial and ornamental 
manner. The frame was made of very light 
poles, though these poles were fitted together 
in permanent joinings. The covering was, like 
that of the tents, made of felt, but the sheets 
were joined together by close and strong seams, 

28 Genghis Khan. 

The painting. Account of a large movable house. 

and the whole was coated with a species of 
paint, which not only closed all the pores and 
interstices and made the structure very tight, 
but also served to ornament it; for they were 
accustomed, in painting these houses, to adorn 
the covering with pictures of birds, beasts, and 
trees, represented in such a manner as doubt- 
less, in their eyes, produced a very beautiful 

These movable houses were sometimes very 
large. A certain traveler who visited the coun- 
try not far from the time of Genghis Khan says 
that he saw one of these structures in motion 
which was thirty feet in diameter. It was 
drawn by twenty-two oxen. It was so large 
that it extended five feet on each side beyond 
the wheels. The oxen, in drawing it, were not 
attached, as with us, to the centre of the for- 
ward axle-tree, but to the ends of the axle-trees, 
which projected beyond the wheels on .each 
side. There were eleven oxen on each side 
drawing upon the axle-trees. There were, of 
course, many drivers. The one who was chief 
in command stood in the door of the tent or 
house which looked forward, and there, with 
many loud shouts and flourishing gesticulations, 
issued his orders to the oxen and to the other 

The Monguls. 29 

The traveling chests. Necessity of such an arrangement. 

The household goods of this traveling chief- 
tain were packed in chests made for the pur- 
pose, the house itself, of course, in order to be 
made as light as possible, having been emptied 
of all its contents. These chests were large, 
and were made of wicker or basket-work, cov- 
ered, like the house, with felt. The covers 
were made of a rounded form, so as to throw 
off the rain, and the felt was painted over with 
a certain composition which made it impervious 
to the water. These chests were not intended 
to be unpacked at the end of the journey, but 
to remain as they were, as permanent store- 
houses of utensils, clothing, and provisions. 
They were placed in rows, each on its own cart, 
near the tent, where they could be resorted to 
conveniently from time to time by the serv- 
ants and attendants, as occasion might require. 
The tent placed in the centre, with these great 
chests on their carts near it, formed, as it were, 
a house with one great room standing by itself, 
and all the little rooms and closets arranged in 
rows by the side of it. 

Some such arrangement as this is obviously 
necessary in case of a great deal of furniture or 
baggage belonging to a man who lives in a 
tent, and who desires to be at liberty to re- 
move his whole establishment from place to 

30 Genghis Khan. 

Houses in the towns. 

place at short notice ; for a tent, from the 
very principle of its construction, is incapable 
of being divided into rooms, or of accommo- 
dating extensive stores of furniture or goods. 
Of course, a special contrivance is required for 
the accommodation of this species of property. 
This was especially the case with the Monguls, 
among whom there were many rich and great 
men who often accumulated a large amount of 
movable property. There was one rich Mon- 
gul, it was said, who had two hundred such 
chest-carts, which were arranged in two rows 
around and behind his tent, so that his estab- 
lishment, when he was encamped, looked like 
quite a little village. 

The style of building adopted among the 
Monguls for tents and movable houses seemed 
to set .the fashion for all their houses, even for 
those that were built in the towns, and were 
meant to stand permanently where they were 
first set up. These permanent houses were lit- 
tle better than tents. They consisted each of 
one single room without any subdivisions what- 
ever. They were made round, too, like the 
tents, only the top, instead of running up to a 
point, was rounded like a dome. There were 
no floors above that formed on the ground, and 
no windows. 

The Monguls. 31 

Roads over the plains. Tribes and families. 

Such was the general character of the dwell- 
ings of the Monguls in the days of Genghis 
Khan. They took their character evidently 
from the wandering and pastoral life that the 
people • led. One would have thought that very 
excellent roads would have been necessary to 
have enabled them to draw the ponderous 
carts containing their dwellings and household 
goods. But this was less necessary than might 
have been supposed on account of the nature 
of the country, which consisted chiefly of im- 
mense grassy plains and smooth river valleys, 
over which, in many places, wheels would travel 
tolerably well in any direction without much 
making of roadway. Then, again, in all such 
countries, the people who journey from place 
to place, and the herds of cattle that move to 
and fro, naturally fall into the same lines of 
travel, and thus, in time, wear great trails, as 
cows make paths in a pasture. These, with a 
little artificial improvement at certain points, 
make very good summer roads, and in the win- 
ter it is not necessary to use them at all. 

The Monguls, like the ancient Jews, were 
divided into tribes, and these were subdivided 
into families ; a family meaning in this connec- 
tion not one household, but a large congeries 
of households, including all those that were 


Influence of diversity of pursuits. 

of known relationship to each other. These 
groups of relatives had each its head, and the 
tribe to which they pertained had also its gen- 
eral head. There were, it is said, three sets of 
these tribes, forming three grand divisions of the 
Mongul people, each of which was ruled by its 
own khan ; and then, to complete the system, 
there was the grand khan, who ruled over all. 
A constitution of society like this almost al- 
ways prevails in pastoral countries, and we 
shall see, on a little reflection, that it is natural 
that it should do so. In a country like ours, 
where the pursuits of men are so infinitely di- 
versified, the descendants of different families 
become mingled together in the most promis- 
cuous manner. The son of a farmer in one 
state goes off, as soon as he is of age, to some 
other state, to find a place among merchants or 
manufacturers, because he wishes to be a mer- 
chant or a manufacturer himself, while his fa- 
ther supplies his place on the farm perhaps by 
hiring a man who likes farming, and has come 
hundreds of miles in search of work. Thus 
the descendants of one American grandfather 
and grandmother will be found, after a lapse 
of a few years, scattered in every direction all 
over the land, and, indeed, sometimes all over 
the world. 

The Monguls. 33 

Tribes and clans. Mode of making war. 

It is the diversity of pursuits which, prevails 
in such a country as ours, taken in connection 
with the diversity of capacity and of taste in 
different individuals, that produces this disper- 

Among a people devoted wholly to pastoral 
pursuits, all this is different. The young men, 
as they grow up, can have generally no induce- 
ment to leave their homes. They continue to 
iive with their parents and relatives, sharing 
the care of the flocks and herds, and making 
common cause with them in every thing that 
Is of common interest: It is thus that those 
great family groups are formed which exist in 
all pastoral countries under the name of tribes 
or clans, and form the constituent elements of 
the whole social and political organization of 
the people. 

In case of general war, each tribe of the Mon- 
guls furnished, of course, a certain quota of 
armed men, in proportion to its numbers and 
strength. These men always went to war, as 
has already been said, on horseback, and the 
spectacle which these troops presented in gal- 
loping in squadrons over the plains was some- 
times very imposing. The shock of the onset 
when they charged in this way upon the ene- 
my was tremendous. They were armed with 

34 Genghis Khan. 

Horsemen. The bow and arrow. 

bows and arrows, and also with sabres. As 
they approached the enemy, they discharged 
first a shower of arrows upon him, while they 
were in the act of advancing at the top of their 
speed. Then, dropping their bows by their 
side, they would draw their sabres, and be ready, 
as soon as the horses fell upon the enemy, to 
cut down all opposed to them with the most 
furious and deadly blows. 

If they were repulsed, and compelled by a 
superior force to retreat, they would gallop at 
full speed over the plains, turning at the same 
time in their saddles, and shooting at their pur- 
suers with their arrows as coolly, and with as 
correct an aim, almost, as if they were still. 
While thus retreating the trooper would guide 
and control his horse by his voice, and by the 
pressure of his heels upon his sides, so as to 
have both his arms free for fighting his pur- 

These arrows were very formidable weap- 
ons, it is said. One of the travelers who visit' 
ed the country in those days says that they 
could be shot with so much force as to pierce 
the body of a man entirely through. 

It must be remembered, however, in respect 
to all such statements relating to the efficiency 
of the bow and arrow, that the force with which 

The Monguls. 85 

The flying horseman. Nature of the how and arrow. 


an arrow can be thrown depends not upon any 
independent action of the bow, but altogether 
upon the strength of the man who draws it. 
The bow, in straightening itself for the propul- 
sion of the arrow, expends only the force which 
the man has imparted to it by bending it ; so 
that the real power by which the arrow is pro- 
pelled is, after all, the muscular strength of the 
archer. It is true, a great deal depends on the 
qualities of the bow, and also on the skill of the 
man in using it, to make all this muscular 

36 Genghis Khan. 

Superiority of fire-arms. Sources of information. 

strength, effective. "With, a poor bow, or with 
unskillful management, a great deal of it would 
be wasted. But with the best possible bow, 
and with the most consummate skill of the 
archer, it is the strength, of the archer's arm 
which throws the arrow, after all. 

It is very different in this respect with a bul- 
let thrown by the force of gunpowder from the 
barrel of a gun. The force in this case is the 
explosive force of the powder, and the bullet is 
thrown to the same distance whether it is a 
very weak man or a very strong man that pulls 
the trigger. 

But to return to the Monguls. All the in- 
formation which we can obtain in' respect to 
the condition of the people before the time of 
Genghis Khan comes to us from the reports 
of travelers who, either as merchants, or as em- 
bassadors from caliphs or kings, made long 
journeys into these distant regions, and have 
left records, more or less complete, of their ad- 
ventures, and account of what they saw, in 
Writings which have been preserved by the 
learned men of the East. It is very doubtful 
how far these accounts are to be believed. One 
of these travelers, a learned man named Salam, 
who made a journey far into the interior of 
Asia by order of the Caliph Mohammed Amin 

The Monguls. 37 

Gog and Magog. Salam. 

Billah, some time before the reign of Genghis 
Khan, says that, among other objects of re- 
search and investigation which occupied his 
mind, he was directed to ascertain the truth in 
respect to the two famous nations Gog and 
Magog, or, as they are designated in his ac- 
count, Yagog and Magog. The story that had 
been told of these two nations by the Arabian 
writers, and which was extensively believed, 
was, that the people of Yagog were of the or- 
dinary size of men, but those of Magog were 
only about two feet high. These people had 
made war upon the neighboring nations, and 
had destroyed many cities and towns, but had 
at last been overpowered and shut up in prison. 
Salam, the traveler whom the caliph sent to 
ascertain whether their accounts were true, 
traveled at the head of a caravan containing 
fifty men, and with camels bearing stores and 
provisions for a year. He was gone a long time.' 
When he came back he gave an account of his 
travels; and in respect to Gog and Magog, he 
said that he had found that the accounts which 
had been heard respecting them were true. He 
traveled on, he said, from the country of one 
chieftain to another till he reached the Caspian 
Sea, and then went on beyond that sea for 
thirty or forty days more. In one place the 

38 Genghis Khan. 

Adventures of Salam and his party. The wonderful mountain. 

party came to a tract of low black land, which 
exhaled an odor so offensive that they were 
obliged to use perfumes all the way to over- 
power the noxious smells. They were ten days 
in crossing this fetid territory. After this they 
went on a month longer through a desert coun- 
try, and at length came to a fertile land which 
was covered with the ruins of cities that the 
people of Gog and Magog had destroyed. 

In six days more they reached the country 
of the nation by which the people of Gog and 
Magog had been conquered and shut up in 
prison. Here they found a great many strong 
castles. There was a large city here too, con- 
taining temples and academies of learning, and 
also the residence of the king. 

The travelers took up their abode in this 
city for a time, and while they were there they 
made an excursion of two days' journey into 
the country to see the place where the people 
of Gog and Magog were confined. When they 
arrived at the place they found a lofty mount- 
ain. There was a great opening made in the 
face of this mountain two or three hundred feet 
wide. The opening was protected on each side 
by enormous buttresses, between which was 
placed an immense double gate, the buttresses 
and the gate being all of iron. The buttresses 

The Monguls. 39 

Great bolts and bars. The prisoners. 

were surmounted with, an iron" bulwark, and 
with, lofty towers also of iron, which were car- 
ried up as high as to the top of the mountain 
itself. The gates were of the width of the 
opening cut in the mountain, and were seven- 
ty-five feet high; and the valves, lintels, and 
threshold, and also the bolts, the lock, and the 
key, were all of proportional size. 

Salam, on arriving at the place, saw all these 
wonderful structures with his own eyes, and he 
was told by the people there that it was the 
custom of the governor of the castles already 
mentioned to take horse every Friday with ten 
others, and, coming to the gate, to strike the 
great bolt three times with a ponderous ham- 
mer weighing five pounds, when there would 
be heard a murmuring noise within, which were 
the groans of the Yagog and Magog people con- 
fined in the mountain. Indeed, Salam was told 
that the poor captives often appeared on the 
battlements above. Thus the real existence of 
this people was, in his opinion, fully proved ; 
and even the story in respect to the diminutive 
size of the Magogs was substantiated, for Salam 
was told that once, in a high wind, three of them 
were blown off from the battlements to the 
ground, and that, on being measured, they were 
found but three spans high. 

40 Genghis Khan. 

Travelers' tales. Progress of intelligence. 

This is a specimen of the tales brought home 
from remote countries by the most learned and 
accomplished travelers of those times. In com- 
paring these absurd and ridiculous tales with 
the reports which are brought back from dis- 
tant regions in our days by such travelers as 
Humboldt, Livingstone, and Kane, we shall 
perceive what an immense progress in intelli- 
gence and information the human mind has 
made since those days. 

Yezonkai Khan. 41 

Yezonkai Behadr. Orthography of Mongul names. 

Chapter III. 
Yezonkai Khan. 

THE name of the father of Genghis Khan is 
a word which can not be pronounced ex- 
actly in English. It sounded something like 
this, Yezonkai Behadr, with the accent on the 
last syllable, Behadr, and the a sounded like a 
in hark. This is as near as we can come to it ; 
but the name, as it was really pronounced by 
the Mongul people, can not be written in En- 
glish letters nor spoken with English sounds. 

Indeed, in all languages so entirely distinct 
from each other as the Mongul language was 
from ours, the sounds are different, and the let- 
ters by which the sounds are represented are 
different too. Some of the sounds are so ut- 
terly unlike any sounds that we have in En- 
glish that it is as impossible to write them in 
English characters as it is for us to write in 
English letters the sound that a man makes 
when he chirps to his horse or his dog, or when 
he whistles. Sometimes writers attempt to rep- 
resent the latter sound by the word whew ; and 

42 Genghis Khan. 

Great diversities. Yezonkai's power. 

when, in reading a dialogue, we come to the 
word whew, inserted to express a part of what 
one of the speakers uttered, we understand by 
it that he whistled ; but how different, after all, 
is the sound of the spoken word ivhew from the 
whistling sound that it is intended to repre- 

Now, in all the languages of Asia, there are 
many sounds as impossible to be rendered by 
the European letters as this, and in making 
the attempt every different writer falls into a 
different mode. Thus the first name of Gen- 
ghis Khan's father is spelled by different trav- 
elers and historians, Yezonkai, Yesukay, Yes- 
suki, Yesughi, Bissukay, Bisukay, Pisukay, and 
in several other ways. The real sound was un- 
doubtedly as different from any of these as they 
were all different from each other. In this nar- 
rative I shall adopt the first of these methods, 
and call him Yezonkai Behadr. 

Yezonkai was a great khan, and he descend- 
ed in a direct line through ten generations, so 
it was said, from a deity. Great sovereigns in 
those countries and times were very fond of 
tracing back their descent to some divine ori- 
gin, by way of establishing more fully in the 
minds of the people their divine right to the 
throne. Yezonkai's residence was at a great 

Yezonkai Khan. 45 

A successful warrior. Katay. 

palace in the country, called by a name, the 
sound of which, as nearly as it can be repre- 
sented in English letters, was Diloneldak. From 
this, his capital, he used to make warlike ex- 
cursions at the head of hordes of Monguls into 
the surrounding countries, in the prosecution 
of quarrels which he made with them under 
various pretexts ; and as he was a skillful com- 
mander, and had great influence in inducing all 
the inferior khans to bring large troops of men 
from their various tribes to add to his army, he 
was usually victorious, and in this way he ex- 
tended his empire very considerably while he 
lived, and thus made a very good preparation 
for the subsequent exploits of his son. 

The northern part of China was at that time 
entirely separated from the southern part, and 
was under a different government. It consti- 
tuted an entirely distinct country, and was call- 
ed Katay.* This country was under the do- 
minion of a chieftain called the Khan of Katay. 
This khan was very jealous of the increasing 
power of Yezonkai, and took part against him 
in all his wars with the tribes around him, and 
assisted them in their attempts to resist him ; 
but he did not succeed. Yezonkai was too 

* Spelled variously Kathay, Katay, Kitay, and in other 

46 Genghis Khan. [1163. 

The Khan of Temujin. Mongul custom. 

powerful for them, and went on extending his 
conquests far and wide. 

At last, under the pretense of some affront 
which he had received from them, Yezonkai 
made war upon a powerful tribe of Tartars that 
lived in his neighborhood. He invaded their 
territories at the head of an immense horde of 
Mongul troops, and began seizing and driving 
off their cattle. 

The name of the khan who ruled over these 
people was Temujin. Temujin assembled his 
forces as soon as he could, and went to meet 
the invaders. A great battle was fought, and 
Yezonkai was victorious. Temujin was defeat- 
ed and put to flight. Yezonkai encamped aft- 
er the battle on the banks of the Eiver Amoor, 
near a mountain. He had all his family with 
him, for it was often the custom, in these enter- 
prises, for the chieftain to take with him not 
only all his household, but a large portion of 
his household goods. Yezonkai had several 
wives, and almost immediately after the battle, 
one of them, named Olan Ayka, gave birth to 
a son. Yezonkai, fresh from the battle, de- 
termined to commemorate his victory by giv- 
ing his new-born son the name of his vanquish- 
ed enemy. So he named him Temujin.* His 

* The name is intended to be pronounced Tim-oo-zhin. 

1163.] Yezonkai Khan. 47 

Birth of Genghis Khan. Predictions of the astrologer. 

birth took place, as nearly as can now be ascer- 
tained, in the year of our Lord 1163. 

Such were the circumstances of our hero's 
birth, for it was this Temujin who afterward 
became renowned throughout all Asia under 
the name of Genghis Khan. Through all the 
early part of his life, however, he was always 
known by the name which his father gave him 
in the tent by the river side where he was 

Among the other grand personages in Ye- 
zonkai's train at this time, there was a certain 
old astrologer named Sugujin. He was a rela- 
tive of Yezonkai, and also his principal minis- 
ter of state. This man, by his skill in astrol- 
ogy, which he applied to the peculiar circum- 
stances of the child, foretold for him at once a 
wonderful career. He would grow up, the as- 
trologer said, to be a great warrior. He would 
conquer all his enemies, and extend his con- 
quests so far that he would, in the end, become 
the Khan of all Tartary. Young Temujin's 
parents were, of course, greatly pleased with 
these predictions, and when, not long after this 
time, the astrologer died, they appointed his 
son, whose name was Karasher, to be the guard- 
ian and instructor of the boy. They trusted, 
it seems, to the son to give the young prince 

48 Genghis Khan. [1175. 

Explanation of the predictions. Karasher. 

such a training in early life as should prepare 
him to realize the grand destiny which the fa- 
ther had foretold for him. 

There would be something remarkable in the 
fact that these predictions were uttered at the 
birth of Genghis Khan, since they were after- 
ward so completely fulfilled, were it not that 
similar prognostications of greatness and glory 
were almost always offered to the fathers and 
mothers of young princes in those days by 
the astrologers and soothsayers of their courts. 
Such promises were, of course, very flattering 
to these parents at the time, and brought those 
who made them into great favor. Then, in the 
end, if the result verified them, they were re- 
membered and recorded as something wonder- 
ful ; if not, they were forgotten. 

Karasher, the astrologer's son, who had been 
appointed young Temujin's tutor, took his pupil 
under his charge, and began to form plans for 
educating him. Karasher was a man of great 
talents and of considerable attainments in learn- 
ing, so far as there could be any thing like 
learning in such a country and among such a 
people. He taught him the names of the va- 
rious tribes that lived in the countries around, 
and the names of the principal chieftains that 
ruled over them. He also gave him such in- 

1175.] Yezonkai Khan. 49 

Education of Temujin. His precocity. 

formation as he possessed in respect to the coun- 
tries themselves, describing the situation of the 
mountains, the lakes, and the rivers, and the 
great deserts which here and there intervened 
between the fertile regions. He taught him, 
moreover, to ride, and trained him in all such 
athletic exercises as were practiced by the youth 
of those times. He instructed him also in the 
use of arms, teaching him how to shoot with a 
bow and arrow, and how to hold and handle 
his sabre, both when on horseback and when 
on foot. He particularly instructed him in the 
art of shooting his arrow in any direction when 
riding at a gallop upon his horse, behind as 
well as before, and to the right side as well as 
to the left. To do this coolly, skillfully, and 
with a true aim, required great practice as well 
as much courage and presence of mind. 

Young Temujin entered into all these things 
with great spirit. Indeed, he very soon ceased 
to feel any interest in any thing else, so that by 
the time that he was nine years of age it was 
said that he thought of nothing but exercising 
himself in the use of arms. 

Mne years of age, however, with him was 

more than it would be with a young man 

among us, for the Asiatics arrive at maturity 

much earlier than the nations of "Western Eu- 


50 Genghis Khan. ■ [1175. 

His early marriage. Plans of Temujin's father. 

rope and America. Indeed, by the time that 
Temnjin was thirteen years old, his father con- 
sidered him a man — at least he considered him 
old enough to be married. He was married, 
in fact, and had two children before he was fif- 
teen, if the accounts which the historians have 
given ns respecting him are true. 

Just before Temujin was thirteen, his father, 
in one of his campaigns in Katay, was defeated 
in a battle, and, although a great many of his 
followers escaped, he himself was surrounded 
and overpowered by the horsemen of the enemy, 
and was made prisoner. He was put under the 
care of a guard ; for, of course, among people 
living almost altogether on horseback and in 
tents, there could be very few prisons. Ye- 
zonkai followed the camp of his conqueror for 
some time under the custody of his guard ; but 
at length he succeeded in bribing his keeper to 
let him escape, and so contrived, after encoun- 
tering many difficulties and suffering many 
hardships, to make his way back to his own 

He was determined now to make a new in- 
cursion into Katay, and that with a larger force 
than he had had before. So he made an alli- 
ance with the chieftain of a neighboring tribe, 
called the Kaymans ; and, in order to seal and 

1175.] Yezonkai Khan. 51 

Karizu. Tayian. Death of Yezonkai. 

establish this alliance, he contracted that his 
son should marry the daughter of his ally. 
This was the time when Temujin was but thir- 
teen years old. The name of this his first wife 
was Karizu — at least that was one of her 
names. Her father's name was Tayian. 

Before Yezonkai had time to mature his 
plans for his new invasion of Katay, he fell 
sick and died. He left five sons and a daughter, 
it is said ; but Temujin seems to have been the 
oldest of them all, for by his will his father left 
his kingdom, if the command of the group of 
tribes which were under his sway can be called 
a kingdom, to him, notwithstanding that he was 
yet only thirteen years old. 

52 Genghis Khan. [1175. 

Temujin's accession. Didcontent. 

Chapter IV. 
The First Battle. 

IN the language of the Monguls and of their 
neighbors the Tartars, a collection of tribes 
banded together under one chieftain was desig- 
nated by a name which sounded like the word 
orda. This is the origin, it is said, of the En- 
glish word horde. 

The orda over which Yezonkai had ruled, 
and the command of. which, at his death, he left 
to his son, consisted of a great number of sep- 
arate tribes, each of which had its own particu- 
lar chieftain. All these subordinate chieftains 
were content to be under Yezonkai's rule and 
leadership while he lived. He was competent, 
they thought, to direct their movements and to 
lead them into battle against their enemies. 
But when he died, leaving only a young man 
thirteen years of age to succeed him, several of 
them were disposed to rebel. There were two 
of them, in particular, who thought that they 
were themselves better qualified to reign over 
the nation than such a boy; so they formed 

1175.] The First Battle. 53 

Taychot and Chamuka. Arrangements for the battle. 

an alliance with each other, and with such other 
tribes as were disposed to join them, and ad- 
vanced to make war upon Temujin at the head 
of a great number of squadrons of troops, 
amounting in all to thirty thousand men. 

The names of the two leaders of this rebel- 
lion were Taychot and Chamuka. 

Young Temujin depended chiefly on his 
mother for guidance and direction in this emerg- 
ency. He was himself very brave and spirited ; 
but bravery and spirit, though they are of such 
vital importance in a commander on the field 
of battle, when the contest actually comes on, 
are by no means the principal qualities that are 
required in making the preliminary arrange- 

Accordingly, Temujin left the forming of the 
plans to his mother, while he thought only of 
his horses, of his arms and equipments, and of 
the fury with which he would gallop in among 
the enemy when the time should arrive for the 
battle to begin. His mother, in connection with 
the chief officers of the army and counselors of 
state who were around her, and on whom her 
husband Yezonkai, during his lifetime, had been 
most accustomed to rely, arranged all the plans. 
They sent off messengers to the heads of all 
the tribes that they supposed would be friendly 

54: Genghis Khan. [1175. 

Temujin's ardor. Porgie. 

to Temujin, and appointed places of rendezvous 
for the troops that they were to send. They 
made arrangements for the stores of provisions 
which would be required, settled questions of 
precedence among the different clans, regulated 
the order of march, and attended to all other 
necessary details. 

In the mean time, Temujin thought only of 
the approaching battle. He was engaged con- 
tinually in riding up and down upon spirited 
horses, and shooting in all directions, backward 
and forward, and both to the right side and to 
the left, with his bow and arrow. Nor was all 
this exhibition of ardor on his part a mere use- 
less display. It had great influence in awaken- 
ing a corresponding ardor among the chieftains 
of the troops, and among the troops themselves. 
They felt proud of the spirit and energy which 
their young prince displayed, and were more 
and more resolved to exert themselves to the 
utmost in defending his cause. 

There was another young prince, of the name 
of Porgie, of about Temujin's age, who was also 
full of ardor for the fight. He was the chief- 
tain of one of the tribes that remained faithful 
to Temujin, and he was equally earnest with 
Temujin for the battle to begin. 

At length the troops were ready, and, with 

1175.] The First Battle. 55 

Exaggerated statements. The battle. 

Temujin and his mother at the head of them, 
the j went forth to attack the rebels. The, reb- 
els were ready to receive them. They v were 
thirty thousand strong, according to the state- 
ments of the historians. This number is 
probably exaggerated, as all numbers were 
in those days, when there was no regular en- 
rollment of troops and no strict system of enu- 

At any rate, there was a very great battle. 
Immense* troops of horsemen coming at full 
speed in opposite directions shot showers of ar- 
rows at each other when they arrived at the 
proper distance for the arrows to take effect, 
and then, throwing down their bows and draw- 
ing their sabres, rushed madly on, until they 
came together with an awful shock, the dread- 
ful confusion and terror of which no person 
can describe. The air was filled with the most 
terrific outcries, in which yells of fury, shrieks 
of agony, and shouts of triumph were equally 
mingled. Some of the troops maintained their 
position through the shock, and rode on, bear- 
ing down all before them. Others were over- 
thrown and trampled in the dust ; while all, 
both those who were up and those who were 
down, were cutting in every direction with their 
sabres, killing men and inciting the horses to 

56 Genghis Khan. [1175. 

Bravery 'of Temuj in and Porgie. 

redoubled fury by the wounds which they gave 

In the midst of such scenes as these Temujin 
and Porgie fought furiously with the rest. 
Temujin distinguished himself greatly. It is 
probable that those who were immediately 
around him felt that he was under their charge, 
and that they must do all in their power to pro- 
tect him from danger. This they could do 
much more easily and effectually under the 
mode of fighting which prevailed in those days 
than would be possible now, when gunpowder 
is the principal agent of destruction. Temu- 
jin's attendants and followers could gather 
around him and defend him from assailants. 
They could prevent him from charging any 
squadron which was likely to be strong enough 
to overpower him, and they could keep his en- 
emies so much at bay that they could not reach 
him with their sabres. But upon a modern 
field of battle there is much less opportunity 
to protect a young prince or general's son, or 
other personage whose life may be considered 
as peculiarly valuable. No precautions of his 
attendants can prevent a bomb's bursting at his 
feet, or shield him from the rifle balls that come 
whistling from such great distances through the 

1175.] The Fiest Battle. 57 

Influence of Temujin's example. Taychot slain. The victory. 

At any rate, whether protected by his attend- 
ants or only by the fortune of war, Temujin 
passed through the battle without being hurt, 
and the courage and energy which he display- 
ed were greatly commended by all who wit- 
nessed them. His mother was in the battle too, 
though, perhaps, not personally involved in the 
actual conflicts of it. She directed the ma- 
noeuvres, however, and by her presence and 
her activity greatly encouraged and animated 
the men. In consequence of the spirit and en- 
ergy infused into the troops by her presence, 
and by the extraordinary ardor and bravery of 
Temujin, the battle was gained. The army of 
the enemy was put to flight. One of the lead- 
ers, Taychot, was slain. The other made his 
escape, and Temujin and his mother were left 
in possession of the field. 

Of course, after having fought with so much 
energy and effect on such a field, Temujin was 
now no longer considered as a boy, but took 
his place at once as a man among men, and was 
immediately recognized by all the army as 
their prince and sovereign, and as fully entitled, 
by his capacity if not by his years, to rule in his 
own name. He assumed and exercised his 
^powers with as much calmness and self-posses- 
sion as if he had been accustomed to them for 

58 GrENGHIS Khan. [1175. 

Rewards and honors. Temujin's rising fame. 

many years. He made addresses to his officers 
and soldiers, and distributed honors and re- 
wards to them with a combined majesty and 
grace which, in their opinion, denoted much 
grandeur of soul. The rewards and honors 
were characteristic of the customs of the coun- 
try and the times. They consisted of horses, 
arms, splendid articles of dress, and personal 
ornaments. Of course, among a people who 
lived, as it were, always on horseback, such 
objects as these were the ones most highly 

The consequence of this victory was, that 
nearly the whole country occupied by the reb- 
els submitted without any farther resistance to 
Temujin's sway. Other tribes, who lived on 
the borders of his dominions, sent in to pro- 
pose treaties of alliance. The khan of one of 
these tribes demanded of Temujin the hand of 
his sister in marriage to seal and confirm the 
alliance which he proposed to make. In a 
word, the fame of Temujin's prowess spread 
rapidly after the battle over all the surround- 
ing countries, and high anticipations began to 
be formed of the greatness and glory of his 

In the course of the next year Temujin was 
married to his second wife, although he was at 

1175.] The First Battle. 59 

His second wife. Purta carried away captive. 

this time only fourteen years old. The name 
of his bride was Purta Kugin. By this wife, 
who was probably of about his own age, he 
had a daughter, who was born before the close 
of the year after the marriage. 

In his journeys about the country Temujin 
sometimes took his wives with him, and some- 
times he left them temporarily in some place 
of supposed security. Toward the end of the 
second year Purta was again about to become 
a mother, and Temujin, who at that time had 
occasion to go off on some military expedition, 
fearing that the fatigue and exposure would be 
more than she could well bear, left her at home. 
While he was gone a troop of horsemen, from 
a tribe of his enemies, came suddenly into the 
district on a marauding expedition. They over- 
powered the troops Temujin had left to guard 
the place, and seized and carried off every thing 
that they could find that was valuable. They 
made prisoner of Purta, too, and carried her 
away a captive. The plunder they divided 
among themselves, but Purta they sent as a 
present to a certain khan who reigned over a 
neighboring country, and whose favor they 
wished to secure. The name of this chieftain 
was Yang Khan. As this Yang Khan figures 
somewhat conspicuously in the subsequent his- 

60 Genghis Khan. [1175. 

Customary present. Purta and Vang Khan. 

tor j of Temujin, a full account of him will be 
given in the next chapter. All that is neces- 
sary to say here is, that the intention of the 
captors of Purta, in sending her to him as a 
present, was that he should make her his wife. 
It was the custom of these khans to have as 
many wives as they could obtain, so that when 
prisoners of high rank were taken in war, if 
there were any young and beautiful women 
among them, they were considered as charm- 
ing presents to send to any great prince or po- 
tentate near, whom the captors were desirous of 
pleasing. It made no difference, in such cases, 
whether the person who was to receive the pres- 
ent were young or old. Sometimes the older 
he was the more highly he would prize such a 

Yang Khan, it happened, was old. He was 
old enough to be Temujin's father. Indeed, he 
had been in the habit of calling Temujin his 
son. He had been in alliance with Yezonkai, 
Temujin's father, some years before, when Te- 
mujin was quite a boy, and it was at that time 
that he began to call him his son. 

Accordingly, when Purta was brought to him 
by the messengers who had been sent in charge 
of her, and presented to him in his tent, he 

1175.] The First Battle. 63 

Purta's return. Birth of her child. 

" She is very beautiful, but I can not take 
her for my wife, for she is the wife of my son. 
I can not marry the wife of my son." 

Vang Khan, however, received Purta undef 
his charge, gave her a place in his household, 
and took good care of her. 

When Temujin returned home from his ex* 
pedition, and learned what had happened dur 
ing his absence, he was greatly distressed at the 
loss of his wife. • Not long afterward he ascer* . 
tained where she was, and he immediately sent 
a deputation to Yang Khan asking him to send 
her home. With this request Yang Khan im- 
mediately complied, and Purta set out on her 
return. She was stopped on the way, however, 
by the birth of her child. It was a son. As 
soon as the child was born it was determined 
to continue the journey, for there was danger, 
if they delayed, that some new troop of enemies 
might come up, in which case Purta would per- 
haps be made captive again. So Purta, it is 
said, wrapped up the tender limbs of the infant 
in some sort of paste or dough, to save them 
from the effects of the jolting produced by the 
rough sort of cart in which she was compelled 
to ride, and in that condition she held the babe 
in her lap all the way home. 

She arrived at her husband's residence in 

64 Genghis Khan. [1175. 

Jughi. Temujin's wonderful dream. 

safety. Temujin was overjoyed at seeing her 
again ; and he was particularly pleased with his 
little son, who came out of his packing safe and 
sound. In commemoration of his safe arrival 
after so strange and dangerous a journey, his 
father named him Safe-arrived ; that is, he gave 
him for a name the word in their language that 
means that. The word itself was Jughi. 

The commencement of Temujin's career was 
thus, on the whole, quite prosperous, and every 
thing seemed to promise well. He was him- 
self full of ambition and of hope, and began to 
feel dissatisfied with the empire which his fa- 
ther had left him, and to form plans for extend- 
ing it. He dreamed one night that his arms 
grew out to an enormous length, and that he 
took a sword in each of them, and stretched 
them out to see how far they would reach, 
pointing one to the eastward and the other to 
the westward. In the morning he related his 
dream to his mother. She interpreted it to 
him. She told him it meant undoubtedly that 
he was destined to become a great conqueror, 
and that the directions in which his kingdom 
would be extended were toward the eastward 
and toward the westward. 

Temujin continued for about two years after 
this in prosperity, and then his good fortune 

1175.] The First Battle. 65 

Disaffection among his subjects. A rebellion. Temujin discouraged. 

began to wane. There came a reaction. Some 
of the tribes nnder his dominion began to grow 
discontented. The subordinate khans began to 
form plots and conspiracies. Even his own 
tribe turned against him. Eebellions broke out 
in various parts of his dominions ; and he was 
obliged to make many hurried expeditions here 
and there, and to fight many desperate battles 
to suppress them. In one of these contests he 
was taken prisoner. He, however, contrived 
to make his escape. He then made proposals 
to the disaffected khans, which he hoped would 
satisfy them, and bring them once more to sub- 
mit to him, since what he thus offered to do in 
these proposals was pretty much all that they 
had professed to require. But the proposals 
did not satisfy them. What they really intend- 
ed to do was to depose Temujin altogether, and 
then either divide his dominions among them- 
selves, or select some one of their number to 
reign in his stead. 

At last, Temujin, finding that he could not 
pacify his enemies, and that they were, more- 
over, growing stronger every day, while those 
that adhered to him were growing fewer in 
numbers and diminishing in strength, became 
discouraged. He began to think that perhaps 
he really was too young to rule over a kingdom 

66 Genghis Khan. [1175. 

Temujin plans a temporary abdication. 

composed of wandering hordes of men so war- 
like and wild, and he concluded for a time to 
give up the attempt, and wait until times should 
change, or, at least, until he should be grown 
somewhat older. Accordingly, in conjunction 
with his mother, he formed a plan for retiring 
temporarily from the field ; unless, indeed, as 
we might reasonably suspect, his mother form- 
ed the plan herself, and by her influence over 
him induced him to adopt it. 

The plan was this : that Temujin should send 
an embassador to the court of Yang Khan to 
ask Yang Khan to receive him, and protect him 
for a time in his dominions, until the affairs of 
his own kingdom should become settled. Then, 
if Yang Khan should accede to this proposal, 
Temujin was to appoint his uncle to act as re- 
gent during his absence. His mother, too, was 
to be married to a certain emir, or prince, named 
Menglik, who was to be made prime minister 
under the regent, and was to take precedence 
of all the other princes or khans in the king- 
dom. The government was to be managed by 
the regent and the minister until such time as 
it should be deemed expedient for Temujin to 

This plan was carried into effect. Yang 
Khan readily consented to receive Temujin into 

1175.] * The First Battle. 67 

Arrangement of a regency. Temujin's departure. 

his dominions, and to protect him there. He 
was very ready to do this, he said, on account 
of the friendship which he had borne for Temu- 
jin's father. Temujin's mother was married to 
the emir, and the emir was made the first prince 
of the realm. Finally, Temujin's uncle was 
proclaimed regent, and duly invested with all 
necessary authority for governing the country 
until Temujin's return. These things being all 
satisfactorily arranged, Temujin set out for the 
country of Yang Khan at the head of an armed 
escort, to protect him on the way, of six thou- 
sand men. He took with him all his family, 
and a considerable suite of servants and attend- 
ants. Among them was his old tutor and 
guardian Karasher, the person who had been 
appointed by his father to take charge of him, 
and to teach and train him when he was a boy. 
Being protected by so powerful an escort, 
Temujin's party were not molested on their 
journey, and they all arrived safely at the court 
of Yang Khan. 

68 Genghis Khan. [1175. 

Karakatay. Vang Khan's dominions. 

Chapter Y. 
Yang Khan. 

THE country over which Yang Khan ruled 
was called Karakatay. It bordered upon 
the country of Katay, which has already been 
mentioned as forming the northern part of what 
is now China. Indeed, as its name imports, it 
was considered in some sense as a portion of 
the same general district of country. It was 
that part of Katay which was inhabited by 

Yang Khan's name at first was Togrul. The 
name Yang Khan, which was, in fact, a title 
rather than a name, was given him long after- 
ward, when he had attained to the height of his 
power. To avoid confusion, however, we shall 
drop the name Togrul, and call him Yang Khan 
from the beginning. 

Yang Khan was descended from a powerful 
line of khans who had reigned over Karakatay 
for many generations. These khans were a 
wild and lawless race of men, continually fight- 
ing with each other, both for mastery, and also 

1175.] Vang Khan. 69 

The cruel fate of Mergus. His wife's stratagem. 

for the plunder of each other's flocks and herds. 
In this way most furious and cruel wars were 
often fought between near relatives. Yang 
Khan's grandfather, whose name was Mergus, 
was taken prisoner in one of these quarrels by 
another khan, who, though he was a relative, 
was so much exasperated by something that 
Mergus had done that he sent him away to a 
great distance to the king of a certain country 
which is called Kurga, to be disposed of there. 
The King of Kurga put him into a sack, sew- 
ed up the mouth of it, and then laid him across 
the wooden image of an ass, and left him there 
to die of humger and suffocation. 

The wife of Mergus was greatly enraged 
when she heard of the cruel fate of her hus- 
band. She determined to be revenged. It 
seems that the relative of her husband who had 
taken him prisoner, and had sent him to the 
King of Kurga, had been her. lover in former 
times before her marriage; so she sent him a 
message, in which she dissembled her grief for 
the loss of her husband, and only blamed the 
King of Kurga for his cruel death, and then 
said that she had long felt an affection for him, 
and that, if he continued of the same mind as 
when he had formally addressed her, she was 
now willing to become his wife, and offered, if 

70 Genghis Khan. [1175. 

NawT. He falls into the snare. 

he would come to a certain place, which she spe- 
cified, to meet her, she would join him there. 

Nawr, for that was the chieftain's name, fell 
at once into the snare which the beautiful wid- 
ow thus laid for him. He immediately accept- 
ed her proposals, and proceeded to the place of 
rendezvous. He went, of course, attended by 
a suitable guard, though his guard was small, 
and consisted chiefly of friends and personal 
attendants. The princess was attended also by 
a guard, not large enough, however, to excite 
any suspicion. She also took with her in her 
train a large number of carts, which were to be 
drawn by bullocks, and which were laden with 
stores of provisions, clothing, and other such 
valuables, intended as a present for her new 
husband. Among these, however, there were 
a large number of great barrels, or rounded 
receptacles of some sort, in which she had 
concealed a considerable force of armed men. 
These receptacles were so arranged that the 
men concealed in them could open them from 
within in an instant, at a given signal, and issue 
forth suddenly all armed and ready for action. 

Among the other stores which the princess 
had provided, there was a large supply of a 
certain intoxicating drink which the Monguls 
and Tartars were accustomed to make in those 

1175.] Vang Khan. 71 

Armed men in ambuscade. Death of Nawr, 

days. As soon as the two parties met at the 
place of rendezvous the princess gave Nawr a 
very cordial greeting, and invited him and all 
his party to a feast, to be partaken on the spot. 
The invitation was accepted, the stores of pro- 
visions were opened, and many of the presents 
were unpacked and displayed. At the feast 
Nawr and his party were all supplied abund- 
antly with the intoxicating liquor, which, as is 
usual in such cases, they were easily led to 
drink to excess ; while, on the other hand, the 
princess's party, who knew what was coming, 
took good care to keep themselves sober. At 
length, when the proper moment arrived, the 
princess made the signal. In an instant the 
men who had been placed in ambuscade in the 
barrels burst forth from their concealment and 
rushed upon the guests at the feast. The prin- 
cess herself, who was all ready for action, drew 
a dagger from her girdle and stabbed Nawr to 
the heart. Her guards, assisted by the re-en- 
forcement which had so suddenly appeared, 
slew or secured all his attendants, who were so 
totally incapacitated, partly by the drink which 
they had taken, and partly by their astonish- 
ment at the sudden appearance of so over- 
whelming a force, that they were incapable of 
making any resistance. 

72 Genghis Khan. [1175. 

Credibility of these tales. Early life of Vang Khan. 

The princess, having thus accomplished her 
revenge, marshaled her men, packed up her 
pretended presents, and returned in triumph 

Such stories as these, related by the Asiatic 
writers, though they were probably often much 
embellished in the narration, had doubtless all 
some foundation in fact, and they give us some 
faint idea of the modes of life and action which 
prevailed among these half-savage chieftains in 
those times. Yang Khan himself was the 
grandson of Mergus, who was sewed up in the 
sack. His father was the oldest son of the 
princess who contrived the above-narrated 
stratagem to revenge her husbands death. It 
is said that he used to accompany his father to 
the wars when he was only ten years old. The 
way in which he formed his friendship for Ye- 
zonkai, and the alliance with him which led 
him to call Temujin his son and to refuse to 
take his wife away from him, as already related, 
was this : When his father died he succeeded 
to the command, being the oldest son ; but the 
others were jealous of him, and after many and 
long quarrels with them and with other rela- 
tives, especially with his uncle, who seemed to 
take the lead against him, he was at last over- 
powered or outmanoeuvred, and was obliged to 

1175.] Yang Khan. 73 

Reception of Temujin. Prester John. 

fly. He took refuge, in his distress, in the conn- 
try of Yezonkai. Yezonkai received him in a 
very friendly manner, and gave him effectual 
protection. After a time he furnished him with 
troops, and helped him to recover his kingdom, 
and to drive his uncle away into banishment in 
his turn. It was while he was thus in Yezon- 
kai's dominions that he became acquainted with 
Temujin, who was then very small, and it was 
there that he learned to call him his son. Of 
course, now that Temujin was obliged* to fly 
himself from his native country and abandon 
his hereditary dominions, as he had done be- 
fore, he was glad of the opportunity of requit- 
ing to the son the favor which he had received, 
in precisely similar circumstances, from the 
father, and so he gave Temujin a very kind 

There is another circumstance which is some- 
what curious in respect to Yang Khan, and that 
is, that he is generally supposed to be the prince 
whose fame was about this period spread all 
over Europe, under the name of Prester John, 
by the Christian missionaries in Asia. These 
missionaries sent to the Pope, and to various 
Christian kings in Europe, very exaggerated 
accounts of the success of their missions among 
the Persians, Turks, and Tartars; and at last 

74 Genghis Khan. [1175. 

His letter to the King of France. Other letters. 

they wrote word that the great Khan of the 
Tartars had become a convert, and had even 
become a preacher of the Gospel, and had taken 
the name of Prester John. The word prester 
was understood to be a corruption of presbyter. 
A great deal was accordingly written and said 
all through Christendom about the great Tartar 
convert, Prester John. There were several let- 
ters forwarded by the missionaries, professedly 
from him, and addressed to the Pope and to the 
different kings of Europe. Some of these let- 
ters, it is said, are still in existence. One of 
them was to the King of France. In this let- 
ter the writer tells the King of France of his 
great wealth and of the vastness of his domin- 
ions. He says he has seventy kings to serve 
and wait upon him. # He invites the King of 
France to come and see him, promising to be- 
stow a great kingdom upon him if he will, and 
also to make him his heir and leave all his do- 
minions to him when he dies ; with a great deal 
more of the same general character. 

The other letters were much the same, and 
the interest which they naturally excited was 
increased by the accounts which the mission- 
aries gave of the greatness and renown of this 
more than royal convert, and of the progress 
which Christianity had made and was still mak- 

1175.] Vang Khan. 75 

The probable truth. Temujin and Vang Khan. 

ing in his dominions through their instrument- 

It is supposed, in modern times, that these 
stories were pretty much all inventions on the 
part of the missionaries, or, at least, that the ac- 
counts which they sent were greatly exagger- 
ated and embellished; and there is but little 
doubt that they had much more to do with the 
authorship of the letters than any khan. Still, 
however, it is supposed that there was a great 
prince who at least encouraged the missionaries 
in their work, and allowed them to preach 
Christianity in his dominions, and, if so, there 
is little doubt that Yang Khan was the man. 

At all events, he was a very great and pow- 
erful prince, and he reigned over a wide extent 
of country. The name of his capital was Kara- 
korom. The distance which Temujin had to 
travel to reach this city was about ten days' 

He was received by Yang Khan with great 
marks of kindness and consideration. Yang 
Khan promised to protect him, and, in due time, 
to assist him in recovering his kingdom. In 
the mean while Temujin promised to enter at 
once into Yang Khan's service, and to devote 
himself faithfully to promoting the interests of 
his kind protector by every means in his power. 

76 Genghis Khan. [1182. 

Temujin 1 a popularity. 

Chapter VI. 
Temujin in Exile. 

VANGr KHAN gave Temujin a very hon- 
orable position in his court. It was nat- 
ural that he should do so, for Temujin was a 
prince in the prime of his youth, and of very 
attractive person and manners ; and, though he 
was for the present an exile, as it were, from 
his native land, he was not by any means in a 
destitute or hopeless condition. His family and 
friends were still in the ascendency at home, 
and he himself, in coming to the kingdom of 
Yang Khan, had brought with him quite an 
important body of troops. Being, at the same 
time, personally possessed of great courage and 
of much military skill, he was prepared to ren- 
der his protector good service in return for his 
protection. In a word, the arrival of Temujin 
at the court of Yang Khan was an event calcu- 
lated to make quite a sensation. 

At first every body was very much pleased 
with him, and he was very popular; but before 
long the other young princes of the court, and 

1182.] Temujin in Exile. 77 

Rivals and enemies appear. Plots. Yemuka. Wisulujine. 

the chieftains of the neighboring tribes, began 
to be jealous of him. Yang Khan gave him 
precedence over them all, partly on account of 
his personal attachment to him, and partly on 
account of the rank which he held in his own 
country, which, being that of a sovereign prince, 
naturally entitled him to the very highest po- 
sition among the subordinate chieftains in the 
retinue of Yang Khan. But these subordinate 
chieftains were not satisfied. They murmured, 
at first secretly, and afterward more openly, 
and soon began to form combinations and plots 
against the new favorite, as they called him. 

An incident soon occurred which greatly in- 
creased this animosity, and gave to Temujin's 
enemies, all at once, a very powerful leader 
and head. This leader was a very influential 
chieftain . named Yemuka. This Yemuka, it 
seems, was in love with the daughter of Yang 
Khan, the Princess Wisulujine. He asked her 
in marriage of her father. To precisely what 
state of forwardness the negotiations had ad- 
vanced does not appear, but, at any rate, when 
Temujin arrived, Wisulujine soon began to turn 
her thoughts toward him. He was undoubt- 
edly younger, handsomer, and more accomplish- 
ed than her old lover, and before long she 
gave her father to understand that she would 

78 Genghis Khan. [1182. 

Yemuka's disappointment. His rage. Conspiracy formed. 

much rather have him for her husband than 
Yemuka. It is true, Temujin had one or two 
wives already ; but this made no difference, for 
it was the custom then, as, indeed, it is still, for 
the Asiatic princes and chieftains to take as 
many wives as their wealth and position would 
enable them to maintain. Yemuka was ac- 
cordingly refused, andWisulujine was given in 
marriage to Temujin. 

Yemuka was, of course, dreadfully enraged. 
He vowed that he would be revenged. He im- 
mediately began to intrigue with all the dis- 
contented persons and parties in the kingdom, 
not only with those who were envious and jeal- 
ous of Temujin, but also with all those who, 
for any reason, were disposed to put themselves 
in opposition to Yang Khan's government. 
Thus a formidable conspiracy was formed for 
the purpose of compassing Temujin's ruin. 

The conspirators first tried the effect of pri- 
vate remonstrances with Yang Khan, in which 
they made all sorts of evil representations 
against Temujin, but to no effect. Temujin 
rallied about him so many old friends, and 
made so many new friends by his courage and 
energy, that his party at court proved stronger 
than that of his enemies, and, for a time, they 
seemed likely to fail entirely of their design. 

1182.] Temujin in Exile. 79 

Progress of the league. Oath of the conspirators. 

At length the conspirators opened communi- 
cation with the foreign enemies of Yang Khan, 
and formed a league with them to make war 
against and destroy both Yang Khan and Te- 
mujin together. The accounts of the progress 
of this league, and of the different nations and 
tribes which took part in it, is imperfect and 
confused ; but at length, after various prelim- 
inary contests and manoeuvres, arrangements 
were made for assembling a large army with a 
view of invading Yang Khan's dominions and 
deciding the question by a battle. The differ- 
ent chieftains and khans whose troops were 
united to form this army bound tnemselves to- 
gether by a solemn oath, according to the cus- 
toms of those times, not to rest until both Yang 
Khan and Temujin should be destroyed. 

The manner in which they took the oath 
was this : They brought out into an open space 
on the plain where they had assembled to take 
the oath, a horse, a wild ox, and a dog. At a 
given signal they fell upon these animals with 
their swords, and cut them all to pieces in the 
most furious manner. When they had finish- 
ed, they stood together arid called out aloud in 
the following words : 

"Hear! O God! heaven! earth! the 
oath that we swear against Yang Khan and 

80 Genghis Khan. [1182. 

The oath. Karakorom. Plan formed by Temujin. 

Temujin. If any one of us spares them when 
we have them in our power, or if we fail to 
keep the promise that we have made to destroy 
them, may we meet with the same fate that has 
befallen these beasts that we have now cut to 

They uttered this imprecation in a very sol- 
emn manner, standing among the mangled and 
bloody remains of the beasts which lay strewed 
all about the ground. 

These preparations had been made thus far 
very secretly; but tidings of what was going 
on came, before a great while, to Karakorom, 
Yang Khan's capital. Temujin was greatly 
excited when he heard the news. He imme- 
diately proposed that he should take his own 
troops, and join with them as many of Vang 
Khan's soldiers as could be conveniently spared, 
and go forth to meet the enemy. To this Yang 
Khan consented. Temujin took one half of 
Yang Khan's troops to join his own, leaving 
the other half to protect the capital, and so set 
forth on his expedition. He went off in the 
direction toward the frontier where he had un- 
derstood the principal part of the hostile forces 
were assembling. After a long march, prob- 
ably one of many days, he arrived there before 
the enemy was quite prepared for him. Then 

1182.] Temujin in Exile. 81 

The campaign. Unexpected arrival of Vang Khan. His story. 

followed a series of manoeuvres and counter- 
manoeuvres, in which Temujin was all the time 
endeavoring to bring the rebels to battle, while 
they were doing all in their power to avoid it. 
Their object in this delay was to gain time for 
re-enforcements to come in, consisting of bodies 
of troops belonging to certain members of the 
league who had not yet arrived. 

At length, when these manoeuvres were 
brought to an end, and the battle was about to 
be fought, Temujin and his whole army were 
one day greatly surprised to see his father-in- 
law, Yang Khan himself, coming into the camp 
at the head of a small and forlorn-looking band 
of followers, who had all the appearance of fu- 
gitives escaped from a battle. They looked 
anxious, way-worn, and exhausted, and the 
horses that they rode seemed wholly spenf 
with fatigue and privation. On explanation, 
Temujin learned that, as soon as it was known 
that he had left the capital, and taken with him 
a large part of the army, a certain tribe of Yang 
Khan's enemies,- living in another direction, 
had determined to seize the opportunity to in- 
vade his dominions, and had accordingly come 
suddenly in, with an immense horde, to attack 
the capital. Yang Khan had done all that he 
could to defend the city, but he had been over- 

82 Genghis Khan. [1182. 

Temujin's promises. Eesult of the battle. 

powered. The greater part of his soldiers had 
been killed or wounded. The city had been 
taken and pillaged. His son, with those of the 
troops that had been able to save themselves, 
had escaped to the mountains. As to Yang 
Khan himself, he had thought it best to make 
his way, as soon as possible, to the camp of 
Temujin, where he had now arrived, after en- 
during great hardships and sufferings on the 

Temujin was at first much amazed at hear- 
ing this story. He, however, bade his father- 
in-law not to be cast down or discouraged, and 
promised him full revenge, and a complete tri- 
umph over all his enemies at the coming bat- 
tle. So he proceeded at once to complete his ar- 
rangements for the coming fight. He resigned 
to Yang Khan the command of the main body 
of the army, while he placed himself at the 
head of one of the wings, assigning the other 
to the chieftain next in rank in his army. In 
this order he went into battle. 

The battle was a very obstinate and bloody 
one, but, in the end, Temujin's party was vic : 
torious. The^ troops opposed to him were de- 
feated and driven off the field. The victory 
appeared to be due altogether to Temujin him- 
self; for, after the struggle had continued a long 

1182.] Temujin in Exile. 83 

Teniujin victorious. State of things at Karakorom. Erkekava. 

time, and the result still appeared doubtful, the 
troops of Temuj in's wing finally made a des- 
perate charge, and forced their way with such 
fury into the midst of the forces of the enemy 
that nothing could withstand them. This en- 
couraged and animated the other troops to such 
a degree that very soon the enemy were en- 
tirely routed and driven from off the field. 

The effect of this victory was to raise the rep- 
utation of Temujin as a military commander 
higher than ever, and greatly to increase the 
confidence which Yang Khan was inclined to 
repose in him. The victory, too, seemed at first 
to have well-nigh broken up the party of the 
rebels. Still, the way was not yet open for 
Yang Khan to return and take possession of 
his throne and of his capital, for he learned 
that one of his brothers had assumed the gov- 
ernment, and was reigning in Karakorom in 
his place. It would seem that this brother, 
whose name was Erkekara, had been one of 
the leaders of the party opposed to Temujin. 
It was natural that he should be so ; for, being 
the brother of the king, he would, of course, oc- 
cupy a very high position in the court, and 
would be one of the first to experience the ill 
effects produced by the coming in of any new 
favorite. He had accordingly joined in the 

84 Genghis Khan. [1182. 

Preparations for the final conflict. Erkekara vanquished. 

plots that were formed against Temujin and 
Yang Khan. Indeed, he was considered, in 
some respects, as the head of their party, and 
when Yang Khan was driven away from his 
capital, this brother assumed the throne in his 
stead. The question was, how could he now 
be dispossessed and Yang Khan restored. 

Temujin began immediately to form his plans 
for the accomplishment of this purpose. He 
concentrated his forces after the battle, and 
soon afterward opened negotiations with other 
tribes, who had before been uncertain which 
side to espouse, but were now assisted a great 
deal in coming to a .decision by the victory 
which Temujin had obtained. In the mean 
time the rebels were not idle. They banded 
themselves together anew, and made great ex- 
ertions to procure re-enforcements. Erkekara 
fortified himself as strongly as possible in Kara- 
korom, and collected ample supplies of ammu- 
nition and military stores. It was not until 
the following year that the parties had com- 
pleted their preparations and were prepared 
for the final struggle. Then, however, anoth- 
er great battle was fought, and again Temujin 
was victorious. Erkekara was killed or driven 
away in his turn. Karakorom was retaken, 
and Yang Khan entered it in triumph at the 

1182.] Temujin in Exile. 85 

Vang Khan restored. Temujin' s popularity. 

head of his troops, and was once more estab- 
lished on his throne. 

Of course, the rank and influence of Temu- 
jin at his court was now higher than ever be- 
fore. He was now about twenty-two or twen- 
ty-three year's of age. He had already three 
wives, though it is not certain that all of them 
were with him at Yang Khan's court. He was 
extremely popular in the army, as young com- 
manders of great courage and spirit almost al- 
ways are. Yang Khan placed great reliance 
upon him, and lavished upon him all possible 

He does not seem, however, yet to have be- 
gun to form any plans for returning to his na- 
tive land. 

86 Genghis Khan. [1182. 

Erkekara. State of the country. 


Chapter VII. 

Eupture with Vang Khan. 

EMUJTN remained at the court, or in the 
dominions of Vang Khan, for a great many 
years. During the greater portion of this time 
he continued in the service of Vang Khan, and 
on good terms with him, though, in the end, as 
Ave shall presently see, their friendship was 
turned into a bitter enmity. 

Erkekara, Vang Khan's brother, who had 
usurped his throne during the rebellion, was 
killed, it was said, at the time when Vang Khan 
recovered his throne. Several of the other 
rebel chieftains were also killed, but some of 
them succeeded in saving themselves from ut- 
ter ruin, and in gradually recovering their for- 
mer power over the hordes which they respect- 
ively commanded. It must be remembered 
that the country was not divided at this time 
into regular territorial states and kingdoms, but 
was rather one vast undivided region, occupied 
by immense hordes, each of which was more or 
less stationary, it is true, in its own district or 

1182.] Bupture with Yang Khan. 87 

Wandering habits. Yemuka. Sankum. 

range, but was nevertheless without any per- 
manent settlement. The various clans drifted 
slowly this way and that among the plains and 
mountains, as the prospects of pasturage, the 
fortune of war, or the pressure of contermin- 
ous hordes might incline them. In cases, too, 
where a number of hordes were united un- 
der one general chieftain, as was the case with 
those over whom Vang Khan claimed to have 
sway, the tie by which they were bound togeth- 
er was very feeble, and the distinction between 
a state of submission and of rebellion, except in 
case of actual war, was very slightly defined. 

Yemuka, the chieftain who had been so ex- 
asperated against Temujin on account of his 
being supplanted by him in the affections of 
the young princess, Vang Khan's daughter, 
whom Temujin had married for his third wife, 
succeeded in making his escape at the time 
when Vang Khan conquered his enemies and 
recovered his throne. For a time he concealed 
himself, or at least kept out of Vang Khan's 
reach, by dwelling with hordes whose range 
was at some distance from Karakorom. He 
soon, however, contrived to open secret nego- 
tiations with one of Vang Khan's sons, whose 
name was something that sounded like San- 
kum. Some authors, in attempting to repre* 

88 . Genghis Khan. [1182. 

Yemuka's intrigues with Sankum. Deceit. 

sent his name in our letters, spelled it Sun- 

Yemuka easily persuaded this young San- 
kum to take sides with him in the quarrel. It 
was natural that he should do so, for, being the 
son of Yang Khan, he was in some measure 
displaced from his own legitimate and proper 
position at his father's court by the great and 
constantly increasing influence which Temujin 

" And besides," said Yemuka, in the secret 
representations which he made to Sankum, 
" this new-comer is not only interfering with 
the curtailing your proper influence and con- 
sideration now, but his design is by-and-by to 
circumvent and supplant you altogether. He 
is forming plans for making himself your fa- 
ther's heir, and so robbing you of your rightful 

Sankum listened very eagerly to these sug- 
gestions, and finally it was agreed between him 
and Yemuka that Sankum should exert his in- 
fluence with his father to obtain permission for 
Yemuka to come back to court, and to be re- 
ceived again into his father's service, under pre- 
tense of having repented of his rebellion, and 
of being now disposed to return to his allegi- 
ance. Sankum did this, and, after a time, Yang 

1182.] Rupture with Vang Khan. 89 

Temujin's situation. His military expeditions. 

Khan was persuaded to allow Yemuka to re- 

Thus a sort of outward peace was made, but 
it was no real peace. Yemuka was as envious 
and jealous of Temujin as ever, and now, more- 
over, in addition to this envy and jealousy, he 
felt the stimulus of revenge. Things, howev- 
er, seem to have gone on very quietly for a 
time, or at least without any open outbreak in 
the court. During this time Yang Khan was, 
as usual with such princes, frequently engaged 
in wars with the neighboring hordes. In these 
wars he relied a great deal on Temujin. Temu- 
jin was in command o£a large body of troops, 
which consisted in part of his own guard, the 
troops that had come with him from his own 
country, and in part of other bands of men 
whom Yang Khan had placed under his orders, 
or who had joined him of their own accord. 
He was assisted in the command of this body 
by four subordinate generals or khans, whom 
he called his four intrepids. They were all 
very brave and skillful commanders. At the 
head of this troop Temujin was accustomed to 
scour the country, hunting out Yang Khan's 
enemies, or making long expeditions over dis- 
tant plains or among the mountains, in the 
prosecution of Yang Khan's warlike projects, 

90 Genghis Khan. [1182, 

Popular commanders. Stories of Temujin's cruelty. 

whether those of invasion and plunder, or of 
retaliation and vengeance. 

Temujin was extremely popular with the 
soldiers who served under him. Soldiers al- 
ways love a dashing, fearless, and energetic 
leader, who has the genius to devise brilliant 
schemes, and the spirit to execute them in a 
brilliant manner. They care very little how 
dangerous the situations are into which he may 
lead them. Those that get killed in perform- 
ing the exploits which he undertakes can not 
speak to complain, and those who survive are 
only so much the better pleased that the dan- 
gers that they have been brought safely through 
were so desperate, and that the harvest of glory 
which they have thereby acquired is so great. 

Temujin, though a great favorite with his 
own men, was, like almost all half-savage war- 
riors of his class, utterly merciless, when he was 
angry, in his treatment of his enemies. It is 
said that after one of his battles, in which he 
had gained a complete victory over an im- 
mense horde of rebels and other foes, and had 
taken great numbers of them prisoners, he or- 
dered fires to be built and seventy large cal- 
drons of water to be put over them, and then, 
when the water was boiling hot, he caused the 
principal leaders of the vanquished army to be 

J.182.] Kupture with Yang Khan. 91 

Probably fictions. Vang Khan's uneasiness. 

thrown in headlong and thus scalded to death. 
Then he marched at once into the country of 
the enemy, and there took all the women and 
children, and sent them off to be sold as slaves, 
and seized the cattle and other property which 
he found, and carried it off as plunder. In thus 
taking possession of the enemy's property and 
making it his own, and selling the poor cap- 
tives into slavery, there was nothing remark- 
able. Such was the custom of the times. But 
the act of scalding his prisoners to death seems 
to denote or reveal in his character a vein of 
peculiar and atrocious cruelty. It is possible, 
however, that the story may not be true. It 
may have been invented by Yemuka and San- 
kum, or by some of his other enemies. 

For Yemuka and Sankum, and others who 
were combined with them, were continually 
endeavoring to undermine Temujin's influence 
with Yang Khan, and thus deprive him of his 
power. But he was too strong for them. His 
great success in all his military undertakings 
kept him up in spite of all that his rivals could 
do to pull him down. As for Yang Khan him- 
self, he was in part pleased with him and proud 
of him, and in part he feared him. He was 
very unwilling to be so dependent upon a sub- 
ordinate chieftain, and yet he could not do 

92 Genghis Khan. [1202 # 

Temujin. Vang Khan's suspicions. 

without him. A king never desires that any- 
one of his subjects should become too conspicu- 
ous or too great, and Yang Khan would have 
been very glad to have diminished, in some 
way, the power and prestige which Temujin 
had acquired, and which seemed to be increas- 
ing every day. He, however, found no means 
of effecting this in any quiet and peaceful man- 
ner. Temujin was at the head of his troops, 
generally away from Karakorom, where Yang- 
Khan resided, and he was, in a great measure, 
independent. He raised his own recruits to 
keep the numbers of his army good, and it was 
always easy to subsist if there chanced to be 
any failure in the ordinary and regular sup- 

Besides, occasions were continually occurring 
in which Yang Khan wished for Temujin's aid, 
and could not dispense with it. At one time, 
while engaged in some important campaigns, 
far away among the mountains, Yemuka con- 
trived to awaken so much distrust of Temujin 
in Yang Khan's mind, that Yang Khan secret- 
ly decamped in the night, and marched away to 
a distant place to save himself from a plot which 
Yemuka had told him that Temujin was con- 
triving. Here, however, he was attacked by a 
large body of his enemies, and was reduced to 

1202.] Eupture with Yang Khan. 93 

A reconciliation. Fresh suspicions. 

sucli straits that he was obliged to send couriers 
off at once to Temujin to come with his intrep- 
ids and save him. Temujin came. He rescued 
Yang Khan from his danger, and drove his en- 
emies away. Yang Khan was very grateful 
for this service, so that the two friends became 
entirely reconciled to each other, and were 
united more closely than ever, greatly to Ye- 
muka's disappointment and chagrin. They 
made a new league of amity, and, to seal and 
confirm it, they agreed upon a double marriage 
between their two families. A son of Temujin 
was to be married to a daughter of Yang Khan, 
and a son of Yang Khan to a daughter of Te- 

This new compact did not, however, last long. 
As soon as Yang Khan found that the danger 
from which Temujin had rescued him was pass- 
ed, he began again to listen to the representa- 
tions of Yemuka and Sankum, who still insist- 
ed that Temujin was a very dangerous man, 
and was by no means to be trusted. They said 
that he was ambitious and unprincipled, and 
that he was only waiting for a favorable oppor- 
tunity to rebel himself against Yang Khan and 
depose him from his throne. They made a 
great many statements to the khan in confirm- 
ation of their opinion, some of which were true 

94 Genghis Kuan. [1202. 

Plans laid. Treachery. Menglik. 

doubtless, but many were exaggerated, and 
others probably false. They, however, suc- 
ceeded at last in making such an impression 
upon the khan's mind that he finally determ- 
ined to take measures for putting Temujin out 
of the way. 

Accordingly, on some pretext or other, he 
contrived to send Temujin away from Kara- 
korom, his capital, for Temujin was so great a 
favorite with the royal guards and with all the 
garrison of the town, that he did not dare to 
undertake any thing openly against him there. 
Yang Khan also sent a messenger to Temujin's 
own country to persuade the chief persons there 
to join him in his plot. It will be recollected 
that, at the time that Temujin left his own 
country, when he was about fourteen years old, 
his mother had married a great chieftain there, 
named Menglik, and that this Menglik, in con- 
junction doubtless with Temujin's mother, had 
been made regent during his absence. Yang 
Khan now sent to Menglik to propose that he 
should unite with him to destroy Temujin. 

" You have no interest," said Yang Khan in 
the message that he sent to Menglik, " in taking 
his part. It is true that you have married his 
mother, but, personally, he is nothing to you. 
And, if he is once out of the way, you will be 

1202.] Kupture with Yang Khan. 95 

Menglik gives Temujin warning. The double niarrinfre. 

acknowledged as the Grand Khan of the Mon- 
guls in your own right, whereas you now hold 
your place in subordination to him, and he may 
at any time return and set you aside alto- 

Yang Khan hoped by these arguments to in- 
duce Menglik to come and assist him in his 
plan of putting Temujin to death, or, at least, 
if Menglik would not assist him in perpetrating 
the deed, he thought that, by these arguments, 
he should induce him to be willing that it 
should be committed, so that he should him- 
self have nothing to fear afterward from his re- 
sentment. But Menglik received the proposal 
in a very different way from what Yang Khan 
had expected. He said nothing, but he de- 
termined immediately to let Temujin know of 
the danger that he was in! He accordingly at 
once set out to go to Temujin's camp to inform 
him of Yang Khan's designs. 

In the mean time, Yang Khan, having ma- 
tared his plans, made an appointment for Te- 
mujin to meet him at a certain place designated 
for the purpose of consummating the double 
marriage between their children, which had 
been before agreed upon. Temujin, not sus- 
pecting any treachery, received and entertained 
the messenger in a very honorable manner, and 

96 Genghis Khan, [1202. 

Plans frustrated. Temujin's camp. Karasher. 

said that he would come. After making the 
necessary preparations, he set out, in company 
with the messenger and with a grand retinue 
of his own attendants, to go to the place ap- 
pointed. On his way he was met or overtaken 
by Menglik, who had come to warn him of his 
danger. As soon as Temujin had heard what 
his stepfather had to say, he made some excuse 
for postponing the journey, and, sending a civil 
answer to Yang Khan by the embassador, he 
ordered him to go forward, and went back him- 
self to his own camp. 

This camp was at some distance from Kara- 
korom. Yang Khan, as has already been stated, 
had sent Temujin away from the capital on ac- 
count of his being so great a favorite that he 
was afraid of some tumult if he were to attempt 
any thing against him there. Temujin was, 
however, pretty strong in his camp. " The 
troops that usually attended him were there, 
with the four intrepids as commanders of the 
four principal divisions of them. His old in- 
structor and guardian, Karasher, was with him 
too. Karasher, it seems, had continued in Te- 
mujin's service up to this time, and was accus- 
tomed to accompany him in all his expeditions 
as his counselor and friend. 

When Yang Khan learned, by the return of 

1202.] Kupture with Vang Khan. 97 

Vang Khan's plans. His plans betrayed by two slaves. 

his messenger, that Tenrujin declined to come 
to the place of rendezvous which he had ap- 
pointed, he concluded at once that he suspected 
treachery, and he immediately decided that he 
must now strike a decisive blow without any 
delay, otherwise Temujin would put himself 
more and more on his guard. He was not 
mistaken, it seems, however, in thinking how 
great a favorite Temujin was at Karakorom, 
for his secret design was betrayed to Temujin 
by two of his servants, who overheard him 
speak of it to one of his wives. Yang Khan's 
plan was to go out secretly to Temujin's camp 
at the head of an armed force superior to his, 
and there come upon him and his whole troop 
suddenly, by surprise, in the night, by which 
means, he thought, he should easily overpower 
the whole encampment, and either kill Temu- 
jin and his generals, or else make them prison- 
ers. The two men who betrayed this plan 
were slaves, who were employed to take care 
of the horses of some person connected with 
Yang Khan's household, and to render various 
other services. Their names were Badu and 
Kishlik. It seems that these men were one 
day carrying some milk to Yang Khan's house 
or tent, and there they overheard a conversa- 
tion between Yang Khan and his wife, by 


98 Genghis Khan. [1202. 

How the slaves overheard. A council called. 

which they learned the particulars of the plan 
formed for Temujin's destruction. The expe- 
dition was to set out, they heard, on the follow- 
ing morning. 

It is not at all surprising that they overheard 
this conversation, for not only the tents, but 
even the houses used by these Asiatic nations 
were built of very frail and thin materials, and 
the partitions were often made of canvas and 
felt, and other such substances as could have 
very little power to intercept sound. 

The two slaves determined to proceed at 
once to Temujin's camp and warn him of his 
danger. So they stole away from their quar- 
ters at nightfall, and, after traveling diligently 
all night, in the morning they reached the 
camp and told Temujin what they had learn- 
ed. Temujin was surprised ; but he had been, 
in some measure, prepared for such intelligence 
by the communication which his stepfather had 
made him in respect to Yang Khan's treacher- 
ous designs a few days before. He immediate- 
ly summoned Karasher and some of his other 
friends, in order to consult in respect to what 
it was best to do. 

It was resolved to elude Yang Khan's design 
by means of a stratagem. He was to come 
upon them, according to the account of the 

1202.] Kuptuke with Yang Khan. 99 

Temujin plans a stratagem. 

slaves, that night. The preparations for re- 
ceiving him were consequently to be made at 
once. The plan was for Temujin and all his 
troops to withdraw from the camp and conceal 
themselves in a place of ambuscade near by. 
They were to leave a number of men behind, 
who, when night came on, were to set the lights 
and replenish the fires, and put every thing in 
such a condition as to make it appear that the 
troops were all there. Their expectation was 
that, when Yang Khan should arrive, he would 
make his assault according to his original de- 
sign, and then, while his forces were in the 
midst of the confusion incident to such an on- 
set, Temujin was to come forth from his ambus- 
cade and fall upon them. In this way he 
hoped to conquer them and put them to flight, 
although he had every reason to suppose that 
the force which Yang Khan would bring out 
against him would be considerably stronger 
in numbers than his own. 

100 Genghis Khan. [1202. 

The ambuscade. The wood and the brook. 

Chapter VIII. 
Progress of the Quarrel. 

TEMITJTN'S stratagem succeeded admira- 
bly. As soon as he had decided upon it 
he began to put it into execution. He caused 
every thing of value to be taken out of his tent 
and carried away to a place of safety. He sent 
away the women and children, too, to the same 
place. He then marshaled all his men, except- 
ing the small guard that he was going to leave 
behind until evening, and led them off to the 
ambuscade which he had chosen for them. 
The place was about two leagues distant from 
his camp. Temujin concealed himself here in 
a narrow dell among the mountains, not far 
from the road where Vang Khan would have 
to pass along. The dell was narrow, and was 
protected by precipitous rocks on each side. 
There was a wood at the entrance to it also, 
which concealed those that were hidden in it 
from view, and a brook which flowed by near 
the entrance, so that, in going in or coming out, 
it was necessary to ford the brook. 

1202.] Progress- of the Quarrel. 101 

The guard left behind. Arrival of Vang Khan's army. 

Temujin, on arriving at the spot, went with 
all his troops into the dell, and concealed him- 
self there. 

In the mean time, the guard that had been 
left behind in the camp had been instructed to 
kindle up the camp-fires as soon as the evening 
came on, according to the usual custom, and to 
set lights in the tents, so as to give the camp 
the appearance, when seen from a little dis- 
tance in the night, of being occupied, as usual, 
by the army. They were to wait, and watch 
the fires and lights until they perceived signs 
of the approach of the enemy to attack the 
camp, when they were secretly to retire on the 
farther side, and so make their escape. 

These preparations, and the march of Temu- 
jin's troops to the place of ambuscade, occupied 
almost the whole of the day, and it was near 
evening before the last of the troops had entered 
the dell. 

They had scarce accomplished this manoeu- 
vre before Yang Khan's army arrived. Yang 
Khan himself was not with them. He had in- 
trusted the expedition to the command of San- 
kum and Yemuka. Indeed, it is probable that 
they were the real originators and contrivers 
of it, and that Yang Khan had only been in- 
duced to give his consent to it — and that per- 

102 Genghis Khan. [1202. 

False hopes. Assault upon the vacant camp. 

haps reluctantly — by their persuasions. San- 
kum and Yemuka advanced cautiously at the 
head of their columns, and when they saw the 
illumination of the camp produced by the lights 
and the camp-fires, they thought at once that 
all was right, and that their old enemy and ri- 
val was now, at last, within their reach and at 
their mercy. 

They brought up the men as near to the 
camp as they could come without being ob- 
served, and then, drawing their bows and mak- 
ing their arrows ready, they advanced furiously 
to the onset, and discharged an immense show- 
er of arrows in among the tents. They ex- 
pected to see thousands of men come rushing 
out from the tents, or starting -up from the 
ground at this sudden assault, but, to their ut- 
ter astonishment, all was as silent and motion- 
less after the falling of the arrows as before. 
They then discharged more arrows, and, finding 
that they could not awaken any signs of life, 
they began to advance cautiously and enter the 
camp. They found, of course, that it had been 
entirely evacuated. They then rode round and 
round the inclosure, examining the ground 
with flambeaux and torches to find the tracks 
which Temujin's army had made in going 
away. The tracks were soon discovered. 

1202.] Progress of the Quarrel. 103 

Advance of the assailants. The ambuscade. 

Those who first saw them immediately set off 
in pursuit of the fugitives, as they supposed 
them, shouting, at the same time, for the rest to 
follow. Some did follow immediately. Others, 
who had strayed away to greater or less dis- 
tances on either side of the camp in search of 
the tracks, fell in by degrees as they received 
the order, while others still remained among 
the tents, where they were to be seen riding to 
and fro, endeavoring to make discoveries, or 
gathering together in groups to express to one 
another their astonishment, or to inquire what 
was next to be done. They, however, all gradu- 
ally fell into the ranks of those who were fol- 
lowing the track which had been found, and 
the whole body went on as fast as they could 
go, and in great confusion. They all supposed 
that Temujin and his troops were making a 
precipitate retreat, and were expecting every 
moment to come up to him in his rear, in which 
case he would be taken at great disadvantage, 
and would be easily overwhelmed. 

Instead of this, Temujin was just coming for- 
ward from his hiding-place, with his squadrons 
all in perfect order, and advancing in a firm, 
steady, and compact column, all being ready at 
the word of command to charge in good order, 
but with terrible impetuosity, upon the advanc- 

104 Genghis Khan. [1202. 

Temujin's victory. Preparations for open war. 

ing enemy. In this way the two armies came 
together. The shock of the encounter was 
terrific. Temujin, as might have been expect- 
ed, was completely victorious. The confused 
masses of Yang Khan's army were overborne, 
thrown into dreadful confusion, and trampled 
under foot. Great numbers were killed. Those 
that escaped being killed at once turned and 
fled. Sankum was wounded in the face by an 
arrow, but he still was able to keep his seat 
upon his horse, and so galloped away. Those 
that succeeded in saving themselves got back 
as soon as they could into the road by which 
they came, and so made their way, in detached 
and open parties, home to Kara'korom. 

Of course, after this, Yang Khan could no 
longer dissimulate his hostility to Temujin, and 
both parties prepared for open war. 

The different historians through whom we 
derive our information in respect to the life and. 
adventures of Genghis Khan have related the 
transactions which occurred after this open out- 
break between Temujin and Yang Khan some- 
what differently. Combining their accounts, 
we learn that both parties, after the battle, open- 
ed negotiations with such neighboring tribes as 
they supposed likely to take sides in the con- 
flict, each endeavoring to gain as many adher- 

1202.] Progress of the Quarrel. 105 

Temujin makes alliances. Turkili. 

ents as possible to his own cause. Temujin 
obtained the alliance and co-operation of a great 
number of Tartar princes who ruled over hordes 
that dwelt in that part of the country, or 
among the mountains around. Some of these 
chieftains were his relatives. Others were in- 
duced to join him by being convinced that he 
would, in the end, prove to be stronger than 
Yang Khan, and being, in some sense, politi- 
cians as well as warriors, they wished to be sure 
of coming out at the close of the contest on the 
victorious side. 

There was a certain khan, named Turkili, 
who was a relative of Temujin, and who com- 
manded a very powerful tribe. On approach- 
ing the confines of his territory, Temujin, not 
being certain of Turkili's disposition toward 
him, sent forward an embassador to announce 
his approach, and to ask if Turkili still retain- 
ed the friendship which had long subsisted be- 
tween them. Turkili might, perhaps, have hes- 
itated which side to join, but the presence of 
Temujin with his whole troop upon his fron- 
tier seems to have determined him, so he sent a 
favorable answer, and at once espoused Temu- 
jin's cause. 

Many other chieftains joined Temujin in 
much the same way, and thus the forces under 

106 Genghis Khan. [1202. 

Solemn league and covenant. Bitter water. Recollection of the ceremony. 

his command were constantly increased. At 
length, in his progress across the country, he 
came with his troop of followers to a place 
where there was a stream of salt or bitter water 
which was unfit to drink. Temujin encamped 
on the shores of this stream, and performed a 
grand ceremony, in which he himself and his 
allies banded themselves together in the most 
solemn manner. In the course of the ceremony 
a horse was sacrificed on the shores of the 
stream. Temujin also took up some of the 
water from the brook and drank it, invoking 
heaven, at the same time, to witness a solemn 
vow which he made, that, as long as he lived, he 
would share with his officers and soldiers the 
bitter as well as the sweet, and imprecating 
curses upon himself if he should ever violate 
his oath. All his allies and officers did the 
same after him. 

This ceremony was long remembered in the 
army, all those who had been present and had 
taken part in it cherishing the recollection of it 
with pride and pleasure; and long afterward, 
when Temujin had attained to the height of 
his power and glory, his generals considered 
their having been present at this first solemn 
league and covenant as conferring upon them a 
sort of title of nobility, by which they and their 

1202.] Progress of the Quarrel. 109 

Temujin's strength. His letter to Vang Khan. 

descendants were to be distinguished forever 
above all those whose adhesion to the cause of 
the conqueror dated from a later time. 

By this time Temujin began to feel quite 
strong. He moved on with his army till he 
came to the borders of a lake which was not a 
great way from Yang Khan's dominions. Here 
he encamped, and, before proceeding any far- 
ther, he determined to try the effect, upon the 
mind of Yang Khan, of a letter of expostula- 
tion and remonstrance; so he wrote to him, 
substantially, as follows : 

"A great many years ago, in the time of my 
father, when you were driven from your throne 
by your enemies, my father came to your aid, 
defeated your enemies, and restored you. 

" At a later time, after I had come into your 
dominions, your brother conspired against you 
with the Markats and the Naymans. I defeat- 
ed them, and helped you to recover your power. 
When you were reduced to great distress, I 
shared with you my flocks and every thing that 
I had. 

"At another time, when you were in circum- 
stances of great danger and distress, you sent 
to me to ask that my four intrepids might go 
and rescue you. I sent them according to your 

110 Genghis Khan. [1202. 

Effect of the letter. Sankum' a anger. 

request, and they delivered you from a most 
imminent danger. They helped you to con- 
quer your enemies, and to recover an immense 
booty from them. 

"In many other instances, when the khans 
have combined against you, I have given you 
most effectual aid in subduing them. 

" How is it, then, after receiving all these 
benefits from me for a period of so many years, 
that you form plans to destroy me in so base 
and treacherous a manner ?" 

This letter seems to have produced some im- 
pression upon Yang Khan's mind ; but he was 
now, it seems, so much under the influence of 
Sankum and Yemuka that he could decide 
nothing for himself. He sent the letter to San- 
kum to ask him what answer should be return- 
ed. But Sankum, in addition to his former 
feelings of envy and jealousy against Temujin, 
was now irritated and angry in consequence of 
the wound that he had received, and determ- 
ined to have his revenge. He would not hear 
of any accommodation. 

In the mean time, the khans of all the Tartar 
and Mongul tribes that lived in the countries 
bordering on Yang Khan's dominions, hearing 
of the rupture between Yang Khan and Temu- 

1202.] Progress of the Quarrel. Ill 

Great accessions to Temujin's army. Mongolistan. 

jin, and aware of the great struggle for the 
mastery between these two potentates that was 
about to take place, became more and more in- 
terested in the quarrel. Temujin was very 
active in opening negotiations with them, and 
in endeavoring to induce them to take his side. 
He was a comparatively young and rising man, 
while Yang Khan was becoming advanced in 
years, and was now almost wholly under the 
influence of Sankum and Yemuka. Temujin, 
moreover, had already acquired great fame and 
great popularity as a commander, and his rep- 
utation was increasing every day, while Yang 
Khan's glory was evidently on the wane. A 
great number of the khans were, of course, pre- 
disposed to take Temujin's side. Others he 
compelled to join him by force, and others he 
persuaded by promising to release them from 
the exactions and the tyranny which Yang 
Khan had exercised over them, and declaring 
that he was a messenger especially sent from 
heaven to accomplish their deliverance. Those 
Asiatic tribes were always ready to believe in 
military messengers sent from heaven to make 
conquests for their benefit. 

Among other nations who joined Temujin at 
this time were the people of his own country of 
Mongolistan Proper. He was received very 

112 Genghis Khan. [1202. 

Final attempt at negotiation. Sankum's answer. 

joyfully by his stepfather, who was in com- 
mand there, and by all his former subjects, and 
they all promised to sustain him in the coming 

After a time, when Temujin had by these 
and similar means greatly increased the number 
of his adherents, and proportionately strength- 
ened his position, he sent an embassador again 
to Yang Khan to propose some accommoda- 
tion. Yang Khan called a council to consider 
the proposal. But Sankum and Yemuka per- 
sisted in refusing to allow any accommodation 
to be made. They declared that they would 
not listen to proposals of peace on any other 
condition than that of the absolute surrender 
of Temujin, and of all who were confederate 
with him, to Yang Khan as their lawful sov- 
ereign. Sankum himself delivered the message 
to the embassador. 

" Tell the rebel Monguls," said he, "that they 
are to expect no peace but by submitting abso- 
lutely to the khan's will ; and as for Temujin, 
I will never see him again till I come to him 
sword in hand to kill him." 

Immediately after this Sankum and Yemuka 
sent off some small plundering expeditions into 
the Mongul country, but they were driven back 
by Temujin's troops without effecting their 

1202.] Progress of the Quarrel. 113 


purpose. The result of these skirmishes was, 
however, greatly to exasperate both parties, 
and to lead them to prepare in earnest for open 


114 Genghis Khan. [1202. 

A council called. Mankerule. Debates. 

Chapter IX. 
The Death of Yang Khan. 

AGRAKD council was now called of all 
the confederates who were leagued with 
Temujin, at a place called Mankerule^ to make 
arrangements for a vigorous prosecution of the 
war. At this council were convened all the 
chieftains and khans that had been induced to 
declare against Yang Khan. Each one came 
attended by a considerable body of troops as 
his escort, and a grand deliberation was held. 
Some were in favor of trying once more to come 
to some terms of accommodation with Yang 
Khan, but Temujin convinced them that there 
was nothing to be hoped for except on condi- 
tion of absolute submission, and that, in that 
case, Yang Khan would never be content until 
he had effected the utter ruin of every one who 
had been engaged in the rebellion. So it was, 
at last, decided that every man should return 
to his own tribe, and there raise as large a force 
as he could, with a view to carrying on the war 
with the utmost vigor. 

1202.] Death of Yang Khan. 115 

Temujin made general-in-chief. He distributes rewards. 

Temujin was formally appointed general-in- 
chief of the army to be raised. There was a 
sort of truncheon or ornamented club, called 
the topaz, which it was customary on such oc- 
casions to bestow, with great, solemnity, on the 
general thus chosen, as his badge of command. 
The topaz was, in this instance, conferred upon 
Temujin with all the usual ceremonies. He 
accepted it on the express condition that every 
man would punctually and implicitly obey all 
his orders, and that he should have absolute 
power to punish any one who should disobey 
him in the way that he judged best, and that 
they should submit without question to all his 
decisions. To these conditions they all sol- 
emnly agreed. 

Being thus regularly placed in command, 
Temujin began by giving places of honor and 
authority to those who left Yang Khan's serv- 
ice to follow him. He took this occasion to re- 
member and reward the two slaves who had 
come to him in the night at his camp, some 
time before, to give him warning of the design 
of Sankum and Yemukato come and surprise 
him there. He gave the slaves their freedom", 
and made provision for their maintenance as 
long as they should live. He also put them on 
the list of. exempts. The exempts were a class 

116 Genghis Khan. [1202. 

Reward of the two slaves. 

of persons upon whom, as a. reward for great 
public services, were conferred certain exclu- 
sive rights and privileges. They had no taxes 
to pay. In case of plunder taken from the en^ 
emy, they received their full share without any 
deduction, while all the others were obliged to 
contribute a portion of their shares for the khan. 
The exempts, too, were allowed various other 
privileges. They had the right to- go into the 
presence of the khan at any time, without wait- 
ing, as others were obliged to do, till they ob- 
tained permission, and, what was more singular 
still, they were entitled to nine pardons for any 
offenses that they might commit, so that it was 
only when they had committed ten misdemean- 
ors or crimes that they were in danger of pun- 
ishment. The privileges which Temujin thus 
bestowed upon the slaves were to be continued 
to their descendants to the seventh generation. 

Temujin rewarded the slaves in this bounti- 
ful manner, partly, no doubt, out of sincere 
gratitude to them for having been the means, 
probably, of saving him and his army from de- 
struction, and partly for effect, in order to im- 
press upon his followers a strong conviction 
that any great services rendered to him or to 
his cause were certain to be well rewarded. 

Temujin now found himself at the head of a 

1202.] Death of Vang Khan. 117 

Organization of the army. Mode of attack. The two armies. 

very large body of men, and his first care was 
to establish a settled system of discipline among 
them, so that they could act with regularity and 
order when coming into battle. He divided his 
army into three separate bodies. The centre 
was composed of his own guards, and was com- 
manded by himself. The wings were formed 
of the squadrons of his confederates and allies. 
His plan in coming into battle was to send for- 
ward the two wings, retaining the centre as a 
reserve, and hold them prepared to rush in with 
irresistible pow§r whenever the time should ar- 
rive at which their coming would produce the 
greatest effect. ' 

When every thing was thus arranged, Te- 
mujin set His army in motion, and began to ad- 
vance toward the country of Yang Khan. The 
squadrons which composed his immense horde 
were so numerous that they covered all the 

In the mean time "Vang Khan had not been 
idle. He, or rather Sankum and Yemuka, act- 
ing in his name, had assembled a great army, 
and he had set out on his march from Karako- 
rom to meet his enemy. His forces, however, 
though more numerous, were by no means so 
well disciplined and arranged as those of Te- 
mujin. They were greatly encumbered, too, 

118 GrENGHIS KHAN. [1202. 

The baggage. Meeting of the two armies. The battle. 

with baggage, the army being followed in its 
march by endless trains of wagons conveying 
provisions, arms, and military stores of all kinds. 
Its progress was, therefore, necessarily slow, for 
the troops of horsemen were obliged to regu- 
late their speed by the movement of the wag- 
ons, which, on account of the heavy burdens 
that they contained, and the want of finished 
roads, was necessarily slow. 

The two armies met upon a plain between 
two rivers, and a most desperate and bloody 
battle ensued. Karasher, Temujin's former tu- 
tor, led one of the divisions of Temujin's army, 
and was opposed by Yemuka, who headed the 
wing of Vang Khan's army which confronted 
his division. The other wings attacked each 
other, too, in the most furious manner, and for 
three hours it was doubtful which party would 
be successful. At length Temujin, who had all 
this time remained in the background with his 
reserve, saw that the favorable moment had ar- 
rived for him to intervene, and he gave the 
order for his guards to charge, which they did 
with such impetuosity as to carry all before 
them. One after another of Yang Khan's 
squadrons was overpowered, thrown into con- 
fusion, and driven from the field. It was not 
long before Yang Khan saw that all was lost 

1202.] Death of Yang Khan. 119 

Vang Khan defeated. His flight. His relations with the Naymans. 

He gave up the contest and fled. A small 
troop of horsemen, consisting of his immediate 
attendants and guards, went with him. At first 
the fugitives took the road toward Karakorom. 
They were, however, so hotly pursued that they 
were obliged to turn off in another direction, 
and, finally, Yang Khan resolved to fly from his 
own country altogether, and appeal for protec- 
tion to a certain chieftain, named Tayian Khan, 
who ruled over a great horde called the Nay- 
mans, one of the most powerful tribes in the 
country of Karakatay. This Tayian was the 
father of Temujin's first wife, the young prin- 
cess to whom he was married during the life- 
time of his father, when he was only about 
fourteen years old. 

It was thought strange that Yang Khan 
should thus seek refuge among the Naymans, 
for he had not, for some time past, been on 
friendly terms either with Tayian, the khan, or 
with the tribe. There were, in particular, a 
considerable number of the subordinate chief- 
tains who cherished a deep-seated resentment 
against him for injuries which he had inflicted 
upon them and upon their country in former 
wars. But all these Tartar tribes entertained 
very high ideas of the obligations of hospital- 
ity, and Yang Khan thought that when the 

120 Genghis Khan. [1202. 

Debates among the Naymana. Tayian. 

Naymans saw him coming among them, a fugi- 
tive and in distress, they would lay aside their 
animosity, and give him a kind reception. 

Indeed, Tayian himself, on whom, as the head 
of the tribe, the chief discredit would attach of 
any evil befalling a visitor and a guest who had 
come in his distress to seek hospitality, was in- 
clined, at first, to receive his enemy kindly, and 
to offer him a refuge. He debated the matter 
with the other chieftains after Yang Khan had 
entered his dominions and was approaching his 
camp ; but they were extremely unwilling that 
any mercy should be shown to their fallen en- 
emy. They represented to Tayian how great 
an enemy he had always been to them. They 
exaggerated the injuries which he had done 
them, and represented them in their worst 
light. They said, moreover, that, by harboring 
Vang Khan, they should only involve them- 
selves in a war with Temujin, who would un- 
doubtedly follow his enemy into their country, 
and would greatly resent any attempt on their 
part to protect him. 

These considerations had great effect on the 
mind of Tayian, but still he could not bring 
himself to give his formal consent to any act 
of hostility against Yang Khan. So the other 
chieftains held a council among themselves to 

1202.] Death of Yang Khan. 121 

Plan of the chieftains. Vang Khan beheaded. 

consider what they should do. They resolved 
to take upon themselves the responsibility of 
slaying Yang Khan. 

" We can not induce Tayian openly to au- 
thorize it," they said, "but he secretly desires 
it, and he will be glad when it is done." 

Tayian knew very well what course things 
were taking, though he pretended not to know, 
and so allowed the other chiefs to go on in their 
own way. 

They accordingly fitted out a troop, and two 
of the chieftains — the two who felt the most 
bitter and determined hatred against Yang 
Khan* — placing themselves at the head of it, set 
off to intercept him. He had lingered on the 
way, it seems, after entering the ISTayman terri- 
tory, in order to learn, before he advanced too 
far, what reception he was likely to meet with. 
The troop of Naymans came suddenly upon 
him in his encampment, slew all his attendants, 
and, seizing Yang Khan, they cut off his head. 
They left the body where it lay, and carried off 
the head to show it to Tayian. 

Tayian was secretly pleased, and he could 
not quite conceal the gratification which the 
death of his old enemy afforded him. He even 
addressed the head in words of scorn and spite, 
which revealed the exultation that he felt at 

122 Genghis Khan. [1202. 

Tayian's deceit. Disposal made of his head. Sankum slain. 

the downfall of his rival. Then, however, 
checking himself, he blamed the chieftains for 
killing him. 

"Considering his venerable age," said he, 
" and his past greatness and renown as a prince 
and commander, you would have done much 
better to have acted as his guards than as his 

Tayian ordered the head to be treated with 
the utmost respect. After properly preparing 
it, by some process of drying and preserving, he 
caused it to be inclosed in a case of silver, and 
set in a place of honor. 

While the preparations for this sort of en- 
tombment were making, the head was an object 
of a very solemn and mysterious interest for all 
the horde. They said that the tongue thrust 
itself several times out of the mouth, and the 
soothsayers, who watched the changes with 
great attention, drew from them important 
presages in respect to the coming events of the 
war. These presages were strongly in favor 
of the increasing prosperity and power of Te- 

Sankum, the son of Vang Khan, was killed 
in the battle, but Yemuka escaped. 

1202.] The Death of Yemuka. 12; 

The victory complete. Exaggeration. The plunder. 

Chapter X. 
The Death of Yemuka. 

IN the mean time, while these events had 
been occurring in the country of the Nay- 
mans, whither Yang Khan had fled, Temujin 
was carrying all before him in the country of 
Yang Khan. His victory in the battle was 
complete ; and it must have been a very great 
battle, if any reliance is to be placed on the ac- 
counts given of the number slain, which it was 
said amounted to forty thousand. These num- 
bers are, however, greatly exaggerated. And 
then, besides, the number slain in such barba- 
rian conflicts was always much greater, in pro- 
portion to the numbers engaged, than it is in the 
better-regulated warfare of civilized nations in 
modern times. 

At all events, Temujin gained a very grand 
and decisive victory. He took a great many 
prisoners and a great deal of plunder. All 
those trains of wagons fell into his hands, and 
the contents of many of them were extremely 
valuable. He took also a great number of 

124 Genghis Khan. [1202. 

Great accession. The khans submit. Sankum and Yemuka. 

horses. Most of these were horses that had 
belonged to the men who were killed or who 
had been made prisoners. All the best troops 
that remained of Yang Khan's army after the 
battle also went over to his side. They consid- 
ered that Yang Khan's power was now entire- 
ly overthrown, and that thenceforth Temnjin 
would be the acknowledged ruler of the whole 
country. They were accordingly ready at once 
to transfer their allegiance to him. 

Yery soon Temujin received the news of 
Yang Khan's death from his father-in-law Tay- 
ian, and then proceeded with more vigor than 
before to take possession of all his dominions. 
The khans who had formerly served Under 
Yang Khan sent in their adhesion to him one 
after another. They not only knew that all 
farther resistance would be useless, but they 
were, in fact, well pleased to transfer their al- 
legiance to their old friend and favorite. Te- 
mujin made a sort of triumphal march through 
the country, being received every where with 
rejoicings and acclamations of welcome. His 
old enemies, Sankum and Yemuka, had disap- 
peared. Yemuka, who had been, after all, the 
leading spirit in the opposition to Temujin, 
still held a body of armed men together, con- 
sisting of all the troops that he had been able 

1202.] The Death of Yemuka. 125 

Hakembu and his daughter. Hakembu's fears. 

to rally after the battle, but it was not known 
exactly where he had gone. 

The other relatives and friends of Yang 
Khan went over to Temujin's side without any 
delay. Indeed, they vied with each other to 
see who should most recommend themselves to 
his favor. A brother of Yang Khan, who was 
an influential and powerful chieftain, came 
among the rest to tender his services, and, by 
way of a present to conciliate Temujin's good 
will, he brought him his daughter, whom he of- 
fered to Temujin as an addition to the number 
of his wives. 

Temujin received the brother very kindly. 
He accepted the present which he brought him 
of his daughter, but, as he had already plenty 
of wives, and as one of his principal officers, the 
captain of his guards, seemed to take a special 
fancy to her, he very generously, as was thought, 
passed over the young lady to him. Of course, 
the young lady herself had nothing to say in 
the case. She was obliged to acquiesce sub- 
missively in any arrangement which her father 
and the other khans thought proper to make in 
respect to the disposal of her. 

The name of the prince her father was Ha- 
kembu. He came into Temujin's camp with 
many misgivings, fearing that, as he was a 

126 Genghis Khan. [1202. 

Temujin 1 s gratitude. His reply. 

brother of Yang Khan, Temujin might feel a 
special resentment against him, and, perhaps, 
refuse to accept his submission and his proffer- 
ed presents. When, therefore, he found how 
kindly he was received, his mind was greatly 
relieved, and he asked Temujin to appoint him 
to some command in his army. 

Temujin replied that he would do it with 
great pleasure, and the more readily because it 
was the brother of Yang Khan who asked it. 
"Indeed," said he to Hakembu, "I owe you 
all the kind treatment in my power for your 
brother's sake, in return for the succor and pro- 
tection for which I was indebted to him, in my 
misfortunes, in former times, when he received 
me, a fugitive and an exile, at his court, and 
bestowed upon me so many favors. I have 
never forgotten, and never shall forget, the 
great obligations I am under to him ; and al- 
though in later years he turned against me, 
still I have never blamed either him or his son 
Sankum for this, but have constantly attrib- 
uted it to the false representations and evil in- 
fluence of Yemuka, who has always been my 
implacable enemy. I do not, therefore, feel 
any resentment against Yang Khan for having 
thus turned against me, nor do I any the less 
respect his memory on that account ; and I am 

1202.] The Death of Yemuka. 127 

Yemuka makes his escape. Arrives in Tayian's dominions. 

very glad that an opportunity now occurs for 
me to make, through you, his brother, some 
small acknowledgment of the debt of gratitude 
which I owe him." 

So Temujin gave Hakembu an honorable 
post in his army, and treated him in all respects 
with great consideration. If he acted usually 
in this generous manner, it is not at all surpris- 
ing that he acquired that boundless influence 
over the minds of his followers which aided 
him so essentially in attaining his subsequent 
greatness and renown. 

In the mean time, although Sankum was 
killed, Yemuka had succeeded in making his 
escape, and, after meeting with various adven- 
tures, he finally reached the country of Tay- 
ian. He led with him there all that portion 
of Yang Khan's army that had saved them- 
selves from being killed or made prisoners, 
and also a great number of officers. These 
broken troops Yemuka had reorganized, as well 
as he could, by collecting the scattered rem- 
nants and rearranging the broken squadrons, 
and in this manner, accompanied by such of 
the sick and wounded as were able to ride, had 
arrived in Tayian's dominions. He was known 
to be a general of great abilities, and he was 
very favorably received in Tayian's court. 

128 Genghis Khan. [1202. 

Tayian's conversations with Yemuka. 

Indeed, Tayian, having heard rumors of the 
rapid manner in which Temujin was extending 
his conquests and his power, began to be some- 
what jealous of him, and to think that it was 
time for him to take measures to prevent this 
aggrandizement of his son-in-law from going 
too far. 

Of course, Tayian held a great many conver- 
sations with Yemuka in respect to Temujin's 
character and schemes. These Yemuka took 
care to represent in the most unfavorable light, 
in order to increase as much as possible Tay- 
ian's feelings of suspicion and jealousy. He 
represented Temujin as a very ambitious man, 
full of schemes for his own aggrandizement, 
and without any sentiments of gratitude or of 
honor to restrain him in the execution of them. 
He threw wholly upon him the responsibility 
of the war with Yang Khan. It grew, he said, 
out of plots which Temujin had formed to de- 
stroy both Yang Khan and his son, notwith- 
standing the great obligations he had been un- 
der to them for their kindness to him in his 
misfortunes. Yemuka urged Tayian also to 
arouse himself, before it was too late, to guard 
himself from the danger. 

" He is your son, it is true," said he, "and he 
professes to be your friend, but he is so treach- 

1202.] The Death of Yemuka. 129 

Yemuka's representations of Temujin's character. Plots farmed. 

erous and unprincipled that you can place no 
reliance upon him whatever, and, notwithstand- 
ing all your past kindness to him, and the tie 
of relationship which ought to bind him to you, 
he will as readily form plans to compass your 
destruction as 4ie would that of any other man 
the moment he imagines that you stand in the 
way of the accomplishment of his ambitious 

These representations, acting upon Tayian's 
natural apprehensions and fears, produced a 
very sensible effect, and at length Tayian was 
induced to take some measures for defending 
himself from the threatened danger. So he 
opened negotiations with the khans of vari- 
ous tribes which he thought likely to join 
him, and soon formed quite a powerful league 
of the enemies of Temujin, and of all who 
were willing to join in an attempt to restrict 
his power. 

These steps were all taken with great secrecy, 
for Yemuka and Tayian were very desirous 
that Temujin should know nothing of the 
league which they were forming against him 
until their arrangements were fully matured, 
and they were ready for action. They did not, 
however, succeed in keeping the secret as long 
as they intended. They were generally care- 

130 Genghis Khan. [1202. 

Alakus. The plots revealed to Temujin. He is deceived. 

ful not to propose to any khan or chieftain to 
join them in their league until they had first 
fully ascertained that he was favorable to the 
object of it. But, growing less cautious as they 
went on, they at last made a mistake. Tayian 
sent proposals to a certain prince or khan, 
named Alakus, inviting him to join the league. 
These proposals were contained in a letter 
which was sent by a special messenger. The 
letter specified all the particulars of the league, 
with a statement of the plans which the allies 
were intending to pursue, and an enumeration 
of the principal khans or tribes that were al- 
ready engaged. 

Now it happened that this Alakus, who 
reigned over a nation of numerous and power- 
ful tribes on the confines of China, was, for 
some reason or other, inclined to take Temu- 
jin's side in the quarrel. So he detained the 
messenger who brought the letter as a prison- 
er, and sent the letter itself, containing all the 
particulars of the conspiracy, at once to Temu- 
jin. Temujin was greatly surprised at receiv- 
ing the intelligence, for, up to that moment, 
he had considered his father-in-law Tayian as 
one of his best and most trustworthy friends. 
He immediately called a grand council of war 
to consider what was to be done. 

1203.] The Death of Ye m it k a. 131 

The young Prince JughL Council of war. 

Temujin had a son named Jughi, who had 
now grown up to be a young man. Jughi's 
father thought it was now time for his son to 
begin to take his place and act his part among 
the other princes and chieftains of his court, 
and he accordingly gave him a seat at this 
council, and thus publicly recognized him, for 
the first time, as one of the chief personages of 
the state. 

The council, after hearing a statement of the 
case in respect to the league which Tayian and 
the others were forming, were strongly inclined 
to combine their forces and march at once to 
attack the enemy before their plans should be 
more fully matured. But there was a difficulty 
in respect to horses. The horses of the differ- 
ent hordes that belonged to Temujin's army 
had become so much exhausted by the long 
marches and other fatigues that they had un- 
dergone in the late campaigns, that they would 
not be in a fit condition to commence a new 
expedition until they had had some time to rest 
and recruit. But a certain khan, named Bulay, 
an uncle of Temujin's, at once removed this 
objection by offering to furnish a full supply 
of fresh horses for the whole army from his 
his own herds. This circumstance shows on 
what an immense scale the pastoral occupations 

132 Genghis Khan. [1203. 

Yemuka and Tayian. Temujin crosses the frontier. 

of the great Asiatic chieftains were conducted 
in those days. 

Temujin accepted this offer on the part of his 
uncle, and preparations were immediately made 
for the marching of the expedition. As soon 
as the news of these preparations reached Ye- 
muka, he urged Tayian to assemble the allied 
troops immediately, and go out to meet Temu- 
jin and his army before they should cross the 

"It is better," said he, addressing Tayian, 
" that you should meet and fight him on his 
own ground, rather than to wait until he has 
crossed the frontier and commenced his ravages 
in yours." 

"lo," said Tayian, in reply, "it is better to 
wait. The farther he advances on his march, 
the more his horses and his men will be spent 
with fatigue, the scantier will be their supplies, 
and the more difficult will he find it to effect 
his retreat after we shall hav.e gained a victory 
over him in battle." 

So Tayian, though he began to assemble his. 
forces, did not advance ; and when Temujin, at 
the head of his host, reached the Nayman fron- 
tier — for the country over which Tayian reign- 
ed was called the country of the Kaymans — he 
was surprised to find no enemy there to defend 

1203.] The Death of Yemuka. 133 

His advance. Preparations for battle. Kushluk and Jughi. 

it. He was the more surprised at this from the 
circumstance that the frontier, being formed by 
a river, might have been very easily defended. 
But when he arrived at the bank of the river 
the way was clear. He immediately crossed 
the stream with all his forces, and then marched 
on into the Nay man territory. 

Temujin took good care, as he advanced, to 
guard against the danger into which Tayian 
had predicted that he would fall — that of ex- 
hausting the strength of his men and of his 
animals, and also his stores of food. He took 
good care to provide and to take with him 
abundant supplies, and also to advance so care- 
fully and by such easy stages as to keep both 
the men and the horses fresh and in full strength 
all the way. In this order and condition he at 
last "arrived at the spot where Tayian had form- 
ed his camp and assembled his armies. 

Both sides immediately marshaled their 
troops in order of battle. Yemuka was chief 
in command on Tayian's side. He was assist- 
ed by a young prince, the son of Tayian, whose 
name was Kushluk. On . the other hand, Ju- 
ghi," the young son of Temujin, who had been 
brought forward at the council, was appointed 
to a very prominent position on his father's 
side. Indeed, these two young princes, who 

134 Genghis Khan. [1203. 

Great battle. Temujin again victorious. Tayian killed, 

were animated by an intense feeling of rivalry 
and emulation toward each other, were appoint- 
ed to lead the van on their respective sides in 
commencing the battle ; Jughi advancing first 
to the attack, and being met by Kushluk, to 
whom was committed the charge of repelling 
him. The two princes fought throughout the 
battle with the utmost bravery, and both of 
them acquired great renown. 

The battle was commenced early in the 
morning and continued all day. In the end, 
Temujin was completely victorious. Tayian 
was mortally wounded early in the day. He 
was immediately taken off the field, and every 
possible effort was made to save his life, but he 
soon ceased to breathe. His son, the Prince 
Kushluk, fought valiantly during the whole 
day, but toward night, finding that all was lost, 
he fled, taking with him as many of the troops 
as he could succeed in getting together in the 
confusion, and at the head of this band made 
the best of his way into the dominions of one 
of his uncles, his father's brother, where he 
hoped to find a temporary shelter until he 
should have time to determine what was to be 

As for Yemuka, after fighting with desper- 
ate fury all day, he was at last, toward night, 

1203.] The Death of Yemuka. 135 

Yemuka is beheaded. 

surrounded and overpowered, and so made 
prisoner. Temujin ordered his head to be cut 
off immediately after the battle was over. He 
considered him, not as an honorable and open 
foe, but rather as a rebel and traitor, and, con- 
sequently, undeserving of any mercy. 

136 Genghis Khan. [1203. 

Plans for the formation of a government. 

Chapter XL 
Establishment of the Empire. 

THERE was now a vast extent of country, 
comprising a very large portion of the in- 
terior of the Asiatic Continent, and, indeed, an 
immense number of wealthy, powerful hordes, 
under Temujin's dominion, and he at once re- 
solved to consolidate his dominion by organ- 
izing a regular imperial government over the 
whole. There were a few more battles to be 
fought in order to subdue certain khans who 
still resisted, and some cities to be taken. But 
these victories were soon obtained, and, in a 
very short time after the great battle with Tay- 
ian, Temujin found himself the undisputed 
master of what to him was almost the whole 
known world. All open opposition to his rule 
had wholly disappeared, and nothing now re- 
mained for him to do but to perfect the organ- 
ization of his army, to enact his code of laws, 
to determine upon his capital, and to inaugu- 
rate generally a system of civil government such 
as is required- for the management of the inter- 
nal affairs of a great empire. 

1203.] The Empire. 137 

His court at Karakorom. Embassadors. Temujin forms a constitution. 

Temujin determined upon making Karako- 
rom his capital. He accordingly proceeded to 
that city at the head of his troops, and entered 
it in great state. Here he established a very 
brilliant court, and during all the following 
winter, while he was occupied with the prelim- 
inary arrangements for the organization and 
consolidation of his empire, there came to him 
there a continual succession of embassadors 
from the various nations and tribes of central 
Asia to congratulate him on his victories, and 
to offer the allegiance or the alliance of the 
khans which they respectively represented. 
These embassadors all came attended by troops 
of horsemen splendidly dressed and fully arm- 
ed, and the gayety and magnificence of the 
scenes which were witnessed in Karakorom 
during the winter surpassed all that had ever 
been seen there before. 

In the mean time, while the attention of the 
masses of the people was occupied and amused 
by these parades, Temujin was revolving in 
his mind the form of constitution which he 
should establish for his empire, and the system 
of laws by which his people should be govern- 
ed. He conferred privately with some of his 
ablest counselors on this subject, and caused a 
system of government and a code of laws to be 

138 Genghis Khan. [1203. 

Election of khans. Division of the country. 

drawn up by secretaries. The details of these 
proposed enactments were discussed in the 
privy council, and, when the whole had been 
well digested and matured, Temujin, early in 
the spring, sent out a summons, calling upon 
all the great princes and khans throughout his 
dominions to assemble at an appointed day, in 
order that he might lay his proposed system 
before them. 

Temujin determined to make his government 
a sort of elective monarchy. The grand khan 
was to be chosen by the votes of all the other 
khans, who were to be assembled in a general 
convocation for this purpose whenever a new 
khan was to be installed. Any person who 
should cause himself to be proclaimed grand 
khan, or who should in any other way attempt 
to assume the supreme authority without hav- 
ing been duly elected by the other khans, was 
to suffer death. 

The country was divided into provinces, over 
each of which a subordinate khan ruled as gov- 
ernor. These governors were, however, to be 
strictly responsible to the grand khan. When- 
ever summoned by the grand khan they were 
required to repair at once to the capital, there 
to render an account of their administration, 
and to answer any charges which had been 

1203.] The Empiee. 139 

Organization of the army. Arms and ammunition. 

made against them. Whenever any serious 
case of disobedience or maladministration was 
proved against them they were to suffer 

Temujin remodeled and reorganized the 
army on the same or similar principles. The 
men were divided into companies of about one 
hundred men each, and every ten of these com- 
panies was formed into a regiment, which, of 
course, contained about a thousand men. The 
regiments were formed into larger bodies of 
about ten thousand each. Officers were ap- 
pointed, of all the various necessary grades, to 
command these troops,' and arrangements were 
made for having supplies of arms and ammuni- 
tion provided and stored in magazines under 
the care of the officers, ready to be distributed 
to the men whenever they should require. 

Temujin also made provision for the build- 
ing of cities and palaces, the making of roads, 
and the construction of fortifications, by ordain- 
ing that all the people should work one day in 
every week on these public works whenever 

Although the country over which this new 
government was to be established was now at 
peace, Temujin was very desirous that the peo- 
ple should not lose the martial spirit which had 

140 Genghis Khan. [1203. 

Hunting. Slaves. Polygamy and slavery. 

thus far characterized them. He made laws to 
encourage and regulate hunting, especially the 
hunting of wild beasts among the mountains; 
and subsequently he organized many hunting 
excursions himself, in connection with the lords 
of his court and the other great chieftains, in 
order to awaken an interest in the dangers and 
excitements of the chase among all the khans. 
He also often employed bodies of troops in these 
expeditions, which he considered as a sort of 
substitute for war. 

He required that none of the natives of the 
country should be employed as servants, or al- 
lowed to perform any menial duties whatever. 
For these purposes the people were required to 
depend on captives taken in war and enslaved. 
One reason why he made this rule was to stim- 
ulate the people on the frontiers to make hos- 
tile excursions among their neighbors, in order 
to supply themselves and the country generally 
with slaves. 

The right of property in the slaves thus taken 
was very strictly guarded, and very severe laws 
were made to enforce it. It was forbidden, on 
pain of death, to harbor a slave, or give him 
meat or drink, clothing or shelter, without per- 
mission from his master. The penalty was 
death, too, if a person meeting a fugitive slave 

1203.] The Empiee. 141 

Concubines. Posthumous marriages. 

neglected to seize and secure him, and deliver 
him to his master. 

Every man could marry as many wives as 
he pleased, and his female slaves were all, by 
law, entirely at his disposal to be made con- 

There was one very curious arrangement, 
which grew out of the great importance which, 
as we have already seen, was attached to the 
ties of relationship and family connection among 
these pastoral nations. Two families could bind 
themselves together and make themselves le- 
gally one, in respect to their connection, by a fic- 
titious marriage arranged between children no 
longer living. In such a case the contracts 
were regularly made, just as if the children 
were still alive, and the ceremonies were all 
duly performed. After this the two families 
were held to be legally allied, and they were 
bound to each other by all the obligations 
which would have arisen in the case of a real 
marriage. This custom is said to be continued 
among some of the Tartar nations to the pres- 
ent day. The people think, it is said, that such 
a wedding ceremony, duly solemnized by the 
parents of children who are dead, takes effect 
upon the subjects of it in the world of spirits, 
and that thus their union, though arranged and 

142 Genghis Khan. [1203. 

Punishment for theft. Eeligion. Freedom of choice. 

consecrated on earth, is confirmed and consum- 
mated in heaven. 

Besides these peculiar and special enact- 
ments, there were the ordinary laws against 
robbery, theft, murder, adultery, and false wit- 
ness. The penalties for these offenses were 
generally severe. The punishment for stealing 
cattle was death. For petty thefts the criminal 
was to be beaten with a stick, the number of 
the blows being proportioned to the nature and 
aggravation of the offense. He could, however, 
if he had the means, buy himself off from this 
punishment by paying nine times the value of 
the thing stolen. 

In respect to religion, the constitution which 
Temujin made declared that there was but one 
God, the creator of heaven and earth, and it 
acknowledged him as the supreme ruler and 
governor of all mankind, the being "who alone 
gives life and death, riches and poverty, who 
grants and denies whatever he pleases, and ex- 
ercises over all things an absolute power." 
This one fundamental article of faith was all 
that was required. For the rest, Temujin left 
the various nations and tribes throughout his 
dominions to adopt such modes of worship and 
to celebrate such religious rites as they sever- 
ally preferred, and forbade that any one should 

1203.] The L'mpike. 143 

Assembly of the khans. Dilon Ildak. Their encampment. 

be disturbed or molested in any way on ac- 
count of his religion, whatever form it might 

At length the time arrived for the grand as- 
sembly of the khans to be convened. The 
meeting was called, not at Karakorom, the cap- 
ital, but at a central spot in the interior of the 
country, called Dilon Ildak. Such a spot was 
much more convenient than any town or city 
would have been for the place of meeting, on 
account of the great troops of horses and the 
herds of animals by which the khans were al- 
ways accompanied in all their expeditions, and 
which made it necessary that, whenever any 
considerable number of them were to be con- 
vened, the place chosen should be suitable for 
a grand encampment, with extensive and fer- 
tile pasture-grounds extending all around. 

As the several khans came in, each at the 
head of his own troop of retainers and follow- 
ers, they severally chose their ground, pitchecl 
their tents, and turned their herds of horses, 
sheep, and oxen out to pasture on the plains. 
Thus, in the course of a few days, the whole 
country in every direction became dotted with 
villages of tents, among which groups of horse- 
men were now and then to be seen galloping to 
and fro, and small herds of cattle, each under 

144 Genghis Khan. [1203. 

Tents and herds of cattle. Temujin's address. 

the care of herdsmen and slaves, moved slowly, 
cropping the grass as they advanced along the 
hill-sides and through the valleys. 

At length, when all had assembled, a spot 
was selected in the centre of the encampment 
for the performance of the ceremonies. A 
raised seat was prepared for Temujin in a sit- 
uation suitable to enable him to address the 
assembly from it.* Before and around this the 
various khans and their attendants and follow- 
ers gathered, and Temujin made them an ora- 
tion, in which he explained the circumstances 
under which they had come together, and an- 
nounced to them his plans and intentions in re- 
spect to the future. He stated to them that, in 
consequence of the victories which he had gain- 
ed through their co-operation and assistance, the 
foundation of a great empire had been laid, and 
that he had now called them together in order 
that they might join with him in organizing 
the requisite government for such a dominion, 
and in electing a prince or sovereign to rule 
over it. He called upon them first to proceed 
to the election of this ruler. 

The khans accordingly proceeded to the 
election. This was, in fact, only a form, for 
Temujin himself was, of course, to be chosen. 
* See Frontispiece. 

1203.] The Empire. 145 

Temnjin is elected grand khan. He is enthroned and honored. 

The election was, however, made, and one of the 
oldest and most venerable of the khans was 
commissioned to announce the result. He came 
forward with great solemnity, and, in the pres- 
ence of the whole assembly, declared that the 
choice had fallen upon Temujin. He then 
made an address, to Temujin himself, who was 
seated during this part of the ceremony upon 
a carpet of black felt spread upon the ground. 
In the address the khan reminded Temujin 
that the exalted authority with which' he was 
now invested came from God, and that to God 
he was responsible for the right exercise of his 
power. If he governed his subjects well, God, 
he said, would render his reign prosperous and 
happy ; but if, on the other hand, he abused his 
power, he would come to a miserable end. 

After the conclusion of the address, seven of 
the khans, who had been designated for this 
purpose, came and lifted Temujin up and bore 
him away to a throne which had been set up 
for him in the midst of the assembly, where all 
the khans, and their various bodies of attend- 
ants, came and offered him their homage. 

Among others there came a certain old 

prophet, named Kokza, who was held in great 

veneration by all the people on account of his 

supposed inspiration and the austere life which 


146 Genghis Khan. [1203. 

The old prophet Kokza. Probably insane. 

he led. He used to go very thinly clad, and 
with his feet bare summer and winter, and it 
was supposed that his power of enduring the 
exposures to which he was thus subject was 
something miraculous and divine. He had re- 
ceived accordingly from the people a name 
which signified the image of God, and he was 
every where looked upon as inspired. He said, 
moreover, that a white horse came to him from 
time to time and carried him up to heaven, 
where he conversed face to face with God, and 
received the revelations which he was com- 
missioned to make to men. All this the peo- 
ple fully believed. The man may have been an 
impostor, or he may have been insane. Often- 
times, in such cases, the inspiration which the 
person supposes he is the subject of arises from 
a certain spiritual exaltation, which, though it 
does not wholly unfit him for the ordinary 
avocations and duties of life, still verges upon 
insanity, and often finally lapses into it en- 

This old prophet advanced toward Temujin 
while he was seated on his carpet of felt, and 
made a solemn address to him in the hearing 
of all the assembled khans. He was charged, 
he said, with a message from heaven in respect 
to the kingdom and dominion of Temujin, 

1203.] The Empire. 147 

His predictions. The title Genghis Khan. Homage of the khans. 

which had been, he deckred, ordained of God, 
and had now been established in fulfillment of 
the Divine will. He was commissioned, more- 
over, he said, to give to Temujin the style and 
title of Genghis Khan,* and to declare that his 
kingdom should not only endure while he lived, 
but should descend to his posterity, from gen- 
eration to generation, to the remotest times. 

The people, on hearing this address, at once 
adopted the name which the prophet had given 
to their new ruler, and saluted Temujin with it 
in long and loud acclamations. It was thus 
that our hero received the name of Genghis 
Khan, which soon extended its fame through 
every part of Asia, and has since become so 
greatly renowned through all the world. 

Temujin, or Genghis Khan, as we must now 
henceforth call him, having thus been proclaim- 
ed by the acclamations of the people under the 
new title with which the old prophet had in- 
vested him, sat upon«his throne while his sub- 
jects came to render him their homage. First 
the khans themselves came up, and kneeled 
nine times before him, in token of their abso- 
lute and complete submission to his authority. 

* The signification of these words, in the language of the 
Monguls, was great khan of khans. 

148 Genghis Khan. [1203. 

Inaugural address. 

After they had retired the people themselves 
came, and made their obeisance in the same 
manner. As they rose from their knees after 
the last prostration, they made the air resound 
once more with their shouts, crying " Long live 
great Genghis Khan !" in repeated and pro- 
longed acclamations. 

After this the new emperor made what might 
be called his inaugural address. The khans 
and their followers gathered once more before 
his throne while he delivered an oration to 
them, in which he thanked them for the honor 
which they had done him in raising him to the 
supreme power, and announced to them the 
principles by which he should be guided in the 
government of his empire. He promised to be 
just in his dealings with his subjects, and also 
to be merciful. He would defend them, he 
said, against all their enemies. He would do 
every thing in his power to promote their com- 
fort and happiness. He would lead them to 
honor and glory, and wo*ld make their names 
known throughout the earth. He would deal 
impartially, too, with all the different tribes and 
hordes, and would treat the Monguls and the 
Tartars, the two great classes of his subjects, 
with equal favor. 

When the speech was concluded Genghis 

1203.] The Empiee. 149 

Rejoicings. Departure of the khans. 

Khan distributed presents to all the subordi- 
nate khans, both great and small. He also 
made magnificent entertainments, which were 
continued for several days. After thus spend- 
ing some time in feasting and rejoicings, the 
khans one after another took their leave of the 
emperor, the great encampment was broken up, 
and the different tribes set out on their return 
to their several homes. 

150 Genghis Khan. [1203. 

Karakorom. Insignificance of cities and towns. 

Chapter XII. 
Dominions of Genghis Khan. 

AFTER the ceremonies of the inauguration 
were concluded, Genghis Khan returned, 
with the officers of his court and his immediate 
followers, to Karakorom. This town, though 
nominally the capital of the empire, was, after 
all, quite an insignificant place. Indeed, but 
little importance was attached to any villages 
or towns in those days, and there were very 
few fixed places of residence that were of any 
considerable account. The reason is, that towns 
are the seats of commerce and manufactures, 
and they derive their chief importance from 
those pursuits ; whereas the Monguls and Tar- 
tars led almost exclusively a wandering and 
pastoral life, and all their ideas of wealth and 
grandeur were associated with great flocks and 
herds of cattle, and handsome tents, and long 
trains of wagons loaded with stores of clothing, 
arms, and other movables, and vast encamp- 
ments in the neighborhood of rich and extend- 
ed pasture-grounds. Those who lived perma- 

1203.] His Dominions. 151 

Account of Karakorom. The buildings. 

nently in fixed houses they looked down upon 
as an inferior class, confined to one spot by 
their poverty or their toil, while they them- 
selves could roam at liberty with their flocks 
and herds over the plains, riding fleet horses or 
dromedaries, and encamping where they pleased 
in the green valleys or on the banks of the me- 
andering streams. 

Karakorom was accordingly by no means a 
great and splendid city. It was surrounded by 
what was called a mud wall — that is, a wall made 
of blocks of clay dried in the sun. The houses 
of the inhabitants were mere hovels, and even 
the palace of the king, and all the other public 
buildings, were of very frail construction ; for 
all the architecture of the Monguls in those 
days took its character from the tent, which 
was the type and model, so to speak, of all other 

The new emperor, however, did not spend a 
great deal of his time at Karakorom. He was 
occupied for some years in making excursions 
at the head of his troops to various parts of his 
dominions, for the purpose of putting down in- 
surrections, overawing discontented and insub- 
ordinate khans, and settling disputes of various 
kinds arising between the different hordes. In 
these expeditions he was accustomed to move 

152 Genghis Khan. [1203. 

The grand encampments. Construction of the tents. 

by easy marches across the plains at the head 
of his army, and sometimes would establish 
himself in a sort of permanent camp, where he 
would remain, perhaps, as in a fixed residence, 
for weeks or months at a time. 

Not only Genghis Khan himself, but many 
of the other great chieftains, were accustomed 
to live in this manner, and one of their encamp- 
ments, if we could have seen it, would have 
been regarded by us as a great curiosity. The 
ground was regularly laid out, like a town, into 
quarters, squares, and streets, and the space 
which it covered was sometimes so large as to 
extend nearly a mile in each direction. The 
tent of the khan himself was in the centre. A 
space was reserved for it there large enough not 
only for the grand tent itself, but also for the 
rows of smaller tents near, for the wives and for 
other women belonging to the khan's family, 
and also for the rows of carts or wagons con- 
taining the stores of provisions, the supplies of 
clothing and arms, and the other valuables 
which these wandering chieftains always took 
with them in all their peregrinations. 

The tent of the khan in summer was made 
of a sort of calico, and in winter of felt, which 
was much warmer. It was raised very high, 
so as to be seen above all the rest of the en- 

1203.] His Dominions. 153 

Dwellings of the women. Mountains and wild beasts. 

campment, and it was painted in gay colors, 
and adorned with other barbaric decorations. 

The dwellings in which the women were 
lodged, which were around or near the great 
tent, were sometimes tents, and sometimes little 
huts made of wood. When they were of wood 
they were made very light, and were construct- 
ed in such a manner that they could be taken 
to pieces at the shortest notice, and packed on 
carts or wagons, in order to be transported to 
the next place of encampment, whenever, for 
any reason, it became necessary for their lord 
and master to remove his domicil to a differ- 
ent ground. 

A large portion of the country which was 
included within the limits of Genghis Khan's 
dominions was fertile ground, which produced 
abundance of grass for the pasturage of the 
flocks and herds, and many springs and streams 
of water. There were, however, several dis- 
tricts of mountainous country, which were the 
refuge of tigers, leopards, wolves, and other fe- 
rocious beasts of prey. It was among these 
mountains that the great hunting parties which 
Genghis Khan organized from time to time 
went in search of their game. There was a 
great officer of the kingdom, called the grand 
huntsman, who had the superintendence and 

154 Genghis Khan. [1203. 

Hunting. The danger of hunting in those days. 

charge of every thing relating to hunting and 
to game throughout the empire. The grand 
huntsman was an officer of the very highest 
rank. He even took precedence of the first 
ministers of state. Genghis Khan appointed 
his son Jughi, who has already been mentioned 
in connection with the great council of war 
called by his father, and with the battle which 
was subsequently fought, and in which he gain- 
ed great renown, to the office of grand hunts- 
man, and, at the same time, made two of the 
older and more experienced khans his minis- 
ters of state. 

The hunting of wild beasts as ferocious as 
those that infested the mountains of Asia is a 
very dangerous amusement even at the present 
day, notwithstanding the advantage which the 
huntsman derives from the use of gunpowder, 
and rifled barrels, and fulminating bullets. But 
in those days, when the huntsman had no bet- 
ter weapons than bows and arrows, javelins, 
and spears, the undertaking was dangerous in 
the extreme. An African lion of full size used 
to be considered as a match for forty men in 
the days when only ordinary weapons were 
used against him, ancl it was considered almost 
hopeless to attack him with less than that num- 
ber. And even with that number to waylay 

1203.] His Dominions. 155 

Modern weapons. Carabines. Fulminating balls. 

and assail him he was not usually conquered 
until lie had killed or disabled two or three of 
his foes. 

Now, however, with the terrible artillery in- 
vented in modern times, a single man, if he has 
the requisite courage, coolness, and steadiness 
of nerve, is a match for such a lion. The weap- 
on used is a double-barreled carabine, both bar- 
rels being rifled, that is, provided with spiral 
grooves within, that operate to give the bullets 
a rotary motion as they issue from the muzzle, 
by which they bore their way through the air, 
as it were, to their destination, with a surpris- 
ing directness and precision. The bullets dis- 
charged by these carabines are not balls, but 
cylinders, pointed with a cone at the forward 
end. They are hollow, and. are filled with a 
fulminating composition which is capable of 
exploding with a force vastly greater than that 
of gunpowder. The conical point at the end 
is made separate from the body of the cylinder, 
and slides into it by a sort of shank, which, 
when the bullet strikes the body of the lion or 
other wild beast, acts like a sort of percussion 
cap to explode the fulminating powder, and 
thus the instant that the missile enters the ani- 
mal's body it bursts with a terrible explosion, 
and scatters the iron fragments of the cylinder 

156 Genghis Khan. [1203. 

Devisme's establishment in Paris. Specimens. 

among his vitals. Thus, while an ordinary 
musket ball might lodge in his flesh, or even 
pass entirely through some parts of his body, 
without producing any other effect than to 
arouse him to a phrensy, and redouble the force 
with which he would spring upon his foe, the 
bursting of one of these fulminating bullets al- 
most any where within his body brings him 
down in an instant, and leaves him writhing and 
rolling upon the ground in the agonies of death. 

On the Boulevard des Italiens, in Paris, is the 
manufactory of Devisme, who makes these car- 
abines for the lion-hunters of Algiers. Prom- 
enaders, in passing by his windows, stop to look 
at specimens of these bullets exhibited there. 
They are of various sizes, adapted to barrels of 
different bores. Some are entire; others are 
rent and torn in pieces, having been fired into 
a bank of earth, that they might burst there as 
they would do in the body of a wild beast, and 
then be recovered and preserved to show the 
effect of the explosion. 

Even with such terrible weapons as these, it 
requires at the present day great courage, great 
coolness, and very extraordinary steadiness of 
nerve to face a lion or a tiger in his mountain 
fastness, with any hope of coming off victorious 
in the contest. But the danger was, of course, 

1203.] His Dominions. 157 

Great danger. Wild beasts more formidable than men. 

infinitely greater in the days of Grenghis Khan, 
when pikes and spears, and bows and arrows, 
were the only weapons with whieh the body 
of huntsmen could arm themselves for the com- 
bat. Indeed, in those days wild beasts were 
even in some respects more formidable enemies 
than men. For men, however excited by an- 
gry passions, are, in some degree, under the in- 
fluence of fear. They will not rush headlong 
upon absolute and certain destruction, but may 
be driven back by a mere display of force, if it 
is obvious that it is a force which they are 
wholly incapable of resisting. Thus a party of 
men, however desperate, may be attacked with- 
out much danger to the assailants, provided that 
the force which the assailants bring against them 
is overwhelming. 

But it is not so with wild beasts. A lion, a 
tiger, or a panther, once aroused, is wholly in- 
sensible to fear. He will rush headlong upon 
his foes, however numerous they may be, 
and however formidably armed. He makes 
his own destruction sure, it is true, but, at the 
same time, he renders almost inevitable the de- 
struction of some one or more of his enemies, 
and, in going out to attack him, no one can be 
sure of not becoming himself one of the victims 
of his fury. 

158 Genghis Khan. [1203. 

Grand huntsman. Timid animals. Stratagems. 

Thus the hunting of wild beasts in the mount- 
ains was very dangerous work, and it is not 
surprising that the office of grand huntsman 
was one of great consideration and honor. 

The hunting was, however, not all of the dan- 
gerous character above described. Some ani- 
mals are timid and inoffensive by nature, and 
attempt to save themselves only by flight. 
Such animals as these were to be pursued and 
overtaken by the superior speed of horses and 
dogs, or to be circumvented by stratagem. 
There was a species of deer, in certain parts of 
the Mongul country, that the huntsmen were 
accustomed to take in this way, namely : 

The huntsmen, when they began to draw 
near to a place where a herd of deer were feed- 
ing, would divide themselves into two parties. 
One party would provide themselves with the 
antlers of stags, which they arranged in such, a 
manner that they could hold them up over 
their heads in the thickets, as if real stags were 
there. The others, armed with bows and ar- 
rows, javelins, spears, and other such weapons, 
would place themselves in ambush near by. 
Those who had the antlers would then make a 
sort of cry, imitating that uttered by the hinds. 
The stags of the herd, hearing the cry, would 
immediately come toward the spot. The men 

1203.] His Dominions. 159 

Mode of taking deer. Training of the horses. 

in the thicket then would raise the antlers and 
move them about, so as to deceive the stags, 
and excite their feelings of rivalry and ire, 
while those who were appointed to that office 
continued to counterfeit the cry of the hind. 
The stags immediately would begin to paw the 
ground and to prepare for a conflict, and then, 
while their attention was thus wholly taken up 
by the tossing of the false antlers in the thick- 
et, the men in ambush would creep up as near 
as they could, take good aim, and shoot their 
poor deluded victims through the heart. 

Of course, it required a great deal of practice 
and much skill to perform successfully such 
feats as these; and there were many other 
branches of the huntsman's art, as practiced in 
those days, which could only be acquired by a 
systematic and special course of training. One 
of the most difficult things was to train the 
horses so that they would advance to meet 
tigers and other wild beasts without fear. 
Horses have naturally a strong and instinctive 
terror for such beasts, and this terror it> was 
very difficult to overcome. The Mongul hunts- 
men, however, contrived means to inspire the 
horses with so much courage in this respect 
that they would advance to the encounter of 
these terrible foes with as much ardor as a 

160 Genghis Khan. [1203. 

Great desert. Cold. Pasturage. No forests. 

trained charger shows in advancing to meet 
other horses and horsemen on the field of 

Besides the mountainous regions above de- 
scribed, there were several deserts in the coun- 
try of the Monguls. The greatest of these des- 
erts extends through the very heart of Asia, 
and is one of the most extensive districts of 
barren land in the world. Unlike most other 
great ' deserts, however, the land is very ele- 
vated, and it is to this elevation that its barren- 
ness is, in a great measure, due. A large part 
of this desert consists of rocks and barren sands, 
and, in the time of which we are writing, was 
totally uninhabitable. It was so cold, too, on 
account of the great elevation of the land, that 
it was almost impossible to traverse it except in 
the warmest season of the year. 

Other parts of this district, which were not 
so elevated, and where the land was not quite 
so barren, produced grass and herbage on which 
the flocks and herds could feed, and thus, in 
certain seasons of the year, people resorted to 
them for pasturage. 

Throughout the whole country there were 
no extensive forests. There were a few tan- 
gled thickets among the mountains, where the 
wild beasts concealed themselves and made 

1203.] His Dominions. 161 

Burning the grass on the plains. 

their lairs, but this was all. One reason why 
forests did not spring up was, as is supposed, 
the custom of the people to burn over the plains 
every spring, as the Indians were accustomed 
to do on the American prairies. In the spring 
the dead grass of the preceding year lay dry 
and withered, and sometimes closely matted to- 
gether, on the ground, thus hindering, as the 
people thought, the fresh grass from growing 
up. So the people were accustomed, on some 
spring morning when there was a good breeze 
blowing, to set it on fire. The fire would run 
rapidly over the plains, burning up every thing 
in its way that was above the ground. But 
the roots of the grass, being below, were safe 
from it. Yery soon afterward the new grass 
would spring up with great luxuriance. The 
people thought that the rich verdure which the 
new grass displayed, and its subsequent rapid 
growth, were owing simply to the fact that the 
old dead grass was out of the way. It is now 
known, however, that the burning of the old 
grass leaves an ash upon the ground whick acts 
powerfully as a fertilizer, and that the richness 
of the fresh vegetation is due, in a great meas- 
ure, to this cause. 

Such was the country which was inhabited 
by the wandering pastoral tribes that were now 

162 Genghis Khan. [1203. 

The various tribes submit. 

under the sway of Genghis Khan. His domin- 
ion had no settled boundaries, for it was a do- 
minion over certain tribes rather than over a 
certain district of country. Nearly all the tribes 
composing both the Mongul and the Tartar na- 
tions had now submitted to him, though he still 
had some small wars to wage from time to time 
with some of the more distant tribes before his 
authority was fully and finally acknowledged. 
The history of some of these conflicts will be 
narrated in the next chapter. 

1203.] Pkince Kushluk. 163 

Kushluk's escape. ' Tukta Bey. Kashin. 

Chapter XIII. 
Adventures of Prince Kushluk. 

PKINCE KUSHLUK, as the reader will 
perhaps recollect, was the son of Tayian, 
the khan of the Naymans, who organized the 
grand league of khans against Temnjin at the 
instigation of Yemnka, as related in a preced- 
ing chapter. He was the young prince who 
was opposed to Jughi, the son of Temujin, in 
the great final battle. The reader will recol- 
lect that in that battle Tayian himself was 
slain, as was also Yemuka, but the young 
prince succeeded in making his escape. 

He was accompanied in his flight by a cer- 
tain general or chieftain named Tukta Bey. 
This Tukta Bey was the khan of a. powerful 
tribe. The name of the town or village which 
he considered his capital was Kashin. It was 
situated toward the southwest, not far from the 
borders of China. Tukta Bey, taking Kushluk 
with him, retreated to this place, and there be- 
gan to make preparations to collect a new army 
to act against Temujin. I say Temujin, for 

164 Genghis Khan. [1203. 

Temujin pursues Tukta Bey and Kushluk. Retreat to Boyrak's country. 

these circumstances took place immediately 
after the battle, and before Temujin had re- 
ceived his new title of Genghis Khan. 

Temujin, having learned that Tukta Bey and 
the young prince had gone to Kashin, determ- 
ined at once to follow them there. As soon as 
Tukta Bey heard that he was coming, he began 
to strengthen the fortifications of his town and to 
increase the garrison. He also laid in supplies 
of food and military stores of all kinds. While 
he was making these preparations, he received 
the news that Temujin was advancing into his 
country at the head of an immense force. The 
force was so large that he was convinced that 
his town could *not long stand out against it. 
He was greatly perplexed to know what to do. 

Now it happened that there was a brother 
of Tayian Khan's, named Boyrak, the chief of 
a powerful horde that occupied a district of 
country not very far distant from Tukta Bey's 
dominions. Tukta Bey thought that this Boy- 
rak would be easily induced to aid him in the 
war, as it was a war waged against the mortal 
enemy of his brother. He determined to leave 
his capital to be defended by the garrison which 
he had placed in it, and to proceed himself to 
Boyrak's country to obtain re-enforcements. 
He first sent off the Prince Kushluk, so that he 

1203.] Prince Kushluk. 165 

Fall and destruction of Kashin. Proclamation. 

might be as soon as possible in a place of safety. 
Then, after completing the necessary arrange- 
ments and dispositions for the defense of his 
town, in case it should be attacked during his 
absence, he took his oldest son, for whose safety 
he was also greatly concerned, and set out at 
the head of a small troop of horsemen to go to 

Accordingly, when Temujin, at the head of 
his forces, arrived at the town of Kashin, he 
found that the fugitives whom he was pursuing 
were no longer there. However, he determ- 
ined to take the town. He accordingly at once 
invested it, and commenced the siege. The 
garrison made a very determined resistance. 
But the forces under Temujin's command were 
too strong for them. The town was soon taken. 
Temujin ordered his soldiers to slay without 
mercy all who were found in arms against him 
within the walls, and the walls themselves, and 
all the other defenses of the place, he caused to 
be leveled with the ground. 

He then issued his proclamation, offering 
peace and pardon to all the rest of the tribe on 
condition that they would take the oath of al- 
legiance to him. This they readily agreed to 
do. There were a great many subordinate 
khans, both of this tribe and of some others 

166 Genghis Khan. [1203. 

Temujin returns to Karakorom. 

that were near, who thus yielded to Temujin, 
and promised to obey him. 

All this took place, as has already been said, 
immediately after the great battle with Tayian, 
and before Temujin had been enthroned as em- 
peror, or had received his new title of Genghis 
Khan. Indeed, Temujin, while making this 
expedition to Kashin in pursuit of Kushluk 
and Tukta Bey, had been somewhat uneasy at 
the loss of time which the campaign occasioned 
him, as he was anxious to go as soon as possi- 
ble to Karakorom, in order to take the neces- 
sary measures there for arranging and consol- 
idating his government. He accordingly now 
determined not to pursue the fugitives any far- 
ther, but to proceed at once to Karakorom, and 
postpone all farther operations against Kushluk 
and Tukta until the next season. So he went 
to Karakorom, and there, during the course of 
the winter, formed the constitution of his new 
empire, and made arrangements for convening 
a grand assembly of the khans the next spring, 
as related in the last chapter. 

In the mean time, Tukta Bey and the Prince 
Kushluk were very kindly received by Boyrak, 
Tayian's brother. For a time they all had rea- 
son to expect that Temujin, after having taken 
and destroyed Kashin, would continue his pur- 

1205.] Prince Kushluk. 167 

Boyrak's precautions. Great battle. Boyrak is taken and Elain. 

suit of the prince, and Boyrak began accord- 
ingly to make preparations for defense. But 
when, at length, they learned that Temujin had 
given up the pursuit, and had returned to Ka- 
rakorom, their apprehensions were, for the mo- 
ment, relieved. They were, however, well 
aware that the danger was only postponed ; 
and Boyrak, being determined to defend the 
cause of his nephew, and to avenge, if possible, 
his brother's death, occupied himself diligently 
with increasing his army, strengthening his for- 
tifications, and providing himself with all pos- 
sible means of defense against the attack which 
he expected would be made upon him in the 
coming season. 

Boyrak's expectations of an attack were fully 
realized. Temujin, after having settled the af- 
fairs of his government, and having now be- 
come Grenghis Khan, took the first opportunity 
in the following season to fit out an expedition 
against Tukta Bey and Boyrak. He marched 
into Boyrak's dominions at the head of a strong 
force. Boyrak came forth to meet him. A 
great battle was fought. Boyrak was entirely 
defeated. "When he found that the battle was 
lost he attempted to fly. He was, however, 
pursued and taken, and was then brought back 
to the camp of Genghis Khan, where he was 

168 Genghis Khan. [1205. 

Flight of Kushluk and Tukta Bey. Pdver Irtish. Ardish. 

put to death. The conqueror undoubtedly jus- 
tified this act of cruelty toward his helpless 
prisoner on the plea that, like Yemuka, he was 
not an open and honorable foe, but a rebel and 
traitor, and, consequently, that the act of put- 
ting him- to death was the execution of a crim- 
inal, and not the murder of a prisoner. 

But, although Boyrak himself was thus taken 
and slain, Kushluk and Tukta Bey succeeded 
in making their escape. They fled to the north- 
ward and westward, scarcely knowing, it would 
seem, where they were to go. They at last 
found a place of refuge on the banks of the 
Eiver Irtish. This river rises not far from the 
centre of the Asiatic continent, and flows north- 
ward into the Northern Ocean. The country 
through which it flows lay to the northwest- 
ward of Genghis Khan's dominions, and be- 
yond the confines of it. Through this country 
Prince Kushluk and Tukta Bey wandered on, 
accompanied by the small troop of followers 
that still adhered to them, until they reached a 
certain fortress called Ardish, where they de- 
termined to make a stand. 

They were among friends here, for Ardish, 
it seems, was on the confines of territory that 
belonged to Tukta Bey. The people of the 
neighborhood immediately flocked to Tukta's 

1208.] Prince Kushluk. 169 

Tukta Bey's adherents. . Genghis Khan pursues them in winter. 

standard, and thus the fugitive khan soon found 
himself at the head of a considerable force. 
This force was farther increased by the coming 
in of broken bands that had made their escape 
from the battle at which Boyrak had been slain 
at the same time with Tukta Bey, but had be- 
come separated from him in their flight. 

It would seem that, at first, Grenghis Khan 
did not know what was become of the fugitives. 
At any rate, it was not until the next year that 
he attempted to pursue them. Then, hearing 
where they were and what they were doing, he 
prepared an expedition to penetrate into the 
country of the Irtish and attack them. It was 
in the dead of winter when he arrived in the 
country. He had hurried on at that season of 
the year in order to prevent Tukta Bey from 
having time to finish his fortifications. Tukta 
Bey and those who were with him were amazed 
when they heard that their enemy was coming 
at that season of the year. The defenses which 
th^y were preparing for their fortress were not 
fully completed, but they were at once con- 
vinced that they could not hold their ground 
against the body of troops that Grenghis Khan 
was bringing against them in the open field, 
and so they all took shelter in and near the 
fortress, and awaited their enemy there. 

170 Genghis Khan. [1208. 

Difficulties of the country. Death of Tukta Bey. 

The winters in that latitude are very cold, 
and the country through which Genghis Khan 
had to march was full of difficulty. The 
branches of the river which he had to cross 
were obstructed with ice, and the roads were 
in many places rendered almost impassable by 
snow. The emperor did not even know the 
way to the fortress where Tukta Bey and his 
followers were concealed, and it would have 
been almost impossible for him to find it had 
it not been for certain tribes, through whose 
territories he passed on the way, who furnished 
him with guides. These tribes, perceiving how 
overwhelming was the force which Genghis 
Khan commanded, knew that it would be use- 
less for them to resist him. So they yielded 
submission to him at once, and detached parties 
of horsemen to go with him down the river to 
show him the way. 

Under the conduct of these guides Genghis 
Khan passed on. In due time he arrived at 
the fortress of Ardish, and immediately forced 
Tukta Bey and his allies to come to an engage- 
ment. Tukta's army was very soon defeated 
and put to flight. Tukta himself, and many 
other khans and chieftains who had joined him, 
were killed ; but the Prince Kushluk was once 
more fortunate enough to make his escape. 

1208.] Peince Kushluk. 171 

Kushluk escapes again. Turkestan. lie is received by Gurkhan. 

He fled with a small troop of followers, all 
mounted on fleet horses, and after various wan- 
derings, in the course of which he and they who 
were with him endured a great deal of priva- 
tion and suffering, the unhappy fugitive at last 
reached the dominions of a powerful prince 
named Gurkhan, who reigned over a country 
which is situated in the western part of Asia, 
toward the Caspian Sea, and is named Turkes- 
tan. This is the country from which the peo- 
ple called the Turks, who afterward spread 
themselves so widely over the western part of 
Asia and the eastern part of Europe, originally 

Gurkhan received Kushluk and his party in 
a very friendly manner, and Genghis Khan did 
not follow them. Whether he thought that the 
distance was too great, or that the power of 
Gurkhan was too formidable to make it pru- 
dent for him to advance into his dominions 
without a stronger force, does not appear. At 
any rate, for the time being he gave up the 
pursuit, and. after fully securing the fruits of 
the victory which he had gained at Ardish, and 
receiving the submission of all the tribes and 
khans that inhabited that region of country, he 
set out on his return home. 

It is related that one of the khans who gave 

172 Genghis Khan. [1208. 

Presentation of the shongar. Urua InaL 

in his submission to Genghis Khan at this 
time made him a present of a certain bird call- 
ed a shongar, according to a custom often ob- 
served among the people of that region. The 
shongar was "a very large and fierce bird of 
prey, which, however, could be trained like the 
falcons which were so much prized in the Mid- 
dle Ages by the princes and nobles of Europe. 
It seems it was customary for an inferior khan 
to present one of these birds to his superior on 
great occasions, as an emblem and token of his 
submission to his superior's authority. The 
bird in such a case was very richly decorated 
with gold and precious stones, so that the pres L 
ent was sometimes of a very costly and mag- 
nificent character. 

Genghis Khan received such a present as 
this from a chieftain named Urus Inal, who 
was among those that yielded to his sway in 
the country of the Irtish, after the battle at 
which Tukta Bey was defeated and killed. 
The bird was presented to Genghis Khan by 
Urus with great ceremony, as an act of sub- 
mission and homage. 

What, in the end, was the fate of Prince 
Kushluk, will appear in the next chapter. 

1208.] Idikut. 175 

Idikut. The old system of farming revenues. 

Chapter XIV. 

THEEE was another great and powerful 
khan, named Idikut, whose tribe had hith- 
erto been under the dominion of Gurkhan, the 
Prince of Turkestan, where Kushluk had sought 
refuge, but who about this time revolted from 
Gurkhan and went over to Genghis Khan, un- 
der circumstances which illustrate, in some de- 
gree, the peculiar nature of the political ties 
by which these different tribes and nations 
were bound to each other. It seems that the 
tribe over which Idikut ruled was tributary to 
Turkestan, and that Gurkhan had an officer 
stationed in Idikut's country whose business it 
was to collect and remit the tribute. The 
name of this collector was Shuwakem. He 
was accustomed, it seems, like almost all tax- 
gatherers in those days, to exact more than was 
his due. The system generally adopted by 
governments in that age of the world for col- 
lecting their revenues from tributary or con- 
quered provinces was to farm them, as the 

176 Genghis Khan. [1208. 

Evils of farming the revenue. Modern system. 

phrase was. That is, they sold the whole rev- 
enue of a particular district in the gross to 
some rich man, who paid for it a specific sum, 
considerably less, of course, than the tax itself 
would really yield, and then he reimbursed 
himself for his outlay and for his trouble by 
collecting the tax in detail from the 'people. 
Of course, it was for the interest of the tax- 
gatherer, in such a case, after having paid the 
round sum to the government, to extort as 
much as possible from the people, since all that 
he obtained over and above the sum that he 
had paid was his profit on the transaction. 
Then, if the people complained to the govern- 
ment of his exactions, they could seldom obtain 
any redress, for the government knew that if 
they rebuked or punished the farmer of the 
revenue, or interfered with him in auy way, 
they would not be able to make so favorable 
terms with him for the next year. 

The plan of farming the revenues thus led to 
a great deal of extortion and oppression, which 
the people were compelled patiently to endure, 
as there was generally no remedy. In modern 
times and among civilized nations this system 
has been almost universally abandoned. The 
taxes are now always collected for the govern- 
ment directly by officers who have to pay over, 

1208.] Idikut. 177 

Disinterested collectors. Independent and impartial courts. 

not a fixed sum, but simply what they collect. 
Thus the tax-gatherers are, in some sense, im- 
partial, since, if they collect more than the law 
entitles them to demand, the benefit inures 
almost wholly to the government, they them- 
selves gaining little or no advantage by their 
extortion. Besides this, there are courts es- 
tablished which are, in a great measure, inde- 
pendent of the government, to which the tax- 
payer can appeal at once in a case where he 
thinks he is aggrieved. This, it is true, often 
puts him to a great deal of trouble and ex- 
pense, but, in the end, he is pretty sure to have 
justice done him, while under the old system 
there was ordinarily no remedy at all. There 
was nothing to be done but to appeal to the 
king or chieftain himself, and these complaints 
seldom received any attention. For, besides 
the natural unwillingness of the sovereign to 
trouble himself about such disputes, he had a 
direct interest in not requiring the extorted 
money to be paid back, or, rather, in not having 
it proved that it was extorted. Thus the poor 
tax-payer found that the officer who collected 
the money, and the umpire who was to decide 
in case of disputes, were both directly interested 
against him, and he was continually wronged ; 
whereas, at the present day, by means of a sys- 

178 Genghis Khan. [1208. 

Waste of the public money. Shuwakem. 

tern which provides disinterested officers to de- 
termine and collect the tax, and independent 
judges to decide all cases of dispute, the evils 
are almost wholly avoided. The only dif- 
ficulty now is the extravagance and ' waste 
with which the public money is expended, 
making it necessary to collect a much larger 
amount than would otherwise be required. 
Perhaps some future generation will discover 
some plain and simple remedy for this evil 

The name of the officer who had the general 
charge of the collection of the taxes in Idikut's 
territory for Gurkhan, King of Turkestan, was, 
as has already been said, Shuwakem. He op- 
pressed the people, exacting more from them 
than was really due. Whether he had farmed 
the revenue, and was thus enriching himself by 
his extortions, or whether he was acting direct- 
ly in Gurkhan's name, and made the people 
pay more than he ought from zeal in his mas- 
ter's service, and a desire to recommend him- 
self to favor by sending home to Turkestan as 
large a revenue from the provinces as possible, 
does not appear. At all events, the people 
complained bitterly. They had, however, no 
access to Gurkhan, Shuwakem's master, and so 

1208.] Idikut. 179 

Idikut's quarrel with Gurkhan's tax-gatherers. Kehellion. 

tliey carried their complaints to Idikut, their 
own khan. 

Idikut remonstrated with Shuwakem, but 
he, instead of taking the remonstrance in good 
part and relaxing the severity of his proceed- 
ings, resented the interference of Idikut, and 
answered him in a haughty and threatening 
manner. This made Idikut very angry. In- 
deed, he was angry before, as it might naturally 
be supposed that he would have been, at hav- 
ing a person owing allegiance to a foreign 
prince exercising authority in a proud and 
domineering manner within his dominions, and 
the reply which Shuwakem made when he re- 
monstrated with him on account of his extor- 
tions exasperated him beyond all bounds. He 
immediately caused Shuwakem to be assas- 
sinated. He also slew all the other officers of 
Gurkhan within his country — those, probably, 
who were employed to assist Shuwakem in col- 
lecting the taxes. 

The murder of these officers was, of course, 
an act of open rebellion against Gurkhan, and 
Idikut, in order to shield himself from the con- 
sequences of it, determined to join himself and 
his tribe at once to the empire of Genghis Khan ; 
so he immediately dispatched two embassadors 
to the Mongul emperor with his proposals. 

180 Genghis Khan. [1208. 

He sends to Genghis Khan. His reception of the embassy. 

The envoys, accompanied by a suitable troop 
of guards and attendants, went into the Mongul 
country and presently came up with Genghis 
Khan, while he was on a march toward the 
country of some tribe or horde that had revolted 
from him. They were very kindly received; 
for, although Genghis Khan was not prepared 
at present to make open war upon Gurkhan, or 
to invade his dominions in pursuit of Prince 
Kushluk, he was intending to do this at some 
future day, and, in the mean time, he was very 
glad to weaken his enemy by drawing off from 
his empire any tributary tribes that were at all 
disposed to revolt from him. 

He accordingly received the embassadors of 
Idikut in a very cordial and friendly manner. 
He readily acceded to the proposals which Idi- 
kut made through them, and, in order to give 
full proof to Idikut of the readiness and sincer- 
ity with which he accepted his proposals, he 
sent back two embassadors of his own to ac- 
company Idikut's embassadors on their return, 
and to join them in assuring that prince of the 
cordiality with which Genghis Khan accepted 
his offers of friendship, and to promise his pro- 

Idikut was very much pleased, when his mes- 
sengers returned, to learn that his mission had 

1208.] Idikut. 181 

Idikut' s visit to Genghis Khan. Gurkhan in a rage. 

been so successful. He immediately determ- 
ined to go himself and visit Genghis Khan in 
his camp, in order to confirm the new alliance 
by making a personal tender to the emperor 
of his homage and his services.. He according- 
ly prepared some splendid presents, and, placing 
himself at the head of his troop of guards, he 
proceeded to the camp of Genghis Khan. The 
emperor received him in a very kind and friend- 
ly manner. He accepted his presents, and, in 
the end, was so much pleased with Idikut him- 
self that he gave him one of his daughters in 
marriage. • 

As for Gurkhan, when he first heard of the 
murder of Shuwakem and the other oificers, he 
was in a terrible rage. He declared that he 
would revenge his servant by laying waste Idi- 
kut's territories with fire and sword. But when 
he heard that Idikut had placed himself under 
the protection of Genghis Khan, and especially 
when he learned that he had married the emper- 
or's daughter, he thought it more prudent to 
postpone his vengeance, not being quite will- 
ing to draw upon himself the hostility of so 
great a power. 

Prince Kushluk remained for many years in 
Turkestan and in the countries adjoining it. 
He married a daughter of Gurkhan, his protect- 

182 Genghis Khan. [12G8. 

Subsequent history of Kushluk. Jena. Kushluk' s final defeat and flight. 

or. Partly in consequence of this connection 
and of the high, rank which he had held in his 
own native land, and partly, perhaps, in conse- 
quence of his personal courage and other mil- 
itary qualities, he rapidly acquired great influ- 
ence among the khans of Western Asia, and 
at last he organized a sort of rebellion against 
Gurkhan, made war against him, and deprived 
him of more than half his dominions. He then 
collected a large army, and prepared to make 
war upon Genghis Khan. Genghis Khan sent 
one of his best generals, at the head of a small 
but very compact and well-disciplined force, 
against him. The name of this general was 
Jena. Kushluk was not at all intimidated by 
the danger which now threatened him. His 
own army was much larger than that of Jena, 
and he accordingly advanced to meet his enemy 
without fear. He was, however, beaten in the 
battle, and, when he saw that the day was lost, 
he fled, followed by a small party of horsemen, 
who succeeded in saving themselves with him. 

Jena set out immediately in pursuit of the 
fugitive, accompanied by a small body of men 
mounted on the fleetest horses. The party 
who were with Kushluk, being exhausted by 
the fatigue of the battle and bewildered by the 
excitement and terror of their flight, could not 

1208.] Idikut. 183 

Hotly pursued by Jena. Kushluk' s death. Genghis Khan's triumph. 

keep together, but were overtaken one by one 
and slain by their pursuers until only three 
were left. These three kept close to Kushluk, 
and with him went on until Jena's party lost 
the track of them. 

At length, coming to a place where two roads 
met, Jena asked a peasant if he had seen any 
strange horsemen pass that way. The peasant 
said that four horsemen had passed a short 
time before, and he told Jena which road they 
had taken. 

Jena and his party rode on in the direction 
which the peasant had indicated, and, pushing 
forward with redoubled speed, they soon over- 
took the unhappy fugitives. They fell upon 
Kushluk without mercy, and killed him on the 
spot They then cut off his head, and turned 
back to carry it to Genghis Khan. 

Genghis Khan rewarded Jena in the most 
magnificent manner for his successful perform- 
ance of this exploit, and then, putting Kush- 
luk's head upon a pole, he displayed it in all 
the camps and villages through which he 
passed, where it served at once as a token and 
a trophy of his victory against an enemy, and, 
at the same time, as a warning to all other per- 
sons of the terrible danger which they would 
incur in attempting to resist his power. 

184 Genghis Khan. [1211. 

China. The Chinese wall. 

Chapter XV. 

The Story of Hujaku. 

^T^HE accounts given us of the events and 
-L transactions of Grenghis Khan's reign aft- 
er he acquired the supreme power over the 
Mongul and Tartar nations are imperfect, and, 
in many respects, confused. It appears, how- 
ever, from them that in the year 1211, that is, 
about five years after his election as grand 
khan, he became involved in a war with the 
Chinese, which led, in the end, to very import- 
ant consequences. The kingdom of China lay 
to the southward of the Mongul territories, and 
the frontier was defended by the famous Chi- 
nese wall, which extended from east to west, 
over hills and valleys, from the great desert to 
the sea, for many hundred miles. The wall 
was defended by towers, built here and there 
in commanding positions along the whole ex- 
tent of it, and at certain distances there were 
fortified towns where powerful garrisons were 
stationed, and reserves of troops were held 
ready to be marched to different points along 

1211.] The Story of Hujaku. 185 

The frontier. Outside the wall. Origin of the quarrel with the Chinese. 

the wall, wherever there might be occasion for 
their services. 

The wall was not strictly the Chinese fron- 
tier, for the territory on the outside of it to a 
considerable distance was held by the Chinese 
government, and there were many large towns 
and some very strong fortresses in this outly- 
ing region, all of which were held and garrison- 
ed by Chinese troops. 

The inhabitants, however, of the countries 
outside the wall were generally of the Tartar 
or Mongul race. They were of a nation or tribe 
called the Kitan, and were somewhat inclined 
to rebel against the Chinese rule. In order to 
assist in keeping them in subjection, one of the 
Chinese emperors issued a decree which ordain- 
ed that the governors of those provinces should 
place in all the large towns, and other strong- 
holds outside the wall, twice as many families 
of the Chinese as there were of the Kitan. This 
regulation greatly increased the discontent of 
the Kitan, and made them more inclined to re- 
bellion than they were before. 

Besides this, there had been for some time a 
growing difficulty between the Chinese govern- 
ment and Grenghis Khan. It seems that the 
Monguls had been for a long time accustomed 
to pay some sort of tribute to the Emperor of 

186 Genghis Khan. [1211. 


China, and many years before, while Genghis 
Khan, under the name of Temujin, was living at 
Karakorom, a subject of Yang Khan, the emper- 
or sent a certain royal prince, named Yong-tsi, 
to receive what was due. While Yong-tsi was 
in the Mongul territory he and Temujin met, 
but they did not agree together at all. The 
Chinese prince put some slight upon Temujin, 
which Temujin resented. Yery likely Temu- 
jin, whose character at that time, as well as aft- 
erward, was marked with a great deal of pride 
and spirit, opposed the payment of the tribute. 
At any rate, Yong-tsi became very much in- 
censed against him, and, on his return, made se- 
rious charges against him to the emperor, and 
urged that he should be seized and put to death. 
But the emperor declined engaging in so dan- 
gerous an undertaking. . Yong-tsi's proposal, 
however, became known to Temujin, and he 
secretly resolved that he would one day have 
his revenge. 

At length, about three or- four years after 
Temujin was raised to the throne, the emperor 
of the Chinese died, and Yong-tsi succeeded 
him. The very next year he sent an officer to 
Genghis Khan to demand the usual tribute. 
When the officer came into the presence of 
Genghis Khan in his camp, and made his de- 

1211.] The Story of Hujaku. 187 

Genghis Khan's contempt for him. Armies raised. 

mand, Genghis Khan asked him who was the 
emperor that had sent him with such a mes- 

The officer replied that Yong-tsi was at that 
time emperor of the Chinese. 

"Yong-tsi!" repeated Genghis Khan, in a 
tone of great contempt. " The Chinese have a 
proverb," he added, "that such a people as they 
ought to have a god for their emperor : but it 
seems thej do not know how to choose even a 
decent man." 

It was true that they had such a proverb. 
They were as remarkable, it seems, in those 
days as they are now for their national self-im- 
portance and vanit}^. 

" Go and tell your emperor," added Genghis 
Khan, " that I am a sovereign ruler, and that I 
will never acknowledge him as my master." 

When the messenger returned with this de- 
fiant answer, Yong-tsi was very much enraged, 
and immediately began to prepare for war. 
Genghis Khan also at once commenced his 
preparations. He sent envoys to the leading 
khans who occupied the territories outside the 
wall inviting them to join him. He raised a 
great army, and put the several divisions of it 
under the charge of his ablest generals. Yong- 
tsi raised a great army too. The historians say 

188 Genghis Khan. [1211. 

Hujaku. Many of the khans come over on Genghis' s side. 

that it amounted to three hundred thousand 
men. He put this army under the command 
of a great general named Hujaku, and ordered 
him to advance with it to the northward, so as 
to intercept the army of Genghis Khan on its 
way, and to defend the wall and the fortresses 
on the outside of it from his attacks. 

In the campaign which ensued Genghis Khan 
was most successful. The Monguls took pos- 
session of a great many towns and fortresses 
beyond the wall, and every victory that they 
gained made the tribes and nations that inhab- 
ited those provinces more and more disposed 
to join them. Many of them revolted against 
the Chinese authority, and turned to their side. 
One of these was a chieftain so powerful that 
he commanded an army of one hundred thou- 
sand men. In order to bind himself solemnly 
to the covenant which he was to make with 
Genghis Khan, he ascended a mountain in com- 
pany with the envoy and with others who were 
to witness the proceedings, and there perform- 
ed the ceremony customary on such occasions. 
The ceremony consisted of sacrificing a white 
horse and a black ox, and then breaking an ar- 
row, at the same time pronouncing an oath by 
which he bound himself under the most solemn 
sanctions to be faithful to Genghis Khan. 

1211.] The Story of IIujaku. 189 

Victory over Hujaku. Genghis Khan is wounded. 

To reward the prince for this act of adhesion 
to his cause, Grenghis Khan made him king over 
all that portion of the country, and caused him 
to be every where so proclaimed. This encour- 
aged a great many other khans and chieftains 
to come over to his side ; and at length one who 
had the command of one of the gates of the 
great wall, and of the fortress which defended 
it, joined him. By this means Genghis Khan 
obtained access to the interior of the Chinese 
dominions, and Yong-tsi and his great general 
Hujaku became seriously alarmed. 

At length, after various marchings and coun- 
termarchings, Grenghis Khan learned that Hu- 
jaku was encamped with the whole of his army 
in a very strong position at the foot of a mount- 
ain, and he determined to proceed thither and 
attack him. He did so; and the result of the 
battle was that Hujaku was beaten and was 
forced to retreat. He retired to a great forti- 
fied town, and Grenghis Khan followed him and 
laid siege to the town. Hujaku, finding him- 
self in imminent danger, fled ; and Grenghis 
Khan was on the point of taking the town, 
when he was suddenly stopped in his career by 
being one day wounded severely by an arrow 
which was shot at him from the wall. 

The wound was so severe that, while suffer- 

190 Genghis Khan. [1211. 

Hujaku disgraced. Restored again. 

ing under it, Genghis Khan found that he could 
not successfully direct the operations of his 
army, and so he withdrew his troops and re- 
tired into his own country, to wait there until 
his wound should be healed. In a few months 
he was entirely recovered, and the next year he 
fitted out a new expedition, and advanced again 
into China. 

In the mean time, Hujaku, who had been re- 
peatedly defeated and driven back the year be- 
fore by Genghis Khan, had fallen into disgrace. 
His rivals and enemies among the other gener- 
als of the army, and among the officers of the 
court, conspired against him, and represented 
to the emperor that he was unfit to command, 
and that his having failed to defend the towns 
and the country that had been committed to 
him was owing to his cowardice and incapacity. 
In consequence of these representations Hujaku 
was cashiered, that is, dismissed from his com- 
mand in disgrace. 

This made him very angry, and he determ- 
ined that he would have his revenge. There 
was a large party in his favor at court, as well 
as a party against him ; and after a long and 
bitter contention, the former once more prevail- 
ed, and induced the emperor to restore Hujaku 
to his command again. 

1211.] The Story of Hujaku. 191 

Dissensions among the Chinese. Advance of the Mongul3. 

The quarrel, however, was not ended, and so, 
when Genghis Khan came the next year to re- 
new the invasion, the councils of the Chinese 
were so distracted, and their operations so par- 
alyzed by this feud, that he gained very easy 
victories over them. The Chinese generals, in- 
stead of acting together in a harmonious man- 
ner against the common enemy, were intent 
only on the quarrel which they were waging 
against each other. 

At length the animosity proceeded to such 
an extreme that Hujaku resolved to depose the 
emperor, who seemed inclined rather to take 
part against him, assassinate all the chiefs of 
the opposite party, and then finally to put the 
emperor to death, and cause himself to be pro- 
claimed in his stead. 

In order to prepare the way for the execu- 
tion of this scheme, he forbore to act vigorously 
against Genghis Khan and the Monguls, but 
allowed them to advance farther and farther 
into the country. This, of course, increased 
the general discontent and excitement, and pre- 
pared the way for the revolt which Hujaku was 

At length the time for action arrived. Hu- 
jaku suddenly appeared at the head of a large 
force at the gates of the capital, and gave the 

192 Genghis Khan. [1211. 

Uujaku'a rebellion. Death of Yong-tsL 

alarm that the Monguls were coming. He 
pressed forward into the city to the palace, and 
gave the alarm there. At the same time, files 
of soldiers, whom he had ordered to this serv- 
ice, went to all parts of the city, arresting and 
putting to death all the leaders of the party op- 
posed to him, under pretense that he had dis- 
covered a plot or conspiracy in which they 
were engaged to betray the city to the enemy. 
The excitement and confusion which was pro- 
duced by this charge, and by the alarm occa- 
sioned by the supposed coming of the Monguls, 
so paralyzed the authorities of the town that 
nobody resisted Hujaku, or attempted to save 
the persons whom he arrested. Some of them 
he caused to be killed on the spot. Others he 
shut up in prison. Finding himself thus un- 
disputed master of the city, he next took pos- 
session of the palace, seized the emperor, de- 
posed him from his office, and shut him up in 
a dungeon. Soon afterward he put him to 

This was the end of Yong-tsi ; but Hujaku 
did not succeed, after all, in his design of caus- 
ing himself to be proclaimed emperor in his 
stead. He found that there would be very 
great opposition to this, and so he gave up this 
part of his plan, and finally raised a certain 

1211.] The Stoey of Hujaku. 193 

Hujaku advances. The battle. Hujaki's victory. 

prince of the royal family to the throne, while 
he retained his office of commander-in-chief of 
the forces. Having thus, as he thought, effect- 
ually destroyed the influence and power of his 
enemies at the capital, he put himself once more 
at the head of his troops, and went forth to meet 
Genghis Khan. 

Some accident happened to him about this 
time by which his foot was hurt, so that he was, 
in some degree, disabled, but still he went on. 
At length he met the vanguard of G-enghis 
Khan's army at a place where they were at- 
tempting to cross a river by a bridge. Hujaku 
determined immediately to attack them. The 
state of his foot was such that he could not 
walk nor even mount a horse, but he caused 
himself to be put upon a sort of car, and was 
by this means carried into the battle. 

The Monguls were completely defeated and 
driven back. Perhaps this was because Gen- 
ghis Khan was not there to command them. 
He was at some distance in the rear with the 
main body of the army. 

Hujaku was very desirous of following up 
his victory by pursuing and attacking the Mon- 
gul vanguard the next day. He could not, 
however, do this personally, for, on account of 
the excitement and exposure which he had en- 

194 Genghis Khan. [1211. 

Kan-ki's expedition. Failure. Hujaku enraged. 

dured in the battle, and the rough movements 
and joltings which, notwithstanding all his care, 
he had to bear in being conveyed to and fro 
abont the field, his foot grew much worse. In- 
flammation set in during the night, and the 
next day the wound opened afresh ; so he was 
obliged to give up the idea of going out him- 
self against the enemy, and to send one of his 
generals instead. The general to whom he 
gave the command was named Kan-ki. 

Kan-ki went out against the enemy, but, after 
a time, returned unsuccessful. Hujaku was 
very angry with him when he came to hear his 
report. Perhaps the wound in his foot made 
him impatient and unreasonable. At any rate, 
he declared that the cause of Kan-ki's failure 
was his dilatoriness in pursuing the enemy, 
which was cowardice or treachery, and, in either 
case, he deserved to suffer death for it. He im- 
mediately sent to the emperor a report of the 
case, asking that the sentence of death which he 
had pronounced against Kan-ki might be con- 
firmed, and that he might be authorized to put 
it into execution. 

But the emperor, knowing that Kan-ki was 
a courageous and faithful officer, would not con- 

In the mean while, before the emperor's an- 

1211.] The Story of Hujaku. 195 

Kan-ki'a second trial. The sand-storm. 

swer came back, the wrath of Hujaku had had 
time to cool a little. Accordingly, when he re- 
ceived the answer, he said to Kan-ki that he 
would, after all, try him once more. 

" Take the command of the troops again," 
said he, "and go out against the enemy. If 
you beat them, I will overlook your first offense 
and spare your life ; but if you are beaten your- 
self a second time, you shall die." 

So Kan-ki placed himself at the head of his 
detachment, and went out again to attack the 
Monguls. They were to the northward, and 
were posted, it seems, upon or near a sandy 
plain. At any rate, a strong north wind began 
to blow at the time when the attack com- 
menced, and blew the sand and dust into the 
eyes of his soldiers so that they could not see, 
while their enemies the Monguls, having their 
backs to the wind, were very little incommoded. 
The result was that Kan-ki was repulsed with 
considerable loss, and was obliged to make the 
best of his way back to Hujaku's quarters to 
save the remainder of his men. 

He was now desperate. Huj aku had declared 
that if he came back without having gained a 
victory he should die, and he had no doubt that 
the man was violent and reckless enough to 
keep his word. He determined not to submit. 

196 Genghis Khan. [1211. 

Kan-ki's desperate resolution. The attack. Hujaku's flight. 

He might as well die fighting, he thought, at 
the head of his troops, as to be ignobly put to 
death by Hujaku's executioner. So he ar- 
ranged it with his troops, who probably hated 
Hujaku as much as he did, that, on returning 
to the town, they should march in under arms, 
take possession of the place, surround the pal- 
ace, and seize the general and make him pris- 
oner, or kill him if he should attempt any re- 

The troops accordingly, when they arrived 
at the gates of the town, seized and disarmed 
the guards, and then marched in, brandishing 
their weapons, and uttering loud shouts and 
outcries, which excited first a feeling of aston- 
ishment and then of terror among the inhabit- 
ants. The alarm soon spread to the palace. 
Indeed, the troops themselves soon reached and 
surrounded the palace, and began thundering 
at the gates to gain admission. They soon 
forced their way in. Hujaku, in the mean 
time, terrified and panic-stricken, had fled from 
the palace into the gardens, in hopes to make 
his escape by the garden walls. The soldiers 
pursued him. In his excitement and agitation 
he leaped down from a wall too high for such 
a descent, and, in his fall, broke his leg. He 
lay writhing helplessly on the ground when 

1211.] The Stoey of Hujaku. 197 

He is killed in the gardens. Kan-ki is pardoned and promoted. 

the soldiers came up. They were wild and 
furious with the excitement of pursuit, and 
they killed him with their spears where he lay. 

Kan-ki took the head of his old enemy and 
carried it to the capital, with the intention of 
offering it to the emperor, and also of surren- 
dering himself to the officers of justice, in or- 
der, as he said, that he might be put to death 
for the crime of which he had been guilty in 
heading a military revolt- and killing his su- 
perior officer. By all the laws of war this was 
a most heinous and a wholly unpardonable 

But the emperor was heartily glad that the 
turbulent and unmanageable old general was 
put out of the way, for a man so unprincipled, 
so ambitious, and so reckless as Hujaku was is 
always an object of aversion and terror to all 
who have any thing to do With him. The em- 
peror accordingly issued a proclamation, in 
which he declared that Hujaku had been justly 
put to death in punishment for many crimes 
which he had committed, and soon afterward 
he appointed Kan-ki commander-in-chief of the 
forces in his stead. 

198 Genghis Khan. [1211. 

War continued. Rich and fertile country. 

Chapter XVI. 
Conquests in China. 

AFTER the death of Hujaku, the Emperor 
of China endeavored to defend his domin- 
ions against Genghis Khan by means of his oth- 
er generals, and the war was continued for sev- 
eral years, during which time Genghis Khan 
made himself master of all the northern part of 
China, and ravaged the whole country in the 
most reckless and cruel manner. The country 
was very populous and very rich. The people, 
unlike the Monguls and Tartars, lived by tilling 
the ground, and they practiced, in great perfec- 
tion, many manufacturing and mechanic arts. 
The country was very fertile, and, in the place of 
the boundless pasturages of the Mongul terri- 
tories, it was covered in all directions with cul- 
tivated fields, gardens, orchards, and mulberry- 
groves, while thriving villages and busy towns 
were scattered over the whole face of it. It was 
to protect this busy hive of wealth and indus- 
try that the great wall had been built ages be- 
fore ; for the Chinese had always been station- 

1214.] Conquests in China. 199 

Grand invasion. Simultaneous attack by four armies. 

ary, industrious, and peaceful, while the terri- 
tories of Central Asia, lying to the north of 
them, had been filled from time immemorial 
with wild, roaming, and unscrupulous troops 
of marauders, like those who were now united 
under the banner of Genghis Khan. The wall 
had afforded for some hundreds of years an ade- 
quate protection, for no commander had ap- 
peared of sufficient power to organize and com- 
bine the various hordes on a scale great enough 
to enable them to force so strong a barrier. But, 
now that Genghis Khan had come upon the 
stage, the barrier was broken through, and the 
terrible and reckless hordes poured in with all 
the force and fury of an inundation. In the 
year 1214, which was the year following that 
in which Hujaku was killed, Genghis Khan or- 
ganized a force so large, for the invasion of. 
China, that he divided it into four different bat- 
talions, which were to enter by different roads, 
and ravage different portions of the country. 
Each of these divisions was by itself a great 
and powerful army, and the simultaneous inva- 
sion of four such masses of reckless and merci^ 
less enemies filled the whole land with terror 
and dismay. 

The Chinese emperor sent the best bodies 
of troops under his command to guard the pass: 

200 Genghis Khan. [1214. 

Enthusiasm of the troops. Captives. 

es in the mountains, and the bridges and ford- 
ing-places on the rivers, hoping in this way to 
do something toward stemming the tide of these 
torrents of invasion. But it was all in vain. 
Genghis Khan had raised and equipped his 
forces by means, in a great measure, of the plun- 
der which he had obtained in China the year 
before, and he had made great promises and 
glowing representations to his men in respect 
to the booty to be obtained in this new cam- 
paign. The troops were consequently full of 
ardor and enthusiasm, and they pressed on with 
such impetuosity as to carry all before them. • 
The Emperor of China, in pursuing his meas- 
ures of defense, had ordered all the men capa- 
ble of bearing arms in the villages and in the 
open country to repair to the nearest large city 
or fortress, there to be enrolled and equipped 
for service. The consequence was that the 
Monguls found in many places, as they ad- 
vanced through the country, nobody but infirm 
old men, and women and children in the ham- 
lets and villages. A great many of these, es- 
pecially such as seemed to be of most conse- 
quence, the handsomest and best of the wom- 
en, and the oldest children, they seized and took 
with them in continuing their march, intending 
to make slaves of them. They also took pos- 

1214.] Conquests in China. 201 

Immense plunder. Dreadful ravages. Base use made of the captives. 

session of all the gold and silver, and also of all 
the silks and other rich and valuable merchan- 
dise which they found, and distributed it as 
plunder. The spoil which they obtained, too, 
in sheep and cattle, was enormous. From it 
they made up immense flocks and herds, which 
were driven off into the Mongul country. The 
rest were slaughtered, and used to supply the 
army with food. 

It was the custom of the invaders, after hav- 
ing pillaged a town and its environs, and taken 
away all which they could convert to any use- 
ful purpose for themselves, to burn the town 
itself, and then to march on, leaving in the place 
only a smoking heap of ruins, with the miser- 
able remnant of the population which they had 
spared wandering about the scene of desolation 
in misery and despair. 

They made a most cowardly and atrocious 
use, too, of the prisoners whom they conveyed 
away. When they arrived at a fortified town 
where there was a garrison or any other armed 
force prepared to resist them, they would bring 
forward these helpless captives, and put them 
in the fore-front of the battle in such a manner 
that the men on the walls could not shoot their 
arrows at their savage assailants without killing 
their own wives and children. The officers 

202 Genghis Khan. [1214. 

Extent of Mongul conquests. The siege of Yen-king. 

commanded the men to fire notwithstanding. 
But they were so moved by the piteous cries 
which the women and children made that they 
could not bear to do it, and so they refused to 
obey, and in the excitement and confusion thus 
produced the Monguls easily obtained posses- 
sion of the town. 

There are two great rivers in China, both of 
which flow from west to east, and they are at 
such a distance from each other and from the 
frontiers that they divide the territory into three 
nearly equal parts. The northernmost of these 
rivers is the Hoang Ho. The Monguls in the 
course of two years overrun and made them- 
selves masters of almost the whole country ly- 
ing north of this river, that is, of about one 
third of China proper. There were, however, 
some strongly-fortified towns which they found 
it very difficult to conquer. 

Among other places, there was the imperial 
city of Yen-king, where the emperor himself 
resided, which was so strongly defended that 
for some time the Monguls did not venture to 
attack it. At length, however, Genghis Khan 
came himself to the place, and concentrated 
there a very large force. The emperor and his 
court were very much alarmed, expecting an 
immediate assault. Still Genghis Khan hesi- 

1214.] Conquests in China. 203 

Proposed terms of arrangement. Difference of opinion.* 

tated. Some of his generals urged him to scale 
the walls, and so force his way into the city. 
But he thought it more politic to adopt a differ- 
ent plan. 

So he sent an officer into the town with pro- 
posals of peace to be communicated to the em- 
peror. In these proposals Genghis Khan said 
that he himself was inclined to spare the town, 
but that to appease his soldiers, who were furi- 
ous to attack and pillage the city, it would be 
necessary to make them considerable presents, 
and that, if the emperor would agree to such 
terms with him as should enable him to satisfy 
his men in this respect, he would spare the city 
and would retire 

The emperor and his advisers were much per- 
plexed at the receipt of this proposal. There 
was great difference of opinion among the coun- 
selors in respect to the reply which was to be 
made to it. Some were in favor of rejecting it 
at once. One general, not content with a sim- 
.ple rejection of it, proposed that, to show the 
indignation and resentment which they felt in 
receiving it, the garrison should march out of 
the gates and attack the Monguls in their camp. 

There were other ministers, however, who 
urged the emperor to submit to the necessity 
of the case, and make peace with the conqueror. 

204 Genghis Khan. [1214. 

Consultations on the subject. The conditions accepted. 

They said that the idea of going out to attack 
the enemy in their camp was too desperate to 
be entertained for a moment, and if they wait- 
ed within the walls and attempted to defend 
themselves there, they exposed themselves to 
a terrible danger, without any countervailing 
hope of advantage at all commensurate with it ; 
for if they failed to save the city they were all 
utterly and irretrievably ruined ; and if, on the 
other hand, they succeeded in repelling the as- 
sault, it was only a brief respite that they could 
hope to gain, for the Monguls would soon re- 
turn in greater numbers and in a higher state 
of excitement and fury than ever. Besides, 
they said, the garrison was discontented and de- 
pressed in spirit, and would make but a feeble 
resistance. It was composed mainly of troops 
brought in from the country, away from their 
families and homes, and all that they desired 
was to be released from duty, in order that they 
might go and see what had become of their 
wives and children. 

The emperor, in the end, adopted this coun- 
sel, and he sent a commissioner to the camp of 
Genghis Khan to ask on what terms peace could 
be made. Genghis Khan stated the conditions. 
They were very hard, but the emperor was 
compelled to submit to them. One of the stip- 

1214.] Conquests in China. 205 

Terms of peace agreed upon. The emperor's uneasiness. 

illations was that Grenghis Khan was to receive 
one of the Chinese princesses, a daughter of the 
late emperor Yong-tsi, to add to the number of 
his wives. There were also to be delivered to 
him for slaves five hundred young boys and as 
many girls, three thousand horses, a large quan- 
tity of silk, and an immense sum of money. 
As soon as these conditions were fulfilled, after 
dividing the slaves and the booty among the 
officers and soldiers of his army, Grenghis Khan 
raised the siege and moved off to the north- 

In respect to the captives that his soldiers 
had taken in the towns and villages— the wom- 
en and children spoken of above; — the army 
carried off with them all that were old enough 
to be of any value as slaves. The little chil- 
dren, who would only, they thought, be in the 
way, they massacred. 

The emperor was by no means easy after the 
Mongul army had gone. A marauding enemy 
like that, bought off by the payment of a ran- 
som, is exceedingly, apt to find some pretext for 
returning, and the emperor did not feel that he 
was safe. Very soon after the Monguls had 
withdrawn, he proposed to his council the plan 
of removing his court southward to the other 
side of the Hoang Ho, to a large city in the 

206 Genghis Khan. [1214. 

Consultations. Abandonment of the capital. 

province of Henan. Some of his counselors 
made great objections to this proposal. They 
said that if the emperor withdrew in that man- 
ner from the northern provinces that portion of 
his empire would be irretrievably lost. . Gen- 
ghis Khan would soon obtain complete and un- 
disputed possession of the whole of it. The 
proper course to be adopted, they said, was to 
remain and make a firm stand in defense of the 
capital and of the country. They must levy 
new troops, repair the fortifications, recruit the 
garrison, and lay in supplies of food and of oth- 
er military stores, and thus prepare themselves 
for a vigorous and efficient resistance in case 
the enemy should return. 

But the emperor could not be persuaded. He 
said that the treasury was exhausted, the troops 
were discouraged, the cities around the capital 
were destroyed, and the whole country was so 
depopulated by the devastations of the Monguls 
that no considerable number of fresh levies 
could be obtained ; and that, consequently, the 
only safe course for the government to pursue 
was to retire to the southward, beyond the river. 
He would, however, he added, leave his son, 
with a strong garrison, to defend the capital. 

He accordingly took with him a few favor- 
ites of his immediate family and a small body 

1214.] Conquests in China. 207 

Revolt of the guards. The siege of the capital renewed. 

of troops, and commenced his journey — a jour- 
ney which was considered by all the people as 
a base and ignoble flight. He involved him- 
self in endless troubles by this step. A revolt 
broke out on the way among the guards who 
accompanied him. One of the generals who 
headed the revolt sent a messenger to Genghis 
Khan informing him of the emperor's abandon- 
ment of his capital, and offering to go over, 
with all the troops under his command, to the 
service of Genghis Khan if Genghis Khan would 
receive him. 

When Genghis Khan heard thus of the re- 
treat of the emperor from his capital, he was, 
or pretended to be, much incensed. He con- 
sidered the proceeding as in some sense an act 
of hostility against himself, and, as such, an in- 
fraction of the treaty and a renewal of the war. 
So he immediately ordered one of his leading 
generals — a certain chieftain named Mingan — 
to proceed southward at the head of a large 
army and lay siege to Yen-king again. 

The old emperor, who seems now to have lost 
all spirit, and to have given himself up entirely 
to despondency and fear, was greatly alarmed 
for the safety of his son the prince, whom he 
had left in command at Yen-king. He imme- 
diately sent orders to his son to leave the city 

208 Genghis Khan. [1214. 

Wan-yen and Mon-yen. Their perplexity. Suicide proposed. 

and come to him. The departure of the prince, 
in obedience to these orders, of course threw an 
additional gloom over the city, and excited still 
more the general discontent which the emper- 
or's conduct had awakened. 

The prince, on his departure, left two gener- 
als in command of the garrison. Their names 
were "Wan-yen and Mon-yen. They were left 
to defend the city as well as they could from 
the army of Monguls under Mingan, which was 
now rapidly drawing near. The generals were 
greatly embarrassed and perplexed with the 
difficulties of their situation. The means of de- 
fense at their disposal were wholly inadequate, 
and they knew not what to do. 

At length one of them, Wan-yen, proposed 
to the other that they should kill themselves. 
This Mon-yen refused to do. Mon-yen was the 
commander on whom the troops chiefly relied, 
and he considered suicide a mode of deserting 
one's post scarcely less dishonorable than any 
other. He said that his duty was to stand by 
his troops, and, if he could not defend them 
where they were, to endeavor to draw them 
away, while there was an opportunity, to a 
place of safety. 

So Wan-yen, finding his proposal rejected, 
went away in a rage. He retired to his apart- 

1214.] Conquests in China. 209 

Wan-yen in despair. His suicide. Mon-yen's plan. 

ment, and wrote a dispatch to the emperor, in 
which he explained the desperate condition of 
affairs, and the impossibility of saving the city, 
and in the end declared himself deserving of 
death for not being able to accomplish the work 
which his majesty had assigned to him. 

He enveloped and sealed this dispatch, and 
then, calling his domestics together, he divided 
among them, in a very calm and composed 
manner, all his personal effects, and then took 
leave of them and dismissed them. 

A single officer only now remained with him. 
In the presence of this officer he wrote a few 
words, and then sent him away. As soon as 
the officer had gone, he drank a cnp of poison 
which he had previously ordered to be pre- 
pared for him, and in a few minutes was a life- 
less corpse. 

In the mean time, the>other general, Mon-yen, 
had been making preparations to leave the city. 
His plan was to take with him such troops as 
might be serviceable to the emperor, but to 
leave all the inmates of the palace, as well as 
the inhabitants of the city, to their fate. Among 
the people of the palace were, it seems, a num- 
ber of the emperor's wives, whom he had left 
behind at the time of his own flight, he having 
taken with him at that time only a few of the 

210 Genghis Khan. [1214. 

Petition of the wives. Sacking of the city by Mingan. 

more favored ones. These women who were 
left, when they heard that Mon-yen was intend- 
ing to abandon the city with a view of joining 
the emperor in the south, came to him in a 
body, and begged him to take them with him. 

In order to relieve himself of their solicita- 
tions, he said that he would do so, but he added 
that he must leave the city himself with the 
guards to prepare the way, and that he would 
return immediately for them. They were sat- 
isfied with this promise, and returned to the 
palace to prepare for the journey. Mon-yen at 
once left the city, and very soon after he had 
gone, Mingan, the Mongul general, arrived at 
the gates, and, meeting with no effectual resist- 
ance, he easily forced his way in, and a scene 
of universal terror and confusion ensued. The 
soldiers spread themselves over the city in 
search of plunder, and killed all who came in 
their way. They plundered the palace and 
then set it on fire. So extensive was the edi 
flee, and so vast were the stores of clothing and 
other valuables which it contained, even after 
all the treasures which could be made available 
to the conquerors had been taken away, that 
the fire continued to burn among the ruins for 
a month or more. 

What became of the unhappy women who 

1214] Conquests in China. 211 

Massacres. Fate of Mon-yen. Treasures. 

were so cruelly deceived by Mon-yen in re- 
spect to their hopes of escape does not directly 
appear. They doubtless perished with the 
other inhabitants of the city in the general 
massacre. Soldiers at such a time, while en- 
gaged in the sack and plunder of a city, are al- 
ways excited to a species of insane fury, and 
take a savage delight in thrusting their pikes 
into all that come in their way. 

Mon-yen excused himself, when he arrived 
at the quarters of the emperor, for having thus 
abandoned the women to their fate by the al- 
leged impossibility of saving them. He could 
not have succeeded, he said, in effectiDg his 
own retreat and that of the troops who went 
with him if he had been encumbered in his 
movements by such a company of women. 
The emperor accepted this excuse, and seem- 
ed to be satisfied with it, though, not long aft- 
erward, Mon-yen was accused of conspiracy 
against the emperor and was put to death. 

Mingan took possession of the imperial treas- 
ury, where he found great stores of silk, and 
also of gold and silver plate. All these things 
he sent to Genghis Khan, who remained still at 
the north at a grand encampment which he had 
made in Tartary. 

After this, other campaigns were fought by 

212 Genghis Khan. [1216. 

Conquests extended. Governors appointed. 

Genghis Khan in China, in the course of which 
he extended his conquests still farther to the 
southward, and made himself master of a very 
great extent of country. After confirming 
these conquests, he selected from among such 
Chinese officers as were disposed to enter into 
his service suitable persons to be appointed 
governors of the provinces, and in this way 
annexed them to his dominions ; these officers 
thus transferring their allegiance from the em- 
peror to him, and covenanting to send to him 
the tribute which they should annually collect 
from their respective dominions. Every thing 
being thus settled in this quarter, Genghis Khan 
next turned his attention to the western front- 
iers of his empire, where the Tartar and Mon- 
gul territory bordered on Turkestan and the 
dominions of the Mohammedans. 

1217.] The Sultan Mohammed. 213 

Mohammedan countries on the west. Sultan Mohammed. 

Chapter XYII. 
The Sultan Mohammed. 

THE portion of China which. Genghis Khan 
had added to his dominions by the con- 
quests described in the last chapter was called 
Katay, and the possession of it, added to the 
extensive territories which were previously un- 
der his sway, made his empire very vast. The 
country which he now held, either under his 
direct government, or as tributary provinces and 
kingdoms, extended north and south through 
the whole interior of Asia, and from the shores 
of the Japan and China Seas on the east, near- 
ly to the Caspian Sea on the west, a distance 
of nearly three thousand miles. 

Beyond his western limits lay Turkestan and 
other countries governed by the Mohammed- 
ans. Among the other Mohammedan princes 
there was a certain Sultan Mohammed, a great 
and very powerful sovereign, who reigned over 
an extensive region in the neighborhood of 
the Caspian Sea, though the principal seat of 
his power was a country called Karazm. He 

214 Genghis Khan. [1217. 

Karazm. Proposed embassy. Makinut and his suite. 

was, in consequence, sometimes styled Moham- 
med Karazm. 

It might perhaps have been expected that 
Genghis Khan, having subdued all the rivals 
within his reach in the eastern part, of Asia, 
and being strong and secure in the possession 
of his power, would have found some pretext 
for making war upon the sultan, with a view 
of conquering his territories too, and adding the 
countries bordering on the Caspian to his do- 
minions. But, for some reason or other, he. 
concluded, in this instance, to adopt a different 
policy. Whether it was that he was tired of 
war and wished for repose, or whether the sul- 
tan's dominions were too remote, or his power 
too great to make it prudent to attack him, he 
determined on sending an embassy instead of 
an army, with a view of proposing to the sul- 
tan a treaty of friendship and alliance. 

The time when this embassy was sent was 
in the year 1217, and the name of the principal 
embassador was Makinut. 

Makinut set out on his mission accompanied 
by a large retinue of attendants and guards. 
The journey occupied several weeks, but at 
length he arrived in the sultan's dominions. 
Soon after his arrival he was admitted to an 
audience of the sultan, and there, accompanied 

1217.] The Sultan Mohammed. 215 

Speech of the embassador. Father and son. 

by his own secretaries, and in the presence of 
all the chief officers of the sultan's court, he de- 
livered his message. 

He gave an account in his speech of the re- 
cent victories which his sovereign, Genghis 
Khan, had won, and of the great extension 
which his empire had in consequence attained. 
He was now become master, he said, of all the 
countries of Central Asia, from the eastern ex- 
tremity of the continent up to the frontiers of 
the sultan's dominions, and having thus become 
the sultan's neighbor, he was desirous of enter- 
ing into a treaty of amity and alliance with 
him, which would be obviously for the mutual 
interest of both. He had accordingly been sent 
an embassador to the sultan's court to propose 
such an alliance. In offering it, the emperor, 
he said, was actuated by a feeling of the sin- 
cerest good- will. He wished the sultan to con- 
sider him as a father, and he would look upon 
the sultan as a son. 

According to the patriarchal ideas of gov- 
ernment which prevailed in those days, the re- 
lation of father to son involved not merely the 
idea of a tie of affection connecting an older 
with a younger person, but it implied some- 
thing of pre-eminence and authority on the one 
part, and dependence and subjection on the 

216 Genghis Khan. [1217. 

The sultan not pleased. Private interview. Conversation. 

other. Perhaps Genghis Khan did not mean 
his proposition to be understood in this sense, 
but made it solely in reference to the disparity 
between his own and the sultan's years, for he 
was himself now becoming considerably ad- 
vanced in life. However this may be, the sul- 
tan was at first not at all pleased with the prop- 
osition in the form in which the embassador 
made it. 

He, however, listened quietly to Makinut's 
words, and said nothing until the public au- 
dience was ended. He then took Makinut 
alone into another apartment in order to have 
some quiet conversation with him. He first 
asked him to tell him the exact state of the 
case in respect to all the pretended victories 
which Genghis Khan had gained, and, in order 
to propitiate him and induce him to reveal the 
honest truth, he made him a present of a rich 
scarf, splendidly adorned with jewels, 

" How is it ?" said he ; " has the emperor re- 
ally made allthose conquests, and is his empire 
as extensive and powerful as he pretends ? Tell 
me the honest truth about it." 

" What I have told your majesty is the hon- 
est truth about it," replied Makinut. "My 
master the emperor is as powerful as I have 
represented him, and this your majesty will 

1217.] The Sultan Mohammed. 217 

Anger of the sultan. Makinut returns a soft answer. 

soon find out in case you come to have any dif- 
ficulty with him." 

This bold and defiant language on the part 
of the embassador greatly increased the irrita- 
tion which the sultan felt before. He seemed 
much incensed, and replied in a very angry 

" I know not what your master means," said 
he, " by sending such messages to me, telling 
me of the provinces that he has conquered, and 
boasting of his power, or upon what ground he 
pretends to be greater than I, and expects that 
I shall honor him as my father, and be content 
to be treated by him only as his son. Is he so 
very great a personage as this?" 

Makinut now found that perhaps he had 
spoken a little too plainly, and he began imme- 
diately to soften and modify what he had said, 
and to compliment the sultan himself, who, as 
he was well aware, was really superior in pow- 
er and glory to Genghis Khan, notwithstanding 
the great extension to which the empire of the 
latter had recently attained. He also begged 
that the sultan would not be angry with him 
for delivering the message with which he had 
been intrusted. He was only a servant, he said, 
and he was bound to obey the orders of his 
master. He assured the sultan, moreover, that 

218 Genghis Khan. [1217. 

The sultan is appeased. Treaty made. 

if any unfavorable construction could by possi- 
bility be put upon the language which the em- 
peror had used, no such meaning was designed 
on his part, but that in sending the embassage, 
and in every thing connected with it, the em- 
peror had acted with the most friendly and hon- 
orable intentions. 

By means of conciliating language like this 
the sultan was at length appeased, and he final- 
ly was induced to agree to every thing which 
the embassador proposed. A treaty of peace 
and commerce was drawn up and signed, and, 
after every thing was concluded, Makinut re- 
turned to the Mongul country loaded with pres- 
ents, some of which were for himself and his 
attendants, and others were for Genghis Khan. 

He was accompanied, too, by a caravan of 
merchants, who, in consequence of the new 
treaty, were going into the country of Genghis 
Khan with their goods, to see what they could 
do in the new market thus opened to them. 
This caravan traveled in company with Maki- 
nut on his return, in order to avail themselves 
of the protection which the guard that attend- 
ed him could afford in passing through the 
intervening countries. These countries being 
filled with hordes of Tartars, who were very 
little under the dominion of law, it would have 

1217.] The Sultan Mohammed. 219 

Genghis Khan is pleased. Opening of the trade. 

been unsafe for a caravan of rich merchandise 
to pass through them without an escort. 

Grenghis Khan was greatly pleased with the 
result of his embassy. He was also much grat- 
ified with the presents that the sultan had sent 
him, which consisted of costly stuffs for gar- 
ments, beautiful and highly-wrought arms, pre- 
cious stones, and other similar articles. He wel- 
comed the merchants too, and opened facilities 
for them to travel freely throughout his domin- 
ions and dispose of their goods. 

In order that future caravans might go and 
come at all times in safety, he established 
guards along the roads between his country 
and that of the sultan. These guards occupied 
fortresses built at convenient places along the 
way, and especially at the crossing-places on 
the rivers, and in the passes of the mountains ; 
and there orders were given to these guards to 
scour the country in every direction around 
their respective posts, in order to keep it clear 
of robbers. Whenever a band of robbers was 
formed, the soldiers hunted them from one lurk- 
ing-place to another until they were extermin- 
ated. In this way, after a short time, the coun- 
try became perfectly safe, an$ the caravans of 
merchants could go and come with the richest 
goods, and even with treasures of gold and sil- 
ver, without any fear. 

220 Genghis Khan. [1217. 

The exorbitant merchants. Their punishment. 

At first, it would seem, some of the merchants 
from the countries of Mohammed asked too 
much for their goods. At least a story is told 
of a company who came very soon after the 
opening of the treaty, and who offered their 
goods first to Genghis Khan himself, but they 
asked such high prices for them that he was 

"I suppose," said he, "by your asking such 
prices as these, you imagine that I have never 
bought any goods before." 

He then took them to see his treasures, and 
showed them over a thousand large chests fill- 
ed with valuables of every description ; gold 
and silver utensils, rich silks, arms and accou- 
trements splendidly adorned with precious 
stones, and other such commodities. He told 
them that he showed them these things in order 
that they might see that he had had some ex- 
perience in respect to dealings in merchandise 
of that sort before, and knew something of its 
just value. And that, since they had been so 
exorbitant in their demands, presuming prob- 
ably upon the ignorance of those whom they 
came to deal with, he should send them back 
with all their gogds, and not allow them to sell 
them any where in his dominions, at any price. 

This threat he put in execution. The mer- 

1217.] The Sultan Mohammed. 228 

The next company. Their artful management. 

chants were obliged to go back without selling 
any of their goods at all. 

The next company of merchants that came, 
having heard of the adventure of the others, 
determined to act on a different principle. Ac- 
cordingly, when they came into the presence of 
the khan with their goods, and he asked them 
the prices of some of them, they replied that 
his majesty might himself fix the price of the 
articles, as he was a far better judge of the 
value of such things than they were. Indeed, 
they added that if his majesty chose to take 
them without paying any thing at all he was 
welcome to do so. 

This answer pleased the emperor very much. 
He paid them double price for the articles 
which he selected from their stores, and he 
granted them peculiar privileges in respect to 
trading with his subjects while they remained 
in his dominions. 

The trade which was thus opened between 
the dominions of the sultan and those of Gen- 
ghis Khan was not, however, wholly in the 
hands of merchants coming from the former 
country. Soon after the coming of the caravan 
last mentioned, Genghis Khan fitted out a com- 
pany of merchants from his own country, who 
were to go into the country of the sultan, tak- 

224 Genghis Khan. [1217, 

Genghis Khan fits out a company. Embassadors. Mohammedans. 

ing with them such articles, the products of the 
country of the Monguls, as they might hope to 
find a market for there. There were four prin- 
cipal merchants, but they were attended by a 
great number of assistants, servants, camel- 
drivers, etc., so that the whole company formed 
quite a large caravan. Genghis Khan sent with 
them three embassadors, who were to present 
to the sultan renewed assurances of the friendly 
feelings which he entertained for him, and of 
his desire to encourage and promote as much 
as possible the commercial intercourse between 
the two countries which had been so happily 

The three embassadors whom Genghis Khan 
selected for this service were themselves Mo- 
hammedans. He had several persons of this 
faith among the officers of his court, although 
the Monguls had a national religion of their 
own, which was very different from that of the 
Mohammedans ; still, all forms of worship were 
tolerated in Genghis Khan's dominions, and the 
emperor was accustomed to take good officers 
into his service wherever he could find them, 
without paying any regard to the nature of 
their religious belief so far as their general du- 
ties were concerned. But now, in sending this 
deputation to the sultan, he selected the embas- 

1217.] The Sultan Mohammed. 225 

Messengers from the court. Large party. 

sadors from among the Mohammedans at his 
court, thinking that it would please the sultan 
better to receive his message through persons 
of his own religious faith. Besides, the three 
persons whom he appointed were natives of 
Turkestan, and they were, of course, well ac- 
quainted with the language of the country and 
with the country itself. 

Besides the merchants and the embassadors, 
Genghis Khan gave permission to each of his 
wives, and also to each of the great lords of his 
court, to send a servant or messenger with the 
caravan, to select and purchase for their mas- 
ters and mistresses whatever they might find 
most curious or useful in the Mohammedan 
cities which the caravan might visit. The 
lords and ladies were all very glad to avail 
themselves of the opportunity thus afforded 

All these persons, the embassadors and their 
suite, the merchants and their servants, and the 
special messengers sent by the lords and ladies 
of the court, formed, as may well be supposed, 
a very numerous company. It is said that the 
caravan, when ready to commence its march, 
contained no less than four hundred and fifty 

Every thing being at last made ready, the 

226 Genghis Khan. [1217. 

Roads doubly guarded. The Calif of Bagdad. 

caravan set out on its long journey. It was 
accompanied by a suitable escort, and, in order 
to provide still more effectually for the safety 
of the rich merchandise and the valuable lives 
committed to it, Grenghis Khan sent on orders 
beforehand to all the military stations on the 
way, directing the captains to double the guard 
on their respective sections of the road while 
the caravan was passing. 

By means of these and other similar precau- 
tions the expedition accomplished the journey 
in safety, and arrived without any misfortune 
in the Mohammedan country. Very serious 
misfortunes, however, awaited them there im- 
mediately after their arrival, arising out of a 
train of events which bad been for some time 
in progress, and which I must now go back a 
little to describe. 

It seems that some difference had arisen 
some time before this between the Sultan Mo- 
hammed and the Calif of Bagdad, who was the 
great head of the Mohammedan power. Mo- 
hammed applied to the calif to grant him cer- 
tain privileges and powers which had occasion- 
ally been bestowed on other sultans who had 
rendered great services to the Mohammedan 
empire. He claimed that he had merited these 
rewards by the services which he had rendered. 

1217.] The Sultan Mohammed. 227 

Mohammed's demand and the calif's reply. The sultan calls a council. 

He had conquered, he said, more than one 
hundred princes and chieftains, and had cut off 
their heads and annexed their territories to his 
dominions, thus greatly enlarging and extend' 
ing the Mohammedan power. 

Mohammed made this demand of the calif 
through the medium of an embassador whom 
he sent to Bagdad. The calif, after hearing 
what the embassador had to say, refused to 
comply. He said that the services which Mo- 
hammed had rendered were not of sufficient 
importance and value to merit the honors and 
privileges which Mohammed demanded. But, 
although he thus declined complying with Mo- 
hammed's request, he showed a disposition to 
treat the sultan himself with all proper defer- 
ence by sending an embassador of his own to 
accompany Mohammed's embassador on his re- 
turn, with instructions to communicate the re- 
ply which the calif felt bound to make in a 
respectful and courteous manner. 

Mohammed received the calif's embassador 
very honorably, and in his presence concealed 
the anger which the answer of the calif excited 
in his mind. As soon as the embassador was 
gone, however, he convened a grand council of 
all the great chieftains, and generals, and min- 
isters of state in his dominions, and announced 

228 Genghis Khan. [1217. 

Mohammed's plan for revenge. March of the army. Failure. 

to them his determination to raise an army and 
march to Bagdad, with a view of deposing the 
calif and reigning in his stead. The great per- 
sonages assembled at the council were very 
ready to enter into this scheme, for they knew 
that if it was successful there would be a great 
many honors and a great deal of booty that 
would fall to their share in the final distribu- 
tion of the spoil. Se they all engaged with 
great zeal in aiding' the sultan to form and 
equip his army. In due time the expedition 
was ready, and the sultan commenced his 
march. But, as often happens in such cases, 
the preparations had been hindered by various 
causes of delay, and it was too late in the sea- 
son when the army began to move. The forces 
moved slowly, too, after they commenced their 
march, so that the winter came on while they 
were among the passes of the mountains. The 
winter was unusually severe, and the troops 
suffered so much from the frosts and the rains, 
and from the various hardships to which they 
were in consequence exposed, that the sultan 
found it impossible to go on. He was con- 
sequently obliged to return, and begin his 
work over again. And the worst of it was, 
that the calif was now aware of his designs, 
and would be able, he knew, before the next 

1217.] The Sultan Mohammed. 229 

The calif's plans. Objections to them. 

season, to take effectual measures to defend 

When the calif heard of the misfortunes 
which had befallen the sultan's army, and his 
narrow escape from the dangers of a formida- 
ble invasion, he was at first overjoyed, and he 
resolved at once on making war upon the re- 
bellious sultan. In forming his plans for the 
campaign, the idea occurred to him of endeav- 
oring to incite Genghis Khan to invade the 
sultan's dominions from the east while he him- 
self attacked him from the west ; for Bagdad, 
the capital of the calif, was to the westward of 
the sultan's country, as the empire of the Mon- 
guls was to the eastward of it. 

But when the calif proposed his plan to his 
counselors, some of them objected to it very 
strenuously. The sultan and the people of his 
country were, like the calif himself, Mohammed- 
ans, while the Monguls were of another relig- 
ion altogether, or, as the Mohammedans called 
them, unbelievers or infidels ; and the counsel- 
ors who objected to the calif's proposal said 
that it would be very wrong to bring the ene- 
mies of God into the country of the faithful to 
guard against a present and temporary danger, 
and thereby, perhaps, in the end occasion the 
ruin both of their religion and their empire. 

230 Genghis Khan. [1217. 

Arguments of the cali£ Message to Genghis Khan. 

It would be an impious deed, they thought, thus 
to bring in a horde of barbarian infidels to wage 
war with them against their brethren. 

To this the calif replied that the emergency 
was so critical that they were j ustified in avail- 
ing themselves of any means that offered to save 
themselves from the ruin with which they were 
threatened. And as to the possibility that Gen- 
ghis Khan, if admitted to the country as their 
ally, would in the end turn his arms against 
them, he said that they must watch, and take 
measures to guard against such a danger. Be- 
sides, he would rather have an open unbeliever 
like Genghis Khan for a foe, than a Moham- 
medan traitor and rebel like the sultan. He 
added, moreover, that he did not believe that 
the Mongul emperor felt any animosity or ill 
will against the Mohammedans or against their 
faith. It was evident, indeed, that he did not, 
for he had a great many Mohammedans in his 
dominions, and he allowed them to live there 
without molestation. . He even had Moham- 
medan officers of very high rank in his court. 

So it was finally decided to send a message 
and invite him to join the calif in making war 
on the sultan. 

The difficulty was now to contrive some 
means by which this message could be con- 

1217.] The Sultan Mohammed. 231 

Artful device. The answer of Genghis Khan. 

veyed through, the sultan's territories, which, 
of course, lay between the dominions of the ca- 
lif and those of Genghis Khan. To accomplish 
this purpose the calif resorted to a very singu- 
lar device. Instead of writing his communica- 
tion in a letter, he caused it to be pricked with 
a needle and some indigo, by a sort of tattooing 
process, upon the messenger's head, in such a 
manner that it was concealed by his hair. The 
messenger was then disguised as a countryman 
and sent forth. He succeeded in accomplish- 
ing the journey in safety, and when he arrived 
Genghis Khan had only to cause his head to be 
shaved, when the inscription containing the ca- 
lif's proposal to him at once became legible. 

This method of making the communication 
was considered very safe, for even if, from any 
accident, the man had been intercepted on the 
way, on suspicion of his being a messenger the 
sultan's men would have found nothing, in 
searching him, to confirm their suspicions, for 
it is not at all probable that they would have 
thought of looking for a letter among his hair. 

Genghis Khan was well pleased to receive 
the proposals of the calif, but he sent back word 
in reply that he could not at present engage in 
any hostile movement against the sultan on ac- 
count of the treaty of peace and commerce 

232 Genghis Khan. [1217. 

The caravan arrives at Otrar. 

which he had recently established with him. 
So long as the saltan observed the stipulations 
of the treaty, he felt bound in honor, he said, 
not to break it. He knew, however, he added, 
that the restless spirit of the sultan would not 
long allow things to remain in the posture they 
were then in, and that on the first occasion giv- 
en he would not fail to declare war against him. 

Things were in this state when the grand 
caravan of merchants and embassadors which 
Genghis Khan had sent arrived at the frontiers 
of the sultan's dominions. 

After passing the frontier, the first important 
place which they reached was a city called 
Otrar. They were received very courteously 
by the governor of this place, and were much 
pleased with the opportunity afforded them to 
rest from the fatigues of their long journey. It 
seems, however, after all, that the governor's 
friendship for his guests was only pretended, 
for he immediately wrote to the sultan, inform- 
ing him that a party of persons had arrived at 
his city from the Mongul country who pretend- 
ed to be merchants and embassadors, but that 
he believed that they were spies, for they were 
extremely inquisitive about the strength of the 
garrisons and the state of the defenses of the 
country generally. He had no doubt, he add- 

1217.] The Sultan Mohammed. 233 

The governor's treachery. The party massacred. 

ed, that they were emissaries sent by Genghis 
Khan to find out the best way of invading his 

One account states that the motive which in- 
duced the governor to make these representa- 
tions to the sultan was some offense which he 
took at the familiar manner in which he was 
addressed by one of the embassadors, who was 
a native of Otrar, and had known the governor 
in former times when he was a private person. 
Another says that his object was to have the 
expedition broken up, in order that he might 
seize for himself the rich merchandise and the 
valuable presents which the merchants and em- 
bassadors had in their possession. 

At any rate, he wrote to the sultan denounc- 
ing the whole party as foreign emissaries and 
spies, and in a short time he received a reply 
from the sultan directing him to put them all 
to death, or otherwise to 'deal with them as he 
thought proper. So he invited the whole party 
to a grand entertainment in his palace, and 
then, at a given signal, probably after most of 
them had become in some measure helpless 
from the influence of the wine, a body of his 
guards rushed in and massacred them all. 

Or, rather, they attempted to massacre them 
all, but one of the merchants' men contrived in 

234 Genghis Khan. [1217. 

Genghis Khan hears the tidings. He declares war. 

the confusion to make his escape. He suc- 
ceeded in getting back into the Mongul coun- 
try, where he reported what had happened to 
Genghis Khan. 

Genghis Khan was greatly exasperated when 
he heard these tidings. He immediately called 
together his sons, and all the great lords and 
chieftains of his court, and recited. to them the 
story of the massacre of the merchants in such 
a manner as to fill their hearts with indigna- 
tion and rage, and to inspire them all with a 
burning thirst for revenge. 

He also immediately sent word to the sul- 
tan that, since by so infamous an action he had 
violated all the engagements which had sub- 
sisted between them, he, from that instant, de- 
clared himself his mortal enemy, and would 
take vengeance upon him for his treacherous- 
ness and cruelty by ravaging his country with 
fire and sword. 

This message was sent, it was said, by three 
embassadors, whose persons ought to have been 
considered sacred, according to every principle 
of international law. But the sultan, as soon 
as they had delivered their message, ordered 
their heads to be cut off. 

This new massacre excited the rage and fury 
of Genghis Khan to a higher pitch than ever. 

1217.] The Sultan Mohammed. 235 


For three days, it is said, lie neither ate nor 
slept, and seemed almost beside himself with 
mingled vexation, grief, and anger. And after- 
ward he busied himself night and day with the 
arrangements for assembling his army and pre- 
paring to march, and he allowed himself no 
rest until every thing was ready. 

236 Genghis Khan. [1217. 

Marshaling of the army. Arms and armor. 

Chapter XVIII. 
The War with the Sultan. 

GENGHIS KHAIST made his preparations 
for a war on an immense scale. He sent 
messengers in every direction to all the princes, 
khans, governors, and other chieftains through- 
out his empire, with letters explaining to them 
the cause of the war, and ordering them to re- 
pair to the places of rendezvous which he ap- 
pointed, with all the troops that they could 

He gave particular directions in respect to 
the manner in which the men were to be arm- 
ed and equipped. The arms required were the 
sabre, the bow, with a quiver full of arrows, 
and the battle-axe. Each soldier was also to 
carry a rope, ropes and cordage being contin- 
ually in demand among people living on horse- 
back and in tents. 

The officers were to wear armor as well as to 
carry arms. Those who could afford it were 
to provide themselves with a complete coat of 
mail. The rest were to wear helmets and 

1218.] War with the Sultan. 237 

Provision for contingencies. 

breast-plates only. The horses were also to be 
protected as far as possible by breast-plates, ei- 
ther of iron, or of leather thick and tough 
enough to prevent an arrow from penetrating. 

When the troops thus called for appeared at 
the place of rendezvous appointed for them, 
Genghis Khan found, as is said, that he had an 
army of seven hundred thousand men ! 

The army being thus assembled, Genghis 
Khan caused certain rules and regulations, or 
articles of war, as they might be called, to be 
drawn up and promulgated to the troops. One 
of the rules was that no body of troops were 
ever to retreat without first fighting, whatever 
the imminence of the danger might be. He 
also ordered that where a body of men were 
engaged, if any subordinate division of them, 
as one company in a regiment, or one regiment 
in a battalion, should break ranks and fly be- 
fore the order for a retreat should have been 
given by the proper authority, the rest were to 
leave fighting the enemy, and attack the por- 
tion flying, and kill them all upon the spot. 

The emperor also made formal provision for 
the event of his dying in the course of the cam- 
paign. In this case a grand assembly of all 
the khans and chieftains 'of the empire was to 
be convened, and then, in the presence of these 

238 Genghis Khan. [1218. 

The army commences its march. Jughi's dirision. 

khans and of his sons, the constitution and laws 
of the empire, as he had established them, were 
to be read, and after the reading the assembly 
were to proceed to the election of a new khan, 
according to the forms which the constitution 
had provided. 

After all these affairs had been arranged, 
Genghis Khan put his army in motion. He 
was obliged, of course, to separate it into sev- 
eral grand divisions, and to send the several di- 
visions forward by different roads, and through 
different sections of the country. So large a 
body can never be kept together on a long 
march, on account of the immense quantity of 
food that is required, both for the horses and 
the men, and which must be supplied in the 
main by the country itself which they traverse, 
since neither horses nor men can carry food 
with them for more than a very few days. 

Genghis Khan put one of the largest divi- 
sions under the command of his son Jughi, the 
prince who distinguished himself so much in 
the conflicts by which his.fother raised himself 
to the supreme power. 

Jughi was ordered to advance with his divi- 
sion through Turkestan, the country where the 
Prince Kushluk had sought refuge, and which 
still remained, in some degree, disaffected to- 

1218.] War with the Sultan. 239 

Preparations of the sultan. His army. His plan. 

ward Genghis Khan. Genghis Khan himself, 
with the main body of the army, took a more 
southerly route directly toward the dominions 
of th*e sultan. 

In the mean time the sultan himself had not 
been idle. He collected together all the forces 
that he could command. When they were 
mustered, the number of men was found to be 
four hundred thousand. This was a large army, 
though much smaller than that of Genghis 

The sultan set out upon his march with his 
troops to meet the invaders. After advancing 
for some distance, he learned that the army of 
Jughi, which had passed through Turkestan, 
was at the northward of his position, and he 
found that by turning in that direction he might 
hope to meet and conquer that part of the Mon- 
gul force before it could have time to join the 
main body. He determined at once to adopt 
this plan. 

He accordingly turned his course, and march- 
ed forward into the part of the country where 
he supposed Jughi to be. At length he came 
to a place where his scouts found, near a river, 
a great many dead bodies lying on the ground. 
Among the others who had fallen there was 
one man who was wounded, but was not dead, 

240 Genghis Khan. [1218. 

The sultan meets Jughi. Opinion of the generals. Jughi's decision. 

This wounded man told the scouts that the 
bodies were those of persons who had been slain 
by the army of Jughi, which had just passed 
that way. The sultan accordingly pressed for- 
ward and soon overtook them. . Jughi was 
hastening on in order to join his father. 

Jughi consulted his generals in respect to 
what it was best to do. They advised him to 
avoid a battle. 

"We are not strong enough," said they, "to 
encounter alone the whole of the sultan's army. 
It is better that we should retreat, which we 
can do in an orderly manner, and thus join the 
main body before we give the enemy battle. 
Or, if the sultan should attempt to pursue us, 
he can not keep his army together in doing so. 
• They will necessarily become divided into de- 
tachments on the road, and then we can turn 
and destroy them in detail, which will be a 
much surer mode of proceeding than for us to 
attack them in the mass." 

Jughi was not willing to follow this advice. 

"What will my father and my brothers 
think," said he, " when they see us coming to 
them, flying from the enemy, without having 
fought them, contrary to his express commands? 
No. We must stand our ground, trusting to 
our valor, and do our best. If we are to die at 

1218.] War with the Sultan. 241 

The battle commenced. Neither party victorious. 

all, we had better be slain in battle than in 
flight. You have done your duty in admonish- 
ing me of the danger we are in, and now it re- 
mains for me to do mine in trying to bring you 
out of it with honor." 

So he ordered the army to halt, and to be 
drawn up in order of battle. 

The battle was soon commenced, and it was 
continued throughout the day. The Monguls, 
though fewer in numbers, were superior to 
their enemies in discipline and in courage, and 
the advantage was obviously on their side, 
though they did not gain a decisive victory. 
Toward night, however, the sultan's troops 
evinced every where a disposition to give way, 
and it was with great difficulty that the officers 
could induce them to maintain their ground 
until the darkness came on and put an end to 
the conflict. When at length the combatants 
could no longer see to distinguish friend from 
foe, the two armies withdrew to their respect- 
ive camps, and built their fires for the night. 

Jughi thought that by fighting during this 
day he had done all that his father required of 
him to vindicate the honor of the army, and 
that now it would be most prudent to retreat, 
without risking another battle on the morrow. 
So he caused fresh supplies of fuel to be but 

242 Genghis Khan. [1218. 

Juglii withdraws. His recpption by his father. The Monguls Tictorious. 

upon the camp-fires in order to deceive the en- 
emy, and then marched out of his camp in the 
night with all his men. The next morning, by 
the time that the sultan's troops were again 
under arms, he had advanced far on his march 
to join his father, and was beyond their reach. 

He soon rejoined his father, and was received 
by him with great joy. Genghis Khan was 
extremely pleased with the course which his 
son had pursued, and bestowed upon him many 
public honors and rewards. 

After this other great battles were fought 
between the two armies. At one of them, a 
great trumpet fifteen feet long is mentioned 
among the other martial instruments that were 
used to excite the men to ardor in making the 

In these battles the Monguls were victorious. 
The sultan, however, still continued to make 
head as well as he could against the invaders, 
until at length he found that he had lost one 
hundred and sixty thousand of his men. This 
was almost half of his army, and the loss en- 
feebled him so much that he was convinced 
that it was useless for him any longer to resist 
the Monguls in the open field ; so he sent off 
his army in detachments to the different towns 
and fortresses of his kingdom, ordering the sev- 

1218.] War with the Sultan. 243 

The sultan's plans. Flying squadron. Genghis Khan. 

eral divisions to shut themselves up and defend 
themselves as well as they could, in the places 
assigned to them, until better times should 

The sultan, however, did not seek shelter in 
this way for himself. He selected from his 
troops a certain portion of those who were 
most active and alert and were best mounted, 
and formed of them a sort of flying squadron 
with which he could move rapidly from place 
to place through the country, wherever his aid 
might be most required. 

Grenghis Khan, of course, now prepared to 
attack the cities where the several divisions of 
the sultan's army had intrenched themselves. 
He wished first to get possession of Otrar, 
which was the place where the embassadors 
and the merchants had been massacred. But 
the city was not very large, and so, instead of 
marching toward it himself, he gave the charge 
of capturing it to two of his younger sons, 
whom he sent off for the purpose at the head 
of a suitable detachment. 

He himself, with the main body, set off upon 
a march toward the cities of Samarcand and 
Bokhara, which were the great central cities of 
the sultan's dominions. 

2M Genghis Khan. [1218. 

Description of the town Bokhara. 

Chapter XIX. 
The Fall of Bokhara. 

BOKHAEA was a great and beautiful city. 
It was situated in the midst of a very fine 
and fertile country, in a position very favorable 
for the trade and commerce of those days. It 
was also a great seat of learning and of the 
arts and sciences. It contained many institu- 
tions in which were taught such arts and sci- 
ences as were then cultivated, and students re- 
sorted to it from all the portions of Western 

The city proper was inclosed with a strong 
wall. Besides this there was an outer wall, 
thirty miles in circumference, which inclosed 
the suburbs of the town, and also a beautiful re- 
gion of parks and gardens, which contained the 
public places of amusement and the villas of 
the wealthy inhabitants. It was this peaceful 
seat of industry and wealth that Genghis Khan, 
with his hordes of ruthless barbarians, was com- 
ing now to sack and plunder. 

The first city which the Monguls reached on 

1219.] The Fall of Bokhara. 245 

Zarnuk. An immediate surrender. Nur. 

their march toward Bokhara was one named 
Zarnuk. In approaching it a large troop rode 
up toward the walls, uttering terrific shouts and 
outcries. The people shut the gates in great 
terror. Genghis Khan, however, sent an officer 
to them to say that it was useless for them to 
attempt to resist him, and to advise them to 
surrender at once. They must demolish their 
citadel, he said, and send out all the young and 
able-bodied men to Genghis Khan. The offi- 
cer advised them, too, to send out presents to 
Grenghis Khan as an additional means of pro- 
pitiating him and inducing him to spare the 

The inhabitants yielded to this advice. The 
gates were thrown open. All the young men 
who were capable of bearing arms were mar- 
shaled and marched out to the Mongul camp. 
They were accompanied by the older men 
among the inhabitants, who took with them 
the best that the town contained, for presents. 
Genghis Khan accepted the presents, ordered 
the young men to be enrolled in his army, and 
then, dismissing the older ones in peace, he re- 
sumed his march and went on his way. 

He next came to a town named JSTur. One 
of the men from Zarnuk served as a guide to 
show the detachment which was sent to sum- 

246 Genghis Khan. [1219. 

Fate cf Nur. The siege of Bokhara commenced. 

mon the city a near way to reach it. Nur was 
a sort of sacred town, having many holy places 
in it which were resorted to by many pilgrims 
and other devotees. 

The people of JSTur shut the gates and for 
some time refused to surrender. But at last, 
finding that it was useless to attempt to resist, 
they opened the gates and allowed the Monguls 
to come in. Genghis Khan, to punish the in- 
habitants, as he said, for even thinking of re- 
sisting him, set aside a supply of cattle and oth- 
er provisions to keep them from starving, and 
then gave up all the rest of the property found 
in the town to be divided among his soldiers as 

At length the army reached the great plain 
in which Bokhara was situated, and encamped 
before the town. Bokhara was very large and 
very populous, as may well be supposed from 
its outer wall of thirty miles in circuit, and Gen- 
ghis Khan did not expect to make himself mas- 
ter of it without considerable difficulty and de- 
lay. He was, however, very intent on besieg- 
ing and taking it, not only on account of the 
general wealth and importance of the place, but 
also because he supposed that the sultan him- 
self was at this time within the walls. He had 
heard that the sultan had retreated there with 

1219.] The Fall of Bokhara. 247 

The sultan's anxiety. Intercepted letters. The deserter. 

his flying squadron, taking with him all his 

This i was, however, a mistake. The sultan 
was not there. He had gone there, it is true, 
at first, and had taken with him the most valu- 
able of his treasures, but before Genghis Khan 
arrived he had secretly withdrawn to Samar- 
cand, thinking that he might be safer there. 

In truth, the sultan was beginning to be very 
much disheartened and discouraged. Among 
other things which occurred to disturb his mind, 
certain letters were found and brought to him, 
as if they had been intercepted, which letters 
gave accounts of a conspiracy among his offi- 
cers to desert him and go over to the side of 
Genghis Khan. These letters were not signed, 
and the sultan could not discover who had writ- 
ten them, but the pretended conspiracy which 
they revealed filled his soul with anxiety and 

It was only a pretended conspiracy after all, 
for the letters were written by a man in Gen- 
ghis Khan's camp, and with Genghis Khan's 
permission or connivance. This man was a Mo- 
hammedan, and had been in the sultan's serv- 
ice ; but the sultan had put to death his father 
and his brothers on account of some alleged of- 
fense, and he had become so incensed at the act 

248 Genghis Khan. [1219. 

The outer -wall taken. Grand sortie made by the garrison. 

that he had deserted to Genghis Khan, and now 
he was determined to do his former sovereign 
all the mischief in his power. His intimate 
knowledge of persons and things connected 
with the sultan's court and army enabled him 
to write these letters in such a way as to de- 
ceive the sultan completely. 

It was past midsummer when the army of 
Genghis Khan laid siege to Bokhara, and it 
was not until the spring of the following year 
that they succeeded in carrying the outer wall, 
so strongly was the city fortified and so well 
was it defended. After having forced the out- 
er wall, the Monguls destroyed the suburbs of 
the town, devastated the cultivated gardens and 
grounds, and pillaged the villas. They then 
took up their position around the inner wall, 
and commenced the siege of the city itself in 
due form. 

The sultan had left three of his greatest gen- 
erals in command of the town. These men de- 
termined not to wait the operations of Genghis 
Khan in attacking the walls, but to make a sud- 
den sally from the gates, with the whole force 
that could be spared, and attack the besiegers 
in their intrenchments. They made this sally 
in the night, at a time when the Monguls were 
least expecting it. They were, however, wholly 

1219.] The Fall of Bokhara. 249 

Evacuation of the town. Pursuit. The fugitives overtaken. 

unsuccessful. They were driven back into the 
city with great loss. The generals, it seems, 
had determined to risk all on this desperate at- 
tempt, and, in case it failed, at once to abandon 
the city to its fate. Accordingly, when driven 
into the city through the gates on one side, they 
marched directly through it and passed out 
through the gates on the other side, hoping to 
save themselves and the garrison by this re- 
treat, with a view of ultimately rejoining the 
sultan. They, however, went first in a south- 
erly direction from the city toward the Eiver 
Amoor. The generals took their families and 
those of the principal officers of the garrison 
with them. 

The night was dark, and they succeeded in 
leaving the city without being observed. In 
the morning, however, all was discovered, and 
Genghis Khan sent off a strong detachment of 
well-mounted troops in pursuit. These troops, 
after about a day's chase, overtook the flying 
garrison near the river. There was no escape 
for the poor fugitives, and the merciless Mon- 
guls destroyed them almost every one by rid- 
ing over them, trampling them down with their 
horses' hoofs, and cutting them to pieces with 
their sabres. 

In the mean time, while this detachment had 

250 Genghis Khan. [1219. 

Surrender. Conditions made. The governor of the citadel. 

been pursuing the garrison, Genghis Khan, 
knowing that there were no longer any troops 
within the city to defend it, and that every 
thing there was in utter confusion, determined 
on a grand final assault ; but, while his men 
were getting the engines ready to batter down 
the walls, a procession, consisting of all the 
magistrates and clergy, and a great mass of the 
principal citizens, came forth from one of the 
gates, bearing with them the keys of the city. 
These keys they offered to Genghis Khan in 
token of surrender, and begged him to spare 
their lives. 

The emperor received the keys, and said to 
the citizens that he would spare their lives on 
condition that, if there were any of the sultan's 
soldiers concealed in the city, they would give 
them up, and that they would also seize and de- 
liver to him any of the citizens that were sus- 
pected of being in the sultan's interest. This 
they took a solemn oath that they would do. . 

The soldiers, however — that is, those that re- 
mained in the town — were not delivered up. 
Most of them retired to the castle, which was a 
sort of citadel, and put themselves under the 
command of the governor of the castle, who, 
being a very energetic and resolute man, de- 
clared that he never would surrender. 

1219.] The Fall of Bokhara. 251 

Genghis Khan enters the city. Valuables surrendered. 

There were a great many of the young men 
of the town, sons of the leading citizens, who 
also retired to the castle, determined not to 
yield to the conqueror. 

Genghis Khan, having thus obtained the keys 
of the city itself, caused the gates to be opened, 
and his troops marched in and took possession. 
He had promised the citizens that his soldiers 
should spare the lives of the people and should 
not pillage the houses on condition that the 
magistrates delivered up peaceably the public 
magazines of grain and other food to supply 
his army; also that all the people who had 
buried or otherwise concealed gold and silver, or 
other treasures, should bring them forth again 
and give them up, or else make known where 
they were concealed. This the people promised 
that they would do. 

After having entered the town, Genghis 
Khan was riding about the streets on horse- 
back at the head of his troop of guards when he 
came to a large and very beautiful edifice. The 
doors were wide, and he drove his horse directly 
in. His troops, and the other soldiers who were 
there, followed him in. There were also with 
him some of the magistrates of the town, who 
were accompanying him in his progress about 
the city. 

252 Genghis Khan. [1219. 

The emperor in the mosque. Desecration of the mosque. 

After the whole party had entered the edi- 
fice, Genghis Khan looked around, and then 
asked them, in a jeering manner, if that was the 
sultan's palace. 

"No,' # ' said they, "it is the house of God." 

The building was a mosque. 

On hearing this, Genghis Khan alighted from 
his horse, and, giving the bridle to one of the 
principal magistrates to hold, he went up, in a 
very irreverent manner, to a sacred place where 
the priests were accustomed to sit. He seized 
the copy of the Koran which he found there, 
and threw it down under the feet of the horses. 
After amusing himself for a time in desecrating 
the temple by these and other similar perform- 
ances, he caused his soldiers to bring in their 
provisions, and allowed them to eat and drink 
in the temple, in a riotous manner, without any 
regard to the sacredness of the place, or to the 
feelings of the people of the town which he 
outraged by this conduct. 

A few days after this Genghis Khan assem- 
bled all the magistrates and principal citizens 
of the town, and made a speech to them from 
an elevated stand or pulpit which was erected 
for the purpose. He began his speech by prais- 
ing God, and claiming to be an object of his 
special favor, in proof of which he recounted 

1219.] The Fall of Bokhara. 253 

Ctenghis Khan makes a speech. The inhabitants give up every thing. 

the victories which he had obtained, as he said, 
through the Divine aid. He then went on to 
denounce the perfidious conduct of the sultan 
toward him in making a solemn treaty of peace 
with him and then treacherously murdering his 
merchants and embassadors. He said that the 
sultan was a detestable tyrant, and that God 
had commissioned him to rid the earth of all 
such monsters. He said, in conclusion, that he 
would protect their lives, and would not allow 
his soldiers to take away their household goods, 
provided they surrendered to him fairly and 
honestly all their money and other treasures; 
and if any of them refused to do this, or to tell 
where their treasures were hid, he would put 
them to the torture, and compel them to tell. 

The wretched inhabitants of the town, feel- 
ing that they were entirely at the mercy of the 
terrible hordes that were in possession of the 
city, did not attempt to conceal any thing. 
They brought forward their hidden treasures, 
and even offered their household goods to the 
conqueror if he was disposed to take them. 
They were only anxious to save, if possible, 
their dwellings and their lives. Genghis Khan 
appeared at first to be pleased with the sub- 
missive spirit which they manifested, but at 
last, under pretense that he heard of some sol- 

254 Genghis Khan. [1219. 

Conflagration. Surrender of the citadel. The town utterly destroyed. 

diers being concealed somewhere, and perhaps 
irritated at the citadel's holding out so long 
against him, he ordered the town to be set on 
fire. The buildings were almost all of wood, 
and the fire raged among them with great fury. 
Multitudes of the inhabitants perished in the 
flames, and great numbers died miserably after- 
ward from want and exposure. The citadel im- 
mediately afterward surrendered, and it would 
seem that Genghis Khan began to feel satisfied 
with the amount of misery which he had caused, 
for it is said that he spared the lives of the gov- 
ernor and of the soldiers, although we might 
have expected that he would have massacred 
them all. 

The citadel was, however, demolished, and 
thus the town itself, and all that pertained to it, 
became a mass of smoking ruins. The prop- 
erty pillaged from the inhabitants was divided 
among the Mongul troops, while the people 
themselves went away, to roam as vagabonds 
and beggars over the surrounding country, and 
to die of want and despair. 

What difference is there between such a con- 
queror as this and the captain of a band of 
pirates or of robbers, except in the immense 
magnitude of the scale on which he perpetrates 
his crimes ? 

1219.] The Fall of Bokhara. 255 

News of the fall of Otrar. Plans for the defense of Otrar. 

The satisfaction which Genghis Khan felt at 
the capture of Bokhara was greatly increased 
by the intelligence which he received soon aft- 
erward from the two princes whom he had sent 
to lay siege to Otrar, informing him that that 
city had fallen into their hands, and that the 
governor of it, the officer who had so treacher- 
ously put to death the embassadors and the mer- 
chants, had been taken and slain. The name 
of this governor was Gayer Khan. The sultan, 
knowing that Genghis Khan would doubtless 
make this city one of his first objects of attack, 
left the governor a force of fifty thousand men 
to defend it. He afterward sent him an addi- 
tional force of ten thousand men, under the 
command of a general named Kanakas. 

With these soldiers the governor shut him- 
self up in the city. He knew very well that if 
he surrendered or was taken he could expect 
no mercy, and he went to work accordingly 
strengthening the fortifications, and laying in 
stores of provisions, determined to fight to the 
last extremity. The captain of the guard who 
came to assist him had not the same reason for 
being so very obstinate in the defense of the 
town, and this difference in the situation of the 
two commanders led to difficulty in the end, as 
we shall presently see. 

256 Genghis Khan. [1219. 

Sorties. The proposal made to Genghis Khan. 

The Mongul princes began the siege of Otrar 
by filling up the ditches that encircled the out- 
er wall of the town in the places where they 
wished to plant their battering-rams to make 
breaches in the walls. They were hindered a 
great deal in their work, as is usual in such 
cases, by the sallies of the besieged, who rushed 
upon them in the night in great numbers, and 
with such desperate fury that they often suc- 
ceeded in destroying some of the engines, or set- 
ting them on fire before they could be driven 
back into the town. This continued for some 
time, until at last the Mongul princes began to 
be discouraged, and they sent word to their fa- 
ther, who was then engaged in the siege of 
Bokhara, informing him of the desperate de- 
fense which was made by the garrison of Otrar, 
and asking his permission to turn the siege into 
a blockade — that is, to withdraw from the imme- 
diate vicinity of the walls, and to content them- 
selves with investing the city closely on every 
side, so as to prevent any one from going out 
or coming in, until the provisions of the town 
should be exhausted, and the garrison be starved 
into a surrender. In this way, they said, the 
lives of vast numbers of the troops would be 

But their father sent back word to them that 

1219.] The Fall of Bokhara. 257 

The siege renewed. The outer walls taken. Desperate conflicts. 

they must do no such, thing, but must go on 
and fight their way into the town, no matter 
how many of the men were killed. 

So the princes began again with fresh ardor, 
and they pushed forward their operations with 
such desperate energy that in less than a month 
the outer wall, and the works of the besieged 
to defend it, were all in ruins. The towers were 
beaten down, the ramparts were broken, and 
many breaches were made through which the 
besiegers might be expected at any moment to 
force their way into the town. The besieged 
were accordingly obliged to abandon the outer 
walls and retire within the inner lines. 

The Monguls now had possession of the sub- 
urbs, and, after pillaging them of all that they 
could convert to their own use, and burning 
and destroying every thing else, they advanced 
to attack the inner works; and here the con- 
test between the besiegers and the garrison was 
renewed more fiercely than ever. The besieged 
continued their resistance for five months, de- 
fending themselves by every possible means 
from the walls, and making desperate sallies 
from time to time in order to destroy the Mon- 
guls' engines and kill the men. 

At length Kanakas, the captain of the guard, 
who had been sent to assist the governor in the 

258 Genghis Kha^. [1219. 

Kanakas and the governor. . Treason. 

defense of the town, began to think it was time 
that the carnage shonld cease and that the town 
should be surrendered. But the governor, who 
knew that he would most assuredly be behead- 
ed if in any way he fell into the hands of the 
enemy, would not listen to any proposal of the 
kind. He succeeded, also, in exciting among 
the people of the town, and among the soldiers 
of the garrison, such a hatred of the Monguls, 
whom he represented as infidels of the very- 
worst character, the enemies alike of God and 
man, that they joined him in the determination 
not to surrender. 

Kanakas now found himself an object of sus- 
picion and distrust in the town and in the gar- 
rison on account of his having made the pro- 
posal to surrender, and feeling that he was not 
safe, he determined to make a separate peace 
for himself and his ten thousand by going out 
secretly in the night and^ giving himself up to 
the princes. He thought that by doing this, 
and by putting the Monguls in possession of the 
gate through which his troops were to march 
out, so as to enable them to gain admission to 
the city, his life would be spared, and that he 
might perhaps be admitted into the service of 
Genghis Khan. 

But he was mistaken in this idea. The 

1219.] The Fall of Bokhara. 259 

Punishment of treason. The Mongul3 enter the town. Citadel stormed. 

princes said that a man who would betray his 
own countrymen would betray them if he ever 
had a good opportunity. So they ordered him 
and all his officers to be slain, and the men to 
be divided among the soldiers as slaves. 

They nevertheless took possession of the gate 
by which the deserters had come out, and by this 
means gained admission to the city. The gov- 
ernor fled to the citadel with all the men whom 
he could assemble, and shut himself up in it. 
Here he fought desperately for a month, mak- 
ing continual sallies at the head of his men, 
and doing every thing that the most resolute 
and reckless bravery could do to harass and 
beat off the besiegers. But all was in vain. In 
the end the walls of the citadel were so broken 
down by the engines brought to bear upon 
them, that one day the Monguls, by a determ- 
ined and desperate assault made on all sides 
simultaneously, forced their way in, through the 
most dreadful scenes of carnage and destruc- 
tion, and began killing without mercy every 
soldier that they could find. 

The soldiers defended themselves to the last. 
Some took refuge in narrow courts and lanes, 
and on the roofs of the houses — for the citadel 
was so large that it formed of itself quite a lit- 
tle town — and fought desperately till they were 

260 Genghis Khan. [1219. 

Desperation of the governor. Courage and devotion of his wife. 

brought down by the arrows of the Monguls. 
The governor took his position, in company 
with two men who were with him, on a terrace 
of his palace, and refused to surrender, but 
fought on furiously, determined to kill any one 
who attempted to come near him. His wife 
was near, doing all in her power to encourage 
and sustain him. 

Genghis Khan had given orders to the princes 
not to kill the governor, but to take him alive. 
He wished to have the satisfaction of disposing 
of him himself. For this reason the soldiers 
who attempted to take him on the terrace were 
very careful not to shoot their arrows at him, 
but only at the men who were with him, and 
while they did so a great many of them were 
killed by the arrows which the governor and 
his two friends discharged at those who at- 
tempted to climb up to the place where they 
were standing. 

After a while the two men were killed, but 
the governor remained alive. Yet nobody 
could come near him. Those that attempted 
it were shot, and fell back again among their 
companions below. The governor's wife sup- 
plied him with arrows as fast as he could use 
them. At length all the arrows were spent, 
and then she brought him stones, which he 

1219.] The Fall of Bokhara. 263 

The governor's fate. 

hurled 'down upon his assaijants when they 
tried to climb up to him. But at last so many 
ascended together that the governor could not 
beat them all back, and he was at length sur- 
rounded and secured, and immediately put in 

The princes wrote word at once to their fa- 
ther that the town was taken, and that the gov- 
ernor was in their hands a prisoner. They re- 
ceived orders in return to bring him with them 
to Bokhara. While on the way, however, an- 
other order came requiring them to put the 
prisoner to death, and this order was immedi- 
ately executed. 

What was the fate of his courageous and de- 
voted wife has never been known. 

264 Genghis Khan. [1219. 

Continuation of the war. • Saganak. 

Chapter XX. 
Battles and Sieges. 

AFTEE the fall of Bokhara and Otrar, the 
war was continued for two years with 
great vigor by. Genghis Khan and the Mon- 
guls, and the poor sultan was driven from place 
to place by his merciless enemies, until at last 
his cause was wholly lost, and he himself, as 
will appear in the next chapter, came to a mis- 
erable end. 

During the two years while Genghis Khan 
continued the war against him, a great many 
incidents occurred illustrating the modes of 
warfare practiced in those days, and the suffer- 
ings which were endured by the mass of the 
people in consequence of these terrible strug- 
gles between rival despots contending for the 
privilege of governing them. 

At one time Genghis Khan sent his sot? 
Jughi with a large detachment to besiege and 
take a certain town named Saganak. As soon 
as Jughi arrived before the place, he sent in a 
flag of truce to call upon the people of the town 

1219.] Battles and Sieges. 265 

Hassan. The murdered embassador. Jughi's revenge. 

to surrender, promising, at the same time, to 
treat them kindly if they would do so. 

The bearer of the flag was a Mohammedan 
named Hassan. Jughi probably thought that 
the message would be better received by the 
people of the town if brought to them by one 
of their own countrymen, but he made a great 
mistake in this. The people, instead of being 
pleased with the messenger because he was a 
Mohammedan, were very much exasperated 
against him. They considered him a renegade 
and a traitor ; and, although the governor had 
solemnly promised that he should be allowed 
to go and come in safety, so great a tumult arose 
that the governor found it impossible to pro- 
tect him, and the poor man was torn to pieces 
by the mob. 

Jughi immediately assaulted the town with 
all his force, and as soon as he got possession 
of it he slaughtered without mercy all the offi- 
cers and soldiers of the garrison, and killed also 
about one half of the inhabitants, in order to 
avenge the death of his murdered messenger. 
He also caused a handsome monument to be 
erected to his memory in the principal square 
of the town. 

Jughi treated the inhabitants of every town 
that dared to resist with extreme severity, while 

266 Genghis Khan. [1219. 

Jughi's general policy. Account of a stratagem. 

those that yielded at once were, in some de- 
gree, spared and protected. The consequence 
of this policy was that the people of many of 
the towns surrendered without attempting to 
defend themselves at all. In one case the mag- 
istrates and other principal inhabitants of a 
town came out to meet him a distance of two 
days 7 journey from them, bringing with them 
the keys of the town, and a great quantity of 
magnificent presents, all of which they laid at 
the conqueror's feet, and implored his mercy. 

There was one town which Jughi's force took 
by a kind of stratagem. A certain engineer, 
whom he employed to make a reconnoissance 
of the fortifications, reported that there was a 
place on one side of the town where there was 
a ditch full of water outside of the wall, which 
made the access to the wall there so difficult 
that the garrison would not be at all likely to 
expect an attack on that side. The engineer 
proposed a plan for building some light bridges, 
which the soldiers were to throw over the ditch 
in the night, after having drawn off the atten- 
tion of the garrison to some other quarter, and 
then, mounting upon the walls by means of lad- 
ders, to get into the town. This plan was 
adopted. The bridges- and the ladders were pre- 
pared, and then, when the appointed night came, 

1219.] Battles and Sieges. 267 

The town taken. A beautiful city. Toukat. 

a feigned attack was made in the opposite part 
of the town. The garrison were then all called 
off to repel this pretended attack, and in this 
way the wall opposite to the ditch was left un- 
defended. The soldiers then threw the bridges 
over the ditch, and planted the ladders against 
the wall, and before the garrison could get in- 
telligence of what they were doing they had 
made their way into the town, and had opened 
one of the gates, and by this means the whole 
army got in. The engineer himself, who had 
proposed the plan, went up first on the first lad- 
der that was planted against the wall. To take 
the lead in such an escalade required great cool- 
ness and courage, for it was dark, and no one 
knew, in going up the ladder, how many ene- 
mies he might have to encounter at the top of it. 

The next place which the army of Jughi ap- 
proached was a quiet and beautiful town, the 
seat of several institutions of learning, and the 
residence of learned men and men of leisure. 
It was a very pleasant place, full of fountains, 
gardens, and delightful pleasure-grounds, with 
many charming public and private promenades. 
The name of this place was Toukat, and the 
beauty and attractiveness of it were proverbial 
through all the country. 

Toukat was a place rather of pleasure than 

268 Genghis Khan. [1219. 

Toukat taken. Arrangements for plundering it. 

of strength, and yet it was surrounded by a 
wall, and the governor of it determined to make 
an effort to defend it. The garrison fought 
bravely, and they kept the besiegers off for 
three days. At the end of that time the en- 
gines of the Monguls had made so many breach- 
es in the walls that the governor was convinced 
that they would soon get in, and so he sent to 
Jughi to ask for the terms on which he would 
allow them to surrender. Jughi replied that 
he would not now make any terms with him at 
all. It was too late. He ought to have sur- 
rendered at the beginning. 

So the Mongul army forced its way into 
the town, and slaughtered the whole garrison 
without mercy. Jughi then ordered all the 
inhabitants, men, women, and children, to re- 
pair to a certain place on the plain outside the 
walls. In obedience to this command, all the 
people went to the appointed place. They 
went with fear and trembling, expecting that 
they were all to be killed. But they found, in 
the end, that the object of Jughi in bringing 
them thus out of the town was not to kill 
them, but only to call them away from the 
houses, so that the soldiers could plunder them 
more conveniently while th*e owners were away. 
After being kept out of the town for a time 

1219.] Battles and Sieges. 269 

Kojend. Timur Melek. His preparations for defense. 

they were allowed to return, and when they 
went back to their houses they found that they 
had been pillaged and stripped of every thing 
that the soldiers could carry away. 

There was another large and important town 
named Kojend. It was situated two or three 
hundred miles to the northward of Samarcand, 
on the River Sir, which flows into Aral Lake. 
The governor of this city was Timur Melek. 
He was a very powerful chieftain, and a man 
of great military renown, having often been in 
active service under the sultan as one of the 
principal generals of his army. When Timur 
heard of the fall of Toukat, he presumed that 
his city of Kojend would be next attacked, as 
it seemed to come next in the way of the Mon- 
gul army ; so he began to make vigorous prep- 
arations for defense. He broke up all the roads 
leading toward the town, and destroyed the 
bridges. He also laid in great supplies of 
food to maintain the inhabitants in case of a 
protracted siege, and he ordered all the corn, 
fruits, and cattle of the surrounding country, 
which he did not require for this purpose, to 
be taken away and stowed in secret places at a 
distance, to prevent their falling into the hands 
of the enemy. 

Jughi did not himself attack this town, but 

270 Genghis Khan. [1219. 

Engines and battering-rams. The floating batteries. 

sent a large detachment under the orders of a 
general named Elak ISTevian. Elak advanced 
toward the city and commenced his operations. 
The first thing that was to be done was to re- 
build a bridge over the river, so as to enable 
him to gain access to the town, which was on 
the opposite bank. Then he set up immense 
engines at different points along the line, some 
of which were employed to batter down the 
walls, and others, at the same time, to throw 
stones, darts, and arrows over the parapets, in 
order to drive the garrison back from them. 
These engines did great execution. Those 
built to batter down the walls were of great 
size and power. Some of them, it was said, 
threw stones over the wall as big as mill- 

Timur Melek was equally active in the de- 
fense of the town. He built a number of flat- 
bottomed boats, which might be called floating 
batteries, since they were constructed for throw- 
ing missiles of all sorts into the camp of the 
enemy. These batteries, it is said, were cover- 
ed over on the top to protect the men, and 
they had port-holes in the sides, like a modern 
man-of-war, out of which, not cannon balls and 
bomb-shells indeed, but arrows, darts, javelins, 
and stones were projected. The boats were 

1219.] Battles and Sieges. 271 

The morass. ' Obstinate conflict 

sent out, some on the upper side of the town 
and some on the lower, and were placed in sta- 
tions where they could most effectually reach 
the Mongul works. They were the means of 
killing and wounding great multitudes of men, 
and they greatly disturbed and hindered the 
besiegers' operations. 

Still Elak persevered. He endeavored to 
shut up the city on every side as closely as 
possible; but there was on one side a large 
morass or jungle which he could not guard, 
and Timur received a great many re-enforce- 
ments, to take the place of the men who were 
killed on the walls, by that way. In the mean 
time, however, Elak was continually receiving 
re-enforcements too from Prince Jughi, who 
was not at a great distance, and thus the strug- 
gle was continued with great fury. 

At last Timur contrived an ingenious strata- 
gem, by which he hoped to cause his enemy to 
fall into a snare. It seems that there was a 
small island in the river, not far from the walls 
of the city, on which, before the siege com- 
menced, Timur had built a fortress, to be held 
as a sort of advanced post, and had garrisoned 
the fortress with about one thousand men. Ti- 
mur now, in order to divert the attention of the 
Monguls from the city itself, sent a number of 

272 Genghis Khan. [1220. 

The pretended deserters. No more stones. 

men out from the city, who pretended to be de- 
serters, and went immediately to the Mongul 
camp. Of course, Elak questioned them about 
the defenses of the city, in order to learn where 
the weak points were for him to attack. The 
pretended deserters advised him to attack this 
fortress on the island, saying that it could very 
easily be taken, and that its situation was such 
that, when it was taken, the city itself must sur- 
render, for it completely commanded the place. 

So Elak caused his principal engines to be 
removed to the bank of the river, opposite the 
island, and employed all his energies and spent 
all his ammunition in shooting at the fortress ; 
but the river was so wide, and the walls of the 
fortress were so thick and so high, that he made 
very little impression. At last his whole sup- 
ply of stones — for stones served in those days 
instead of cannon balls — was exhausted, and as 
the town was situated in an alluvial district, 
in which no stones were to be found, he was 
obliged to send ten or twelve miles to the up- 
land to procure a fresh supply of ammunition. 
All this consumed much time, and enabled the 
garrison to recruit themselves a great deal and 
to strengthen their defenses. 

The operations of the siege were in a great 
measure suspended while the men were obtain- 

1220.] Battles and Sieges. 273 

Building of the jetty. The horsemen in the -water. 

, « — 

ing a new supply of stones, and the whole dis- 
posable force of the army was employed in go- 
ing back and forth to bring them. At length 
an immense quantity were collected ; but then 
the Mongul general changed his plan. Instead 
of throwing the stones from his engines toward 
the fortress on the island, which it had been 
proved was beyond his reach, he determined to 
build out a jetty into the river toward it, so as 
to get a stand-point for his engines nearer the 
walls, where they could have some chance of 
doing execution. So he set his men at work to 
prepare fascines, and bundles, and rafts of tim- 
ber, which were to be loaded with the stones 
and sunk in the river to form the foundation 
for the proposed bank. The men would bring 
the stones down to the bank in their hands, and 
then horsemen, who were ready on the brink, 
would take them, and, resting them on the sad- 
dle, would drive their horses in until they came 
near the place where the stones were to go, 
when they would throw them down and then 
return for others. In this way they could work, 
upon the jetty in many parts at once, some be- 
ing employed in building at £he end where it 
abutted on the shore, while the horsemen were 
laying the foundations at the same time out in 
the middle of the stream. The work of the 

274 Genghis Khan. (1220. 


ur's boats. The fire-proof awninga 

horsemen was very difficult and dangerous, on 
account of holes in the sandy bottom of the riv- 
er, into which they were continually sinking. 
Besides this, the garrison on the walls were do- 
ing their utmost all the time to impede the work 
by shooting arrows, javelins, stones, and fiery 
darts among the workmen, by which means 
vast numbers, both of men and horses, were 

The Monguls, however, persevered, and, not- 
withstanding all the opposition which the gar- 
rison made, they succeeded in advancing the 
mole which they were building so far that Ti- 
mur was convinced that they would soon gain 
so advantageous a position that it would be im- 
possible for him to hold out against them. So 
he determined to attempt to make his escape. 
His plan was to embark on board his boats, 
with all his men, and go down the river in the 
night. • 

In order to prepare for this undertaking, he 
employed his men secretly in building more 
boats, until he had in all more than seventy. 
These boats were kept out of sight, in hidden 
places in the riv^r, until all were ready. Each 
of them was covered with a sort of heavy awn- 
ing or roof, made of wet felt, which was plas- 
tered over with a coating of clay and vinegar. 

1220.] Battles and Sieges. 275 

The fire-boats and the bridge. The bridge burned. 

This covering was intended both to defend the 
men from missiles and the boats themselves 
from being set on fire. 

There was one obstacle, to the escape of the 
boats which it was necessary to remove before- 
hand, and that was the bridge which the Mon- 
guls had built across the river, just below the 
town, when they first came to besiege it. To 
destroy this bridge, Timur one night made a 
sally from one of the gates, and attacked the 
men who were stationed to guard the bridge. 
At the same time he sent down the current of 
the river a number of great flat-bottomed boats, 
filled with combustibles of various kinds, mixed 
with tar and naphtha. These combustibles 
were set on fire before they were launched, and, 
as the current of the river bore them down one 
after another against the bridge, they set the 
wooden piers and posts that supported "it on 
fire, while the guard, being engaged with the 
party which had sallied from the town, could 
not go to extinguish the flames, and thus the 
bridge was consumed. 

The way being thus opened, Timur Melek 
very soon afterward embarked his family and 
the greater part of his army on board the boats 
in the night ; and, while the Monguls had no 
suspicion of what was going on, the boats were 

276 Genghis Khan. [1220. 

Pursuit. Battle in the river. The hoats aground. 

launched, and sent off one after another swiftly 
down the stream. Before morning came all 
traces of the party had passed away. 

Yery soon, however, the Mongul general 
heard how his intended prey had escaped him, 
and he immediately sent off a strong detach- 
ment to follow the southern bank of the river 
and pursue the fugitives. The detachment 
soon overtook them, and then a furious battle 
ensued between the Mongul horsemen on the 
banks and in the margin of the water and the 
men in the boats, who kept the boats all the 
time as near as possible to the northern shore. 

Sometimes, however, when the stream was 
narrow, or when a rocky point projected from 
the northern shore, so as to drive the boats 
nearer to the Mongul side, the battle became 
very fierce and bloody. The Monguls drove 
their' horses far into the water, so as to be as 
near as possible to the boats, and threw arrows, 
javelins, and fiery darts at them, while the Mo- 
hammedans defended themselves as well as they 
could from their windows or port-holes. 

Things went on in this way for some time, 
until, at length, the boats arrived at a part of 
the river where the water was so shallow — be- 
ing obstructed by sand-bars and shoals^ — that 
the boats fell aground. There was -nothing 

1220.] Battles and Sieges. 279 

Tlmur's adventures. He finally escapes. 

now for Timur to do but to abandon the boats 
and escape with, his men to the land. This he 
succeeded in doing; and, after reaching the 
shore, he was able to form his men in array, on 
an elevated piece of ground, before Elak could 
bring up a sufficient number of men to attack 

When the Monguls at length came to attack 
him, he beat them off in the first instance, but 
he was obliged soon afterward to leave the field 
and continue his retreat. Of course, he was 
hotly pursued by the Monguls. His men be- 
came rapidly thinned in number, some being 
killed, and others getting separated from the 
main body in the confusion of the flight, until, 
at last, Timur was left almost alone. At last 
he was himself on the very point of being taken. 
There were three Monguls closely pursuing 
him. He turned round and shot an arrow at 
the foremost of the pursuers. The arrow struck 
the Mongul in the eye. The agony which the 
wounded man felt was so great that the two 
others stopped to assist him, and in the mean 
time Timur got out of the way. In due time, 
and after meeting with some other hairbreadth 
escapes, he reached the camp of the sultan, who 
received him very joyfully, loaded him with 
praises for the indomitable spirit which he had 

280 Genghis Khan. {1220. 

The governor's family. Kojend surrendered. 

evinced, and immediately made him governor 
of another city. 

In the mean time, some of the boats which 
had been abandoned by the soldiers were got 
off by the men who had been left in charge of 
them — one especially, which contained the fam- 
ily of Timur. This boat went quietly down 
the river, and conveyed the family to a place 
of safety. 

The city of Kojend, from which Timur and 
his men had fled, was, of course, now without 
any means of defense, and it surrendered the 
very next day to the Monguls. 

1220.] Death of the Sultan. 281 

Pursuit of the sultan. The two ladies. 

Chapter XXL 
Death of the Sultan. 

IN" the mean time, while Jughi and the other 
generals were ravaging the country with 
their detachments, and besieging and capturing 
all the secondary towns and fortresses that 
came in their way, as related in the last chap- 
ter, Genghis Khan himself, with the main body 
of the army, had advanced to Samarcand in 
pursuit of the sultan, who had, as he supposed, 
taken shelter there. Samarcand was the cap- 
ital of the country, and was then, as it has been 
since, a great and renowned city. 

Besides the sultan himself, whom Genghis 
Khan was pursuing, there were the ladies of his 
family whom he wished also to capture. The 
two principal ladies were the sultana and the 
queen-mother. The queen-mother was a lady 
of very great distinction. She had been great- 
ly renowned during the lifetime of her hus- 
band, the former sultan, for her learning, her 
piety, the kindness of her heart, and the gen- 
eral excellence of her character, so far as her 

282 Genghis Khan. [1220. 

Character of the queen-mother. Khatun. Her retirement. 

dealings with, her subjects and friends were 
concerned, and her influence throughout the 
realm had been unbounded. At some periods 
of her life she had exercised a great deal of po- 
litical power, and at one time she bore the very 
grand title of Protectress of the faith of the icorld. 
She exercised the power which she then pos- 
sessed, in the main, in a very wise and bene- 
ficial manner. She administered justice impar- 
tially. She protected the weak, and restrained 
the oppressions of the strong. She listened to 
all the cases which were brought before her 
with great attention and patience, and arrived 
almost always at just conclusions respecting 
them. With all this, however, she was very 
strict and severe, and, as has almost always 
been the case with women raised to the posses- 
sion of irresponsible power, -she was unrelent- 
ing and cruel in the extreme whenever, as she 
judged, any political necessity required her to 
act with decision. Her name was Khatun.* 

Khatun was not now at Samarcand. She 
was at Karazm, a city which was the cliief res- 
idence of the court. She had been living there 
in retirement ever since the death of her hus- 
band, the present sultan's father. 

Samarcand itself, as has already been said, 

* Pronounced Cah-toon. 

1220.] Death of the Sultan. 283 

Samarcand. Fortifications of the place. Water- works. 

was a great and splendid city. Like most of 
the other cities, it was inclosed in a double wall, 
though, in this case, the outer wall surrounded 
the whole city, while the inner one inclosed 
the mosque, the palace of the sultan, and some 
other public buildings. These walls were 
much better built and more strongly fortified 
than those of Bokhara. There were twelve 
iron gates, it is said, in the outer wall. These 
gates were a league apart from each other. At 
every two leagues along the wall was a fort 
capable of containing a large body of men. 
The walls were likewise strengthened with bat- 
tlements and towers, in which the men could 
fight under shelter, and they were surrounded 
by a broad and deep ditch, to prevent an en- 
emy from approaching too near to them, in 
order to undermine them or batter them down. 
The city was abundantly supplied with wa- 
ter by means of hydraulic constructions as per- 
fect and complete as could be made in those 
days. The water was brought by leaden pipes 
from a stream which came down from the 
mountains at some distance from the town. It 
was conveyed by these pipes to every part of 
the town, and was distributed freely, so that 
every great street had a little current of water 
running through it, and every house a fountain 

284 Genghis Khan. [1220. 

Gates and towers. Crowds of people seeking refuge. 

in the court or garden. Besides this, in a pub- 
lic square or park there was a mound where 
the water was made to spout up in the centre, 
and then flow down in little rivulets and cas- 
cades on every side. 

The gates and towers which have been de- 
scribed were in the outer wall, and beyond 
them, in the environs, were a great many fields, 
gardens, orchards, and beautifully-cultivated 
grounds, which produced fruits of all sorts, that 
were sent by the merchants into all the neigh- 
boring countries. At a little distance the town 
was almost entirely concealed from view by 
these gardens and orchards, there being noth- 
ing to be seen but minarets, and some of the 
loftier roofs of the houses, rising above the 
tops of the trees. 

There were so many people who flocked into 
Samarcand from the surrounding country for 
shelter and protection, when they learned that 
Genghis Khan was coming, that the place would 
hardly contain them. In addition to these, the 
sultan sent over one hundred thousand troops 
to defend the town, with thirty generals to com- 
mand them. There were twenty large ele- 
phants, too, that were brought with the army, 
to be employed in any service which might be 
required of them during the siege. This army, 

1220.] Death of the Sultan. 285 

Encampment. Arrival of the Monguls. Dissensions within the city. 

however, instead of entering the city at once, 
encamped about it. They strengthened the po- 
sition of the camp by a deep ditch which they 
dug, throwing up the earth from the ditch on 
the side toward the camp so as to form a re- 
doubt with which to defend the ground from 
the Monguls. But as soon as Genghis Khan ar- 
rived they were speedily driven from this post, 
and forced to take shelter within the walls of 
the city. Here they defended themselves with 
so much vigor and resolution that Genghis 
Khan would probably have found it very diffi- 
cult to take the town had it not been for dis- 
sensions within the walls. It seems that the 
rich merchants and other wealthy men of the 
city, being convinced that the place would soon- 
er or later fall into the hands of the Monguls, 
thought it would be better to surrender it at 
once, while they were in a condition to make 
some terms by which they might hope to save 
their lives, and perhaps their property. 

But the generals would not listen to any prop- 
osition of this kind. They had been sent by 
the sultan to defend the town, and they felt 
bound in honor, in obedience to their orders, to 
fight in defense of it to the last extremity. 

The dissension within the city grew more 
and more violent every day, until at length the 

286 Genghis Khan. [1220. 

A deputation. Massacre. Escape of the governor. 

party of the inhabitants grew so strong and de- 
cided that they finally took possession of one of 
the gates, and sent a large deputation, consist- 
ing of priests, magistrates, and some of the prin- 
cipal citizens, to Genghis Khan, bearing with 
them the keys of the town, and proposing to 
deliver them up to him if he would spare the 
garrison and the inhabitants. But he said he 
would make no terms except with those who 
were of their party and were willing to surren- 
der. In respect to the generals and the soldiers 
of the garrison he would make no promises. 

The deputation gave up the keys and Gen- 
ghis Khan entered the city. The inhabitants 
were spared, but the soldiers were massacred 
wherever they could be found. A great many 
perished in the streets. A considerable body 
of them, however, with the governor at their 
head, retreated within the inner wall, and there 
defended themselves desperately for four days. 
At the end of that time, finding that their case 
was hopeless, and knowing that they could ex- 
pect no quarter from the Monguls in any event, 
they resolved to make a sally and cut their way 
through the ranks of their enemies at all haz- 
ards. The governor, accordingly, put himself 
at the head of a troop of one thousand horse, 
and, coming out suddenly from his retreat, he 

1220.] Death of the Sultan. 287 

Forlorn condition of the sultan. 

clashed through, the camp at a time when the 
Monguls were off their guard, and so gained the 
open country and made his escape. All the 
soldiers that remained behind in the city were 
immediately put to the sword. 

In the mean time, the sultan himself, finding 
that his affairs were going to ruin, retreated 
from province to province, accompanied by as 
large a force as he could keep together, and 
vainly seekin g to find some place of safety. He 
had several sons, and among them two whose 
titles were Jalaloddin and Kothboddin. Jala- 
loddin was the oldest, and was therefore natu- 
rally entitled to be his father's successor ; but, 
for some reason or other, the queen-mother, 
Khatun, had taken a dislike to him, and had 
persuaded her son, the sultan, to execute a sort 
of act or deed by which Jalaloddin was dis- 
placed, and Kothboddin, who was a great fa- 
vorite of hers, was made heir to the throne in 
his place. 

The sultan had other sons who were govern- 
ors of different provinces, and he fled from one 
to another of these, seeking in vain for some 
safe retreat. But he could find none. He was 
hunted from place to place by detachments of 
the Monguls, and the number of his attendants 
and followers was continually diminishing, un- 

283 Genghis Khan. [1220. 

The sultan sends away his treasures. His flight and his despondency. 

til at last lie began to be completely discour- 

At length, at one of the cities where he made 
a short stay, he delivered to an officer named 
Omar, who was the steward of his household, 
ten coffers sealed with the royal signet, with in- 
structions to take them secretly to a certain dis- 
tant fortress and lock them up carefully there, 
without allowing any one to know that he 
did it. 

These coffers contained the royal jewels, and 
they were of inestimable value. 

After this, one of his sons joined him with 
quite a large force, but very soon a large body 
of Monguls came up, and, after a furious battle, 
the sultan's troops were defeated and scatter- 
ed in all directions ; and he was again obliged 
to fly, accompanied by a very small body of 
officers, who still contrived to keep near him. 
With these he succeeded, at last, in reaching a 
very retired town near the Caspian Sea, where 
he hoped to remain concealed. His strength 
was now spent, and all his courage gone. He 
sank down into a condition of the greatest de- 
spondency and distress, and spent his time in 
going to the mosque and offering up prayers to 
God to save him from total ruin. He made 
confession of his sins, and promised an entire 

1220.] Death of the Sultan. 289 

Narrow escape. Rage of hia pursuers. 

amendment of life if the Almighty would de- 
liver him from his enemies, and restore him to 
his throne. 

At last the Mongul detachment that was in 
pursuit of him in that part of the country were 
informed by a peasant where he was ; and one 
day, while he was" at his prayers in the mosque, 
word was brought to him that the Monguls 
were coming. He rushed out of the mosque, 
and, guided by some friends, ran down to the 
shore and got into a boat, with a view of es- 
caping by sea, all retreat by land being now 
cut off. 

He had scarce got on board the boat when 
the Monguls appeared on the shore. The men 
in the boat immediately pushed off. The Mon- 
guls, full of disappointment and rage, shot at 
them with their arrows ; but the sultan was not 
struck by any of them, and was soon out of the 
reach of his pursuers. 

The sultan lay in the boat almost helpless, 
being perfectly exhausted by the terror and 
distress which he had endured. He soon be- 
gan to suffer, too, from an intense pain in the 
chest and side, which gradually became so se- 
vere that he could scarcely breathe. The men 
with him in the boat, finding that he was seri- 
ously sick, made the best of their way to a small 

290 Genghis Khar. [1220. 

Visit from his son Jalaloddin. His dying words. 

island named Abiskun, which is situated near 
the southeastern corner of the sea. Here they 
pitched a tent, and made up a bed in it, as well 
as they could, for the sufferer. They also sent 
a messenger to the shore to bring off a physi- 
cian secretly. The physician did all that was 
in his power, but it was too late. The inflam- 
mation and the pain subsided after a time, but 
it was evident that the patient was sinking, and 
that he was about to die. 

It happened that the sultan's son, Jalaloddin, 
the one who had been set aside in favor of his 
brother Kothboddin, was at this time on the 
main land not far from the island, and intelli- 
gence was communicated to him of his father's 
situation. He immediately went to the island 
to see him, taking with him two of his broth- 
ers. They were obliged to manage the busi- 
ness very secretly, to prevent the Mongulsfrom 
finding out what was going on. 

On the arrival of Jalaloddin, the sultan ex- 
pressed great satisfaction in seeing him, and he 
revoked the decree by which he had been su- 
perseded in the succession. 

" You, my son," said he, " are, after all, the 
one among all my children who is best able to 
revenge me on the Monguls; therefore I re- 
voke the act which I formerly executed at the 

1220.] Death of the Sultan. 291 

Death and burial. Khatun at Karazm. 

request of the queen, my mother, in favor of 

He then solemnly appointed Jalaloddin to 
be his successor, and enjoined upon the other 
princes to be obedient and faithful to him as 
their sovereign. He also formally delivered to 
him his sword as the emblem and badge of the 
supreme power which he thus conferred upon 

Soon after this the sultan expired. The at- 
tendants buried the body secretly on the island 
for fear of the Monguls. They washed it care- 
fully before the interment, according to custom, 
and then put on again a portion of the same 
dress which the sultan had worn when living, 
having no means of procuring or making any 
other shroud. 

As for Khatun, the queen-mother, when she 
heard the tidings of her son's death, and was 
informed, at the same time, that her favorite 
Kothboddin had been set aside, and Jalalod- 
din, whom she hated, and who, she presumed, 
hated her, had been made his successor, she 
was in a great rage. She was at that time at 
Karazm, which was the capital, and she at- 
tempted to persuade the officers and soldiers 
near her not to submit to the sultan's decree, but 
to make Kothboddin their sovereign after all. 

292 Genghis Khan. [1220. 

Her cruelty to her captives. Dissension. 

While she was engaged in forming this con- 
spiracy, the news reached the city that the Mon- 
guls were coming. Khatun immediately de- 
termined to flee to save her life. She had, it 
seems, in her custody at Karazm twelve chil- 
dren, the sons of various princes that reigned 
in different parts of the empire or in the envi- 
rons of it. These children were either held as 
hostages, or had been made captive in insurrec- 
tions and wars, and were retained in prison as 
a punishment to their fathers. The queen- 
mother found that she could not take these 
children with her, and so she ordered them all 
to be slain. She was afraid that the Monguls, 
when they came, might set them free. 

As soon as she was gone the city fell into 
great confusion on account of the struggles for 
power between the two parties of Jalaloddin 
and Kothboddin. But the sultana, who had 
made the mischief, did not trouble herself to 
know how it would end. Her only anxiety 
was to save her own life. After various wan- 
derings and adventures, she at last found her 
way into a very retired district of country ly- 
ing on the southern shore of. the Caspian, be- 
tween the mountains and the sea, and here she 
sought refuge in a castle or fortress named Ilan, 
where she thought she was secure from all pur- 

1220.] Death of the Sultan. 293 

Khatun' a escape. Her obstinacy. Cause of her hatred of Jalaloddin. 

suit. She brought with her to the castle her 
jewels and all her most valuable treasures. 

But Grenghis Khan had spies in every part 
of'the country, and he was soon informed where 
Khatun was concealed. So he sent a messen- 
ger to a certain Mongul general named Hubbe 
Nevian, who was commanding a detachment in 
that part of the country, informing him that 
Khatun was in the castle of Ilan, and com- 
manding him to go and lay siege to it, and to 
take it at all hazards, and to bring Khatun to 
him either dead or alive. 

Hubbe immediately set off for the castle. 
The queen-mother; however, had notice of his 
approach, and the lords who were with her 
urged her to fly. If she would go with them, 
they said, they would take her to Jalaloddin, 
and he would protect her. But she would not 
listen to any such proposal. She hated Jala- 
loddin so intensely that she would not, even to 
save her life, put herself under his power. The 
very 'worst possible treatment, she said, that 
she could receive from the Monguls would be 
more agreeable to her than the greatest favors 
from the hand of Jalaloddin. 

The ground of this extreme animosity which 
she felt toward Jalaloddin was not any person- 
al animosity to him; it arose simply from an 

294 Genghis Khan. [1220. 

The siege of the fortress. The governor's hopes. 

ancient and long-continued dislike and hatred 
which she had borne against his mother ! 

So Khatun refused to retire from the dan- 
ger, and soon afterward the horde of Monguls 
arrived, and pitched their camp before the cas- 
tle walls. 

For three months Hubbe and his Monguls 
continued to ply the walls of the fortress with 
battering-rams and other engines, in order to 
force their way in, but in vain. The place 
was too strong for them. At length Genghis 
Khan, hearing how the case stood, sent word to 
them to give up the attempt to make a breach, 
and to invest the place closely on all sides, so 
as to allow no person to go out or to come in ; 
in that way, he said, the garrison would soon 
be starved into a surrender. 

When the governor of the castle saw, by the 
arrangements which Hubbe made in obedience 
to this order, that this was the course that was 
to be pursued, he said he was not uneasy, for 
his magazines were full of provisions, and as to 
water, the rain which fell very copiously there 
among the mountains always afforded an abund- 
ant supply. 

But the governor was mistaken in his calcu- 
lations in respect to the rain. It usually fell 
very frequently in that region, but after the 

1220.] Death of the Sultan. 295 

Want of rain. Great suffering. The queen made captive. 

blockade of the fortress commenced, for three 
weeks there was not the smallest shower. The 
people of the country around thought this fail- 
ure of the rain was a special judgment of heaven 
against the queen for the murder of the chil- 
dren, and for her various other crimes. It was, 
indeed, remarkable, for in ordinary times the 
rain was so frequent that the people of all that 
region depended upon it entirely for their sup- 
ply of water, and never found it necessary to 
search for springs or to dig wells. 

The sufferings of the people within the for- 
tress for want of water were very great. Many 
of them died in great misery, and at length the 
provisions began to fail too, and Khatun was 
compelled to allow the governor to surrender. 

The Monguls immediately seized the queen, 
and took possession of all her treasures. They 
also took captive all the lords and ladies who 
had attended her, and the women of her house- 
hold, and two or three of her great-grandchil- 
dren, whom she had brought with her in her 
flight. All these persons were sent under a 
strong guard to Genghis Khan. 

Genghis Khan retained the queen as a cap- 
tive for some time, and treated her in a very 
cruel and barbarous manner. He would some- 
times order her to be brought into his tent, at 

296 GENGHIS Khan. [1220. 

Cruel treatment of the queen-mother. 

the end of Ms dinner, that he might enjoy his 
triumph by insulting and deriding her. On 
these occasions he would throw her scraps of 
food from the table as if she had been a dog. 

He took away the children from her too, all 
but one, whom he left with her a while to com- 
fort her, as he said ; but one day an officer came 
and seized this one from her very arms, while 
she was dressing him and combing his hair. 
This last blow caused her a severer pang 'than 
any that she had before endured, and left her 
utterly disconsolate and heart-broken. 

Some accounts say that soon after this she 
was put to death, but others state that Genghis 
Khan retained her several years as a captive, 
and carried her to and fro in triumph in his 
train through the countries over which she had 
formerly reigned with so much power and 
splendor. She deserved her sufferings, it is 
true ; but Genghis Khan was none the less 
guilty, on that account, for treating her so 

1220.] Victorious Campaigns. 297 

Continued conquests. Efforts of Jalaloddin. 

Chapter XXII. 
Victorious Campaigns. 

AFTER this Genghis Khan went on suc- 
cessfully for several years, extending his 
conquests over all the western part of Central 
Asia, while the generals whom he had left at 
home were extending his dominions in the same 
manner in the eastern portion. He overran 
nearly all of Persia, went entirely around the 
Caspian Sea, and even approached the confines 
of India. 

In this expedition toward India he was in 
pursuit* of Jalaloddin. Immediately after the 
death of his father, Jalaloddin had done all in 
his power to raise an army and carry on the 
war against Genghis Khan. He met with a 
great deal of embarrassment and difficulty at 
first, on account of the plots and conspiracies 
which his grandmother had organized in favor 
of his brother Kothboddin, and the dissensions 
among his people to which they gave rise. At 
last, in the course of a year, he succeeded, in 
some measure, in healing this breach and in 

298 Genghis Khan. [1220. 

Jalaloddin becomes discouraged. The governor's advice. 

raising an army ; and, though he was not strong 
enough to fight the Monguls in a general bat- 
tle, he hung about them in their march and 
harassed them in various ways, so as to impede 
their operations very essentially. Genghis 
Khan from time to time sent off detachments 
from his army to take him. He was often de- 
feated in the engagements which ensued, but 
he always succeeded in .saving himself and 
in keeping together a portion of his men, and 
thus he maintained himself in the field, though 
he was growing weaker and weaker all the 

At last he became completely discouraged, 
and, after signal defeat which he met with from 
a detachment which had been sent against 
him by Genghis Khan, he went, with the few 
troops that remained together, to a strong for- 
tress among the mountains, and told the govern- 
or that it seemed to him useless to continue the 
struggle any longer, and that he had come to 
shut himself up in the fortress, and abandon the 
contest in despair. 

The governor, however, told him that it was 
not right for a prince, the descendant of ances- 
tors so illustrious as his, and the inheritor of so 
resplendent a crown, to yield to discouragement 
and despondency on account of the reverses of 

1220.] Victokious Campaigns. 299 

Renewed exertions. Stratagem. Fictitious soldiers. 

fortune. He advised him again to take the 
field, and to raise a new army, and continue the 
contest to the end. 

Jalaloddin determined to follow this advice, 
and, after a brief period of repose at the castle, 
he again took the field. 

He made great exertions, and finally suc- 
ceeded in getting together about twenty thou- 
sand men. This was a small force, it is true, 
compared with the numbers of the enemy; but 
it was sufficient, if well managed, to enable the 
prince to undertake operations of considerable 
importance, and Jalaloddin began to feel some- 
what encouraged again. With his twenty 
thousand men he gained one or two victories 
too, which encouraged him still more. In one 
of these cases he defeated rather a singular 
stratagem which the Mongul general contrived. 
It seems that the Mongul detachment which 
was sent out in this instance against Jalaloddin 
Was not strong enough, and the general, in or- 
der to make Jalaloddin believe that his force 
was greater than it really was, ordered all the 
felt caps and cloaks that there were in the 
army to be stuffed with straw, and placed on 
the horses and camels of the baggage, in order 
to give the appearance of a second line of re- 
serve in the rear of the line of real soldiers. 

300 Genghis Khan. [1220. 

Quarrel about a horse. Disaffection. 

This was to induce Jalaloddin to surrender 
without fighting. 

But in some way or other Jalaloddin detected 
the deceit, and, instead of surrendering, fought 
the Mongols with great vigor, and defeated 
them. He gained a very decided victory, and 
perhaps this might have been the beginning of 
a change of fortune for him if, unfortunately, 
his generals had not quarreled about the divi- 
sion of the spoil. There was a beautiful Ara- 
bian horse which two of his leading generals 
desired to possess, and each claimed it. The 
dispute became, at last, so violent that one of 
the generals struck the other in his face with 
the lash of his whip. Upon this the feud be- 
came a deadly one. Both parties appealed to 
Jalaloddin. He did not wish to make either 
general an enemy by deciding in favor of the 
other, and so he tried to compromise the mat- 
ter. He did not succeed in doing this ;• and 
one of the generals, mortally offended, went 
off in the night, taking with him all that por- 
tion of the troops which was under his com- 

Jalaloddin did every thing in his power to 
bring the disaffected general back again ; but, 
before he could accomplish this purpose, Gen- 
ghis Khan came up with a large force between 

1220.] Victorious Campaigns. 301 

Jalaloddin's forces divided. Great battle in the defile. 

the two parties, and prevented their effecting a 

Jalaloddin had now no alternative but to re- 
treat. Genghis Khan followed him, and it was 
in this way that, after a time, both the armies 
reached the banks of the Indus, on the borders 
of India. 

Jalaloddin, being closely pursued, took his 
position in a narrow defile near the bank of the 
river, and here a great battle was fought among 
the rocks and precipices. Jalaloddin, it is said, 
had only thirty thousand men at his command, 
while Genghis Khan was at the head of an 
army of three hundred thousand. The num- 
bers in both cases are probably greatly exag- 
gerated, but the proportion may perhaps be 

It was only a small portion of the Mongul 
army that could get into the defile where the 
sultan's troops had posted themselves ; and so 
desperately did the latter fight, that it is said 
they killed twenty thousand of the Monguls 
before they gave in. In fact, they fought like 
wild beasts, with desperate and ; unremitting 
fury, all day long. Toward night it became 
evident to Jalaloddin that it ms all over with 
him. A large portion of his followers were 
killed. Some had made their escape across the 

802 Genghis Khan. [1220. 

Orders to take Jalaloddin alive. He takes leave of his family. 

river, though many of those who sought to do 
so were drowned in the attempt. The rest of 
his men were completely exhausted and dis- 
couraged, and wholly unable to renew the con- 
test on the following day. 

Jalaloddin .had exposed himself very freely 
in the fight, in hopes, perhaps, that he should 
be killed. "But Genghis Khan had given posi- 
tive orders that he should be taken alive. He 
had even appointed two of-his generals to watch 
carefully, and to see that no person should, un- 
der any circumstances, kill him. He wished to 
take him alive, in order to lead him through 
the country a prisoner, and exhibit him to his 
former subjects as a trophy of his victory, just 
as he had done and was still doing with the 
old queen Khatun, his grandmother. 

But Jalaloddin was determined that his con- 
queror should not enjoy this pleasure. He re- 
solved to attempt to save himself by swimming 
the river. He accordingly went first, breath- 
less, and covered with dust and blood from the 
fight, to take a hurried leave of his mother, his 
wives, and his children, who, as was customary 
in those countries and times, had accompanied 
him in his campaign. He found them in his 
tent, full of anxiety and terror. He took leave 
of them with much sorrow and many tears, try- 

1220.] Yictokious Campaigns. 303 

His escape across the river. His defiance of his pursuers. 

ing to comfort them with, the hope that they 
should meet again in happier times. Then he 
took off his armor and his arms, in order that 
he might not be impeded in crossing the river, 
reserving, however, his sword and bow, and a 
quiver full of arrows. He then mounted a fresh 
horse and rode toward the river. 

When he reached the bank of the river, the 
horse found the current so rapid and the agita- 
tion of the water so great that he was very un- 
willing to advance ; but Jalaloddin spurred him 
in. Indeed, there was no time to be lost ; for 
scarcely had he reached the shore when Gen- 
ghis Khan himself, and a party of Monguls, ap- 
peared in view, advancing to seize him. They 
stopped on the bank when they saw Jalaloddin 
ride into the water among the rocks and whirl- 
pools. They did not dare to follow him, but 
they remained at the water-side to see how his 
perilous adventure would end. 

As soon as Jalaloddin found that he was out 
of their reach, he stopped at a place where his 
horse found a foothold, and turned round to- 
ward his pursuers with looks of hatred and de- 
fiance. He then drew his bow, and began to 
shoot at them with his arrows, and he contin- 
ued to shoot until all the arrows in his quiver 
were exhausted. Some of the more daring of 

304 Genghis Khan. [1220. 

Struggles of the horse. Night spent in a tree. 

the Monguls proposed to Genghis Khan that 
they should swim out and try to take him. But 
Genghis Khan would not allow them to go. He 
said the attempt would be useless. 

" You can do nothing at all with him," said 
he. "A man of such cool and determined 
bravery as that will defy and defeat all your 
attempts. Any father might be proud to have 
such a son, and any son proud to be descended 
from such a father." 

When his arrows were all expended, Jalalod- 
din took to the river again ; and his horse, aft- 
er a series of most desperate struggles among 
the whirlpools and eddies, and the boiling surges 
which swept around the rocks, succeeded at 
length in carrying his master over. The prog- 
ress of the horse was watched with great inter- 
est by Genghis Khan and his party from the 
shore as long as they could see him. 

As soon as Jalaloddin landed, and had recov- 
ered a little from the fatigue and excitement of 
the passage, he began to look around him, and 
to consider what was next to be done. He 
found himself entirely alone, in a wild and sol- 
itary place, which he had reason to fear was in- 
fested with tigers and other ferocious beasts of 
prey, such as haunt the j ungles in India. Night 
was coming on too, and there were no signs of 

1220.] Victorious Campaigns. 305 

Jalaloddin meets with friends. Large body of men escaped. 

any habitations or of any shelter. So he fast- 
ened his horse at the foot of a tree, and climb- 
ed up himself among the branches, and in this 
way passed the night. 

The next morning he came down and began 
to walk along the bank of the river to see what 
he could find. He was in a state of great anx- 
iety and distress. Suddenly, to his great relief 
and joy, he came upon a small troop of soldiers, 
accompanied by some officers, who had escaped 
across the river from the battle as he had done. 
Three of these officers were his particular 
friends, and he was overjoyed to see them. 
They had made their way across the river in a 
boat which they had found upon the. bank at 
the beginning of the defeat of the army. They 
had spent the whole night in the boat, being in 
great danger from the shoals and shelving rocks, 
and from the impetuosity of the current. Final- 
ly, toward morning, they had landed, not far 
from the place where Jalaloddin found them. 

Not long after this he came upon a troop of 
three hundred horsemen, who had escaped by 
swimming the river at a place where the wa- 
ter was more smooth, at some distance below. 
These men told him that about six miles far- 
ther down the stream there was a body of about 
four thousand men who had made their escape 

306 Genghis Khan. [1220. 

Pressing wants. Timely aid from Jamalarrazad. 

in a similar manner. On assembling these men, 
Jalaloddin found himself once more at the head 
of a considerable force. 

The immediate wants of the men were, how- 
ever, extremely pressing, for they were all whol- 
ly destitute of food and of every other neces- 
sary, and Jalaloddin would have been greatly 
embarrassed to provide for them had it not 
been for the thoughtfulness and fidelity of one 
of the officers of his household on the other side 
of the river. This officer's name was Jamalar- 
razad. As soon as he found that his master 
had crossed the river, knowing, too, that a great 
number of the troops had attempted to cross be- 
sides, and that, in all, probability, many of them 
had succeeded in reaching the other bank, who 
would all be greatly in want of provisions and 
stores the next morning, he went to work at 
once, during the night, and loaded a very large 
boat with provisions, arms, money, and stuff to 
make clothing for the soldiers. He succeeded 
in getting off in this boat before his plan was 
discovered by the Monguls, and in the course 
of the next morning he reached the opposite 
bank with it, and thus furnished to Jalaloddin 
an abundant provision for his immediate neces- 

Jalaloddin was so much pleased with the 

1220.] Victokious Campaigns 307 

Fate of the sultan's family. Sunken treasures. Jalaloddin's end. 

conduct of Jamalarrazad in this affair that he 
appointed him at once to a very high and re- 
sponsible office in his service, and gave him a 
new title of honor. 

In the mean time, Genghis Khan, on the oth- 
er side of the river, took possession the next 
morning of Jalaloddin's camp. Of course, the 
family of the sultan fell into his hands. The 
emperor ordered all the males to be killed, but 
he reserved the women for a different fate. 
Among the persons killed was a boy about 
eight years old, Jalaloddin's oldest son. 

Jalaloddin had ordered his treasure to be 
sunk in the river, intending, probably, to come 
back and recover it at some future time. But 
Grenghis Khan found out in some way where it 
was sunk, and he sent divers down for it, and 
thus obtained possession of it as a part of his 

After this, Jalaloddin remained five or six 
years in India, where he joined himself and his 
army with some of the princes of that country, 
and fought many campaigns there. At length, 
when a favorable opportunity occurred, he came 
back to his own country, and fought some time 
longer against the Monguls there, but he never 
succeeded in gaining possession of any substan- 
tial power. 

308 Genghis Khan. [1220. 

Sieges. Logs instead of stones for ammunition. 

Genghis Khan continued after this for two 
or three years in the Mohammedan countries 
of the western part of Asia, and extended his 
conquests there in every direction. It is not 
necessary to follow his movements in detail. It 
would only be a repetition of the same tale 
of rapine, plunder, murder, and devastation. 
Sometimes a city would surrender at once, when 
the conqueror approached the gates, by sending 
out a deputation of the magistrates and other 
principal inhabitants with the ~kejs of the city, 
and with magnificent presents, in hopes to ap- 
pease him. And they usually so far succeeded 
in this as to put the Mongul soldiery in good- 
humor, so that they would content themselves 
with ransacking and plundering the place, leav- 
ing the inhabitants alive. At other times the 
town would attempt to resist. The Monguls 
would then build engines to batter down the 
walls, and to hurl great stones over among the 
besieged. In many instances there was great 
difficulty in obtaining a sufficient supply of 
stones, on account of the alluvial character of 
the ground on which the city stood. In such 
cases, after the stones found near were exhaust- 
ed, the besiegers would cut down great trees 
from the avenues leading to the town, or from 
the forests near, and, sawing the trunk up into 

1220.] Victorious Campaigns. 309 

Modern bombs. Bringing stones. Occupation of slave* 

short lengths, would use the immense blocks 
thus formed as ammunition for the engines. 
These great logs of heavy wood, when thrown 
over the walls, were capable of doing almost as 
much execution as the stones, though, com- 
pared with a modern bomb-shell — a monstrous 
ball of iron, which, after flying four or five 
miles from the battery, leaving on its way a 
fiery train through the air, descends into a town 
and bursts into a thousand fragments, which 
fly like iron hail in every direction around — 
they were very harmless missiles. 

In sawing up the trunks of the trees into logs, 
and in bringing stones for the engines, the Mon- 
guls employed the prisoners whom they had 
taken in war and made slaves of. The amount 
of work of this kind which was to be done at 
some of the sieges was very great. It is said 
that at the siege of Nishabur — a town whose 
inhabitants greatly offended Genghis Khan by 
secretly sending arms, provisions, and money to 
Jalaloddin, after they had once surrendered to 
the Monguls and pretended to be friendly to 
them — the army of the Monguls employed 
twelve hundred of these engines, all of which 
were made at a town at some distance from the 
place besieged, and were then transported, in 
parts, by the slaves, and put together by them 

310 Genghis Khan. [1220. 

Shields. Protection against fire. Precautions. 

under the walls. While the slaves were em- 
ployed in works of this kind, they were some- 
times protected by wooden shields covered with 
raw hides, which were carried before them by 
other slaves, to keep off and extinguish the 
fiery darts and arrows which were shot at them 
from the wall. 

Sometimes, too, the places where the engines' 
were set up were protected by wooden bul- 
warks, which, together with the frame- work it- 
self of the engines^ were covered with raw hides, 
to prevent their being set on fire by the ene- 
my. The number of raw hides required for 
this purpose was immense, and to obtain them 
the Monguls slaughtered vast herds of horses 
and cattle which they plundered from the 

In order to embarrass the enemy in respect 
to ammunition for their engines, the people of 
a town, when they heard that the Monguls were 
coming, used to turn out sometimes in mass, 
several days before, and gather up all the stones 
they could find, and throw them into the river, 
or otherwise put them Qut of the way. 

In some cases, the towns that were threaten- 
ed, as has already been said, did not attempt to 
resist, but submitted at once, and cast them- 
selves on the mercy of the conqueror. In such 

1220.] Victorious Campaigns. 311 

Attempts at resistance. Account of Kubru. His noble spirit. 

cases the Mongul generals usually spared the 
lives of the inhabitants, though they plundered 
their property. It sometimes happened, too, 
that after attempting to defend themselves for 
some time, the garrison would become discour- 
aged, and then would attempt to make some 
terms or conditions with the conqueror before 
they surrendered. In these cases, however, 
the terms which the Monguls insisted upon 
were often so hard that, rather than yield to 
them, the garrison would go on fighting to the 

In one instance there lived in a town that was 
to be assailed a certain sheikh, or prince, named 
Kubru, who was a man of very exalted char- 
acter, "as well as of high distinction. The Mon- 
gul general whom Grenghis Khan had commis- 
sioned to take the town was his third son, Ok- 
tay. Oktay had heard of the fame of the 
sheikh, and had conceived a very high respect 
for him. So he sent a herald to the wall with 
a passport for the sheikh, and for ten other per- 
sons such as he should choose, giving him free ■ 
permission to leave the town and go wherever 
he pleased. But the sheikh declined the offer. 
Then Oktay sent in another passport, with per- 
mission to the sheikh to take a thousand men 
with him. But he still refused. He could not 

312 Genghis Khan. [1220. 

Kubru slain. Pusillanimity. Sorties by the garrisons. 

accept Oktay's bounty, he said, unless it were 
extended to all the Mohammedans in the town. 
He was obliged to take his lot with the rest, for 
he was bound to his people by ties too strong 
to be easily sundered. 

So the siege went on, and at the end of it, 
when the town was carried, the sheikh was slain 
with the rest in the streets, where he stood his 
ground to the last, fighting like a lion. 

All the Mohammedan chieftains, however, 
did not possess so noble a spirit as this. One 
chieftain, when he found that the Monguls 
were coming, caused himself to be let down 
with ropes from the wall in the night, and so 
made his escape, leaving the town and the gar- 
rison to their fate. 

The garrisons of the towns, knowing that 
they had little mercy to expect from their ter- 
rible enemies, fought often very desperately to 
the last, as they would have done against beasts 
of prey. They would suddenly open the gates 
and rush out in large bands, provided with eom- 
•bustibles of all kinds and torches, with which 
they would set fire to the engines of the be- 
siegers, and then get back again within the 
walls before the Monguls could recover suf- 
ficiently from the alarm and confusion to in- 
tercept them. In this manner they destroyed 

1220.] Victorious Campaigns. 313 

Desperation of the people. Moda of disposing of prisoner^. 

a great many of the engines, and killed vast 
numbers of men. * 

Still the Monguls would persevere, and, soon- 
er or later, the place was sure to fall. Then, 
when the inhabitants found that all hope was 
over, they had become so desperate in their 
hatred of their foes that they would sometimes 
set the town on fire with their own hands, and 
throw themselves and their wives and children 
into the flames, rather than fall into the hands 
of their infuriated enemies. 

The cruelties which the Monguls perpetrated 
upon their unhappy victims when, after a long 
resistance, they finally gained possession of a 
town, were indeed dreadful. They usually or- 
dered all the people to come out to an open 
space on the plain, and there, after taking out 
all the young and able-bodied men, who could 
be made useful in bringing stones and setting 
up engines, and other such labors, and also all 
the young and beautiful women, to be divided 
among the army or sold as slaves, they would 
put. the rest together in a mass, and kill them 
all by. shooting at them with arrows, just as if 
they had been beasts surrounded in a chase, 
excepting that the excitement and pleasure of 
shooting into such a mass of human victims, 
and of hearing the shrieks and cries of their 

314 Genghis Khan. [1220. 

Prodigious slaughter. Atrocities. The pearl. 

terror, was probably infinitely greater to their 
brutaf murderers than if it had been a herd of 
lions, tigers, and wolves that they were de- 

It is said by the historians that in one case 
the number of people ordered out upon the 
plain was so great that it took four days for 
them to pass out and assemble at the appoint- 
ed place, and that, after those who were to be 
spared had been separated from the rest, the 
number that were left to be slain was over one 
hundred thousand, as recorded by the secre-. 
taries who made an enumeration of them. 

In another case the slaughter was so great 
that it took twelve days to count the number 
of the dead. 

Some of the atrocities which were perpetrated 
upon the prisoners were almost too horrible to 
be described. In one case a woman, quite ad- 
vanced in years, begged the Monguls to spare 
her life, and promised that, if they would do 
so, she would give them a pearl of great value. 

They asked her where the pearl was, and she 
said she had swallowed it. The Monguls then 
immediately cut her down, and ripped her body 
open with their swoftls to find the pearl. They 
found it, and then, encouraged by this success, 
and thinking it probable that other women 

1220.] ViCTOBious Campaigns. 315 

Genghis Khan's grandson killed. His mother's revenge. 

might have attempted to hide their jewels in 
the same way, they proceeded to kill and cut 
open a great number of women to search for 
pearls in their bodies, but they found no more. 

At the siege of a certain city, called Bami- 
yan, a young grandson of Genghis Khan, wish- 
ing to please his grandfather by his daring, ap- 
proached so near the wall that he was reached 
by an arrow shot by one of the archers, and 
killed. Genghis Khan was deeply affected by 
this event, and he showed by the bitterness of 
his grief that, though he was so utterly heart- 
less and cruel in inflicting these woes upon oth- 
ers, he could feel for himself very acutely when 
it came to his turn to suffer. As for the moth- 
er of the child, she was rendered perfectly furi- 
ous by his death. She thought of nothing but 
revenge, and she only waited for the town to 
be taken in order that she might enjoy it. 
When, at last, a practicable breach was made, 
and the soldiers began to pouj: into the city, 
she went in with the rest, and insisted that ev- 
ery man, woman, and child should be put to 
death. Her special rage was directed against 
the children, whom she seemed to take special 
pleasure in destroying, in vengeance for the 
death of her own child. The hatred and rage 
which she manifested against children extend- 

316 Genghis Khan: [1220. 

Principles of the Mohammedan faith. Genghis Khan's opinion. 

ed even to babes unborn, and these feelings she 
evinced by atrocities too shocking to be de- 

The opinions which Genghis Khan entertain- 
ed on religions subjects appear from a conver- 
sation which he held at one time during the 
course of his campaigns in "Western Asia with 
some learned Mohammedan doctors at Bokha- 
ra, which was the great seat at that time of sci- 
ence and philosophy. He asked the doctors 
what were the principles of their religion. They 
replied that these principles consisted of five 
fundamental points : 

1. In believing in one God, the creator of all 
things, and the supreme ruler and governor of 
the universe. 

2. In giving one fortieth part of their yearly 
income or gains to the poor. 

3. In praying to God five times every day. 

4. In setting apart one month in each year 
for fasting. m 

5. In making a pilgrimage to the temple in 
Mecca, there to worship God. 

Genghis Khan told them that he believed 
himself in the first of these articles, and he ap- 
proved of the three succeeding ones. It was 
very well, he said, to give one fortieth of one's 
income to the poor, and to "pray to God five 

1220.] Victorious Campaigns. 317 

The spirit of religious bigotry. 

times a day, and to set apart a month in the 
year for a fast. But as to the last article, he 
could not but dissent from it entirely, for the 
whole world was God's house, and it was ridic- 
ulous, he said, to imagine that one place could 
really be any more fitting than another as a 
place for worshiping him. 

The learned doctors were much dissatisfied 
with this answer. They were, in fact, more 
displeased with the dissent which the emperor 
expressed from this last article, the only one 
that was purely and wholly ritual in its charac- 
ter, than they were gratified with the concur- 
rence which he expressed in all the other four. 
This is not at all surprising, for, from the times 
of the Pharisees down to the present day, the 
spirit of sectarianism and bigotry in religion al- 
ways plants itself most strongly on the platform 
of externals. It is always contending strenu- 
ously for rites, while it places comparatively in 
the background all that bears directly on the 
vital and spiritual interests of the soul. 

318 Genghis Khan. [1221. 

The great hunting party. Object of the hunt. 


Chapter XXIII. 

Grand Celebrations. 

HEN Genghis Khan found that his con- 
quests in Western Asia were in some 
good degree established and confirmed, he illus- 
trated his victory and the consequent extension 
of his empire by two very imposing celebrations. 
The first was a grand hunt. The second was a 
solemn convocation of all the estates of his im- 
mense realm in a sort of diet or deliberative 

The accounts given by the historians of both 
these celebrations are doubtless greatly exag- 
gerated. Their description of the hunt is as 
follows : 

It was after the close of the campaign in 
1221 that it took place, while the army were in 
winter quarters. The object of the hunt was 
to keep the soldiers occupied, so as to avoid the 
relaxation of discipline, and the vices and dis- 
order which generally creep into a camp where 
there are no active occupations to engage the 
minds of the- men. The hunt took place in a 

1221.] Grand Celebrations. 319 

The general plan. The time arrives. 

vast region of uninhabited country, which was 
infested with wild beasts of every kind. The 
soldiers were marched out on this expedition 
in order of war, as. if it were a country occupied 
by armed men that they were going to attack. 
The different detachments were conducted to 
the different points in the outskirts of the coun- 
try, from which they severally extended them- 
selves to the right and left, so as completely to 
inclose the ground. And the space was so 
large, it is said, which was thus inclosed, that 
it took them several weeks to march in to the 

It is true that in such a case the men would 
advance very slowly, perhaps^ only a few miles 
each day, in order that they might examine 
the ground thoroughly, and leave no ravine, or 
thicket, or other lurking-place, where beasts 
might conceal themselves, unexplored. Still, 
the circle was doubtless immensely large. 

When the. appointed morning at length ar- 
rived, the men at the several stations were ar- 
rayed, and they commenced their advance to- 
ward the centre, moving to the sound of trum- 
pets, drums, timbrels, and other such instru- 
ments of martial music as were in use in those 

The men were strictly forbidden to kill any 

320 Genghis Khan. [1221. 

Orders. Progress of the operations. 

animal. They were only to start them out from 
their lurking-places and lairs, and drive them 
in toward the centre of the field. 

Great numbers of the men were provided 
with picks, spades, and other similar tools, with 
which they were to dig out the burrows and 
holes of such animals as should seek refuge un- 
der ground. 

They went on in this way for some weeks. 
The animals ran before them, thinking, when 
they were disturbed by the men, that it was 
only a momentary danger, which they could 
easily escape from, as usual, by running for- 
ward into the next thicket ; but soon the ad- 
vancing line of the soldiers reached them there, 
and drove them out again, and if they attempt- 
ed to turn to the right or the left they soon 
found themselves intercepted. Thus, as the cir- 
cle grew narrower, and the space inclosed di- 
minished, the animals began to find themselves 
mixing with one another in great numbers, and 
being now irritated and angry, they attacked 
one another in many instances, the strong fall- 
ing upon and killing the weak. Thus a great 
many were killed, though not by the hands of 
the soldiers. 

At last the numbers became so great, and the 
excitement and terror of the animals so intense, 

1221.] Geand Celebkations. 321 

Terror of the animals. The inner circle. Condition of the beasts. 

that the soldiers had great difficulty in driving 
them forward. The poor beasts ran this way 
and that, half distracted, while the soldiers 
pressed steadily on behind them, and cut them 
off from every chance of escape by raising ter- 
rific shouts and outcries, and by brandishing 
weapons before them wherever they attempted 
to turn. 

At length the animals were all driven in to 
the inner circle, a comparatively small space, 
which had been previously marked out. Around 
this space double and triple lines of troops were 
drawn up, armed with pikes and spears, which 
they pointed in toward the centre, thus forming 
a sort of wall by which the beasts were closely 
shut in. The plan was now for the officers and 
khans, and all the great personages of the court 
and the army, to go into the circle, and show 
their courage and their prowess by attacking 
the beasts and slaying them. 

But the courage required for such an exploit 
was not so great as it might seem, for it was al- 
ways found on these occasions that the beasts, 
though they had been very wild and ferocious 
when first aroused from their lairs, and had ap- 
peared excessively irritated when they found 
the circle beginning to narrow around them, 
ended at last in losing all their spirit, and in be* 

322 Genghis Khan. [1221. 

The princea enter the ring. Intimidation of the wild beasts. 

coming discouraged, dejected, and tame. This 
was owing partly, perhaps, to their having be- 
come, in some degree, familiar with the sight 
of men, but more probably to the exhaustion 
produced by long-continued fatigue and excite- 
ment, and to their having been for so many- 
days deprived in a great degree of their accus- 
tomed food and rest. 

Thus in this, as in a great many other simi- 
lar instances, the poor soldiers and common peo- 
ple incurred the danger and the toil, and then 
the great men came in at the end to reap the 

Genghis Khan himself was the first to enter 
the circle for the purpose of attacking the beasts. 
He was followed by the princes of his family* 
and by other great chieftains and khans. As 
they went in, the whole army surrounded the 
inclosure, and completely filled the air with the 
sound of drums, timbrels, trumpets, and other 
such instruments, and with the noise of the 
most terrific shouts and outcries which they 
could make, in order to terrify and overawe the 
beasts as much as possible, and to destroy in 
them all thought and hope of resistance. 

And, indeed, so much effect was produced by 
these means of intimidation, that the beasts, it 
is said, became completely stupefied. " They 

1224.] Grand Celebrations. 323 

They recover their ferocity when attacked. The slaughter. 

were so affrighted that they lost all their fierce- 
ness. The lions and tigers became as tame as 
lambs, and the bears and wild boars, like the 
most timorous creatures, became dejected and 

Still, the going in of Genghis Khan and the 
princes to attack them was not wholly without 
danger ; for, of course, it was a point of honor 
with them to select the most ferocious and fierce 
of the animals, and some of these, when they 
found themselves actually assailed, were aroused 
again, and, recovering in some degree their na- 
tive ferocity, seemed impelled to make a last 
desperate effort to defend themselves. After 
killing a. few of the lions, tigers, and bears, Gen- 
ghis Khan and his immediate suite retired to a 
place at one side of the inclosure, where a 
throne had been set up for the emperor on an 
eminence which afforded a good view of the 
field. Here Genghis Khan took his seat in or- 
der to enjoy the spectacle of the slaughter, and 
then an immense number of men were allowed 
to go in and.amuse themselves with killing and 
destroying the poor beasts till they were per- 
fectly satiated with the sight of blood and of 

At last some of the khan's grandsons, attend- 
ed by several other young princes, approached 

324 Genghis Khan. [1224. 

Petition of the young men. En I of the hunt. The assembly at Toukat. 

the throne where the emperor was seated, and 
petitioned him to order the carnage to cease, 
and to allow the rest of the animals to go free. 
This petition the emperor granted. The lines 
were broken up, the animals that had escaped 
being massacred made their way back into the 
wilds again, and the hunt was over. 

The several detachments of the army then 
set out on their march back to the camp again. 
But so great was the scale on which this grand 
hunting expedition was conducted, that four 
months elapsed between the time of their set- 
ting out upon it till the time of their return. 

The grand diet or general assembly of the 
states of Grenghis Khan's empire took place two 
or three years later, when the conquest of West- 
ern Asia was complete, and the sons of the em- 
peror and all the great generals could be called 
together at the emperor's head-quarters without 
much danger. The place chosen for this assem- 
bly was a vast plain in the vicinity of the city 
of Toukat, which has already been* mentioned 
as one of the great cities conquered by Grenghis 
Khan. Toukat lay in a central and convenient 
position for the purpose of this assembly. It 
was, moreover, a rich and beautiful city, and 
could furnish all that would be necessary for 

1224.] Grand Celebrations. 825 

Return of Genghis Khan's sons. Present of horses. 

the wants of the assembly. The meeting, how- 
ever, was not to be held in the city itself, but 
upon a great plain in the environs of it, where 
there was space for all the khans, with their 
numerous retinues, to pitch their tents. 

When. the khans and chieftains began to as- 
semble, there came first the sons of the king, 
returning from the various expeditions on 
which their father had sent them, and bringing 
with them magnificent presents. These pres- 
ents, of course, consisted of the treasures and 
other valuables which they had taken in plun- 
der from the various cities which had fallen 
into their hands. The presents which Jughi 
brought exceeded in value ' those of all the 
others. Among the rest, there was a herd of 
horses one hundred thousand in number. 
These horses had, of course, been seized in the 
pastures of the conquered countries, and were 
now brought to the emperor to be used by him 
in mounting his troops. They were arrayed in 
bands according to the color, white, dappled 
gray, bay, black, and spotted, of each kind an 
equal number. 

The emperor received and welcomed his sons 
with great joy, and readily accepted their pres- 
ents. In return, he made presents to them from 
his own treasuries. 

326 Genghis Khan. [1224. 

The khans arrive. Grand entertainments. Drinks. 

After this, as other princes and khans came 
in, and encamped with their troops and follow- 
ers on the plain, the emperor entertained them 
all with a series of grand banquets and public 
diversions of all sorts. Among other things a 
grand hunting party was organized, somewhat 
similar in the general plan to the one already 
described, only on a much smaller scale, of 
course, in respect to the number of persons en- 
gaged and the time occupied, while yet it great- 
ly surpassed that one in magnificence and 
splendor. Several thousand beasts were slain, 
it is said, and a great number and variety of 
birds, which were taken 'by the falcons. 

At the end of the hunt a great banquet was 
given, which surpassed all the other feasts in 
munificence. They had on the tables of this 
banquet a great variety of drinks — not only rich 
wines from the southern countries, but beer, 
and metheglin, and also sherbet, which the army 
had learned to make in Persia. 

In the mean time, the great space on the 
plain, which had been set apart for the encamp- 
ment, had been gradually becoming filled up 
by the arrival of the khans, until at length, in 
every direction, as far as the eye could reach, 
the whole plain was covered with groups of 
tents and long lines of movable houses, brought 

1224.] Grand Celebrations. 327 

Great extent of the encampment. Laying out the encampment. 

oii wheels. The ground which the encamp- 
ment covered was said by the historians to 
have been seven leagues in extent. If the 
space occupied was any thing at all approach- 
ing this magnitude, it could only be that the 
outer portions of it were occupied by the herds- 
men and other servants of the khans, who had 
to take care of the cattle and horses of the 
troops, and to provide them with suitable pas- 
ture. Indeed, the great number of animals 
which these wandering tribes always took with 
them on their journeys rendered it necessary 
to appropriate a much larger space to their en- 
campments .than would have been otherwise re- 

It is surprising to us, who are accustomed to 
look upon living in tents as so exclusively an 
irregular and temporary expedient, to learn 
how completely this mode of life was, reduced 
to a system in those days, and how perfect and 
complete all the arrangements relating to it 
were made. In this case, in the centre of the 
encampment, a space of two leagues in length 
was regularly laid out in streets, squares, and 
market-places, like a town. Here were the em- 
peror's quarters, with magnificent tents for him- 
self and his immediate household, and multi- 
tudes of others of a plainer character for his 

328 Genghis. Khan. [1224. 

The state tent The throne. Business transacted. 

servants and retainers. The tents of the other 
grand khans were near. They were made of 
rich materials, and ornamented in a sumptuous 
manner, and silken streamers of various colors 
floated in the wind from the summits of them. 

Besides these there was an immense tent, 
built for the assembly itself to hold its sessions 
in. This tent was so large, it is said, that it 
would contain two thousand persons. It was 
covered with white, which made it very con- 
spicuous. There were two entrance-gates lead- 
ing to the interior. One of them was called 
the imperial gate, and was for the use of Gen- 
ghis Khan alone. The other was the public 
gate, and was used in general for the members 
of the assembly and for spectators. 

Within the tent was erected a magnificent 
throne, intended for the use of the emperor dur- 
ing the sessions of the assembly. 

A great amount of important business was 
transacted by the assembly while it continued 
in session, and many important edicts were 
made by the emperor. The constitution and 
laws of the empire were promulgated anew, and 
all necessary arrangements made for the gov- 
ernment of the various provinces both near and 

At length, when these various objects had 

1224.] Grand Celebrations. 329 

Leave-taking. The assembly is dismissed. 

been accomplished, and the business was con- 
cluded, the emperor gave audience individually 
to all the princes, khans, generals, governors of 
provinces, and other grand dignitaries who were 
present on the occasion, in order that they 
might take their leave preparatory to return- 
ing to their several countries. When this cer- 
emony was concluded the encampment was 
broken up, and the various khans set off, each 
at the head of his own caravan, on the road 
leading to his own home. 

330 Genghis Khan. [1227. 

Death of the khan's oldest son. 

Chapter XXIY. 

AFTER the grand convocation described 
in the last chapter, Genghis Khan lived 
only three years. During this time he went 
on extending his conquests with the same tri- 
umphant success that had attended his previous 
operations. Having at length established his 
dominion in Western Asia on a permanent 
basis, he returned to the original seat of his 
empire in the East, after seven years' absence, 
where he was received with great honor by the 
Mongul nation. He began again to extend his 
conquests in China. He was very successful. 
Indeed, with the exception of one great calam- 
ity which befell him, his career was one of con- 
tinued and unexampled prosperity. 

This calamity was the death of his son Jughi, 
his oldest, most distinguished, and best-beloved 
son. The news of this event threw the khan 
into a deep melancholy, so that for a time he 
lost all his interest in public affairs, and even 
the news of victories obtained in distant coun- 

1227.] Conclusion. 331 

Effects of this calamity. Plans for the invasion of China. 

tries by his armies ceased to awaken any joyful 
emotions in his mind. 

The khan was now, too, becoming quite ad- 
vanced in life, being about sixty -four years old, 
which is an age at which the mind is slow to 
recover its lost elasticity. He did, however, 
slowly recover from the effects of his grief, and 
he then went on with his warlike preparations. 
He had conquered all the northern portion of 
China, and was now making arrangements for 
a grand invasion of the southern part, when at 
length, in the spring of the year 1227, he fell 
sick. He struggled against the disease during 
the summer, but at length, in August, he found 
himself growing worse, and felt that his end 
was drawing nigh. 

His mind was occupied mainly, during all 
this interval, by arranging the details of the 
coming campaign, and making known to the 
officers around him all the particulars of his 
plans, in order that they might carry them out 
successfully after his decease. He was chiefly 
concerned, as well he might be, lest the gener- 
als should quarrel among each other after he 
should be gone, and he continually exhorted 
them to be united, and on no account to allow 
discord or dissensions to creep in and divide 

332 Genghis Khan. [1227. 

The khan's sons. Hid sickness. Change for the worse. 

His oldest son, next to Jughi, was Jagatay, 
but lie was of a mild and amiable temper, and 
not so well qualified to govern so widely -ex- 
tended an empire as the next son, whose name 
was Oktay. The next son to Oktay, whose 
name was Toley, was with his father at the 
time when his sickness at last assumed an im- 
mediately alarming character. 

This change for the worse, which convinced 
the emperor that his death was drawing nigh, 
took place one day when he was traveling with 
a portion of his army, being borne on a litter 
on account of his infirm and feeble condition. 
A halt was ordered, a camp was formed, and 
the great conqueror was borne to a tent which 
was pitched for him on the spot near the bor- 
ders of the forest. The physicians and the as- 
trologers came around him, and tried to com- 
fort him with encouraging predictions, but he 
knew by the pains that he felt, and by other 
inward sensations, that his hour had come. 

He accordingly ordered that all of his sons 
who were in the camp, and all the princes of 
his family, should be called in to his bedside. 
When they had all assembled, he caused him- 
self to be raised up in his bed, and then made 
a short but very solemn address to them. 

"I leave you." said lie, " the greatest empire 

1227.] Conclusion. 333 

Farewell address. He claims the right to name his successor. 

in the world, but your preserving it depends 
upon your remaining always united. If dis- 
cord steals in among you all will most assured- 
ly be lost." 

Then, turning to the great chieftains and 
khans, who were standing by — the great nobles 
of his court- — he appealed to them, as well as to 
the princes of his family, whether it was not 
just and reasonable that he, who had establish- 
ed the empire, and built it up wholly from the 
very foundations, should have the right to name 
a successor to inherit it after he was gone. 

They all expressed a full assent to this prop- 
osition. His sons and the other princes of his 
family fell on their knees and said, " You are 
our father and our emperor, and we are your 
slaves. It is for us to bow in submission to 
all the commands with which you honor us, 
and to render the most implicit obedience to 

The khan then proceeded to announce to the 
assembly that he had made choice of his son 
Oktay as his successor, and he declared him the 
khan of khans, which was the imperial title, 
according to the constitution. 

The whole assembly then kneeled again, and 
solemnly declared that they accepted the choice 
which the emperor had made, and promised al- 

334 Genghis Khan. [1227. 

Other arrangements. Death of the emperor. His grave and monument. 

legiance and fidelity to the new sovereign so 
soon as lie should be invested with power. 

The aged emperor then gave to his second 
son, Jagatay, a large country for his kingdom, 
which, however, he was, of course, to hold un- 
der the general sovereignty of his brother. He 
also appointed his son Toley, who was then 
present, to act as regent until Oktay should 
return. • 

The assembly was then dismissed, and very 
soon afterward the great conqueror died. 

Toley, of course, immediately entered upon 
his office as regent, and under his direction the 
body of his father was interred, with great mag- 
nificence, under a venerable tree, where the 
khan had rested himself with great satisfaction 
a few days before he was taken sick. 

The spot was a very beautiful one, and in 
due time a magnificent monument was erected 
over the grave. Trees were afterward planted 
around the spot, and other improvements were 
made in the grounds, by which it became, at 
length, it was said, one of the finest sepulchres 
in the world. 

As soon as Oktay, whom the emperor had 
designated as his successor, returned home, he 
was at once proclaimed emperor, and establish- 
ed himself at his father's court. The news of 

1227.] Conclusion. 335 

Visits of condolence to the ne-w emperor. Fate of the empire. 

the old emperor's death, rapidly spread through- 
out Asia, and a succession of embassadors were 
sent from all the provinces, principalities, and 
kingdoms throughout the empire, and also from 
such contiguous states as desired to maintain 
friendly relations with the new monarch, to 
bring addresses and messages of condolence 
from their respective rulers. And so great was 
the extent of country from which these embas- 
sadors came that a period of six months was 
consumed before these melancholy ceremonies 
were ended. 

The fate of the grand empire which Genghis 
Khan established was the same with that of all 
others that have arisen in the world, from time 
to time, by the extension of the power of great 
military commanders over widely-separated and 
heterogeneous nations. The sons and success- 
ors to whom the vast possessions descended 
soon quarreled among themselves, and the im- 
mense fabric fell to pieces in less time than it 
had taken to construct it. 

The End.