A civilization in Civilization Revolution 2
|Begin the game with||+50% trade from captured cities|
In the eleventh century the Mongols were nomadic horsemen who roamed the wild steppes of Mongolia. Although fearless warriors and matchless horsemen, the Mongols were not much of a threat to their neighbors beyond the occasional hit-and-run cattle raid. However this changed dramatically with the birth of Temujin in approximately 1167 AD.
From a very young age Temujin showed great skill and courage in battle, and he quickly rose to become leader of his tribe. A master diplomat and statesman as well, Temujin amassed great power and influence among all the tribal leaders, and by 1204 he had united all of the tribes under his rule. It was at this time he received the title 'Genghis Khan', meaning "Great Ruler." Almost immediately he began to plan the conquest of his "civilized" neighbors.
China, at the time, was divided into three parts: the Ch'in, who were the most powerful, reigned in the north at Beijing; the Sung occupied the South; and the Hsi-Hsia, the weakest of the three, inhabited the western flank of the Great Wall. The Mongol conquest of China began in 1211 when the consolidated tribes of the Great Khan struck at the Hsi-Hsia, with tremendous success.
Little realizing his peril, the arrogant Ch'in Emperor refused to meet with Khan, insisting on a public display of servitude from Temujin. Temujin reacted by ordering a general advance against the Ch'in Empire. The resulting war lasted for approximately 23 years, and ended in the complete destruction of the Ch'in.
Although the Mongols began the war as nomadic horsemen, by the time they defeated the Ch'in they had learned how to use advanced siege weaponry to capture cities.
Amid the war against the Ch'in the Mongols also encountered the Shah of Khwarizm, who ruled a large Muslim state that stretched from modern day Iran to southern Russia as far as the Caspian and Aral Seas. In 1219 a Mongol horde estimated at 100,000 horsemen invaded Khwarizm and the other cities that lay along the rich Silk Way. Due to their stubborn resistance, the cities of Khwarizm were destroyed, their populations slaughtered or enslaved, and the area almost completely depopulated. In many respects, this area today still has not recovered from the Mongol invasion.
After destroying Khwarizm, the Mongols invaded Russia. In a series of campaigns between 1237-40, the Mongols completely subjected the various principalities of Russia, destroying anyone who opposed them. From Russia, the Mongols continued their western advance by invading Poland, Silesia, and Hungary. They easily defeated the armies of Poland, Germany, and Hungary, and appeared poised to erupt into Western Europe. But the death of the Great Khan, Temujin's grandson Ogodai, caused the armies to retreat in order to seek new orders, thus sparing most of Europe from destruction.
Less fortunate was the Muslim world, as Baghdad was sacked in 1258 by yet another Mongol army and the Caliph executed by being trampled to death beneath Mongol horses. The destruction of Baghdad and slaughtering of its population was a blow that the Arab Empire of the Caliphs never fully recovered from. The Mongols were finally turned back for the first time by the Mameluks of Egypt in 1260.
By the end of the 13th century Mongol armies had been involved in action in countries including: Poland, Japan, Korea, Hungary, Russia, Palestine, Egypt, Persia, India, China, Cambodia, Burma, Vietnam, and Indonesia. After Temujin's death in 1227 five more Khans would follow, including Kublai Khan, whose triumph was the union of all of China under his rule. However, the death of Kublai Khan in 1294 AD marked the end of an era for Mongol conquests, and the fortunes of the Mongol armies began to decline. While many of the khanates founded by the Mongols lasted for several more centuries, the age of the great nomadic forces was over. Although their era was brief in duration, the Mongols conquered the largest empire the world has ever seen and terrorized virtually the entire Eurasian continent.
The Mongol Empire was both the largest land empire ever assembled as well as the fastest created. In less than a century, the Mongols conquered all of China and Central Asia.
Africa was spared from Mongol conquest thanks to the valiant efforts of an army of former Egyptian slave-soldiers known as the Mamlukes. Their victory at the battle of Ain Jalut marked the first true defeat of the Mongols.