There were many well-known rulers, such as Julius Caesar or Tutankhamun. And even if they may have been great, or good, there is definitely one emperor who deserves to be noticed. His name is Genghis Khan, and as a ruler, he never faltered in his step and grew to conquer the world as he knew it. Genghis Khan took a stand against, and defied his tribe, leading him to conquer most of Asia, raise a formidable empire, and ultimately become the most renowned sovereign known to mankind.
Genghis Khan's exact date of birth is unknown, however, he was born in 1162 AD in Delüün, Boldog which is located in the modern day Dadal Province of Mongolia. He was born with a blood clot on his hand which meant to the Mongols that he was destined to rule. However, this didn't come easy, when he was 9 his father took him to meet his future wife, Borte. On his father's way back, he was invited to eat a conciliatory meal with a rival tribe, the Tatar who happened to poison him. After the news reached him that his father had been killed, Genghis Khan returned to his village to claim leadership but, was denied. After his father died, his family was under pressure, so Genghis, to assert his leadership, killed his half-brother.
When Genghis Khan was 20, he was ambushed by the Taichi'uts. They then forced him to work for them. However, a sympathetic captor helped him escape. After he had escaped, he joined his brothers and select members of his tribe to create an elite fighting unit. Over time his unit turned into an immense army of 20,000 men. After gathering his army he set out to eliminate the rivalries between tribes and unite the Mongols, but first, there was some revenge to be had. Genghis Khan brutally and mercilessly avenged his father by killing all the Tatar men taller than 3 feet. He then sought revenge, and boiled the Taichi'uts chiefs alive. By the year 1206, Genghis had conquered many tribes and most recently conquered the Naiman tribe, which gave him control of central and eastern Mongolia. Genghis Khan was an impressive conqueror, but, there was more than just luck, or brutality.
Genghis Khan had not just brute power, but strategic plots too. He had an extensive network of espionage, which allowed him to acquire the latest innovations and technology, which his army quickly adapted to. His army used a sophisticated system for signaling in battle, that included torches, smoke, and flashes of light. On top of that, drums were used for signaling to charge, and during the battle, a complex arrangement of flags was used to signal battle plans indicating where to go, and when. But Genghis Khan's army was not just strategy, there was plenty of skill in his soldiers, and quality in their weapons.
Genghis Khan was many things, but he certainly was not someone who ill-equipped his soldiers. The common soldier was very well equipped with a bow, a quiver-full of arrows, a shield, a dagger, a lasso, a saddlebag for carrying food, tools, and extra clothes. The saddlebags could even be inflated to help a soldier float across a river. These were the standard items that every soldier carried; however, there were some specially equipped warriors such as cavalrymen. These cavalrymen had an additional short sword, javelin, body armor, a battle ax, and a lance which was used for one thing, pulling enemies off of their horses. These soldiers were very well trained. For example, all of the cavalrymen could maneuver a horse using just their thighs, so that their arms were open to shoot a bow and arrow, or perhaps knock someone off of their horse. Genghis Khan's army was always followed by an extremely organized group of ox carts which carried food, weapons, and supplies. With the ox carts, were shamans and officials. The shamans followed to provide medicinal treatment, and the officials followed to keep track of, and organize the valuables won in the fight. His army was well trained and equipped which helped lead him to greatness, and he conquered much more than just Mongolia.
Genghis Khan was not originally called Genghis Khan; he was called Temujin. Only after he had proven himself by conquering an exemplary portion of the world did the mongol tribe leaders concur that he should be named Genghis Khan, or 'universal ruler.' This title carried a political power as well as a spiritual power. The leading shaman also decided to give him the title 'representative of Mongke Koko Tengri,' which means representative of the eternal blue sky. Mongke Koko Tengri also happens to be the overlord god of the Mongols. This marked Genghis Khan as the ultimate chief. To defy him would be like defying god. In fact, he was so closely associated with God that it is thought that he once said to one of his rivals, "I am the flail of god. If you had not committed great sins, God would not have sent a punishment like me upon you." Genghis Khan being the ultimate religious and physical luminary, no-one could stop him.
Genghis Khan conquered throughout his life. In 1207 He led his army against the Chinese kingdom of Xi Xia, and in 1209 he forced them to surrender. 2 years later his army's food supply was diminishing as his army grew. So, in 1211 he attacked the Jin Dynasty in north China. The reason he besieged the Jin Dynasty was simply for the vast rice fields. The fight with the Jin Dynasty went on for almost 20 full years. While he was engaged on that battlefront another portion of his army was engaging in combat at the western border fighting with the many Muslim countries. Genghis Khan also established a trading agreement with the Khwarizm Dynasty. However, this agreement quickly ended when the governor of one of the cities attacked a caravan with supplies. This caused Genghis Khan to rage and demolish empires throughout Asia and Europe. He even personally commanded the three-prong attack on the Khwarizm Dynasty with over 200,000 Mongol soldiers. Eventually, in 1221, Genghis Khan captured and killed Shah Muhammad and his son to for once and for all destroy the Khwarizm Dynasty. After his death, his empire conquested as far as Austria before falling back. This was as far as he conquered and death was near.
Genghis Khan was a great man and ruler. After his death on August 18, 1227, in Western Xia, the Mongols had lost a great man. But he was not forgotten his legacy is a great one. He did many things in society worth recognition and one of them was empowering women. He had women doing many important roles. He also placed higher trust upon them. He also indirectly created the Silk Road. The way he did this was by conquering a huge portion of area and by uniting many countries that were once detached, leading to direct trade routes, not hand-offs. The last extremely significant thing he did was having a group of spiritual leaders follow his army, so that medication was more accessible. Genghis Khan was revolutionary and stories of him have passed down through the ages, he left a big impact on modern society.
Genghis Khan created an empire and the empire stood a good 50 years after his death. This proves how worthy he was. He was also a great ruler. Genghis Khan took a stand against, and defied his tribe, leading him to conquer most of Asia, raise an empire, and ultimately become the most renowned sovereign known to mankind. He will go down in the ages as he has for the last 800 year. And like he once said, “If you're afraid - don't do it, - if you're doing it - don't be afraid!”.
Genghis Khan. (n.d.). Retrieved February 13, 2017.
Genghis Khan. (2015, November 06). Retrieved February 13, 2017.
History.com Staff. (2009). Genghis Khan. Retrieved February 13, 2017.
Weatherford, J. M. (2010). The secret history of the Mongol queens: how the daughters of Genghis Khan rescued his empire. New York: Crown .