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By Jack Weatherford

The identify Genghis Khan frequently conjures a twin of a constant, bloodthirsty barbarian on horseback major a ruthless band of nomadic warriors within the looting of the civilized global. however the awesome fact is that Genghis Khan used to be a visionary chief whose conquests joined backward Europe with the flourishing cultures of Asia to set off a world awakening, an unheard of explosion of applied sciences, alternate, and ideas. In Genghis Khan and the Making of the fashionable global, Jack Weatherford, the single Western pupil ever to be allowed into the Mongols’ “Great Taboo”—Genghis Khan’s native land and forbidden burial site—tracks the magnificent tale of Genghis Khan and his descendants, and their conquest and transformation of the realm. battling his solution to energy at the distant steppes of Mongolia, Genghis Khan constructed progressive army techniques and weaponry that emphasised quick assault and siege struggle, which he then brilliantly used to crush opposing armies in Asia, holiday the again of the Islamic global, and render the armored knights of Europe out of date. below Genghis Khan, the Mongol military by no means numbered greater than 100,000 warriors, but it subjugated extra lands and folks in twenty-five years than the Romans conquered in 400. With an empire that stretched from Siberia to India, from Vietnam to Hungary, and from Korea to the Balkans, the Mongols dramatically redrew the map of the globe, connecting disparate kingdoms right into a new international order. yet opposite to renowned knowledge, Weatherford finds that the Mongols weren't simply masters of conquest, yet possessed a genius for innovative and benevolent rule. On each point and from any standpoint, the size and scope of Genghis Khan’s accomplishments problem the boundaries of mind's eye. Genghis Khan was once an cutting edge chief, the 1st ruler in lots of conquered nations to place the facility of legislations above his personal energy, inspire non secular freedom, create public faculties, furnish diplomatic immunity, abolish torture, and institute loose alternate. The alternate routes he created turned profitable pathways for trade, but in addition for concepts, applied sciences, and services that reworked the way in which humans lived. The Mongols brought the 1st overseas paper foreign money and postal process and constructed and unfold progressive applied sciences like printing, the cannon, compass, and abacus. They took neighborhood meals and items like lemons, carrots, noodles, tea, rugs, cards, and pants and became them into staples of lifestyles all over the world. The Mongols have been the architects of a brand new lifestyle at a pivotal time in heritage. In Genghis Khan and the Making of the fashionable international, Jack Weatherford resurrects the real heritage of Genghis Khan, from the tale of his relentless upward push via Mongol tribal tradition to the waging of his devastatingly winning wars and the explosion of civilization that the Mongol Empire unleashed. This extraordinary paintings of revisionist background doesn’t simply paint an exceptional portrait of a very good chief and his legacy, yet demanding situations us to think again how the trendy international was once made.

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Extra resources for Genghis Khan and the Making of the Modern World

Sample text

From Korea to Armenia, they composed all manner of myths and fanciful stories about Genghis Khan’s life. In the absence of reliable information, they projected their own fears and phobias onto these accounts. With the passage of centuries, scholars weighed the atrocities and aggression committed by men such as Alexander, Caesar, Charlemagne, or Napoleon against their accomplishments or their special mission in history. For Genghis Khan and the Mongols, however, their achievements lay forgotten, while their alleged crimes and brutality became magnified.

He swore eternal friendship and allegiance to a slightly older boy who became the closest friend of his youth but turned into the most dedicated enemy of his adulthood, and he found the girl whom he would love forever and whom he made the mother of emperors. The dual capacity for friendship and enmity forged in Genghis Khan’s youth endured throughout his life and became the defining trait of his character. The tormenting questions of love and paternity that arose beneath a shared blanket or in the flickering firelight of the family hearth became projected onto the larger stage of world history.

His was not an empire that hoarded wealth and treasure; instead, he widely distributed the goods acquired in combat so that they could make their way back into commercial circulation. He created an international law and recognized the ultimate supreme law of the Eternal Blue Sky over all people. At a time when most rulers considered themselves to be above the law, Genghis Khan insisted on laws holding rulers as equally accountable as the lowest herder. He granted religious freedom within his realms, though he demanded total loyalty from conquered subjects of all religions.

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