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Great Khan e1692499114779

Sons of the Great Khan

Genghis Khan left behind four sons to inherit his throne. All of them became renowned warlords in their own right, and also fathered many gifted gifted and khans.


     His eldest son, Jochi, whose legitimacy was doubted by his brothers and other relatives since was born soon after his mother was rescued from the Mergid, died a few months before Genghis Khan. Although none of the Jochids ever sat on the Mongolian throne, his two sons, Orla and Bat went beyond the Irtysh River and conquered all the lands where their horses could carry them and one established the White and the other the Golden Horde, empires which lasted for many years.


     Genghis’s second son Tsagaadai, famed for his participation in the writing of the Mongols’ legal code the Ih Zasag, inherited the lands captured during his father’s western campaign, those of the Uighur, Kara-Khitan and the Khwarazm Empires. The Tsagaadai Khanate built by his descendants survived until the time of Tamerlane, or Timur Khan. Tsagaadai died in the same year as Ogodei Khan, the third son of Genghis.


     In 1223, Genghis’ third son Ogodei was elected by a Huriltai, an assembly of a princess, to replace his celebrated father. He held the throne until his death in 1241. Ogodei’s son Guyuk reigned only for two years, and after his death, his lineage ceased to play a significant role.


     Genghis’ youngest son Tului inherited his father’s native lands in the basin between the Onon and Herlen Rivers and, though he himself was not great khan, he had the good fortune to start a long lineage of khans. Tului administered the affairs of the empire for the two years in between Genghis Khan’s death and Ogodei’s election, but he did not survive until the next election, dying 1232 of alcoholism. Twenty years later, however, his children accomplished a brilliant victory by snatching the throne from Ogodei’s family. Tului’s sons Mongke and Kublai were both elected grand khans. Kublai established the Yuan Dynasty, which ruled China for one hundred years. Yet another son, Hulegu Khan, burnt down Baghdad and founded a powerful state known as the Il-khanate that existed for many years in the expensive territories which stretched to the Black Sea or the Persian Empire Il-Khanate.


  • 1227-1229: Reign of Genghis Khan’s youngest son Tului.
  • 1229: The law was enforced throughout the Empire.
  • 1230: Ogodei sent an army led by  Chormogan to wage war on the Islamic empires.
  • 1231: Ogodei sent an army southward, led by Subeedei.
  • 1235: The Ih Huraldai was established in the city of Karakorum.
  • 1236-1241: An enormous army of 150000, led by Subeedei, invades the land between western Siberia and the Adriatic Sea.
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