Marco Polo

Ah, the idiot box, our childhood companion/minder let us speak of your marvellous ways and bask in your shiny technicolour.
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kaos
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Marco Polo

Post by kaos » Wed Mar 11, 2015 12:15 am

Kublai Khan is fucking awesome.
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Mik
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Re: Marco Polo

Post by Mik » Wed Mar 11, 2015 10:42 am

Temujin and his offspring were some of baddest motherfuckers that have ever lived, Ögedei is pretty forgotten only cause he is the son of the great Khan, but it was under his rule that the Empire was close to invading Egypt and was almost assured victory, Europe was on the radar too and they couldn't be stopped.

Subutai, gets my vote for greatest military commander to ever live, he was told to go scout, he conquered like 4 countries.
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kaos
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Re: Marco Polo

Post by kaos » Wed Mar 11, 2015 10:54 am

yeah I saw a map of what Kublai had taken. and I was like...Whoa!
Who in the hell fucked up and lost ALL of it though?
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Re: Marco Polo

Post by Mik » Wed Mar 11, 2015 12:16 pm

After Ögedei died it was never the same, they elected a Great Khan in something called a kurultai, which could only occur in Mongolia, so basically it takes 2 years to get everyone back home.

Ögedei died relatively young, he had selected a successor but it's only ever really a suggestion in Mongol culture and they chose someone else, Guyuk, who basically drank himself to death within 2 years of getting the nod. This effectively ended any further expansion of the empire, cause they had to go elect someone else so that's 4 years of elections in quick succession and a lot of bad blood, grudges from losing the last time and pettiness, plus I think Subutai died in battle at the age of 72 around then.

I suppose it all stems from how the empire got split up post Ghengis' death, there was 4 or 5 Khanates or provinces that got divided between the sons, with one of them elected Khan of all Khans.

There was differences in wealth due of the size of these territories and the lands they entailed, for example someone got control of Mongolia as a Khanate, which fucking sucks cause it's probably the poorest of t hem all but it's also very honourable, it's the motherland. So they consider themselves the True Mongols, because life is hard here, this where you breed true warriors and the Han Chinese Khanate is thinking, well all the money is here, the capitol city has been moved here, we're the Real Mongols, a splintering of ideology starts to occur. This causes a lot of bickering over who should have the biggest say in what is going on, an uprising in their Khanate should be more important than attacking the west, this was all muted during the periods of successful raids because of the wealth that flowed by proxy, once it stopped however, there was infighting and fingerpointing.

Think of the Mongol Empire's expansion like the lapping of waves against a beach as the tide rises, they took but retreated in the winter, to reconquer uprisings and go home, then out again in the summer pushing further to see if they'd be stopped, during even Ghengis' reign the northern Chinese rebelled like 8 times iirc one of his last wishes was for his successor to just go up there and kill everyone to sort it out.

Kublai fought a war against his cousins to gain control, he wasn't elected, which basically spelled out how things were going to be decided from now on and effectively killed one of the core ideals that drove them to power, something similar happened to the Roman Republic, though it had a few centuries of success as an Empire after that. In effect turning inward to resolve leadership caused a low tide feedback loop.

Also they got corrupted by the cultures they conquered, it was a complaint between the old guard that each new generation was too soft and Chinese influenced, which I suppose was true. It's way more complicated than this but that's a rough idea of why it crumbled.

No King reigns forever, I guess.
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