Genghis Khan | Biography, Conquests, Achievements, & Facts

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Highlights of Genghis Khan:

Occupation Supreme Khan of the Mongols
Born 1162
Died 1227
1206 to 1227
known for Founder of the Mongol Empire

Biography of Genghis Khan:

Early Life
Genghis Khan was raised on Mongolia’s arid, chilly plains. Temujin, which was his boy’s name, was Japanese for “finest steel.” His father, Yesugai, served as their tribe’s khan, or equivalent chief. Despite the challenges of life, Temujin relished his formative years. From an early age, he enjoyed horseback riding and going hunting with his brothers.


Temujin was taken to live with the tribe of his future bride, Borte, when he was just nine years old. Temujin, however, later learned that his father had actually been poisoned by some rival Tartars. He became the khan and went back to his original tribe.


Temujin learned that his family had been betrayed when he got home. Temujin and his family were expelled from the tribe by an additional warrior who assumed the role of khan. They merely managed to get by on their own. Temujin, though, was a persistent person. He assisted his family in making it through the first dreadful winter before starting to plan his retaliation against the Tartars for killing his father.

Assembling an Army

Temujin started to develop his own tribe over the course of the following few years. He joined forces with her clan after marrying Borte. He was a harsh and ferocious combatant who won the admiration of many Mongols for his bravery. The size of his warrior army increased until it was sufficient to confront the Tartars.

Punishing the Tartars

Temujin had no mercy when he eventually engaged the Tartars in battle. He executed their leaders and destroyed their army. He subsequently started subduing his rival Mongol tribes. He realized the need for Mongol unification. The other Mongol tribes consented to join forces with Temujin and follow him once he vanquished his greatest foes. He was given the title “ruler of all” and given the moniker Genghis Khan.

A Brilliant General

The general Genghis was a genius. He divided his warriors into 1000-person “gurans” groups. They practiced combat strategy every day, and to quickly communicate across the army, they used drums, flags, and smoke signals. His troops were well-equipped, and they received early instruction in horseback riding and combat. They could ride at full speed and shoot deadly arrows while controlling their horses simply with their legs. On the battlefield, he employed creative strategies as well. On occasion, he would dispatch a small army, only to order them to withdraw. The enemies would quickly find themselves surrounded by a mob of Mongol soldiers when they charged after the smaller force.


Genghis Khan was an effective ruler. He was deadly and cruel to those he opposed, but devoted to those who supported him. He established the Yasak, a written body of law. Regardless of their backgrounds, he promoted the men who did well. Even his own sons had to perform well if they wanted to be in charge.


Genghis shifted his attention to the prosperous southern territories after uniting the Mongol tribes. In 1207, he made his first assault on the Xi Xia people. He merely needed two years to subdue the Xi Xia and force them to submit.

Genghis consulted the Chinese Jin Dynasty in 1211. He was seeking retribution from them for how they had treated the Mongols. By 1215, the Mongols were in control of the northern half of China after capturing Yanjing (Beijing), the capital of the Jin.

Muslim Lands

Genghis wished to establish economic relations with the western Muslim countries. To meet with their leaders, he dispatched a commercial delegation there. The delegation’s men were nonetheless murdered by the mayor of one of their communities. Genghis was indignant. He assumed command of 200,000 men and spent the following years obliterating the western cities. He traveled all the way to Eastern Europe, killing everything in his path. He was a ruthless man who killed everyone.

The Kwarizmian Empire was the name of the region to the west. The Shah Ala ad-Din Muhammad served as its leader. When Genghis ordered the Shah and his son to be killed in 1221, the dynasty came to an end.


Once again in China, Genghis passed away in 1227. Although no one is really sure how he passed away, many believe he was hurt when he fell from his horse. As his successor, he designated his son Ogedei.

Genghis Khan Facts That Are Interesting

Jebe was one of his best generals. Jebe once engaged Genghis in combat and shot him with an arrow. Genghis was so impressed that he decided not to kill Jebe. Jebe adopted the moniker “The Arrow”.

He was one of the most powerful kings in the world, but he preferred to reside in a yurt.

To send messages swiftly across their vast kingdom, the Mongols employed a system akin to the Pony Express.

Ogedei, Tolui, Chagatai, and Jochi were his four most favored sons. Kublai Khan, who would conquer all of China and found the Yuan Dynasty, was Tolui’s son.

It was reportedly claimed by him that “conquering the world on horseback is easy; it is dismounting and governing that is hard.”

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