The Mongol empire was the world’s largest empire. The Mongol’s practices and beliefs had both positive and negative effects. The large Mongolian empire promoted communication and diversity; however, despite this positive effect, the Mongolian empire housed the deaths of many innocent people. In addition to this, the Mongol empire fostered various religions, but enforced the same practices on everyone, no matter what religion they may follow; this brought order amongst the Mongolian empire.
The Mongolian empire was, and still is to this day, the largest empire known to man (Doc 1). Under the Mongolians, communication was immensely improved (Doc 6). There is a possibility that document 6 is biased. Document 6 came from the Golden Horde, which was a Mongolian province. Since this document came from the Mongolians, this document is nothing but positive feedback of the Mongolian empire. So everything written in this document may not be precisely true; it could be “candy-coated” to give the impression that the Mongolian empire was an amazing empire, and that nothing but good derived from it.
The improvement of this communication was fostered by the system of post horses (Doc 8). The system of post horses is a center that has many roads extending from it into different provinces, and these roads are filled with yams, or posting stations, every twenty-five miles, which are filled with three to four hundred horses (Doc 8). The Khan’s, or the Mongolian emperor’s, messenger(s) travels/ travel this post horse system, commanding however many horses needed, in addition to “spreading the word” (Doc 8). In turn, this communication amongst many different provinces gave rise to diversification. For example, Persian viniculture (winemaking) thrived under the Mongols, as well as the Persian silk industry, which thrived under the Mongols due to their conquest because it opened up contacts with other provinces, such as China (Doc 6).
Despite the benefit of communication and diversification under the Mongolian empire, this empire fostered the deaths of many innocent victims. After the Mongols would sack a city, they would drive out the city’s citizens and chop off their heads, and after the heads were they would sort the heads into piles: one for men, one for women, and then one for children (Doc 4). In some cases they even buried people alive upside-down (Doc 5)! However, this document, document 5, may be biased. This document came from a Persian manuscript, so the Persians could have over exaggerated the strictness of the Mongols and portrayed them as wicked people. It is very possible that the Persians could have does this especially if they despised the Mongols for taking over their land.
Very few people survived, if any were to have survived, then the survivors were most likely artisans or slaves, since the Mongols sought them out before they began to murder the city’s inhabitants with an axe (Doc 3). However, inhabitants of cities were not the only ones who suffered assassination; soldiers of the Mongolian army suffered manslaughter as well. In the Mongolian army there was a captain who oversaw ten soldiers, then there was a captain supervised one hundred soldiers, and so on (Doc.2). If a few men out of a group of ten were to run away, then all of the ten men would be put to death (Doc 2). Same applies to men in a group of one hundred; if ten men were to flee from a group of one hundred, then every man, from that group of one hundred men, would be put to death (Doc 2). This type of cruel order applied to many circumstances, whether it was soldiers running away, not fighting boldly, or not rescuing their captured companions (Doc 2).
The Mongolian empire adopted many religions, and out of these religions the most dominant were Christianity, Islam, and Buddhism (Doc 9). Despite the diversity in religion, every person, no matter what their religion, was obligated to follow the same principles. The following are some principles the people living under the Mongolians had to follow: not to get drunk more than three times per month, not to commit adultery, not to commit theft, and to be respectful and sharing towards one another (Doc 10). Also men could marry as many wives as they could keep; however, they had to make sure they did not marry their mother(s), sister(s), or daughter(s) (Doc 10). Women, who were wives, were to make sure that whenever their husband was to leave the house, to go hunting or to fight in a war, that they maintained the household (Doc 10). By everyone following these principles order was maintained throughout the Mongolian empire. Robbers and thieves were not found throughout the Mongol empire; therefore, houses and carts, in which people stored their wealth, did not have locks or bolts (Doc 7).
An additional document that would be helpful would be a diary of a mediocre Mongol citizen. Many of the provided documents are from high Mongolian officials or Persians, which could be biased. Knowing the life of an ordinary Mongolian citizen would paint a better picture of how Mongolian life was. It could explain what society was like, what conditions people lived in, how often people were killed, and so on.
Altogether the Mongolian Empire was balanced; they were neither really good nor really bad. They had a couple of positive influences, such as their advancement in communication and diversification, as well as they maintained order throughout their empire. However, the Mongolian empire proved to be a consequence in that they killed so many innocent people.