The letter from Kuyuk Khan to Pope Innocent IV
It appears as though their superior military techniques enabled the Mongols to amass an empire and overthrow the Chinese Empire. Famous leadership from Ghengis Khan also played a large role in the military prowess of the Mongols. Although only a small portion of their population was used as military, they were spectacular at ambushes and would lure their enemies into pursuit and then ambush with flank attacks that were crippling. I think the fact that they began conquering smaller nomadic Chinese tribes also gave them an advantage because they were able to start small and conquer outlying territories first. As well as their strong military advantage, the Song Empire was militaristically weak which automatically put the Mongols at an advantage to conquer the empire.
The Mongols “attacked the Song from the west in the 1260s and finally defeated the remnants of the Song navy in 1279” (Spielvogel & Duiker, 2013). and by then the culture of the Mongols had changed significantly. Under Ghengis Khan’s leadership, a new capital was set up but Mongolians were prohibited from practicing sedentary occupations and living in cities. The aristocrats took government positions and commoners took up lifestyles of farmers or merchants. One main difference that was implemented was the fact that inheritance was divided equally.
The letter from Kuyuk Khan to Pope Innocent IV is what I would expect to read from a person who was ruling an empire. The letter that the Pope sent was presumptuous and was disrespectful in my opinion as it was begging the Khan to stop conquering Christian provinces and was also basically stating that Christians are better and deserve a better fare than anyone else. I think Kuyuk Khan was also asking the Pope to do something that would have been extremely uncomfortable for him by asking him to visit the empire and pay fealty to him. It was also unreasonable for the Pope to ask the Khan to be a Christian so he knew he was only asking a similar thing of the Pope.
Spielvogel, J. J., & Duiker, W. J. (2013). The Essential World History. Cengage Learning.
By Vassily Maximov, Public Domain
Vincent Triola. Sat, Mar 13, 2021. Why were the Mongols able to amass an empire? Retrieved from https://vincenttriola.com/blogs/ten-years-of-academic-writing/why-were-the-mongols-able-to-amass-an-empire