The Mongols and the Yuan Dynasty

The Mongols

The Mongol empire lasted from 1200-1279. The Mongol empire was the largest empire that the world has seen. It is still the largest today, even after it's fall. Throughout the Mongol empire's rule, there were many rulers. Because of this, the Mongol empire was a monarchy. The first ruler was named Genghis Khan. During Genghis Khan's rule, the Mongols captured much of Asia, including most of China. Because the Mongols were such a brute force in the world, they were in charge of keeping safe passage for travelers on the Silk Roads. Even though the Mongols had so much power, the empire had to come to an end. This happened when Genghis Khan's grandson, Kublai Khan, took over as the Great Khan. During his reign, he conquered much of China. Then, when the last Song ruler was defeated, he created the Yuan dynasty and declared himself emperor, thus decreasing the power of the Mongol empire.

The Yuan Dynasty

The Yuan dynasty lasted from 1279 to 1368. It began when Kublai Khan declared himself emperor of China and created the Yuan. During the Yuan, many significant events happened. One of these events was when Marco Polo traveled to China. Marco Polo visited the Yuan court and Kublai Khan became very interested in the young traveler. For this reason, Khan sent Polo on many missions around China for several years. This lead to many discoveries and accounts of the entire nation of China. Even though the Yuan seemed to prosper because of these missions, it eventually fell into disrepair. The dynasty began to weaken after Kublai Khan died. When he died, there were many power struggles over who will rule next. This made it very hard for the people to be kept governed. Many rebellions erupted which lead to the defeat of the Mongols/Yuan when a rebel army attacked them and defeated them. The Yuan dynasty fell in 1368.

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