The Earliest States of Eastern Europe
DG-2021, 510-523

Reflection of Mongolian Primary Sources of the 13th century in the Dynastic History "Yuan Shi" Based on the Material of Mongol Campaigns against Rus and Eastern Europe

R. P. Khrapachevsky

Center of Military and General history studies (Moscow)


For citation: Khrapachevsky, Roman P. Reflection of Mongolian Primary Sources of the 13th century in the Dynastic History Yuan Shi Based on the Material of Mongol Campaigns against Rus and Eastern Europe // Drevneishie gosudarstva Vostochnoi Evropy (The Earliest States of Eastern Europe). 2021: Eastern Europe and the World of Islam. In honor of Tatjana M. Kalinina. Editors of the volume B.E. Rashkovskiy, E.V. Litovskikh, E.A. Melnikova. Moscow: Dmitry Pozharsky University, 2021. S. 510–523.


DOI: 10.32608/1560-1382-2021-42-510-523


AbstractThis study presents the results of a comparative analysis of the information contained in the Chinese dynastic history Yuan shi (1370) and the Yuan texts of the 13th and the beginning of the 14th century on the campaigns of the Mongols in Rus and in Eastern Europe during the first half of the 13th century. The article provides evidence of the existence (along with specific examples) of the Mongol primary sources of the mid-thirteenth century which information was used by the authors of Yuan Shi for writing biographies of a number of officials of the Mongol Empire who participated in these campaigns. Various components of the sources of Yuan shi were examined to demonstrate this conclusion. One of the most important sources was the Yuan compendiums of official documents, such as Jing-shi dadian (1331) as well as the so-called “codes of regulations”. The significance of the enormous compilation of Jing-shi dadian for the authors of Yuan shi consisted in the fact that for this compilation original texts of decrees, rescripts, and edicts of the kaans of the Mongol Empire, as well as the Yuan emperors, were translated from the Mongolian language into Chinese during the 1310s — 1320s. Thus, the authors of Yuan shi had access to many original documents drawn up in the office of the Mongol Empire until the 1260s. In addition, the author used thes till extant texts of the Yuan his toriographers and writers Wang Yun (1227–1304), Yao Sui (1238–1313) and Yan Fu (1236–1312). The author demonstrates the ways passed by the information from statements of service of ranks in the Yuan time, Mongol acts, and Yuan letters of honor of the titled dignitaries to texts of the Yuan authors and then to Yuan shi. Fragments of the texts of the above-mentioned Yuan authors are quoted as well as passages from extant narratives and documents of the Mongol Empire and the Yuan Dynas ty. Many of them are introduced into scientific circulation for the first time. They provide various details of the military campaigns of the Mongols in Rus and Eastern Europe and information on the activities of such historical persons as the Genghisides Batu, Ugedei, Guyuk and Mengu-kaan, commanders Subedei, Tutuk and Shiri-gambu. They also contain important observations concerning the Rus, the Alans and the Kipchaks, whom the Mongols encountered during these campaigns. This information covers the following issues: geography of the Mongol campaigns with the place-names retained in the Mongols’ documents; the course of hos tilities; details of sieges of cities by the Mongols and the means used for this; exact chronology of events of these campaigns, etc.

Yuan-shi, Batu, Ugedei, Mengu-kaan, Subedei, his torians Yuan, the Rus, the Alans, the Kipchaks

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