What weapons helped Genghis Khan to conquer half the world

15/03/20 weapons What weapons helped Genghis Khan to conquer half the world

the Empire of the nomads was the result of a confluence of many circumstances. However, the main one could be the invention of the bow, the efficiency of which is comparable to firearms.
After the unification of nomadic tribes in 1206 Temujin proclaimed Genghis Khan. By 1215 the Mongols conquered a large part of the Chinese Empire of Jin. In 1221 taken Urgench, Khorezm ceases to exist. In 1234-m goes into the history of the remaining part of the Empire of Jin. 1237 1241 for the year destroyed most of the Russian principalities. In 1241, the nomads are invading Eastern Europe, in 1243 m conquer Anatolia. Baghdad fell in 1258, and the famous stronghold of the assassins — Alamut castle were commissioned in 1256.

All of the Mongolian generals could not be as talented as Genghis Khan, and their army was not the most numerous. However, the rapid expansion of the possessions of the nomads did not stop a few decades after the death of Genghis Khan, regardless of who was the head of their army. Due to what was then the Mongols managed to change the course of history?

New tactics

Contemporaries often left memories of big victories of the Mongol warriors. In historical sources it is an unusual style of combat of the nomads: the riders move quickly on the battlefield, changing direction, often their tactic was retreat. Perfectly keep riding the warriors never stopped shooting arrows at the enemy, even during the retreat. Pursuing the enemy was losing strength and concentration. The Mongols, seeing that the advantage is on their side, then changed direction and crossed to the counter.

in Other scenarios, prepared by the Mongols, were: fragmentation of the enemy’s forces in the ambush. The enemy, exhausted and enthusiastic pursuit of the main forces of the nomads, getl side kick from the squad, who had taken refuge in ambush.

the Effectiveness of the fight Mongolian riders during the retreat was higher than most of the warriors that time when they fought face to face. Special attention chroniclers drew on the ability of the Mongols to archery. Documented cases shooting hundreds of meters. Victims of deadly arrows were, not only people but also horses. The power of this type of weapon allowed to kill animals that influenced the battle with the enemy cavalry: the horse of her size to get much easier, and once killed the horse halted and the rider. The Horde of hundreds of brilliantly used his trump card: mobility, ability to keep distance and possession of small arms.

the Invention that changed the course of history

Many historians (one is a famous Russian expert, doctor of historical Sciences Sergey Nefedov) suggest that the decisive role in the victories of the nomads was played by the invention of a new design of the bow. Warriors of the Eurasian steppe for quite a long time used a bow with composite (multi-piece) construction. Wooden arch on the sides in the center of the archery master had drained bone plates. The revolutionary invention of the Mongols was that they removed one plate, and the second placed front: before lining reinforced design, and now the onion has become much more elastic. A similar benefit did not use sedentary peoples, as the tensile strength of wood, which they often take for making a bow, several times lower than the parts of animals ‘ bones.

in Addition to increasing the capacity of the innovation were given the opportunity to strongly reduce the size of the weapon and with the maximum benefit to use it when riding. Having enough arrows, the riders can maintain an intense fire on the move, that the effect was comparable with the use of automatic firearms. The force fired arrows from the weapon of a new type was so great that it is not inferior to the powerfirst guns.


Features of the Mongolian bow was also the complexity of production and operation, which also prevented its use by other Nations. Manufacture of Mongolian composite bows can be compared with forging samurai swords. The layers of wood and bone plate, and the metal layers of the Japanese swords were joined together by special technology. Manufacture of weapons required considerable effort. Besides, it was not always feasible. In humid climates, for example, it was impossible to achieve the necessary strength of the design: it was impossible to dry the glued parts.

the Advantage in the development of new type weapons were given and particular way of life of nomads. In order to maximize the hard and often pull a bow (riders for hours of the battle were able to do it hundreds of times), you must have special training. Nomads learned to shoot and ride a horse since childhood. As a result of long years of hard training have developed a reflex skill to fire on horseback. To use the new weapons on the same level neither the Europeans nor the Arabs could not.

Another factor that influenced the success of the Mongolian bow a certain commonality of tribes, historians believe the inaccessibility to most of the nomads of heavy weapons. Metal armor and swords are found only in a few graves of the Horde: most likely, they were available only to the wealthy warriors. The result of the great battle tactics was predefined. The army, mostly consisting of lightly armed archers could constantly evade a head-on collision with the enemy, to harass and shoot him, and often on the field of battle thing didn’t even get to use swords and spears.

New battle tactics, which appeared together with the Mongolian bow, allowed the nomads to make a qualitative leap in the art of war and create an Empire unprecedented time scales.

Russian Seven

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