Saturday, December 06, 2008


This Day in the History of Conquest by the World's Greatest Band of Warriors

On this day in 1240, Mongol hoards under Batu Kahn occupied and destroyed Kiev in the Ukraine. Hungary, Poland, and most of the rest of Eastern Europe were next over the following four decades, but finally the West began to defeat the invaders largely with the construction of stone castles. That Eastern Europe was the third area of interest to the Mongols, after China and the Middle East was a help as well. Whew, a close one for us.



We are talking about the army that staged the only succcessful winter invasion of Russian.they were an army of cavalry by and large and I suggest that the failure of the Mongols to invest eastern Europe was more the result of forested terrain and internal politics of succession.

The internal politics of succession might well have been the first reason they did not take over Western Europe. Good point.
"We are talking about the army that staged the only succcessful winter invasion of Russian."

1) The invasion took about three years, so call it a "winter invasion" is perhaps a stretch.

2) The kingdoms that they assimilated included Kiev and Novgorod, both of which were Swedish. So, perhaps "second successful invasion of Russia."

3) "Hordes" not "hoards", and generally the Mongol armies were actually smaller than their opponents. (Though that's not what those opponents believed.)

4) The Mongols were doing pretty well in the forested hills of eastern Europe when the recall message came in. It's an interesting question what might have happened had the Mongols reached Germany, France, and Italy in numbers, but previous battles don't suggest that they were having huge problems with the terrain.
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