A Mongol clan leader begins to unify the Mongol clans around 1200. He defeats his enemies one by one and succeeds in 1206.
Temuijin takes the title of Genghis Khan, or "universal ruler." In doing this, he unites every Mongol clan under his own leadership.
After uniting the Mongols, Genghis Khan's fist goal was to take China. His armies invaded the northern Jin Empire.
Genghis Khan begins an invasion of Central Asia after Muslims murdered Mongol traders and an ambassador. The Mongols conquered many cities with no mercy. Genghis had all of Central Asia by 1225.
Genghis Khan dies in 1227. The cause of his death was from illness, not from battle. His successors continue to expand the empire after his death.
The Mongol Empire was divided into four sections or khanates. There was the Khanate of the Great Khan, the Khanate of Chagatai, the Illkhanate, and Khanate of the Golden Horde. Descendents of Genghis Khan ruled each Khanate. Kublai Khan rules the Khanate of the Great Khan.
A Venetian trader named Marco Polo arrives in Kublai Khan's court around 1275. Polo was sent on government missions by the Great Khan.
Kublai Khan attemps to take Japan after conquering China. The fleet was made up of 150,000 warriors. The invasion lasted 53 days until a typhoon destroyed the Mongol fleet.
After the death of Kublai Khan, the Yuan Dynasty begins to fall. After his death rebellions broke out in China.
History of the Mauryan and Gupta Empires
At this time, a Nanda family ruled the lower Ganges River. Chandragupta Maurya and his army kill the unpopular Nanda king. Chandragupta takes the throne and starts the Mauryan Empire.
One of Alexander the great's generals, Seleucus wants control over the Indus Valley. Chandragupta defeats Seleucus after several years of fighting and the Mauryan Empire reached over 2,000 miles. North India is politically united for the first time.
Chandragupta's son assumes the title of king in 301 BC. He rules for 32 years.
Asoka is the grandson of Chandrgupta and takes the throne in 269 BC. He first begins a military campaign but after observing war he decides to study Buddhism.
The Empire started to fade because Asoka's policies of nonviolence and toleration could not hold the empire together. Asoka dies in 232 BC.
For 500 years Greeks, Persians, and Central Asians come to northern India starting around 185 BC. These invaders introduce new languages and culture to Indian society.
Chandra Gupta comes into power by marrying the daughter of a royal family. He takes the title "Great King of Kings."
Chandra Gupta's son, Samundra Gupta becomes king in 335 BC. He expands the empire throught 40 years of war and conquest.
Chandra Gupta II defeats the Shakas and adds land to the coast. This opens up trade with the Mediterranean world. He also negotiates peaceful alliances.
Chandra Gupta II began his rule in 375. His rule ends in 415.
Invaders called the Hunas that were related to the Huns threaten northern India. The empire breaks into small kingdoms, many overrun, and ends in 535.
Timur the lame destroyed the city of delhi in 1398. The city was completely devestated and there was no life left in it.
An 11 year old boy named Babur inherited a small kingdom in 1494. The elders then took away the kingdom and drove Babur south, where he built up an army.
In 1526 Babur defeated a 100,000 man army with only 12,000 troops. He later defeated the large rajput army.
Babur's grandson, Akbar, took the throne when he was just 13. As a very skilled military conqueror, Akbar unified a land of 100 million people. He was also tolerant of different cultures and religions. He eventually died in 1605.
The wife of Shah Jahan, Mumtaz Mahal, died in 1631 while giving birth to her 14th child. Shah Jahan ordered a tomb to be built in her memory. The tomb was called the Taj Mahal.
Whe Shah Jahan becomes ill in 1657, his four sons desire power. A civil war begins and Shah Jahan's third son, Aurangzeb, takes the throne.
Aurangzeb ruled the Mughal Empire from 1658 to 1707. He greatly expanded the empire, but he restricted the peoples lives and was not tolerant of Hindus. At the end of his rule the empire was out of resources and many died due to famine.
The Decameron was written by Giovanni Boccaccio. It tells of a group of young people who are trying to avoid the plauge in 1348.
Cosimo de Medici was the wealthiest European and won control of the government in 1634. He won control by giving loans to ruling council. He was dictator of Flourence for 30 years until he died in 1464.
Leonardo was a painter, scientist, sculptor, and inventor. He studied anatomy and nature and filled his notebook with sketches of inventions. He painted the famous painting, Mona Lisa.
The war between England and France ended in 1453. At the end of the war, cites grew rapidly and merchants became wealthy enough to sponsor artists.
Renaissance scholars wanted to go back to the learning of the Greeks and Romans. In 1453, Christian scholars fled Constantinople with Greek and Roman manuscripts when the city was conquered by the Turks.
Donatello made sculpture more realistic by including posture and expression. This is demonstrated in his statue of David, built in the late 1460s.
Grandson of Cosimo, Lorenzo de Medici, came to power in 1469. He ruled as a dictator but had an elected government.
Michelangelo was also a Renaissance man like Leonardo. He is most famous for the dome of St. Peter's, the paintings on the ceiling of the Sistine Chapel, and the statue of David.
Vittoria Colonna was a member of a noble family. She married Marquis of Pescara in 1509, but he was often away on military campaigns. Vittoria exchanged sonnets with Michelangelo, helped publish "The Courtier," and wrote to her husband while he was away.
In 1494, a French King assumed control of Naples, Italy. He then launched an invasion of Northern Italy. Many Italian artists and writers fled to Northern Europe, with them their techniques and styles.
Michelangelo sculpted his statue of David from 1501 to 1504. He shows David right before battle, who stands 18 feet tall.
The Mona Lisa was painted by Leonardo da Vinci from 1504 to 1506. The portrait was thought to be of Lisa Gherardini, the wife of a wealthy merchant from Flourence.
Erasmus wrote his famous work, "The Praise of Folly" in 1509. The book displayed merchants, lovers, and scholars.
"The Prince" was written Niccolo Machiavelli. It is in the form of a political guidebook that examines how a ruler can gain and keep power and shows the qualities of a politician.
In 1516 Thomas More wrote the book, "Utopia" which means "no place" in Greek. He describes a perfect place to live with no corruption, war, or greed.
In 1528 "The Courtier" was written by Baldassare Castiglione. The book tought one how to become a Renaissance man. Renaissance men were well educated and skilled in many fields.
Flemish painting reached a peak after 1550 with the paintings of Pieter Bruegel the Elder. He was skilled in displaying large numbers of people like in weddings, dances, or harvests.