Mongols in Russia. First meeting


Mongolian cavalry attack, medieval miniature

In the 1220 year, in the midst of the military campaign to conquer Khorezm, Genghis Khan “outfitted two leaders: Dzhebe-noiana and Subet-Bahadur (Subedei), with thirty thousand (warriors)” (An-Nasawi). They had to find and capture the escaped Khorezmshah - Mohamed II. “By the power of the Great God, until you take it in your hands, do not return,” Genghis ordered them, and “they crossed the river, heading for Khorasan, and scoured the country.”

They could not find an unlucky ruler: he died on one of the islands of the Caspian Sea at the end of the 1220 year (some authors claim that at the beginning of the 1221). But his mother was captured, bypassing the sea from the south, defeated the Georgian army at the Battle of Sagimi (the son of the famous Queen Tamara George IV Lasha was seriously wounded in it) and in the Kotman Valley, captured a number of cities in Iran and the Caucasus.


However, the war did not end; the new Khorezmshah was Jalal ad-Din, who had been fighting the Mongols for 10 years, sometimes inflicting sensitive defeats on them - this was described in the article Empire of Genghis Khan and Khorezm. Last Hero

Subaday and Jeba informed Genghis Khan about the death of Muhammad and flight to an unknown destination Jalal ad-Din, and, according to Rashid ad-Din, were ordered to move north to defeat the tribes related to the Kipchaks of Khorezm.


Ismailov I.S. "Tatar-Mongols at the walls of Derbent"


Subuday and Jabe's war with the Polovtsi


Having captured Shemakha and Derbent, the Mongols fought through the lands of Lezghins and entered the Alans' possessions, to which the Kipchaks (Polovtsy) came to help.

As you know, a difficult battle with them, which is "Yuan-shi" (история the Yuan dynasty, written in the XIV century under the leadership of Song Lun) calls the battle in the Yu-Yu valley, did not reveal the winners. Ibn al-Asir in the Complete Code of History reports that the Mongols were forced to resort to tricks, and, only with the help of deception, they managed, in turn, to defeat both those and others.

“Yuan Shi” calls the battle of Buzu (Don) the second battle of the Subedei and Jebe corps — here the Polovtsy, who had left the Alans, were defeated. Ibn al-Asir also talks about this battle, adding that the Mongols "took from the Kipchaks twice as much as they had before."

It seemed that now Subaedei and Jebe could calmly withdraw their troops in order to report to Genghis Khan on their successes and receive well-deserved rewards. Instead, the Mongols go even further north, chasing the Kipchaks in front of them and trying to squeeze them to some kind of natural barrier - a large river, the sea, mountains.

S. Pletneva believed that in those days in the Ciscaucasia, the Volga region and in the Crimea there were seven tribal unions of the Polovtsy. Therefore, after the defeat, the demoralized Polovtsians were divided. A part ran to the Crimea, the Mongols pursued them, and, crossing the Kerch Strait, captured the city of Sugdeya (Surozh, now Sudak). Others moved to the Dnieper - it was they who later, along with the Russian squads, would take part in the unfortunate battle of Kalka (the Alici River in the Yuan Shi).

A logical question arises about the true purpose and objectives of this campaign. What task did the generals of Genghis Khan now perform so far from the main forces and the main theater of operations? What was it? Preventive strike on the Kipchaks, who could become allies of the new Khorezmshah? Intelligence expedition? Or, something more was planned, but not everything turned out as Genghis Khan would like?

Or maybe, from a certain moment, it was an “improvisation" that went too far and lost all contact with Genghis Subudei and Jaebe?


What do we see in the 1223 year? Subadei and Jeba were ordered to capture the Khorezmshah, but the former was not alive, and the new one, Jalal ad-Din, was forced to flee to India a year and a half ago after losing the battle in Indus. Soon he will return to Iran, Armenia, Georgia, and will begin to gather a new state for himself with his sword and fire. Khorezm fell, and Genghis Khan, now preparing for war with the Tangut kingdom of Xi Xia. His headquarters and the army of Subedai and Jebe are shared by many thousands of kilometers. Interestingly, in the spring of 1223, did the Great Khan even know where he was and what the corps that had gone on a trip three years ago was doing?

Another extremely interesting question: how real was the threat to the South Russian principalities?

Let's try to figure it out. First of all, let’s try to answer the question: why did Subaedey and Jebe, sent in search of the Khorezmshah, so stubbornly pursue the Kipchaks, better known to us as Polovtsy? They did not have an order for the final conquest of these territories (and the forces for such an ambitious task were clearly not enough). And there was no military need for this persecution after the second battle (on the Don): the defeated Polovtsians were not in danger, and the Mongols could freely join forces with Jochi.

Some consider the reason the original hatred of the Mongols towards the Kipchaks, who for centuries have been their rivals and competitors.

Mongols in Russia. First meeting




Others point to the kinship of Khan Kutan (in Russian chronicles - Kotyan) with the mother of Khorezmshah Muhammad II - Terken-Khatyn. Still others believe that the Kipchaks accepted the enemies of the Genghis Khan clan - the Merkits.

Finally, Subaedei and Jebe probably understood that soon the Mongols would come to these steppes for a long time (Juchi ulus would often be “Bulgar and Kipchak”, or “Khorezm and Kipchak”), and therefore they could strive to inflict maximum damage on their current owners, to facilitate the task of future conquerors.

That is, such a consistent desire of the Mongols to the complete destruction of the Polovtsian troops with rational reasons can be fully explained.

But was a clash between the Mongols and the Russians inevitable that year? Most probably not. It is impossible to find at least one reason why the Mongols should have sought such a clash. In addition, Subaedey and Jeba did not have the opportunity to make a successful invasion of Russia. There were no siege machines in their tumens, and there were no Khitan or Jurchen engineers and craftsmen capable of building such weapons, so there was no question of storming the cities. Yes, and a simple raid, it seems, was not included in their plans. We remember that the famous campaign of Igor Svyatoslavich in 1185 ended with a blow from the combined forces of the Polovtsy in the Chernigov and Pereyaslavl lands. In the 1223 year, the Mongols won a much more significant victory, but did not take advantage of its fruits.

The events preceding the Battle of Kalka are presented to many as follows: defeating the Kipchaks on the Don, the Mongols drove them to the borders of the Russian principalities. Finding themselves on the verge of physical destruction, the Polovtsy turned to the Russian princes with the words:
“Our Tatars have taken our land now, and yours will be taken tomorrow, protect us; if you don’t help us, then we will be killed today, and you will be killed tomorrow. ”


Gathered to the council of Russian princes Mstislav Udatny (then - Prince Galitsky), the son-in-law of Khan Kutan (Kotyan) stated:
“If we, brothers, do not help them, then they will surrender to the Tatars, and then they will have even more strength.”


That is, it turns out that the Mongols did not leave anyone any choice. The Polovtsians were supposed to either die, or completely submit to and become part of the Mongolian army. A clash between the Russians and the aliens who found themselves at their borders was also inevitable, the question was only where it will take place. And the Russian princes decided: "It is better for us to accept them (the Mongols) on a foreign land than on our own."

Such a simple and clear scheme where everything is logical and there is no desire to ask additional questions - and, at the same time, is absolutely wrong.

In fact, the Mongols at the time of these negotiations were not close to the Russian borders: they fought with another tribal alliance of the Polovtsy in the Crimea and the Black Sea steppes. Kotyan, who had said, quoted earlier, a beautiful, full of pathos, phrase about the need to unite efforts in the fight against foreign invaders, his relatives could justifiably accuse him of betrayal, since he took away about 20 thousands of soldiers, condemning those remaining to inevitable defeat. And Kotyan could not know for sure whether the Mongols would go further north. But the Polovtsian khan longed for revenge, and the anti-Mongol alliance, which he was trying to organize now, seemed to be not defensive, but offensive.


Khan Kotyan persuades Russian princes to repulse the Tatar-Mongols, modern illustration


Fatal decision


Mstislav Kievsky, Mstislav Chernigovsky, Volyn prince Daniil Romanovich, Smolensk prince Vladimir, Sursky prince Oleg, son of the Kiev prince Vsevolod - former Novgorod prince, nephew of the Chernigov prince Mikhail came to the council of princes in Kiev. They allowed the Polovtsy and their supporters, Mstislav Galitsky (he is better known under the nickname Udatny - “Lucky” and not “Udaloy”) to convince them that the danger was real, and agreed to go on a campaign against the Mongols.


Seal of Mstislav Udatny


The problem was that the main force of the Russian squads was traditionally infantry, which was delivered to the place of general gathering on boats. And therefore, the Russians could fight the Mongols only with the very great desire of the Mongols themselves. Subudey and Dzhebe could easily evade the battle, or play with the "cat and mouse" with the Russians, leading their squads behind them, exhausting them with long marches - which happened in reality. And there were no guarantees that the Mongols, who at that time were far in the south, would generally come to the borders of Russia and, moreover, would enter into a battle absolutely unnecessary to them. But the Polovtsy knew that the Mongols could be forced to do this. Have you already guessed what happened next?

The gathering place of the Russian squads this time was Varyazhsky Island, which was located opposite the mouth of the Trubezh River (currently flooded by the Kanevsky Reservoir). It was difficult to hide such a significant accumulation of troops, and the Mongols, learning about this, tried to enter into negotiations. And the words of their ambassadors were standard:
“We heard that you were going against us, obeying the Polovtsy, but we did not occupy your land, neither your cities, nor villages, came to you; we came by God's permission to our servants and grooms, to filthy Polovtsy, but we have no war with you; if the Polovtsians run to you, then you beat them from there and take their good to yourself; we heard that they are doing a lot of evil to you, because we are beating them from here. ”


One can argue about the sincerity of these proposals, however, there was no need to kill the Mongolian ambassadors, among whom was also one of the two sons of Sudedei (Chambek). But, at the insistence of the Polovtsy, all of them were killed, and now the Russian princes became the bloodlines of the Mongols in general, and of Subedai.

This murder was not an act of bestial cruelty, or a manifestation of savagery and stupidity. It was an insult and a challenge: the Mongols were deliberately provoked to battle with an opponent who was superior in strength and in the most unfavorable conditions and circumstances for them (as it seemed to everyone then). And reconciliation was almost impossible.

Nobody touched the Mongols of the second embassy with a finger - because this was no longer necessary. But they came to Kotyan’s son-in-law, Mstislav Galitsky, one of the initiators of this campaign. This meeting took place at the mouth of the Dniester, where, in a roundabout way going to join with the troops of other princes, his squad sailed on boats. And the Mongols at that time were still in the Black Sea steppes.
“You listened to the Polovtsy and killed our ambassadors; now come upon us, well, then come; we didn’t touch you: God is above us all, "
- said the ambassadors, and the Mongol army began moving north. And the squad of Mstislav on the boats along the Dnieper climbed to the island of Khortytsya, where she joined other Russian troops.

So, slowly and at the same time, inevitably went to meet each other armies of opposite sides.

The forces of the parties


On a campaign against the Mongols, the squads of the following principalities: Kiev, Chernigov, Smolensky, Galitsky-Volynsky, Kursky, Putivl and Trubchevsky.


Fomin N. Three Mstislav (Before the Battle of Kalka)


The detachment of the Principality of Vladimir, commanded by Vasilko Rostovsky, managed to reach only Chernigov. Having received news of the defeat of the Russian troops on Kalka, he turned back.

The number of Russian troops is currently estimated at about 30 thousand people, about another 20 thousand were put up by Polovtsy, they were headed by the thousand thousand Yarun - voivode Mstislav Udatny. Historians believe that the next time the Russians could assemble such a large army only in the 1380 year - for the Battle of Kulikovo.

The army, indeed, was large, but did not have a common command. Mstislav Kievsky and Mstislav Galitsky fiercely competed among themselves, as a result, at the decisive moment, on 31 on May 1223, their troops were on different banks of the Kalka River.


Mstislav Romanovich Stary, mosaic of the Golden Gate metro station, Kiev



Lipitskaya battle, 1216. The entry of Mstislav Udatny into battle. Thumbnail from the Facade of the XVI century


The Mongols began their campaign, having an army from 20 to 30 thousand people. By this time, they certainly suffered losses, and therefore, the number of their troops, even according to the most optimistic estimates, was unlikely to exceed 20 thousand people, but was probably less.

Beginning of the campaign


Having waited for the approach of all units, the Russians and the Polovtsy allied with them crossed to the left bank of the Dnieper and moved east. The units of Mstislav Udatny moved in the forefront: they were the first to meet with the Mongols, the advanced units of which, after a short battle, retreated. The Galicians accepted the enemy’s deliberate retreat as his weakness, and the self-confidence of Mstislav Udatny increased with each day of the persecution. In the end, he apparently decided that he could cope with the Mongols without the help of other princes - with only one Polovtsy. And it was not only a thirst for fame, but also an unwillingness to share the booty.

Battle of Kalka


The Mongols retreated for another 12 days, the Russian-Polovtsian troops were very stretched out and were tired. Finally, Mstislav Udatny saw the Mongol troops ready for battle, and, without warning the other princes, with his squad and Polovtsy attacked them. Thus began the battle on Kalka, reports of which are available in 22 Russian chronicles.


Dimitrov V. The Battle of Kalka


In all chronicles, the name of the river is given in the plural: on Kalki. Therefore, some researchers believe that this is not the proper name of the river, but an indication that the battle took place on several closely located small rivers. The exact location of this battle has not been determined; currently, the areas on the Karatysh, Kalmius and Kalchik rivers are considered as a possible battle place.

The Sofia Chronicle indicates that, at first, some Kalki had a small battle between the advanced detachments of the Mongols and the Russians. The warriors of Mstislav Galitsky captured one of the Mongol centurions, whom this prince issued to kill Polovtsians. Having overturned the enemy here, the Russians approached another Kalka, where on May 31 and 1223 the main battle unfolded.


Daniil Romanovich and Mstislav Mstislavich on a campaign, medieval miniature


So, the troops of Mstislav Udatny, Daniil Volynsky, Chernihiv cavalry and Polovtsy, not coordinating their actions with other participants in the campaign, crossed to the other side of the river. The Kiev prince Mstislav Stary, with whom his two son-in-law was, remained on the opposite bank, where a fortified camp was built.

The attack of the reserve parts of the Mongols was overturned by the attacking Russian troops, the Polovtsy fled (it was their flight that was called the cause of the defeat of the Novgorod and Suzdal chronicles). Mstislav Udatny, the hero of the battle of Lipitsa, also fled, and the first to reach the Dnieper, where the Russian rooks were. Instead of organizing defense on the shore, he, having transferred part of his squad to the opposite shore, ordered to chop and burn all the boats. It was his actions that became one of the main reasons for the death of about 8 thousand of Russian soldiers.


B. Chorikov. Prince Mstislav Galitsky, having lost the battle of Kalk, escapes beyond the Dnieper


The cowardly and unworthy behavior of Mstislav is in sharp contrast with the behavior of the same Igor Svyatoslavich in the 1185 year, who also had the opportunity to escape, but stated:
“If we jump, we will save ourselves, and we will abandon ordinary people, and it will be a sin against us before God, betraying them, we will leave. Either we die, or we all remain alive together. ”


This example is a vivid proof of the moral degradation of the Russian princes, which will reach its peak during the time of Yaroslav Vsevolodovich, his sons and grandchildren.

Meanwhile, the camp of Mstislav of Kiev lasted three days. There were two reasons. Firstly, Subaedey with the main forces chased the fleeing Russian soldiers to the Dnieper, and, only after destroying them, returned. Secondly, the Mongols did not have infantry capable of breaking through the fortifications of Kiev. But their allies were hunger and thirst.

Convinced of the resilience of Kiev and the failure of the assaults, the Mongols entered into negotiations. The Russian chronicles claim that on behalf of the enemy a certain “governor of brodniks” Ploskiny conducted negotiations, and Mstislav of Kiev believed the co-religionist kissing the cross that the Mongols “will not shed your blood”.


Sculptural composition "Captive Mstislav", tin


The Mongols didn’t really shed the blood of the Russian princes: the annals claim that they, having put the bound captives on the ground, laid on top of the boards on which they arranged a feast in honor of the victory.

Eastern sources talk about the death of captured Russian princes a little differently.

It is alleged that Subedei sent for negotiations not Ploskin, but the former governor (wali) of the city of Khin Ablas (in Bulgarian sources he is called Ablas-Khin), who lured the Russian princes beyond the fortifications. Subaedeus allegedly asked them so that Russian soldiers could hear outside the fence: who should be executed for the death of his son - princes or their soldiers?

The princes cowardly replied that they were warriors, and Subaedey turned to their warriors:
“You heard that your beks betrayed you. Leave without fear, for I will execute them myself for treason to my soldiers, and I will let you go. ”


Then, when the bound princes were put under the wooden shields of the Kiev camp, he again turned to the surrendered soldiers:
“Your beks wanted you to be the first to land. So trample them into the land for this. ”


And the princes were crushed with their own feet by their own warriors.

Thinking, Subaeday said:
“Warriors who have killed their backs should not live.”


And he ordered to kill all the captured soldiers.

This story is more credible, since it was clearly written from the words of an eyewitness Mongol. And on the part of the Russian surviving eyewitnesses, this terrible and sad incident, as you understand, most likely did not happen.

Consequences of the Battle of Kalka


In total, in this battle and after it, according to various sources, from six to nine Russian princes died, a lot of boyars and about 90% of ordinary soldiers.

Accurately documented the death of six princes. This is the Kiev prince Mstislav the Old; Chernigov prince Mstislav Svyatoslavich; Alexander Glebovich from Dubrovitsy; Izyaslav Ingvarevich from Dorogobuzh; Svyatoslav Yaroslavich from Janowice; Andrey Ivanovich from Turov.

The defeat was truly terrible, and in Russia made an incredibly difficult impression. Epics were even created that stated that it was on Kalka that the last Russian heroes died.

Since the Kiev prince Mstislav Stary was a figure that suited many, his death provoked a new round of strife, and the years that passed from Kalka to the Western campaign of the Mongols in Russia were not used by the Russian princes to prepare to repel the invasion.

The return of the army of Subudey and Jabe


Having won the battle on Kalka, the Mongols did not go to ruin the remaining defenseless Russia, and finally moved east. And therefore, we can safely say that this battle was unnecessary and optional for them, the Mongol invasion of Russia in the 1223 year could not be feared. The Russian princes were either misled by the Polovtsy and Mstislav Galitsky, or they decided to take the prey they had stolen during the campaign from the strangers.

But the Mongols did not go to the Caspian Sea, as one might suppose, but to the lands of the Bulgars. Why? Some suggest that the Saxin tribe, having learned about the approach of the Mongols, set fire to the grass, which caused the corps of Subaedey and Jebe to turn to the north. But, firstly, this tribe wandered between the Volga and the Urals, and the Mongols simply could not find out about the fire it had set up before they approached the lower Volga, and secondly, the time for the steppe fire was inappropriate. The steppe burns when dry grass prevails in it: last spring, after the snow melts, last year’s grass burns, in the fall, this year’s grass has dried. The directories state that "during the period of intensive vegetation, steppe fires practically do not occur." The Battle of Kalka, as we recall, took place on May 31. Here is what the Khomutov steppe (Donetsk region) looks like in June: there’s nothing to burn in it.


Chomutov steppe in June


So, the Mongols are again looking for opponents, stubbornly go to the Bulgars. For some reason, Subaday and Jebe do not consider their mission to be fully accomplished. But they have already accomplished the almost impossible, and the English historian S. Walker will later compare their campaign along the path traveled and these battles with the campaigns of Alexander the Great and Hannibal, claiming that they surpassed both of them. Napoleon will write about Subaedey's great contribution to military art. What else do they need? They decided alone, with such insignificant forces, to defeat absolutely all the states of Eastern Europe? Or do we not know something?

What is the result? At the end of 1223 or the beginning of 1224, the Mongol army weary of the campaign was ambushed and defeated. The name Jebe is no longer found in historical sources, it is believed that he died in battle. The great commander Subedai was seriously wounded, he lost one eye and will remain lame for the rest of his life. According to some reports, there were so many captured Mongols, the victorious Bulgars exchanged them for rams at a one-to-one rate. Only 4 thousands of soldiers break into Desht-i-Kipchak.

How should meet the same Sub-Bedey Genghis Khan? Put yourself in his place: you send two generals at the head of 20 or 30 of thousands of selected horsemen in search of the head of a hostile state. They do not find the old Khorezmshah, they miss the new one, and they themselves disappear for three years. They appear where it is not necessary, they fight with someone, gain unnecessary victories that lead to nothing. There are also no plans for war with the Russians, but they demonstrate to the probable adversary the possibilities of the Mongolian army, making you think and, possibly, prompt you to take measures to repel subsequent aggression. And, finally, they are ruining their army - not some steppe rabble, but the invincible heroes from Onon and Kerulen, throwing them into battle in the most adverse conditions. If Subedei and Jabe acted arbitrarily, "at their own peril and risk," the conqueror's anger must be very great. But Subaedey escapes punishment. But the relationship between Genghis Khan and his eldest son, Jochi, is deteriorating sharply.

Jochi and Genghis Khan


Jochi is considered the eldest son of the great conqueror, but probably his real father was an unnamed Merkit, whose wife or concubine Borte became during her captivity. Genghis, who loved Borte, and understood his guilt (he shamefully fled during the Merkit raid, leaving his wife, mother, and brothers to their own devices) recognized Jochi as his son. But the illegitimate origin of his first-born was no secret to anyone, and Chagatay openly reproached his brother with Merkit origin - because of his position, he could afford it. Others were silent, but they knew everything. Genghis Khan, it seems, did not like Dzhuchi, and therefore allocated the ravaged Khorezm, the sparsely populated steppe in the territory of present-day Kazakhstan and the uninhabited lands of the West, to which he had to go with a detachment of 4 of thousands of Mongols and soldiers of the peoples of the conquered countries.

Rashid ad-Din in the “Collection of Chronicles” hints that Jochi violated Genghis’s order, having at first avoided helping the corps of Sub-Jedi and Jebe, and then, after their defeat, from a punitive expedition against the Bulgars.
“Go to the lands where Subudai-bahtatur and Jebe Noyon have been, take all the winterings and summers. Destroy the Bulgar and Polovtsian ",
- Genghis Khan writes to him, Jochi does not even answer.

And in 1224, under the pretext of illness, Jochi refused to come to Kurultai - apparently, he did not expect anything good from a meeting with his father.

Many authors of those years speak of the strained relations of Jochi and Genghis Khan. The 13th-century Persian historian Ad-Giuzjani states:
“Tushi (Jochi) said to his close associates:“ Genghis Khan has gone mad that he is destroying so many people and destroying so many kingdoms. It seems to me the most expedient to kill his father on the hunt, get close to Sultan Muhammad, bring this state into a flourishing state and render assistance Muslims. " His brother Chaghatai found out about this plan and informed his father about this traitorous plan and intention of his brother. Upon learning, Genghis Khan sent his confidants to poison and kill the carcasses. "


The Genealogy of the Turks states that Jochi died 6 months before the death of Genghis Khan - in 1227. But Jamal al-Qarshi claims that this happened before:
"The carcass died before his father - in the 622 / 1225 year."


This date is considered by historians more reliable, since in 1224 or 1225 the angry Genghis Khan was going to go to war against Jochi, and, as they say, only the death of his son stopped this campaign. It is unlikely that Genghis Khan delayed the war against the son who had shown rebellion for two years.

According to the official version cited by Rashid ad-Din, Jochi died of the disease. But even contemporaries did not believe in this, claiming that the cause of his death was poison. At the time of the death of Jochi was about 40 years.

In 1946, Soviet archaeologists in the Karaganda region of Kazakhstan (in the Alatau mountains, about 50 km north-east of Zhezkagan) in the mausoleum, where, according to legend, Jochi was buried, a skeleton without a right hand with a cut skull was discovered. If this body really belongs to Jochi, we can conclude that the envoys of Genghis Khan did not really hope for poison.


The alleged mausoleum of Juchi Khan is a 13th-century architectural monument located in the Ulytau district of the Karaganda region at 50 km northeast of Zhezkazgan


Perhaps, having appeared in the Volga steppes in June 1223, Subaedey and Jabe established contact with the Metropolis and received instructions on further actions. That is why they so long and slowly moved to the lands of the Bulgars: they could have been there already in the middle of summer, and they came only at the end of the 1223 of the year or at the beginning of the 1224. Expected to meet the reinforcements sent to them by Jochi, or his blow to the rear of the Bulgarians? This could be the beginning of the Western campaign of the Mongols.

But why did not the first-born of Genghis come to the aid of the commanders of his father?

According to one version, he was a “steppe paladin”, and did not want to lead his troops to the conquest of forest kingdoms uninteresting to him and obscure alien peoples. The same Al-Giuzjani wrote that when the carcasses (Jochi)
"Saw the air and water of the Kipchak land, he found that all over the world there can be no land more pleasant than this, air is better than this, water is sweeter than this, meadows and pastures are more extensive than these."


Perhaps it was Desht-i-Kipchak that he wanted to become the lord of.

According to another version, Jochi did not like Subadei and Jebe, who were people of a different generation - associates of the unloved father, commanders of the old, Genghis "school", and did not approve of their methods of war. And therefore, deliberately did not go towards them, sincerely wishing them death.

In this case, if Jochi survived Genghis Khan, perhaps his campaign to the West was of a different nature.

In any case, this great campaign "to the last sea" would take place. But in 1223, the Mongols did not have plans for a war with the Russian principalities. The battle of Kalka was an unnecessary, useless and even harmful battle for them, because it showed their strength in it, and it was not their "fault" that the Russian princes, occupied with their strife, ignored such a serious and formidable warning.

The killing of the ambassadors was not forgotten either by the Mongols, or, moreover, by the loss of their son Subedai, and this probably influenced the course of subsequent Mongolian military campaigns on the territory of Russia.

Some oddities of the initial stage of the war between the Mongols and the Russian principalities will be discussed in the next article.
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