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11 Great Facts about Genghis Khan

Genghis Khan is one of the most infamous names of all time, and with good reason. Known for being a domineering, cruel, and downright terrifying warrior, his legacy was one of horror and pain. But how much do you actually know about the once very powerful man? Here are some gruesome but still fairly fun facts about Genghis Khan.

1. Genghis Khan wasn’t his real name!

Although we all know the name Genghis Khan, it was not actually the one he was born with. In fact, originally, he was called Temüjin. He was born in 1162 in the Mongolian steppes.

2. His name has an important meaning.

The name Genghis Khan wasn’t randomly chosen, though. “Genghis Khan” actually means “Universal Ruler” or “Oceanic Leader” in the Mongolian language.

3. He was a keen military strategist.

One thing no one can deny about Genghis Khan is that he was a brilliant military strategist known for his innovative tactics, organization of the Mongol army, and use of psychological warfare. He even succeeded in uniting the disparate Mongol tribes under his leadership in the early 13th century.


Ghengis Khan Fact
Ghengis Khan Portrait

4. He changed the Mongol Empire for good.

Under Genghis Khan, the empire of Mongolia grew to become the largest of any land empire in the history of the planet – stretching all the way from Asia, Khan’s homeland, to Eastern Europe!

5. He created the Yassa Code.

Genghis Khan created the Yassa Code, a set of laws that governed various aspects of Mongol life, including military discipline and criminal justice. However, he was also known for his religious tolerance, allowing freedom of religion within the empire. Don’t assume the man was cruel all of the time – many people enjoyed fighting and living under his leadership.

6. He started the meritocracy.

Quite ahead of his time in this sense, Genghis Khan implemented a merit-based system for selecting military officers and leaders. Individuals were to be promoted based on their abilities rather than noble lineage.

7. He implemented population control, too.

He also implemented policies to control population growth. He encouraged fertility among the Mongols while limiting the population of conquered peoples.

8. He died a mysterious death, however.

Genghis Khan died in 1227. However, the exact circumstances of his death remain a historical mystery. Some believe that he fell from his horse in battle, others suggest he was assassinated, but no one truly knows. If you believe the stuff of legend, he went out fighting – but who’s to really say?

9. His empire was divided after he died.

Following his death, Genghis Khan’s empire was divided among his four sons. The eldest son, Jochi, received the western part, which later became the Golden Horde.

interesting facts about Ghengis Khan

10. He had a massive influence on Chinese culture.

Part of Khan’s legacy definitely became evident in Chinese culture. This was largely due to the fact that his grandson Kublai Khan became the first non-Chinese ruler of all of China during the Yuan Dynasty.

11. He had a long lineage.

Studies have found that Genghis Khan’s genetic legacy is widespread. In fact, a significant portion of the modern Mongolian population and certain other groups sharing a common Y-chromosomal lineage traced all the way back to him!

amazing facts about Ghengis Khan

FAQs about Genghis Khan

What is Genghis Khan famous for?

Genghis Khan was most famous for creating the largest land empire in history. He was also known for having many children, leaving a widespread legacy, and his influence across multiple cultures. He was also seen as one of the cruelest conquerors of all time.

How many have Genghis Khan’s DNA today?

It would be very difficult to ascertain just how many descendants Genghis Khan has today, however, it is believed that about 16 million people alive today have shared DNA with Genghis Khan.

How many children did Genghis Khan have?

The exact number of children Genghis Khan had is unknown. Historians believe that he could have had hundreds of children in total! However, he did have between eight and ten children with his primary wife.

Further reading:

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This page was last modified on December 14, 2023. Suggest an edit