Keeping the nomadic element of the Mongol and Bedouin societies in mind, how, in your opinion, did their respective historical experiences differ? What explanations would you suggest account for these differences?
Bedouin lived in the dry desert region. On the other hand, Mongols were nomadic tribes of the steppes, which was a beautiful region. Bedouin obtained water and fodder for their animals at oasis in desert. They used mainly date as their food. They had to wonder in search of fodder. Camel was their main animal. On the other hand, nomadic Mongols had large green pastures. There was no storage of water because rivers like Onon and Selenga flowed in their region. In the steppe region, there were also hundreds of springs from the melting snow of hills. Bedouin were not hunter gathers. They were mainly cattle bearers. But many Mongols tribes were hunters-gathers. Trade was their main occupation.
Reason of Differences- the main reason for differences in Nomadic characteristics of Mongols and Bedouins were landscape and other geographical conditions of their country.
‘If history relies upon written records produced by city-based literati, nomadic societies will always receive a hostile representation.’
Would you agree with this statement? Does it explain the reason why Persian chronicles produced such inflated figures of casualties resulting from Mongol campaigns?
How does the following account enlarge upon the character of the Pax Mongolica created by the Mongols by the middle of the thirteenth century?
The Franciscan monk, William of Rubruck, was sent by Louis IX of France on an embassy to the great Khan Mongke’s court. He reached
Karakorum, the capital of Mongke, in 1254 and came upon a woman from Lorraine (in France) called Paquette, who had been brought from Hungary and was in the service of one of the prince’s wives who was a Nestorian Christian. At the court he came across a Parisian goldsmith named Guillaume Boucher, ‘whose brother dwelt on the Grand Pont in Paris’. This man was first employed by the Queen Sorghaqtani and then by Mongke’s younger brother. Rubruck found that at the great court festivals the Nestorian priests were admitted first, with their regalia, to bless the Grand Khan’s cup, and were followed by the Muslim clergy and Buddhist and Taoist monks…