The Mongols were a vast and powerful empire that thrived off of conquest and the conquering of other societies. While they took over vastly different kinds of cultures and government systems, they always used the same strategy and tactic. They were primarily focused on economic gain, power, and striking fear into their enemies and the rest of the world in a way that was convenient for them. The Mongols invaded China and Russia with that in mind, and because of this they had a similar effect on both societies. The Mongols made a few political reforms in both societies, but they focused on gaining control of the economy.
Both China and Russia were affected economically by the Mongol rule, by clever planning and conquest. The Mongols didn’t think that Russia had much to offer, because of it’s location. They did see potential for economic gain in the steepes they used for farming, and they placed heavy taxation on the goods sold in villages and towns. This is similar to how the Mongols took control of the Silk Road in China. The Mongol Empire took advantage of what was already a part of the society they took over for their gain.
They were particularly gifted at adapting to environments and cultures that were foreign to them, and gaining from their culture. Both China and Russia had political reforms and shifts in central power after the Mongols invaded. They came into their societies and destroyed all of the large cities and areas of high population in both societies. This is because of the consistent conquering strategy of the Mongols. The Mongols adapted to China by giving themselves the Chinese name “The Yaun. ” They adapted a lot of Chinese culture, as did the Mongols with Russia.
While the Russians retained the Orthodox Church after the Mongols invaded, the Chinese retained classical Confucian principles as part of their lives. Despite the positive economic impact of enforcing taxes, the Mongols impact on China wasn’t all positive. Because trade increased so much through the Silk Road, a plague carried by rodents began to spread, called the Bubonic Plague. It ended up killing over 75 million people, and wiped out ? of Europe’s population. The effects of the Mongols on Russia weren’t all positive either. The population of Russia decreased significantly due to he amount of slaughter and fighting during the Mongol invasion. Several cities tried to resist the Mongols, and because of this, there were several bloody battles. The Mongols had a positive impact on China and Russia economically due to the Silk Road and heavy taxation, but they didn’t alter either society significantly politically. While both societies prospered for quite a while after Mongol rule, the bubonic plague left both countries hindered with death and anguish. The conquest of Russia and China turned out to be nullifying for both societies when looking at the grand scheme of world history.