Five interesting facts about Genghis Khan — in celebration of the publishing of my short story “Retro-Casuality or the Allergy of Genghis Khan”

Did you know that despite his infamy the cause of death and final resting place of 13th-century conqueror and imperial ruler Genghis Khan are both unknown? In my short story “Retro-Casuality or the Allergy of Genghis Khan,” a dystopian super hero tale recently published in Inaccurate Realities, I propose a solution to the mysterious death of Genghis Khan. Get your copy now in print or for the device of your choice. And now I offer five interesting facts about the Great Khan:

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His Name was “Blacksmith”

Until he was in his mid-40s, Genghis went by the name Temujin, which means “of iron” or “blacksmith.” He wasn’t called Genghis Kahn until he was declared leader of the Mongols in 1206. While “Khan” is a traditional title meaning “leader” or “ruler,” historians are still unclear on the origins of “Genghis.”

No One Knows What Genghis Khan Looked Like

No portraits or sculptures of Genghis Khan made during his lifetime survive. Descriptions of his appearance contradict. While many accounts depict him as tall and a mane of hair and bushy beard, a 14th century Persian historian named Rashid al-Din claimed Genghis had red hair and green eyes.

The Size of the Empire

Between 1206 and his death in 1227, Genghis Khan conquered more territory than any individual in known history –almost 12 million square miles. With that said, the Mongols’ brutal attacks may have reduced the entire world population by as much as 11 percent.

Religious Tolerance

Genghis Khan passed unprecedented laws declaring religious freedom for everyone in the empire. He often met with religious leaders to discuss the details of their faiths.

The Mysterious Death of Genghis Khan

Genghis Khan died in 1227, but little else about his death is known. One legend has Genghis on his deathbed ordering his final resting place be kept secret. As mourners traveled to the gravesite, hundreds soldiers were to slaughter anyone they encountered on the way. Then, after the funeral ceremony, thousands of invited guests were to be slain, along with sacrificial virgins and horses. Finally, the soldiers were to kill each other and themselves. Talk about keeping a secret…

John Herman



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