The Enthronement of Munga [Mongke] Khan and The Capture of Baghdad

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The Enthronement of Munga [Mongke] Khan.

Now when BATU, the son of TUSHI, the son of CHINGIZ KHAN, moved from his camp which was in the country of the SAKSIN and BULGARIANS to go to see GHOYUK KHAN, and he came to the place which is called AL-‘AKMAK, in the neighbourhood of the city of KAYALIGH, the report of the death of GHOYUK KHAN reached him. Therefore he remained where he was. And he sent ambassadors to all the sons of the kings, and collected them near him. Those who were unable to come sent letters and said, ‘BATU is the greatest [prince] of us all. And we will approve of whatsoever he doeth and accept it.’ And at the beginning the sons of GHOYUK KHAN, together with the queen their mother, whose name was ‘AOJUL GHANMISH KHATUN, came to BATU, and they only remained two days. And they left and departed, leaving behind TIMOR NAWIN, to whom they said, ‘When the sons of the kings, great and small, are gathered together, to whatsoever they agree, do thou also agree on our behalf. And when the whole collection [of princes] was complete, they all committed the selection [of the Khan] to BATU, saying, ‘If he himself wisheth to be [Khan], let him be [Khan]; and if he doth not, then we all will be subject unto whomsoever he choseth’. [488] Then BATU said, ‘With the exception of MUNGA I cannot see any man of us who is capable of ruling rightly a great kingdom like this’; and they all said, ‘He is worthy and suitable’. And when MUNGA, like a wise man, exhibited signs of excusing himself, they took him by force and seated him on the throne, And BATU, together with all the other princes, knelt down on their knees and did homage to him. And BATU took the cup according to custom and made him drink.

And the kingdom being assured to him in the year six hundred and forty-nine of the ARABS (A.D. 1251), on the ninth day of the fourth month, the all-wise and believing queen, SARKUTANI BAGI, the mother of MUNGA KHAN, began to make friends of all the chiefs and nobles by means of liberal gifts and presents, and to bring into subjection the rebels through promises of good treatment. And whilst they were awaiting the coming of the sons of GHOYUK KHAN and of his mother ‘AOJUL JANMISH, a certain man who was one of those who train lions for the amusement of princes came and said, ‘When I was out hunting for a certain lion to kill, I went a journey of three days in search of him. And I came to the houses (i.e. tents) of the sons of GHOYUK KHAN, who were coming here. And I saw a chariot which had broken down, and a young man was sitting by the side of and repairing it, and he called me to help him. And when I came near the chariot I saw that it was armoured and that it was filled with weapons of war. And I asked the young man, saying, “What are these?” And he said unto me in a surprised fashion, “Seeing that thou art of our party, how is it that thou knowest not what these things are? All the chariots which are with us are like this.” And having left him I have come to inform you; now ye will know [what must be done].’

Then MUNGA KHAN sent a chief whose name was MANGASAR, with two thousand horsemen, to meet the sons of GHOYUK KHAN. And he said unto them, ‘Before ye [deal] with little men it is right that ye should come to MUNGA KHAN and see him; and then let your armies come’. And being unable to reply with hard words they did so. And when they came, after they had eaten, and drunk, and rested for three days, MUNGA KHAN revealed the matter unto them; and they were ashamed, and were unable to make any apology whatsoever. Then he commanded, and they killed all those nobles who were participators in the treachery, [489] having departed from ‘AILJIKATAI NAWIN whom GHOYUK KHAN had made ruler of the west. And all the others who were with him they cast down on the ground. And he sent and had KADAK NAWIN brought upon a chariot (or, wagon), and after he had confessed his sin he was killed in an agonizing manner. And so also was it the case with the wife of GHOYUK KHAN, for having passed judgement upon her they killed her. Her sons, however, he did not kill because of the honour of the royal succession, but he commanded that they should dwell each in his specially appointed place together with a few men to minister unto them. And thus was the kingdom established (or, founded) for MUNGA. He committed to his brother KUBLAI the countries of the CHINESE, that is to say, the KHATAYE; and he sent another brother, that is HULABU, to the countries of the west; and the younger brother whose name was ‘ARIGH BOKA he kept near him.

And he laid down the Law far the countries of the KHATAYE:

Every rich man was to pay a tribute each year of fifteen dinars in gold, and the poor man one dinar. And for the territory of the PERSIANS: Every rich man [was to pay each year] ten dinars, and the poor man one dinar.

And concerning the beasts and cattle he commanded:

From every hundred head of cattle one head was to be taken, and from the man who had less than one hundred head nothing was to be taken.

And he granted to all prisoners and captives freedom from afflictions.

And he commanded that heathen (?) priests, and the Christian priests, and deacons, and monks, and the learned men and scribes of the Muslims should be free from taxation; and among all the peoples the JEWS only were to be deprived of this benefit, and a certain poet of that period said :

In this freedom for thee, O Jew, there is no portion.

With the exception of disgrace, O wretched man, there is for thee

no companion.

And in this year, which is the year fifteen hundred and sixty-two of the GREEKS (A.D. 1251), dissension fell among the Turkish slaves in EGYPT. And some of them sent to MALIK AN-NASIR whilst he was reigning in DAMASCUS, and pressed him to go to EGYPT, [promising that] they would deliver it over to him. And he collected a numerous army, and he went to GAZA that he might go into EGYPT and reign over it. And when the TURKS who had no liking for him heard [this], they collected their troops. And they brought out also a multitude of FRANKS who were imprisoned with them, and they set them on horses. And they came and engaged MALIK AN-NASlR by the side of [490] GAZA, and they broke him badly, and only with the greatest difficulty did he and some men, very few in number, escape and come as fugitives to DAMASCUS.

And in this year, in the LATTER KANON (JANUARY), died ZABIL (ISABEL?), the believing queen, the daughter of LION the Great. She was the consort of king HAITUM, the son of CONSTANTINE, and the mother of king LION (II) the Less of CILICIA. Now the goodness of this woman, and her charitableness, and her humility no man can describe [adequately]. For she used to go about barefooted in the nunneries and the churches, and however long she stood up in prayer she never ceased to weep. May God give her rest with the other holy women!

And at the return of the year, that is to say the year fifteen hundred and sixty-three of the GREEKS (A.D. 1252), HAITUM, king of CILIClA, went to do service to MUNGA KHAN the Great. He partook of the Lifegiving Mysteries on the fifth day [of the week], and he marched away on the Friday of the Crucifixion. And because he was afraid that the nobles of BETH RHOMAYE would smite him in treachery, he made a report to go out that he was sending an ambassador on in advance to the Khan, and that when he received the command [i.e. permit to travel] he would set out. And he also wrote letters to the lord of BETH RHOMAYE with this same object. And he himself went forth with this ambassador, and he was disguised in the dress of servants and he was leading a horse; now he was dressed in filthy rags, and he rode upon a most wretched beast. And he passed through all the cities of BETH RHOMAYE, and no man knew him, but in ‘ARZENGAN a man in the bazar recognized him, and said, ‘This is king HAITUM’. And when the ambassador heard [this] he turned round to the king as he was leading the horse, and he smote him on his cheek and reviled him, and said, ‘Yea, O fool, here thou wouldst be a king, and they would liken thee to a king!’ And thus [the man’s] suspicion was removed. And the king continued to wear the garb of peasants (or, husbandmen) until he came to the frontier of the IBERIANS, and then he revealed himself. At this period he lived outside his country for nearly three years and a half, and then he returned.

And in this year, which is the year six hundred and fifty of the ARABS (A.D. 1252), after the ‘KURILTAI’, that is to say, the ‘Great Assembly’, HULABU, the brother of MUNGA KHAN, struck his camp to come to these western countries, which are without in the territory of ‘AILJIKATAI, who GHOYUK KHAN [491] sent. Then MUNGA KHAN commanded that from all the armies of the east and of the west, out of every ten persons two persons should go [to fight]. And among the sons of the kings he sent with him a young brother of his own whose name was SABATAI (SUNTAI? STAI?) ‘AOGHUL, and from the side of BATU BULGHAI, the son of SIBAKAN, and KUTAR, ‘AOGHOL, and KULI together with many troops. And from the country (or, quarter) of JAGHATAI TAKODAR his grandson; and from the side of SHISHKAN (JIJKAN?) BAGI, the sister of the Khan, and BOKA TIMOR with an ‘AWIRATHAIN army. And from the countries of KHATA they brought one thousand houses (companies?) of men who were skilled in the working of engines of war and in throwing naphtha. And KIT BOKA, who was the chief of the bakery, was sent on in advance of the troops. And HULABU left SHUMAGAR (JUMAGAR?), his son by the Great Queen, together with his mother, in his place in the service of MUNGA KHAN. And this same son, after some time, having risen up to come out to his father, died on the road; And he took with him from among his other sons his eldest son whose name was ‘ABKA (‘ABAKA?), and his other son whose name was ‘ASHMUT (BASHMUT?). And of the wives of TULI KHAN their father, DAKUZ (TOKUZ?) KHATUN, the truly believing and Christian queen. She had been given to HULABU to wife, according to the custom of the MONGOLS, and she came with him. And she raised on high the horn of the Christians in all the earth.

Now they remained on the road until the year six hundred and fifty-three of the ARABS (A.D. 1255), and then they came to PERSIA. And in this year, in the month of TAMMUZ (JULY), suddenly an army of the TATARS burst forth, and came against MELITENE; at their head stood YASAWUR, who had come there eight years previously. And he spoiled villages and hamlets, and he burned houses and store-houses (or, granaries), and he killed every one who was found on his road; and he pitched his camp on the northern side [of the city].

And certain of the TATARS, as they were passing through the country of GHUBUS, [492] went up to the Monastery of MAKRUNA and demanded gold. and meat, and drink, from the monks. And they, poor miserabJe wretches, in their simplicity would not consent to give them anything, and they thought that they would probably go on their way. And they did go away, but they took many other TATARS and then came back. And again they asked the monks to give them something. And when they would not be persuaded, the MONGOLS made war on them. And they set fire to the tower of the monastery wherein were many loads of ‘amar kubha, and wax, and a large quantity of oil, which became food for the flame. And they burned all the monks, both young and old, about three hundred souls, and men and women, who were natives of the country.

In that year the writer of these things was the Bishop of GHOBOS, who was prescnt in the Monastery of MAR BAR SAWMA at the Synod of the election of MAR DIONYSIUS the Patriarch, who is ‘ANGUR, And no man was present with him there except two disciples, viz. FARAJ, a native of DOMNINAYA, and KAWMA, a lay brother (?) of LUAZNAYA. FARAJ cast himself down from the tower to the TATARS, and they did him no harm, but after a little he died ; and KAWMA was burned in the fire. And ‘AHRON the physician, an old man, the father of the bishop in the village of MARGA, was present in the granary with BAR SAWMA, his little son. And when the TATARS burst forth he did not wish to flee to the monastery with the rest of the people of that village, but he climbed the mountain on the other side, and he went and hid in a strong and rocky place on the banks of the EUPHRATES. And he remained there in hiding with his little son for a period of about forty days–until the TATARS departed, and only one mule was drowned by them in the river. Now there were other fugitives in the place which is called BAR’AMA, and they used to go forth in the night, and prepare food for themseJves and their beasts.

And in the year six hundred and forty-seven of the ARABS (A.D. 1249), BADR AD-DIN LULU, the lord of MAWSIL, reigned over GAZARTA, a city of KARDU, for the following reason: when MALIK MU’TAM, the lord of GAZARTA, who was descended from the sons of ‘ATABAG ZANGI, saw that BADR AD-DIN had waxed strong, and was possessed of an army which could injure or help, he wished to make a friendship with him, and he took the daughter of BADR AD-DIN to wife for his son [493] MALIK MAS’UD. And, in accordance with the operation of SATAN, MUS’AD hated the daughter of BADR AD-DIN with all his heart. And MU’ATAM, his father, admonished him strictly that he should not make apparent his hatred of her, but he was unable [to hide it]. And when the daughter began to set herself against BADR AD-DIN, her father, he sent and took her. And after a little MU’ATAM died, and MALIK MAS’UD, his son, rose up in his place. And BADR AD-DIN began to harass him with demands to so great an extent that he sent and said unto him, ‘I want such and such a stone which is in the necklace of such and such a hand-maiden by name, and such and such a thing of so-and-so’. And giving him everything, at length he sent to him, saying, ‘Didst thou truly sell GAZARTA when we were encamped against NISIBIS?’ And MAS’UD sent to him, saying, ‘I have taken every thing from thee; even if I would give thee my kingdom, I cannot do so’.

Therefore BADR AD-DIN collected his troops, and he went and encamped against GAZARTA, on the third day [of the week], on the twenty-fourth day of the sixth month of the aforesaid year, in the days of NISAN (APRIL), and he afflicted it with war. And MAS’UD sent and demanded a pledge [of safety] for his life. And BADR AD-DIN promised to give him the fortress which is called PARAH, [saying] that he must take his family and his wives and depart thither. And MAS’UD consented and he removed the guards and men of war from it.

And BADR AD-DIN sent one of his eunuchs, and he cast iron fetters on him, and brought him out by night from GAZARTA and seated him in a boat, pretending that he was scnding him to MAWSIL. And he commanded the sailors and the slaves whom he had placed with him to drown him in the TIGRIS, and then to leave [the boat] and to flee to SYRIA. And they were to send forth a report that MAS’UD had cast himself into the river and was drowned, and ‘we are afraid that our lord BADR AD-DIN will destroy us because were negligent in respect of him, and because he did this to himself’. And having taken him they went down to sail on the TIGRIS and did as they had been commanded, and they fled to SYRIA, and spread abroad the above report, and after a year they went back again to MAWSIL. Then BADR AD-DIN went to GAZARTA and took possession of it on Friday the eleventh day of the seventh month of the above-mentioned year. This city is not one of those builded by the GREEKS, but the MA’DAYE people (i.e. nomad ARABS) who are called the ‘Sons of ‘OMAR’ built it, [494] and is therefore called by their name.

At this time, when certain merchants were crossing the great river of PERSIA which is called ‘GIHON’, there was with them a poor man who was wearing such apparel as Fakirs wear. This man said to the boatman, ‘I, even I, am Sultan JALAL AD-DIN KHAWARAZM SHAH, concerning whom they say that the KURDS killed me in the mountains of ‘AMID. Now, it was not I, but the keeper of my apparel who was killed, and behold, for a number of years I have been going round about in the world secretly (i.e. in disguise) and enjoying myself.’ Then the sailors being afraid took him and carried him to the nobles of the MONGOLS who were near. And they tortured him very severely, and he did not deny [what he had said], but up to the moment when he died he continued to say ‘I am he’ (i.e. I am JALAL AD-DIN).

And in the year fifteen hundred and sixty-five of the GREEKS (A.D. 1254) ambassadors began to come at frequent intervals with the request to Sultan ‘IZZ AD-DIN of ICONIUM that he would go in person and do service to the great Khan (i.e. acknowledge his overlordship), for if he did not the [Mongol] troops would invade his country and lay it waste. And being pressed to go by those inside and those outside, he came by force as far as SEBASTIA, when he gave himself up to a life of riotous luxury and to the gratification of lusts of various kinds. For wherever he heard [about] a wife, or a daughter, or a son of any of the nobles or of the people generally, he took them by force and debauched them. Therefore the nobles hated him, and they wished that his intermediate brother, that is to say RUKN AD-DIN, could reign over them. And when ‘IZZ AD-DIN heard [this], he was afraid, and he returned again to ICONIUM, and he made ready his young brother, that is to say ‘ALA AD-DIN, and sent him to pay homage to the Khan. And he wrote [and sent] with him a letter, saying, ‘Behold, I have sent my young brother, that is ‘ALA AD-DIN, who is a Sultan like myself, and it hath not been possible for me to come because JALAL AD-DIN KARATAI, my ‘Atabag, is dead, and an enemy from the west hath stirred himself up against me. Assuredly I will come at another time.’

And the young brother having gone, and the nobles who were with him, he died on the road through the treachery of those nobles. And ‘IZZ AD-DIN and RUKN AD-DIN remained in ICONIUM. And when ‘IZZ AD-DIN heard of tbe death of his young brother, he wished to take and destroy the intermediate brother; so that he alone might be left. And when the nobles perceived this they made RUKN AD-DIN to take to flight. It is said [495] that they dressed him in a dirty tunic [such as is worn by] the servants of cooks, and that having loaded on his head a tray of boiled meat, they took him out by night from the palace and set him upon a horse. And they brought him to CAESAREA in one night, and seated him upon the throne, and a multitude of his troops gathered together about him. And RUKN AD-DIN took them and came to do battle with his brother ‘IZZ AD-DIN. And ‘IZZ AD-DIN sallied forth and engaged him in battle, and again he broke him, and he took him prisoner and shut him up in the fortress which is called DAWALU.

And in the year fifteen hundred and sixty-six of the GREEKS, which is the year six hundred and fifty-three of the ARABS (A.D. 1255), ‘ALA AD-DIN, the head of the ISHMAELITES, was killed in the fortress which is called ‘SHIR KUH’, that is, ‘Mountain of the Lion’, and RUKN AD-DIN, his son, rose up after him. And HULABU sent and said to him, ‘If thine aim is straight towards us, and thou desirest friendship and peace, destroy all thy fortresses, and do thou come to us in person; and if not prepare thyself for war’. Then quickly RUKN AD-DIN sent and destroyed five fortresses in which there were no stores (or, provisions) and which would not have been able to resist the TATARS. And he sent a reply to HULABO saying, ‘Behold I have fulfilled thy command in part, and little by little I will pull down the rest of the fortresses’. Now HULABU knew well that in his craftiness RUKN AD- DIN wished some days to pass (i.e. he wanted to gain time). Therefore he sent KID BUKA against the fortress which is called ‘SHAHDAIR’ (SHAHDIZ?), and he took it in two days, and three other fortresses which were round about it.

Then RUKN AD-DIN took a son of one of the poor men, and he dressed him in royal apparel, and sent him to the king as a hostage. Now although HULABU knew that he was a liar-son (i.e. pseudo-son) of RUKN AD-DIN, he did not show that he knew it, but he sent him back with honour, and he said, ‘It was thee for whom I asked, and not thy son’. And afterwards RUKN AD-DIN again sent, [this time] his real brother, whose name was SHIRAN SHAH, together with three hundred horsemen. And HULABU having taken the horsemen and sent them to KAZWIN, sent back RUKN AD-DIN’S brother to him, and said that he himself, RUKN AD-DIN, must come. And on the night of the Birth of the Redeemer, when RUKN AD-DIN rose up to come to the service, his slaves drew their daggers, and said, ‘If thou goest we will kill thee’. Then he sent and made the matter known to the King of Kings. And HULABU commanded him, saying, ‘Protect thyself against them, [496] and concoct a plan so that thou canst come to us, and thou shalt live, for they all are about to be destroyed with the edge of the sword’. And RUKN AD-DIN accepted the command.

And one night he came down, together with his sons and his household, and was received (or, welcomed) splendidly by the King of Kings, and he was sent to the city of KAZWIN with honour. As for the three hundred horsemen, the MONGOLS killed them secretly, and they also made themselves masters of the fortress from which RUKN AD-DIN had come down–now its name was ‘MAIMUNDUR’–and they destroyed it. Thus also did it happen to the strong fortress which is called ‘ALAMUTH’, and the fortress which is called ‘GERDKUH’, which is situated in the heart of the heavens. And the TATARS took fifty other fortresses which were round about it, and they laid them waste and pulled them down; and all those who were in them they killed. And by means of these blessed captures God had mercy on all and Christians who lived in terror and trembling through the fear of the ISHMAELITES who were carriers of daggers and were shedders of innocent blood.

Then when RUKN AD-DIN saw that the mercies of HULABU in respect of him were manifestly sincere, he said unto him with frank boldness, ‘The days in which I now live thou hast by thy goodness added to my life; therefore I beg of thee to permit me to pass them pleasantly’. And HULABU commanded the treasurers that a large amount of gold and slIver should be given to him. And having received it he began to eat, and to drink, and to enjoy himself. And he loved one of the daughters of the MONGOLS, and HULABU commanded and she was given to him to wife. And one day when he was drinking wine he spoke to a player on the lute, and he sang the following verse in the Persian language:

I have come to thee, sick man, as to the physician.

I have come to thee, O King of Kings, that I may obtain life by meeting

thee. I have come to thee that I may pluck the health-giving fruit of thy crop.

If it were not so, with what kind of merchandise could I have come to thy land?

And when HULABU heard these [lines] his words were very pleasing to him, and he was given over to affection in his eyes (i.e. HULABU felt affection for RUKN AD-DIN).

And subsequently RUKN AD-DIN asked for a Pukdana (i.e. command; or, permit; or, warrant) to go and see the face [497] of MUNGA KHAN; and HULABU appointed a messenger [to go] with him, and sent him [thither]. And whefi he was on the road he quarrelled with the messenger, and took such a hatred of him that when they arrived at the camp of MUNGA KHAN, the messenger calumniated him and he was killed. And the command went forth that all the seed of the ISHMAELITES, both males and females, shou1d perish wheresoever they were.

And in the year BASHU (BAJU ?) NAWIN, the captain of the soldiery of the TATARS, went forth towards ‘ARZAN AL-RUM. And he sent a messenger to Sultan ‘IZZ AD-DIN in the month of ‘AB (AUGUST) and asked him for a place wherein to pass the winter, because in MUJAN the country in which he usually passed the winter each year, HULABU, the King of Kings, the brother of MUNGA KHAN, wished to winter. And with BAJU came HAITUM from the service of the Great Khan, and he entered his own country on Friday, the first day of the month of ILUL (SEPTEMBER), and there was rejoicing for the Christians. Now the Sultan did not wish to give BAJU a place [to winter in], and he treated him with contempt, because he heard that another chief who was greater than he, or rather his lord, had driven him out of his country. Therefore he made ready for war with him. And when BAJU came the Sultan ‘IZZ AD-DIN met him in battle by the side of the store-house (or khan ?) of the Sultan, between ICONIUM and ‘AKSARA, and he was broken and fled to his inner countries which are on the frontier of NINEVEH. The captain of the host of BETH RHOMAYE was YAWTASH BAGLAR BAG, who was killed in this war. And BAJU NAWIN brought RUKN AD-DIN out of prison, and made him king over BETH RHOMAYE in the year fifteen hundred and sixty-seven of the GREEKS (A.D. 1256).

And ‘IZZ AD-DIN sent an ambassador from the place where he was to HULABU, and he laid a complaint against BAJU, saying that he ‘was alienating him from the kingdom and from the inheritance of his fathers’. And HULABU sent a ‘Yarlikh’, that is to say a Pukdana (i.e. royal decree), [saying] that the countries were to be divided between the two brothers. Therefore when the year fifteen hundred and sixty-eight of the GREEKS (A.D. 1257) began, ‘IZZ AD-DIN was restored, and he came to KUNYA (KONIA). And RUKN AD-DIN [went] with BAJU into winter quarters in the inner countries of BITHYNIA which were on the sea-coast, And because ‘IZZ AD-DIN was afraid of BAJU [498] he began to make ready an army. And he sent one of his slaves whose name was TUGHR HAPA (TUGHR BALABA?) towards MELITENE that he might make up an army [composed] of KURDS, MA’DAYE, and TURKOMANS. And when that slave had come, he went to the fortress of ZAID. And he sent and had brought [to him] two nobles of the KURDS; to the one, SHARAF AD-DIN ‘AHMAD, the son of BELAS, he gave MELITENE, and to the other, SHARAF AD-DIN MAHAMAD, the son of SHAIKH ‘ADI, he gave the fortress of ZAID.

Now when the son of BELAS had come he was not received by the people of MELITENE, because they had sworn fealty to RUKN AD-DIN, and he began to make war on the citizens. And they lived in tribulation because of him during the whole winter, and there was famine, for [the price of] one kepiza of wheat went up to one hundred and twenty coins of the Sultan. And when the people of MELlTENE could bear with him no longer, they rose up against the son of BELAS, and they killed about three hundred men of his followers. And he himself fled and passed over into the country of KLAUDYA, and he burnt the Monastery of MADIK, and the Monastery of MAR ‘ASYA on the first day of the week of Hosannas (Palm Sunday), on the first day of the month of NISAN (APRIL); and he wrought great destruction in the country and likewise in the country of GHUBOS. And from there he marched straight to ‘AMID, and there he was overtaken by the lord of MAIPERKAT and killed.

And the other slave, the son of SHAIKH ‘ADl, who was in the fortress of ZAID, having made the inhabitants of the fortress to endure many trials, took his wives (brothers?) and marched towards KAMAH in order to come to the help of ‘IZZ AD-DIN SULTAN, and there the troops of ‘ANGURAK NAWIN overtook him and killed him. Now when ‘IZZ AD-DIN SULTAN heard of the evil end which had befallen the KURDS who had come to help him, he sent the captain of his host to MELITENE. He was called ‘ALl BAHADUR, and was short in his stature, and of meagre proportions, but a strenuous fighter and one highly skilled in the questions (or, tactics) of war. When this man came the people of MELITENE welcomed him. From him came help for the citizens and the country, and the roads were open [again], and men were bringing wheat from everywhere. For at that time [499] the mountains, and hills, and valleys round about MELITENE were filled with the TURKOMANS and with the AGAGRAYE (or, ‘A’JAZAYE) who were pillaging everywhere. From one village alone in the country of HASEN MANSUR they took seven thousand bulls, and cows, and asses, and she-asses, and forty-five thousand sheep and goats. And they took also the Monasteries of MADIK, and MAR ‘ASYA, and MAR DIMAT, and they carried off from them a great mass of goods. And, ALI BAHADUR himself pursued [them] and expelled them from the country, and he caught their chief whose name was SHUTI (JUTI?) BAG, and shut him up in the fortress of MASARA.

And whilst the people of MELITENE were experiencing this opportune peace, BAJU and his armies sallied out from the inner country of BITHYNIA, and during the days of the month of NISAN (APRIL) they spread themselves about over the countries of GALATIA and CAPPADOCIA. And they began to make war on the fortresses so that they might hand them over to RUKN AD-DIN. And they came to the region of ‘ABLASTAIN, and they shed the blood of all the people who were in it, about seven thousand [souls], and they carried off the young men and maidens into captivity. And they arrived in MELITENE on the Sabbath of the full moon of the month of ILUL, (SEPTEMBER), and BAHADUR fled to GHAKHTAI. Then BAJU made the people of MELITENE swear oaths of fealty on behalf of RUKN AD-D IN, and he took from it a very large number of dinars. And he left in the city one of the slaves of RUKN AD-DIN whose name was FAKHR AD-DIN ‘AYAS, and he himself removed to the fortress of ZAID, because a command had come to him from the King I of Kings, HULABU, that he should come down in all haste to BAGHDAD.

And at the beginning of the year fifteen hundred and sixty-nine of the GREEKS (A.D. 1258), in the season of the autumn, BAJU NAWIN came to MAWSIL; and he did not harm that country much. For MALIK SALIH; the son of BADR AD-DIN, the lord of MAWSIL, had in those days just come from doing service of HULABU. And TURKAN, the daughter of JALAL AD-DIN KHAWARAZMSHAH, had been given to him to wife, and she was with him in the dress of the MONGOLS. Rightly did all the country folk flee to the city and hide themselves until BAJU had passed. Then, as soon as ever BAJU had crossed the EUPHRATES, ‘ALI BAHADUR turned and came to MELITENE. And the citizens, because they had sworn oaths of fealty to RUKN AD-DIN, and also because of their fear of [500] BAJU, shut the gates of the city in his face. And he collected an army of the ‘AGAGRAYE, and began to make war on it, and the city was in great tribulation through war and famine. A kapiza (i.e. an ass’s load) of salt in it [was sold] for four hundred white coins of the Sultan, and [a kapiza] of wheat for seventy. And when the peoples of the city could not endure hunger and imprisonment [any longer], they leaped up one night and opened the gates of the city, and they brought in BAHADUR and the ‘AGAGRAYE who were with him. And in the night he made the criers go up into the minarets of the mosques, and he cried peace to the ARABS and the Christians. And he encouraged them to fear not, for his charge was against the nobles and not the citizens.

And on the following morning he seized the slave of RUKN AD-DIN and shut him up, and he set SHEHAB ‘ARID upon the colt of an ass, and made him to ride through the city, and he held him up to ridicule and then killed him. And he tied a head of cotton on the neck of another man who was called MU’IN IGDISH (or, IGRISH) BASHI, and another head in the form of a dog, and he made him march round about through the city and then killed him. And in the same way he killed the Greek priest whose name was KALAWYAN, and his two brothers BASIL and MANIL (MANU’IL?), and his son KIRYAWRI, who were great lawyers. And together with these he also destroyed the three sons of SHEHAB ISAW, who were Kurdish Amirs. Then the killing ceased, and the city enjoyed a little peace. But the famine increased greatly after the gates of the city were opened, because the country had become an absolute desert, and nothing came in from any other place because of the TURKOMAN highway robbers. Many people sold their sons and their daughters to the ‘AGAGRAYE, and others soaked their old shoes in water, and boiled them and ate them. And a woman was found who had roasted her son, and when they charged her she swore that she had not roasted him alive, but only after he was dead. And some women were discovered with the body of a dead woman before them, and they were cutting off slices of her flesh and roasting them and eating them.

Now when BAHADUR knew that it was impossible for him to resist the [501] advance of the TATARS, he forsook the city and fled to the Sultan ‘IZZ AD-DIN, and with him were HUSAIN JOBAN, and BAR SAWMA, the son of ANDRIOS, who was subsequently killed by them on the road. And during this famine certain young men of the country of GHUBOS, who were Christians, rebelled in the GAZARTA of the village of ‘EBRA, and they sallied out and robbed and killed their brethren who were Christians, and they went in there and ate food.

At this time THEODORE, the son of KALAWYAN, the king of NINEVEH, fell sick in a city the name of which was NIPI. And when he felt that he was going to die, he called to him ARSENIUS the Patriarch, and committed to him the care and upbringing of KALAWYAN his son. For as yet he was small in stature (or, of tender age), and he was at that time under the direction of a certain general whose name was MICHAEL, and who was called ‘PALAIOLOGOS’. And because of this king THEODORE was afraid lest he would meditate rebellion and seize the kingdom with the hand of violence. Which thing actually took place. Therefore he commanded one of the generals whose name was GADINOS to go to THESSALONICA, where MICHAEL was living; and cast fetters of iron upon him and bring him to him. Now when GADINOS went he said unto MICHAEL, ‘I know that thou art going to be king, but submit thyself to fetters with cunning, and come with me to the king. And when he seeth thy submission he will release thee and magnify thee.’ And thus MICHAEL did, and he went to the king bound in fetters. And when the king saw that he was not complaining, he was gracious to him and released him, and made him a partner with the Patriarch in the management of the young man. And after a few days he departed this life. And MUZALON, his deputy, who was also the son-in-law of KIRA BALWINA, the sister of the king, took him and carried him to the Monastery of MAGNESIA, and he deposited him there in the grave of his fathers. And he tarried a few days in the monastery whilst he arranged affairs with his mother-in-law, who was the sister of the deceased king, so that he might become king, and destroy the nobles who would not consent to accept him.

And when [502] this plot was revealed to MICHAEL and the other nobles, they commanded the FRANKS who were their fellow soldiers to go up to the monastery, and to hack MUZALON in pieces with their swords, wheresoever he might be. And when they went up they found him in the church praying, and there they hacked him limb from limb. And the nobles also went up and they cried out with a loud voice, ‘May the king of the GREEKS, MICHAEL PALAIOLOGOS, live [long]! May the Autocrator of RHOMANIA, MICHAEL PALAIOLOGOS, live [long]!’ And they all went from there to NICAEA, and they seized the young man KALAWYAN, and they sent him and had him shut up in one of the fortresses. And they also sent ARSENIUS the Patriarch, who had rebuked them for his murder, into exile, in a monastery in one of the islands of the sea of PONTUS.

And after MICHAEL had reigned for a time he determined within himself to go and attack CONSTANTINOPLE, because he heard that there was a small army therein with BO’DWIN the Frankish king its lord. And during his journey he sent and had NICEPHORUS, the Metropolitan of EPHESUS, brought, and he made him Patriarch in the city of KALYOPOLI (GALLIPOLI) in the place of ARSENIUS, who had been exiled. And he departed from there and went and encamped against CONSTANTINOPLE, and he was unable to capture it, because the citizens and the soldiers stood up strenuously on the walls and fought fiercely. And when MICHAEL saw that he could not succeed, he left and went back.

And after a short time the Frankish merchants who were in the city of ‘AKKO and were cal1ed ‘BUNDIKAYE’ (VENETIANS), began to quarrel with those who were called ‘JANABIZ’ (GENOESE), and the PIZANAYE (PISANS) attached themselves to the VENETIANS. And when the VENETIANS who were in all the other countries heard [of this], they ran without delay to the help of their companions, and CONSTANTINOPLE was empty of them. And MICHAEL himself perpetrated another fraud, and he told one of his adherents who was the captain of a fortress to show signs of rebellion, and to send a message to BO’DWIN [saying] that he must send an army, and that he would transfer that fortress to him. And the captain of the fortress did even so, and he flattered BO’DWIN and led him into error and when [503] BO’DWIN sent the little army which he had with him, MICHAEL made ready swiftly and went and encamped against it. And MICHAEL himself also flattered certain of the citizens, and one night they opened to him an old gate which had never been opened since the time of CONSTANTINE the Conqueror. And the GREEKS went in and put [the city] to the sword, and it was only with the greatest difficulty that BO’DWIN himself and his household was able to save themselves by embarking in a small shallow boat, and they fled to the FRANKS. And thus once again CONSTANTINOPLE remained in the possession of the GREEKS after belonging to the FRANKS for a period of fifty-three years. As for NICEPHORUS the unlawful Patriarch, he did not live very long, but died quickly. And king MICHAEL appointed in his place ROMANUS, the Patriarch of the city of ADRIANOPOLIS. Now this man, as soon as ever he rose up, became involved in some scandalous affair and was cast forth. Then king MICHAEL sent and brought ARSENIUS the Patriarch from exile, and he promised him that he would bring out KALAWYAN, the son of the king, from prison, and would transfer to him the kingdom of his father, and that he himself would only hold CONSTANTINOPLE, which he had taken with the sword. And the Patriarch prayed over him, and was reconciled [to him], and sat again on the [Patriarchal] throne.

Then MICHAEL, having placated the Patriarch, added wickedness to wickedness, and instead of bringing KALAWYAN out of prison and making him king, sent and had his eyeballs taken out and blinded his eyes. When the Patriarch understood this he again relinquished his office, and returned to his imprisonment. And the king brought an archimandrite whose name was JOSEPH (?) and made him Patriarch, and behold he standeth at the head [of the Church] this day. And it was in the days of winter that these wickednesses were perpetrated in MELITENE.


Bar Hebraeus’


Concerning the Taking of Babel (Baghdad).

HULABU, King of Kings, went down to BAGHDAD; and BAJU also arrived from BETH RHOMAYE. And the armies of the men of BAGHDAD sallied forth to meet the TATARS in battle. And those who stood at their head (i.e. were their captains) were: the Great Amir, a KURD, who was called ‘BAR KURAR’, and DAWITHDAR the Little, a slave of the Khalifah. And the two [504] sides (or, hosts) remained facing each other, without engaging in battle, for twenty-three days. Then straightway on the fourth day [of the week], on the eighth day of the first month of the ARABS, in the year six hundred and fifty-six (A.D. 1258), which is the year fifteen hundred and sixty-nine of the GREEKS, BAJU NAWIN and his troops drew nigh to a place which is called ‘the Grave of AHMAD’, on the western side of BAGHDAD, and the BAGHDAD troops approached and the armies met each other in battle, and the company of BAJU NAWIN was broken, and the BAGHDAD troops were triumphantly victorious. And the Amir SULAIMAN SHAH and his army were on the walls of BAGHDAD.

And when the evening had come, BAR KURAR, an old man, said unto DAWITHDAR, a young man, ‘This time God hath given us the victory. It is right that we should go into our houses and rest, and then we will sally forth again and attack forthwith.’ The young man, however, was puffed up, and did not want to go in, and both of them passed the night outside. And because those BAGHDAD troops were encamped on low-lying ground, the TATARS went and made a breach in the banks of the great canal of water [fed], from the TIGRIS, and floods of water poured down on them at midnight. And they began to flee from the waters, and their bows, and their arrows, and the sheaths of their swords were soaked with water. And when the day broke the TATARS of the battalions of HULABU returned, and the battle continued until the ninth hour of the fifth day [of the week] ; and the BAGHDAD troops were defeated and stricken helpless, and BAR KURAR was killed, and DAWITHDAR fled and went into the city.

Then BAJU and his troops came and encamped on the western side of BAGHDAD, and HULABU encamped on the east side, on the second day [of the week], on the thirteenth day of the first month, and he made war on the city with great fierceness–opposite the crown of the palace of the Khalifah. And the Khalifah MUSTA’SIM, the wretched man, in despair called his Wazir ‘ALKAMI, and NAJM AD-DIN ‘ABD AL-JANI, the son of DARNUS, and MAR MAKIKA, the Catholicus, and he commanded them to take gold in abundance, and royal possessions, and Arabian horses, and to fetch the ambassadors of the TATARS out of prison, and to array them in [fine] apparel, and to give them lavish gifts, and to go forth with them to the King of Kings. And they were to demand a pledge of safety for the lives of the Khalifah, [505] and his sons and his daughters, and to make an apology saying that the things which had happened had taken place through evil counsellors. Then, if he would be gracious, and would grant them their lives, they would become his slaves, and subjects who would pay tribute.

And when these men had gone forth to the King of Kings and fulfilled their embassy, HULABU detained them and would not let them return to the Khalifah. And he continued the war with still greater ferocity, and the TATARS made a great breach in the ‘Ajami tower; and they entered the city on Friday, the twenty-fifth day of the first month, but the citizens prevailed over them, and drove them outside again. And the TATARS renewed their attack in full strength, and on the following day, that is to say the Sabbath, they became masters of all the walls. And the people of BAGHDAD fled and hid themselves in the houses and in the underground chambers (sardabs). And on the Sabbath day the two sons of the Khalifah went out to the King of Kings, and an hour later the Khalifah himself went forth [to him]. And the King of Kings commanded, and they cast iron fetters on him, and stood over him in a tent for seven days–until the King of Kings had gone in person to the palace of the Khalifah and had inspected the treasures, and the rich things, old and new, which were hidden away and laid up in stores; and he uncovered them all and had them brought out. And the MONGOLS drew their swords, and slew all the people of BAGIIDAD–tens of thousands of men–the IBERIANS especially effected a great slaughter. And the Catholicus collected all the Christians into the church of the Third Bazar, and there he protected them, and none of the Christians was injured. And the wealthy ARABS brought out vast amounts of their riches to the Catholicus, that peradventure if they were able to save themselves they might retain their property, but all of them were killed.

And aftefwards when the wrath of the King of Kings had subsided somewhat, he had the wretched Khalifah brought before him, and he passed judgement on him and condemned him to death. And he commanded and they put him on a piece of sackcloth and then sewed it up round about him, and with kicks of their feet they killed him. [They did this] because certain of the ARABS had frightened the King of Kings saying, ‘If the blood of this man be shed on the earth, no rain will ever again fall thereon, and also coals of fire will burst forth from it’. And in this wise the kingdom of the ABBASIDES came to an end. And also the other kingdoms of the ARABS [506] began to totter. And the kingdom of the MONGOLS stood and triumphed in the countries which are outside (i.e. foreign) as well as those which are within (i.e. native).

And the TATARS on their return from BAGHDAD came and encamped against the fortress of ‘ARBIL. And when SAHIB BAR SALAYA wished to surrender to him, the large number of KURDS who dwelt therein threatened him with violence, and he fled from them to the TATARS. Then came BADR AD-DIN LULU and bought the fortress and everything which was in it from the TATARS for seventy thousand dinars. And the TATARS marched off, and BADR AD-DIN received the fortress of ‘ARBIL and placed guards therein. And after a short time a certain Kurdish Amir whose name was SHARAF AD-DIN JALALI brought a Pukdana (i.e. a Decree = Patent), and took the fortress from BADR AD-DIN, and drove out his guards who were therein. And when that same JALALI, together with his TATAR troops, were going against the rebellious KURDS who were in JULMARG, BADR AD-DIN sent certain KURDS and they killed him whilst he was sleeping in his tent. And a certain Christian whose name was MOKHATAS, the brother of SAFI SULAIMAN, the great physician, became master of ‘ARBIL. And after his death TAJ AD-DIN ‘ISA, his son, rose up in his place, and he was a good, believing man. And in his time there was a very severe famine and a pestilence in all the land of SEN’AR, and ‘ATHOR (ASSYRIA), and BETH NAHRIN, and SYRIA and BETH RHOMAYE; for in DAMASCUS a young dove for a sick man was sold for twelve nasraye

(1) i.e. zuze nasraye. These were coins struck by Saladin = Gr. drachmae (?).