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Books to Read About Mongolia


While staying at home during these uncertain times why not try some books about Mongolia. With its extensive history and unique nomadic culture, Mongolia would be an interesting subject to study from the comfort of your home. History of Mongolia alone will be enough to consume you for weeks to come, from Attila the Hun to the Great Genghis Khan, disunity of Mongolian Empire and civil war between brothers, Mongolia under Qing rule and fight for independence, post-war socialist Mongolia's shift to democracy in 1990 and more. Travel through history and culture of Mongolia with style. 


THE SECRET HISTORY OF THE MONGOLS

The Secret History of the Mongols is a chronicle written in the 13th century CE (with some later additions) and is the most important and oldest medieval Mongolian text. The book covers the origins of the Mongol people, the rise to power and reign of Genghis Khan  (r. 1206-1227 CE) and the reign of his son and successor Ogedei Khan (r. 1229-1241 CE). Written from a Mongolian perspective, unlike most other medieval sources on the Mongol Empire, the work is an invaluable record of their legends, oral and written histories and, with its treatment of Genghis Khan and his imperial orders, it gives a unique insight into one of the most important leaders in world history. The title includes the word ‘secret’ because either only members of the imperial family and those given special favour or only Mongols were permitted to read it, even if other versions were in circulation in some remote places like Tibet. Read More about the book...


ALMANAC: HISTORY OF MONGOLIA

This book explores the history of Mongolia from period to period. Starting from the Primeval Period - Stone Age - Ancient Nomads Period of the Great Mongolian Empire Mongols converted into Tibetan Buddhism Mongolia during the Manchu Ching Dynasty Struggle for Independence Communist Period Civilized and Democratic Mongolia. It explores each period with great detail and that times political nature, religion, culture. This is the book for whoever wants to go down the rabbit hole of Mongolian history. 

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MOVING WITH THE SEASONS: PORTRAIT OF A MONGOLIAN FAMILY 

This stunning book by Liza F. Carter is a unique portrait of a Mongolian nomadic family. Filled with photographs and information on daily life, Moving with the Seasons: Portrait of a Mongolian Family document a way of life that is under tremendous pressure to change. The family blends ancient ways of living that have survived since the time of Genghis Khan in AD 1200 with elements of the modern world. The book draws on the author's experience with a single family to reveal the unique culture of Mongolian nomads and their remarkable capacity to thrive in one of the world's harshest environments. The family's willingness to share with the rest of the world the annual cycle of nomadic life on the Mongolian steppe makes for an unusually intimate portrait. Much of the information found in the text and photographs come directly from time spent with this family, and is not available in print elsewhere. 

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HEARING BIRDS FLY: A NOMADIC YEAR IN MONGOLIA

Louisa Waugh's passionately written account of her time in a remote Mongolian village. Frustrated by the increasingly bland character of the capital city of Ulan Bator, she yearned for the real Mongolia and got the chance when she was summoned by the village head to go to Tsengel far away in the west, near the Kazakh border. Her story completely transports the reader to feel the glacial cold and to see the wonders of the Seven Kings as they steadily emerge from the horizon. 

Through her, we sense their trials as well as their joys, rivalries, and even hostilities, many of which the author shared or knew about. Her time in the village was marked by coming to terms with the harshness of the climate and also by how she faced up to new feelings towards the treatment of animals, death, solitude and real loneliness, and the constant struggle to censor her reactions as an outsider. Above all, Louisa Waugh involves us with the locals' lives in such a way that we come to know them and care for their fates.


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THE SECRET HISTORY OF THE MONGOL QUEENS

The Mongol queens of the thirteenth century ruled the largest empire the world has ever known. The daughters of the Silk Route turned their father’s conquests into the first truly international empire, fostering trade, education, and religion throughout their territories and creating an economic system that stretched from the Pacific to the Mediterranean.

Yet sometime near the end of the century, censors cut a section about the queens from the Secret History of the Mongols, and, with that one act, the dynasty of these royals had seemingly been extinguished forever, as even their names were erased from the historical record.

With The Secret History of the Mongol Queens, a groundbreaking and magnificently researched narrative, Jack Weatherford restores the queens’ missing chapter to the annals of history."

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