The Info List - Töregene Khatun

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Töregene Khatun (also Turakina) (d. 1246) was the Great Khatun and regent of the Mongol Empire
Mongol Empire
from the death of her husband Ögedei Khan in 1241 until the election of her eldest son Güyük Khan
Güyük Khan
in 1246.

A coin probably struck in Georgia or Azerbaijan
during the reign of Töregene Khatun (1244–46).


1 Background 2 Great Khatun of the Mongol Empire 3 Role in Mongol conquests 4 Güyük's coronation 5 Notes 6 References

Background[edit] Born in the Naiman tribe, Töregene was given as wife to Qudu, the noble of the Merkit
clan at first.[1] But Rashid-al-Din Hamadani
Rashid-al-Din Hamadani
named her first husband as Dair Usun of the Merkits.[2][not specific enough to verify] When Genghis
conquered the Merkits in 1204, he gave Töregene to Ögedei as his second wife. While Ögedei's first wife had no sons, Töregene gave birth to five sons. She eclipsed all of Ögedei's wives and gradually increased her influence among the court officials. But Töregene still resented Ögedei's officials and the policy of centralizing the administration and lowering tax burdens. Töregene sponsored the reprinting of the Taoist canon in North China.[3] Through the influence of Töregene, Ögedei appointed Abd-ur-Rahman as tax farmer in China. She was one of the greatest Khatun. Great Khatun of the Mongol Empire[edit] Soon after Ögedei died in 1241, at first power passed to the hands of Moqe, one of Genghis
Khan's wives, who Ögedei inherited. With the support of Chagatai and her sons, Töregene assumed complete power as regent in spring 1242 as Great Khatun[4] and dismissed her late husband's ministers and replaced them with her own, the most important of whom was another woman, Fatima, a Tajik or Persian captive from the Middle Eastern campaign. She was a Shiite Muslim
Shiite Muslim
who deported Shiite shrine of Meshed
to Mongolia. She tried to arrest several of Ögedei's main officials. Her husband's chief secretary, Chinqai, and the administrator, Mahmud Yalavach fled to her son Koden in North China
North China
while Turkestani administrator Masud Begh, fled to Batu Khan
Batu Khan
in Russia. In Iran
Töregene ordered Korguz arrested and handed over to the widow of Chagatai, whom he had defied. The Chagatayid Khan
Chagatayid Khan
Qara Hülëgü executed him. Töregene appointed Arghun
aqa of the Oirat as governor in Persia. She put Abd-ur-Rahman in charge of general administration in North China and Fatima became even more powerful at the Mongol court. These actions led the Mongol aristocrats into a frenzy of extortionate demands for revenue. Role in Mongol conquests[edit] Töregene had friendly relations with Ögedei's commanders in China. The conflicts between the Mongols and the Song troops took place in the areas of Chengdu. Töregene sent her envoys to negotiate peace, but Song imprisoned them.[5] The Mongols captured Hangzhou
and invaded Sichuan
in 1242. She ordered Zhang Rou and Chagaan (Tsagaan) to attack the Song Dynasty. When they pillaged the Song territory, the Song court sent a delegation to ceasefire. Chagaan and Zhang Rou returned north after the Mongols accepted the term.[6] During the reign of Ögedei, the Seljuks of Rum
offered friendship and a modest tribute to Chormaqan.[7] Under Kaykhusraw II, however, the Mongols began to pressure the Sultan
to go to Mongolia
in person, give hostages, and accept a Mongol darughachi. Mongol raids began in 1240. The Seljuk Sultan
Kaykhusraw assembled a large army to meet them. The king of Cilician Armenia
Cilician Armenia
was required to produce 1400 lances and the Greek Emperor of Nicaea 400 lances. Both rulers met the sultan in Kayseri
to negotiate details. The Grand Komnenos of Trebizond contributed 200, while the young Ayyubid prince of Aleppo
supplied 1000 horsemen.[8] In addition to these, Kaykhusraw commanded the Seljuq army and irregular Turkmen cavalry, though both had been weakened by the Baba Ishak rebellion. However, Baiju
and his Georgian auxiliaries crushed them at the battle of Köse Dağ in 1243. After that battle, the Sultanate of Rum, the Empire of Trebizond
Empire of Trebizond
and the Lesser Armenia
Lesser Armenia
quickly declared their allegiance one by one to the Mongol Empire
Mongol Empire
ruled by Töregene Khatun. The Mongol troops under general Baiju
probed the forces of Abbasid Iraq
and Ayubid
ruled Syria
in 1244-46. Güyük's coronation[edit] She was in exercise of power in a society that was traditionally led only by men. She managed to balance the various competing powers within the empire, and even within the extended family of the descendants of Genghis
Khan, over a 5-year period in which she not only ruled the empire, but set the stage for the ascension of her son Güyük
as Great Khan. During Töregene's reign, foreign dignitaries arrived from the distant corners of the empire to her capital at Karakorum
or to her nomadic imperial camp. The Seljuk sultan came from Turkey — as did representatives of the Caliph
of Abbasid
in Baghdad. So did two claimants to the throne of Georgia: David Ulu, the illegitimate son of the late king — and David Narin, the legitimate son of the same king. The highest-ranking European delegate was Alexander Nevsky's father, Grand Prince Yaroslav Vsevolodovich of Vladimir and Suzdal, who died suspiciously just after dining with Töregene Khatun. The Mongols practiced polygamy. Ögedei Khan's favorite son was Kochu, who was his through another wife, and he had nominated Kochu's son Siremun to succeed him after his father suddenly died in China in 1237. But some sources mention that Khoch was a son of Töregene and she did not want little Shiremun to succeed.[1] Töregene opposed the choice in favor of Güyük, but despite the enormous influence she had on him, she was unable to persuade Ögedei to change his selection. She did, however, achieve her aims through cunning. When the lesser khans appointed her regent after her husband's death, she appointed her favorites to high positions in the imperial household and initiated what was to be a successful scheme to elevate her son Güyük. When Temüge Otchigen, the youngest brother of Genghis, gathered his men and tried to unsuccessfully seize the throne, Güyük quickly came to meet him. Töregene managed to keep a Kurultai from being held until it was sure her son Güyük
was favored by the majority. Töregene passed power onto her son Güyük
in 1246. She retired west to Ögedei's appanage on the Emil. Despite her role in ensuring Güyük's election as Khagan, the relationship between Töregene and her son eventually collapsed. Güyük's brother Koden accused Fatima of using witchcraft to damage his health; when Koden died a few months later, Güyük
insisted that his mother hand Fatima over for execution. Töregene threatened her son Güyük
that she would commit suicide to spite him. Güyük's men seized Fatima and put her to death by sewing up all of her orifices and dumping her into water; Töregene's supporters in the imperial household were simultaneously purged.[9] Within 18 months of Fatima's death, Töregene herself died under still unexplained circumstances. Notes[edit]

^ a b C. P. Atwood Encyclopedia of Mongolia
and the Mongol Empire, p.544 ^ Rashid al-Din-Jami al-tawarikh, Ta'rikh-i Ghazani ^ Australian National University. Institute of Advanced Studies East Asian History, p.75 ^ The journey of William of Rubruck to the eastern parts of the world, 1253-55, p.62 ^ Jeremiah Curtin The Mongols A History, p.343 ^ J.Bor Mongol hiiged Eurasiin diplomat shastir, vol.II, p.224 ^ C. P. Atwood Encyclopedia of Mongolia
and the Mongol Empire, p.555 ^ Simon de Saint-Quentin, Histoire des Tartares, xxxi.143-144. ^ Man, John (2006). Kublai Khan: From Xanadu to Superpower. London: Bantam Books. pp. 76–77. ISBN 9780553817188. 


Jack Weatherford
Jack Weatherford
- The Women Who Ruled the Mongol Empire
Mongol Empire
(dead link) Jack Weatherford
Jack Weatherford
- The Secret History of the Mongol Queens: How the Daughters of Genghis
Khan Rescued His Empireь Crown 2010

Töregene Khatun House of Naiman (1242–1246)

Regnal titles

Preceded by Ögedei Khan Great Khatun (regent) of the Mongol Empire 1242–1246 Succeeded by Güyük

v t e

Khagans of the Mongol Empire

Early Great Khans

Khan Tolui
Khan (as Regent) Ögedei Khan Töregene Khatun (as Regent) Güyük
Khan Oghul Qaimish (as Regent) Möngke Khan Kublai Khan
Kublai Khan
/ Ariq Böke

Yuan (Kublaid) Great Khans

Kublai Khan Temür Khan Külüg Khan Buyantu Khan Gegeen Khan Yesün Temür Khan Ragibagh Khan Jayaatu Khan Khutughtu Khan Rinchinbal Khan Ukhaantu Khan

v t e

Mongol Empire
Mongol Empire



Khagan Khan Khatun Khanum Jinong Khong Tayiji Noyan Tarkhan

Political Military

Jarlig Örtöö Orda Pax Mongolica Yassa Kurultai Paiza / Gerege Manghit / Mangudai Tümen Kheshig

Politics Organization Life


Administrative divisions and vassals Banner (Bunchuk) Invasions and conquests Destructiveness Imperial Seal Military tactics and organization Organization under Genghis
Khan Religion Society and economy

House of Borjigin House of Ögedei Mongol Armenia Byzantine–Mongol alliance Franco-Mongol alliance List of Mongol and Tatar raids against Rus' Mongol and Tatar states in Europe


Yuan dynasty Chagatai Khanate

House of Ögedei

Golden Horde



Major cities

Almalik Avarga Azov
(Azaq) Bukhara Bolghar Karakorum Dadu Majar Maragheh Qarshi Samarkand Sarai Batu/Berke Saray-Jük Shangdu
(Xanadu) Soltaniyeh Tabriz Ukek Xacitarxan

Campaigns Battles



Siberia (1207) Qara Khitai (1216–18) Khwarezmia (1218–1221)


Western Xia (1205 / 1207 / 1209–10 / 1225–27) Northern China and Manchuria (1211–34) Southern China (1235–79) Kingdom of Dali (1253–56) Tibet (1236 / 1240 / 1252) Korea (1231–60) Japan (1274 / 1281) Sakhalin (1264–1308)


Burma (1277 / 1283 / 1287) Java (1293) Vietnam (1257 / 1284–88) Burma (1300–02)


India (1221–1327)


Georgia (1220–22 / 1226–31 / 1237–64) Chechnya (1237–1300s) Volga Bulgaria (1229–36) Rus' (1223 / 1236–40) Poland and Bohemia (1240–41) Hungary (1241-42) Serbia (1242) Bulgaria (1242) Latin Empire (1242) Lithuania (1258-59) Poland (1259–60) Thrace (1264-65) Hungary (1285–86) Poland (1287–88) Serbia (1291) Poland (1340-1341)

Middle East

Anatolia (1241–43) Iraq
(1258) Syria
(1260–1323) Palestine (1260 / 1301)

Civil wars

Division of the Mongol Empire Toluid Civil War
Toluid Civil War
(1260–64) Berke–Hulagu war
Berke–Hulagu war
(1262) Kaidu–Kublai war
Kaidu–Kublai war
(1268–1301) Esen Buqa–Ayurbarwada war
Esen Buqa–Ayurbarwada war


Great Khans

Khan Tolui
(regent) Ögedei Khan Töregene Khatun (regent) Güyük
Khan Oghul Qaimish (regent) Möngke Khan Kublai Khan (Khagans of the Yuan)


Jochi Batu Khan Sartaq Khan Orda Khan Berke Toqta Öz Beg Khan Chagatai Khan Duwa Kebek Hulagu Abaqa Arghun Ghazan


Subutai Jebe Muqali Negudar Bo'orchu Guo Kan Borokhula Jelme Chilaun Khubilai Aju Bayan Kadan Boroldai Nogai Khan

Timeline of the Mongol Empire

v t e

List of emperors of the Yuan dynasty
Yuan dynasty

Early Mongol rulers posthumously promoted by Kublai Khan
Kublai Khan
as Yuan emperors

Taizu Ruizong (regent) Taizong Dingzong Xianzong

Enthronement of Kublai Khan
Kublai Khan
in 1260 as Khagan, officially assuming the role of Emperor of China
Emperor of China
as Yuan Shizu starting in 1271 Following conquest of Southern Song dynasty
Song dynasty
in 1279 ruled all of China

Shizu Chengzong Wuzong Renzong Yingzong Taiding Emperor Tianshun Emperor Wenzong Mingzong Ningzong Huizong (Emperor Shun)

Xia → Shang → Zhou → Qin → Han → 3 Kingdoms → Jìn / 16 Kingdoms → S. Dynasties / N. Dynasties → Sui → Tang → 5 Dynasties & 10 Kingdoms → Liao / Song / W. Xia / Jīn → Yuan → Ming →