Kublai Khan - Nayan's Rebellion

Nayan's Rebellion

During the conquest of the Jin, Genghis Khan's younger brothers received large appanages in Manchuria. Their descendants strongly supported Kublai's coronation in 1260, but the younger generation desired more independence. Kublai enforced Ögedei Khan's regulations that the Mongol noblemen could appoint overseers and the Great Khan's special officials, in their appanages, but otherwise respected appanage rights. Kublai's son Manggala established direct control over Singan and Shansi in 1272. In 1274, Kublai appointed Lian Xixian to investigate abuses of power by Mongol appanage holders in Manchuria. The region called Lia-tung was immediately brought under the Khagan's control, in 1284, eliminating autonomy of the Mongol nobles there.

Threatened by the advance of Kublai's bureaucratization, Belgutei's fourth generation descendant, Nayan (not confused with Temüge's descendant Nayan), instigated a revolt in 1287. Nayan tried to join forces with Kublai's competitor Kaidu in Central Asia. Manchuria's native Jurchens and Water Tatars, who had suffered a famine, supported Nayan. Virtually all of the fraternal lines under Hadaan, a descendant of Hachiun, and Shihtur, a grandson of Hasar, joined Nayan's rebellion, and because Nayan was popular prince, Ebugen, a grandson of Genghis Khan's son Khulgen, and the family of Khuden, a younger brother of Güyük Khan, contributed troops for this rebellion.

The rebellion was crippled by early detection and timid leadership. Kublai sent Bayan to keep Nayan and Kaidu apart by occupying Karakorum, while Kublai led another army against the rebels in Manchuria. Kublai's commander Oz Temür's Mongol force attacked Nayan's 60,000 inexperienced soldiers on June 14, while Chinese and Alan guards under Li Ting protected Kublai. The army of Chungnyeol of Goryeo assisted Kublai in battle. After a hard fight, Nayan's troops withdrew behind their carts and Li Ting began bombardment and attacked Nayan's camp that night. Kublai's force pursued Nayan, who was eventually captured and executed without bloodshed, a traditional way of executing princes. Meanwhile, the rebel prince Shikqtur invaded the Chinese district of Liaoning but was defeated within a month. Kaidu withdrew westward to avoid a battle. However, Kaidu defeated a major Yuan army in Khangai and briefly occupied Karakorum in 1289. Kaidu had ridden away before Kublai could mobilize a larger army.

Widespread but uncoordinated uprisings of Nayan's supporters continued until 1289; these were ruthlessly repressed. The rebel princes' troops were taken from them and redistributed among the imperial family. Kublai harshly punished the darughachis appointed by the rebels in Mongolia and Manchuria. This rebellion forced Kublai to approve the creation of the Liaoyang Branch Secretariat on December 4, 1287, while rewarding loyal fraternal princes.

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Famous quotes containing the word rebellion:

    Scholars planning a rebellion could never succeed even in three years.
    Chinese proverb.