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On This Day



On This Day… The Worst Human In History?

Written by: George Chittenden : 27 May 2019

It was on this day, 18th August, back in 1227 when the first Great Khan of the Mongol Empire, Genghis Khan supposedly died. I use the word supposedly as many conflicting accounts of his death exist. We do know that he was 65 years old when he died during the fall of the Xi Xia kingdom's capital. The causes of his death vary from sickness, being killed by Xia troops, dying of battle injuries, falling off his horse and even being murdered by a local princess after taking her as his trophy. Sadly, we’ll never really know for sure, as the Great Khan was buried in an unmarked grave, in keeping with Mongol tradition. On his deathbed Genghis Khan ordered that Xi Xia be wiped from the face of the earth, and consequently Khan’s successors destroyed whole cities and towns, killing or enslaving all their inhabitants.

So, was Genghis Khan the worst living human in history? Well he is certainly a contender. It’s hard to know exactly how many died because of his leadership, but many historians put the number at around 40 million. The population of China plummeted by tens of millions during the Khan’s lifetime, and he may have killed a full three-fourths of modern-day Iran’s population during his war with the Khwarezmid Empire. In total the Mongols may have reduced the entire world population by as much as 11 percent.

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