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It was The Year of Your Lord 1206 when Boyrak’s fears of an attack were fully realized. I, after having settled the affairs of my government, and having now become The Great Genghis Khan, took the first opportunity the following season to fit out an expedition against Tukta Bey and Boyrak. I marched into Boyrak’s dominions at the head of a formidable force. Boyrak came forth to meet me. A great battle was fought. Boyrak was entirely defeated. When he found that the battle was lost he attempted to run away. He was, however, pursued and taken, and then brought back to my camp where I had him put to death. I justified this act of cruelty toward the prisoner on the rational that, like Yemuka, he was not an open and honorable foe, but a rebel and traitor, and consequently, the act of putting him to death was the execution of a criminal, and not the murder of a prisoner.

Although Boyrak himself was thus taken prisoner and put to death, Kushluk and Tukta Bey succeeded in making their escape. They fled to the north-west, scarcely knowing, it would seem, where they were to go. At last, they found a place of refuge on the banks of the Irtysh River. This river rises not far from the center of Asia, joins with the Ob’ River and flows northward into the Arctic Ocean. The country through which it flows lay to the northwest of my dominions, and beyond its confines.

 

Through this country, Prince Kushluk and Tukta Bey wandered on, accompanied by the small troop of followers that still adhered to them, until they reached a fortress called Ardish, where they determined to make a stand. They were among friends here, for Ardish was on the confines of territory that belonged to Tukta Bey.

 

An entire year had passed; it was now 1207. The people of the neighborhood immediately flocked to Tukta’s flag, and the fugitive khan soon found himself at the head of a considerable force. This force was farther increased by the coming in of broken bands that had made their escape from the battle at which Boyrak had been captured and killed. At first, I did not know what had become of the fugitives. It was not until the next year that I attempted to pursue them. Then, hearing where they were and what they were doing, I prepared an expedition to penetrate into the country of the Irtish  River and attack them. It was in the dead of winter when I arrived in the country. I had hurried to prevent Tukta Bey from having time to finish his fortifications.

 

Tukta Bey and those who were with him were amazed when they heard that I was coming during the winter of 1207/1208. The defenses which they were preparing for their fortress were not fully completed, but they were at once convinced that they could not hold their ground against the body of troops that I was leading against them in the open field; so they all took shelter in and near the fortress, and awaited their enemy there

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Next post;  #70    The Death of Tukta Bey

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