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Flashcards in Asia: 1200-1450 Deck (23)
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Following the collapse of the Western Roman Empire, what did the Eastern Roman Empire come to be called?

The Eastern Roman Empire came to be called Byzantium after the former name of its capital, Constantinople.

Although Byzantine residents continued to call themselves Romans and use Roman law, the Empire was profoundly influenced by Greek ideals, from culture to language.



Sufism is an Islamic religious group that stresses Islam's mystical traditions and places an emphasis on meditation, fasting, and devout prayer.

Sufism arose during the Umayyad Caliphate out of a reaction to the increased worldliness of the Caliphs.


What caliphate followed the Umayyad Caliphate?

Following the Umayyad Caliphate, the Abbasid Caliphate was established in Baghdad under Abu Abas, a descendant of one of Muhammad's uncles.

The Abbasid Caliphs gradually became disassociated with the day-to-day running of the government and public functions like leading prayers.

Most governmental functions were carried out by viziers, a system of bureaucracy inherited from the Persians. Under the Abbasid Caliphate, Baghdad became a center for culture and learning, attracting scholars from as far away as Europe.


Who were the Mamlukes?

The Mamlukes were Turkish horsemen who arrived in Asia Minor as mercenaries against the Byzantine Empire. They converted to Islam and a large group of them moved south to Egypt, where they established a kingdom in 1250.


In 1055, the _____ _____ conquered Baghdad, ending the Abbasid Caliphate's temporal rule.

Seljuk Turks

The Seljuk Turks were nomads, who'd converted to Islam and unified the Turkic tribes of the Central Asian steppes. Although the Seljuk Turks took over the governmental functions of the Abbasids, they did allow the Caliphs to continue their religious functions. In 1258, the Abbasid Caliphate would formally end when the Mongols captured Baghdad and executed the last Abbasid Caliph.


In 907, internal dissension and external invasion doomed the Tang Dynasty. The _____ Empire emerged as the most powerful of the separate states that arose in the wake of the Tang's collapse.


The Song Empire emerged in east central China and governed most of the land between the Huang He and Annam (Vietnam). The Song began losing land in the 1000s, and by the 1100s had become a tributary state to the Liao Empire to the north. The Song maintained some independence until the Mongol invasions of the 1270s.


Which Chinese state had the most urban population by the 1000s?

The state with the world's largest urban population was the Song Empire; several cities in the Song had more than a million residents.

With the Song Dynasty's emphasis on trade, Canton (now Guangzhou), a port city on the Chinese coast, was one of the world's largest cities and trading ports.


Much like the Tang Dynasty, the Song Empire was characterized by invention. What were some of the most prominent innovations?

During the Song Empire, the Chinese developed block printing long before Gutenberg invented the printing press, although they may have adapted it from the Koreans.

The Chinese also proved adept at adapting techonology to new uses. For instance, in 1090 Chinese traders began widespread use of the compass, which revolutionized naval travel and trade. Previously, the compass had been used for fortune-telling.


What is foot-binding?

Foot-binding was a Chinese practice that became firmly established by the 1200s. A tiny foot was considered attractive by the Chinese; and the feet of young Chinese girls were broken and confined to conform to this ideal.

Foot-binding was symptomatic of the large-scale subjugation of women in Chinese culture; women were treated as second-class individuals.



Shogun is a Japanese term meaning "great general;" and it refers to the Japanese leader who ruled in the empire's name from 1192 until 1867. Until the modern era, Japanese history is usually divided into shogunates, which refer to the families that held the office at given times.

Much like in the feudal system of Western Europe, in Japan, the shogun shared power with powerful landowner-warriors known as daimyo.


What is a daimyo?

During Japan's early shogun period, the daimyo were powerful landowner-warriors who came from Japan's warrior class, known as the samurai. By the late 1400s, the power of the shogun began to wane and Japan's daimyo ruled their lands with little regard for the central government.



Bushido was the code of the Japanese warrior class, the samurai. Bushido was harsher than the chivalric code of Western Europe, but also emphasized loyalty, honor, and personal bravery.

The extreme penalty for violating bushido was ritual suicide.


What state developed in northern India in 1206 following the conquest of Delhi by Islamic armies from Central Asia?

The capture of Delhi marked the beginnings of the Delhi Sultanate, an Islamic state that ruled most of northern India. The Sultanate introduced Islam into India, in addition to Hinduism and Buddhism which were already well established in India. Southern India remained divided into southern states.


Who united the 30 feuding tribes of the Mongols into one entity in 1206?

In 1206, Genghis Khan united the Mongols into a unified group. Genghis Khan reorganized the Mongol armies and led them off on a campaign of military conquest throughout Eurasia.


What nation was the first target of Genghis Khan's unified Mongol armies?

China was Genghis Khan's first conquest; and by 1215 the Mongols had captured Beijing. By the time Genghis Khan died in 1227, the Mongols had subdued China, most of Central Asia, and were poised to march westward.

Mongol success was mainly attributable to their quick adaptation of the necessary technology required for warfare in the 1200s. Already skilled horsemen who could move quickly, they adopted siege warfare from their Chinese opponents.


Although Mongol efforts against China continued, the second wave of Mongol conquests was also directed against Europe. How far did the Mongols get?

The Mongols took over most of Russia and the Ukraine by 1240, and between 1240 and 1242 they attacked Bulgaria, Romania, and Hungary, taking over large swaths of land.

They finally overextended themselves when they invaded Poland and Germany, and gradually the tide of Mongol conquest in Europe began to recede. For two centuries, however, Russia and the Ukraine would remain under Mongol control.


Which geographical area did the Mongols target in the 1250s?

In the 1250s, the Mongols attacked the Middle East. They destroyed the Abbasid Caliphate and were finally turned back by a Mamluke army north of Jerusalem in 1260. At its height, the Mongol territory stretched from the Ukraine to Korea and included the Middle East, China, and Annam.


What fate befell the Mongol Empire at the zenith of its power?

In 1260, the Mongol Empire was at the height of its power when civil war broke out during a dynastic struggle.

The Mongol Empire was divided into four units. As the most powerful, Kublai Khan, the most famous of the leaders of the four units, took control of China and Mongolia.


Who was Timur (or Tamerlane)?

Timur was one of the rulers of the Mongol successor states and attempted to recreate the empire of Genghis Khan. Between 1370 and 1405, he conquered the Delhi Sultanate, Persia, and large swaths of Central Asia. His success was short-lived; after his death his empire gradually receded.


Pax Mongolica

Pax Mongolica (Mongol Peace) refers to the stability that the Mongolians brought to Eurasia by uniting it under one leader.

The Mongols had a well-established postal system and borrowed many advances from conquered peoples, such as a law code and paper currency from China. They also borrowed new religious beliefs, such as Buddhism and Islam.


Who was the most well traveled man of the 1300s?

The title of most well traveled man belongs to Ibn Battuta, who journeyed to the Arabian Peninsula, Mesopotamia, Persia, Central Asia, Anatolia, China, Sumatra, and even to Timbuktu.

Battuta's record of his journeys, known as Travels, continues to be a valuable resource for historians.


Omar Khayyám composed his ______, a collection of poetry composed of quatrains.


Omar Khayyám's poetry is at once bittersweet and contemplative; he remains one of Iran's best beloved poets. Khayyám was also a mathematician and challenged many of the tenets of Euclidian geometry, proposing theories related to the actions and behaviors of parallels.


Which classic of Arabian literature consists of a large collection of short stories told to amuse a king?

The Arabian Nights consists of 1001 short tales, composed in Arabic and framed as an attempt on the part of Scheherazade to amuse her royal husband. Many of the stories are folk tales originating from South Asia.