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Battle of Zhongdu
Part of the Mongol invasions
Siège de Beijing (1213-1214).jpeg
The siege of Zhongdu (modern Beijing), as depicted in the Persian Jami' al-tawarikh by Rashid-al-Din Hamadani
Date1215
LocationBeijing, China
Result Mongol victory
Belligerents
22px Mongol Empire Jin Dynasty China
Commanders and leaders
22px Genghis Khan Xuanzong
Strength
unknown, but numerous About 6,000 or more
Casualties and losses
A few soldiers killed Almost all


The Battle of Zhongdu (present-day Beijing) was a battle in 1215 between the Mongols and the Jurchen Jin Dynasty, which controlled northern China. It saw the Mongols win and allowed them to continue their conquest of China.

The year 1211 marked the beginning of the war between the Mongols and the Jin Dynasty. The Jin Dynasty was able to hold Genghis Khan (Temüjin) and his Mongol army at bay for the first two years of the war.

Throughout this time however, Temüjin continued to build his forces and by 1213 had an army so powerful that they conquered all of the Jin territory up to the Great Wall of China. From this strategic location, Temüjin made the decision to split up his forces into three smaller armies in an attempt to break through the wall and finish his conquest of China; with the exception of the Southern Song. He sent his brother, Kasar, as the head of one of these armies east into Manchuria. He sent another army south toward Shanxi under command of his three oldest sons. Temüjin led the third army, along with his son Tuli, towards Shandong. The plan was a success as all three armies broke through the wall in different places.

According to Ivar Lissner the besieged inhabitants resorted firing on the Mongols with their muzzeloading cannons by using gold and silver cannon shot as ammunition after their supply of metal ran out.[1][2][3][4] The battle for Beijing was long and tiresome, but the Mongols proved to be more powerful as they finally took the city on 1 June 1215, massacring its inhabitants.[citation needed] This forced the Jin Emperor Xuanzong to move his capital south to Kaifeng, and opened the Yellow River valley to further Mongol ravages.

References[edit | edit source]

  1. Ivar Lissner (1957). The living past (4 ed.). Putnam's. p. 193. http://books.google.com/books?id=0skIAQAAIAAJ&q=cannon+melting+silver+gold+shot. Retrieved 2012 23 April. "When all the metal inside the city had been used up for cannon balls, the defenders began melting down silver and eventually gold, and their ancient muzzleloaders finally poured golden shot into the Mongols' camp." [Original from the University of California Digitized 27 Jan 2009 Length 444 pages]
  2. Ivar Lissner (1961). The living past. Capricorn. p. 193. http://books.google.com/books?ei=mFmXT6v4J-rl0QH95c3XDg&id=GQJIAAAAMAAJ&dq=When+all+the+metal+inside+the+city+had+been+used+up+for+cannon+balls%2C+the+defenders+started+melting+down+silver+and+eventually+gold%2C+and+their+ancient&q=metal+cannon+balls+melting+silver+gold+shot. Retrieved 2012 23 April. "When all the metal inside the city had been used up for cannon balls, the defenders started melting down silver and eventually gold, and their ancient muzzle-loaders poured golden shot into the Mongols' camp!" [Original from the University of Michigan Digitized 31 Aug 2007 Length 444 pages]
  3. Operations economy: industrial applications of operations research (2 ed.). Prentice-Hall. 1966. p. 254. http://books.google.com/books?ei=mFmXT6v4J-rl0QH95c3XDg&id=03lRAAAAMAAJ&dq=When+all+the+metal+inside+the+city+had+been+used+up+for+cannon+balls%2C+the+defenders+started+melting+down+silver+and+eventually+gold%2C+and+their+ancient&q=metal+cannon+balls+melting+silver+gold+shot. Retrieved 2012 23 April. "13. In 1215, the Chinese city of Yen-King, the modern Peking, was besieged by the Mongols under Genghis Khan. When all the metal inside the city had been used up for cannon balls, the defenders began melting down silver and eventually gold, and their ancient muzzleloaders finally poured golden shot into the Mongols' camp." [Original from the University of Michigan Digitized 28 Nov 2007 Length 486 pages]
  4. Industrial operations research (illustrated ed.). Prentice-Hall. 1972. p. 313. ISBN 0-13-464263-5. http://books.google.com/books?ei=mFmXT6v4J-rl0QH95c3XDg&id=Fh9VAAAAMAAJ&dq=When+all+the+metal+inside+the+city+had+been+used+up+for+cannon+balls%2C+the+defenders+started+melting+down+silver+and+eventually+gold%2C+and+their+ancient&q=metal+cannon+balls+melting+silver+gold+shot. Retrieved 2012 23 April. "11.13. In 1215, the Chinese city of Yen-King, the modern Peking, was besieged by the Mongols under Genghis Khan. When all the metal inside the city had been used up for cannon balls, the defenders began melting down silver and eventually gold, and their ancient muzzleloaders finally poured golden shot into the Mongols' camp." [Original from the University of Wisconsin - Madison Digitized 4 Jan 2008 ISBN 0-13-464263-5, ISBN 978-0-13-464263-5 Length 578 pages]

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