Compare and Contrast Political and Economic Effects of Mongol Rule on China and Russia

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The formation and conquests of the Mongol Empire through the 1200’s-1300’s was very influential both politically and economically on the states of China and Russia in various ways. The Chinese were initially economically stable, and experienced a period of further economical success under the Mongol rule due to various improvements instituted by the Mongols that helped encourage trade. However, overspending eventually majorly contributed to its demise. Dissimilarly, Russia’s economy was falling apart at the seams, and the Mongol arrival helped relatively stabilize it. In both Russia and China, however, the Mongols dominated the government. The arrival of the Mongols in China brought about a major shift in the central power of government. The “khans”, referred to as “Great Leaders”, dominated the government and the top positions within it. While they tried to govern without altering too much of Chinese tradition, they failed to actually do so and ended up discriminating against the Han Chinese, who were very often denied public service jobs. However, they did help unite China and form the Yuan Empire. Additionally, the Mongols moved the capital to Beijing in an attempt to make it the center of politics and commerce in China. They made other improvements to encourage trade, such as reorganizing and rebuilding roads, irrigation, and plumbing, building granaries to prevent famines, and extending the Great Canal. These improvements proved successful, as it helped them export in large amounts and become a lucrative center for trade. Nevertheless, their excessive spending severely depleted China’s economy. These various construction projects were quite costly, so their need for revenue grew more pressing. The court appointed non-Chinese ministers to raise more funds, but by taxing the people, they alienated the Chinese and thus, without their support only hastened the

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