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Roman, Mongolian, and Ottoman Empires’ History

Since the Ancient Mesopotamia period, several civilizations have emerged and grown their desires to conquer vast lands and spheres of power. There were more than 190 ancient empires with clearly demarcated borders (Wings, 2019). These empires existed in different periods in history and were dissimilar in many aspects, but one common denominator that characterized them all is that they all collapsed in the end. Ancient empires thrived or fell because of strategy or wrong execution, which was often characterized by brutality. The Roman Empire, Mongolian, and Ottoman Empires share some common characteristics, and yet they contrast each other in various ways.

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The Roman Empire existed between 27 BC to 476 AD. The empire began after the proclamation of Augustus Caesar as the first emperor in 31 BC. It fell with the collapse of Constantinople in 1453CE. Present-day Italy, as well as all the countries bordering the Mediterranean Sea, formed part of the empire (Wings, 2019). The Mongolian empire emerged as a result of the movement of the Mongols out of Central Asia for purposes of building a state of their own. Its leaders, Genghis Khan and Kublai Khan, steered the warriors into conquering some parts of Europe and China.

On its part, the Ottoman Empire was created in Anatolia by the Turkish tribes. The then mighty Byzantine Empire had been on a gradual decline for close to two hundred years. By the 1400s, a growing nomadic group known as the Ottomans entered Asia Minor from Central Asia and began posing significant threats to the Byzantine. They attacked Constantinople in 1453, a siege that lasted for two months (Gunasti, 2020). After successfully capturing the city, they changed its name to Istanbul and made it their Muslim capital. The city was initially Christian-dominated. The Ottoman empire boasted of well-trained armed forces with elite military strategies, which significantly contributed to its fast growth. The empire then expanded its territories to Egypt, Russia, the Middle East, and the Balkans. By the 1500s, the Ottoman was the largest empire in Europe and the Middle East.

From the illustrations presented above, it is apparent that all the three empires did not have many similarities in the way they were created. Nonetheless, all three empires had an insatiable appetite for expansion after they were formed. They grew and expanded into adjacent lands where they conquered populations into their respective territories. The other similarity is that the empires came into being by taking advantage of a gap created by the decline of earlier or the fall of previous rulers or kingdoms. In the Roman case, Augustin Caesar created the empire after the death of Julius Caesar, while the Ottoman empire rose as a result of the fall of the Byzantine empire.

Unlike the Ottoman and the Mongolian empires, the Roman Empire was not developed due to military conquest. Nonetheless, there were class differences between the plebeians (the ordinary citizens) and the patricians (the noble families), which further contributed to a popular uprising against the ruling class. Moreover, while the creation of the Roman and the Mongolian empires are attributed to the actions of individuals, the Ottoman empire was formed as a result of mass rebellions against the declining Byzantine Empire (Gunasti, 2020). Augustin Caesar was the single man responsible for the creation and development of the Roman Empire, while in the Mongolian empire, it was Genghis Khan. The Mongolian warriors relied on horses to fight and drive their enemies out, while the Ottoman empire used ground armies (Howard, 2017). The Roman empire was formed and ran on the Christian doctrines, while both the Mongolian and Ottoman empires were centered on the Islamic religion.

Decline and Fall of the Empires

Although all the three empires collapsed because of a myriad of issues, the most common factor that contributed to their collapse was poor leadership and external invasions. There are several reasons that conspired to bring each of these empires to its knees. The fall of the Roman Empire was political instability, external invasions by the Germanic tribe and the Persians, the plague that killed many soldiers and laborers who produced food, military problems, agricultural problems, overexpansion, Christianity, Diocletian, and Constantine. However, the main reason for the Mongolian empire’s collapse was the death of Kublai Khan. Many rulers who succeeded him were weak at strategy and did not have the discipline to keep the empire intact.

The poor leadership responsible for the collapse of the Mongolian empire was also witnessed in the Ottoman empire, which was also rife with corruption. Other reasons that caused the collapse of the empire included the rise in power of most nations in Europe and the removal of the empire from vital trade routes, a fact that limited the diffusion of new ideas and culture. Both the Mongolian and the Ottoman empires received a lot of resentments from their new territories, and this caused a lot of resistance that eventually led to their decline. The Mongolian empire was not welcomed in Russia and China (Lüsted, 2017). They were fought and overpowered in these regions and subsequently weakened. Moreover, while the world was changing very fast, the Ottoman and Mongolian empires decided to withhold their primitive cultures of nomadism and inferior agricultural practices, respectively.

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Greatest Influence

Of the three empires discussed above, the Mongolian has the greatest influence on today’s society. The Mongolian state, which is sandwiched between China and Russia, is a true testament to the Mongolian empire. Even today, the country mainly consists of nomadic tribes like their conquering ancestors. However, the influence of the Mongolian empire transcends beyond its borders. When the Mongolian army attacked Russia with military brute, they left devastations and distress in their wake (Lüsted, 2017). The Russian believed that the attackers were sent by God to punish them for their sins. They, thus, turned to God for forgiveness and spiritual nourishment by establishing the Orthodox Church. This church has had a strong voice in Russia and remains a key pillar of the country’s national and religious identity.

The Mongolian empire also has a great influence on art that is used today in Russia and Ukraine. For instance, in present-day Russia, the fresco and iconography paintings, which are linked to the ancient Mongolians, are present in many of its churches. The empire also left linguistic effects that are still present today (Kalra, 2018). The Russian language borrowed several words and phrases from Mongolia. Examples of such words include ambar(barn), bazar (bazaar), den’gi (money), loshad’ (horse), sunduk (truck, chest), and tamozhnya (customs). Based on these influences, it can, therefore, be concluded that the Mongolian empire has the greatest influence on our society today.


Gunasti, S. (2020). Qur’an between the Ottoman Empire and the Turkish Republic: An exegetical tradition. Routledge.

Howard, D. A. (2017). A History of the Ottoman Empire. Cambridge University Press.

Kalra, P. (2018). The Silk Road and the political economy of the Mongol Empire. Taylor and Francis.

Lüsted, M. A. (2017). Genghis Khan and the building of the Mongol Empire. Rosen Publishing.

Wings, P. (2019). The Roman Empire: The history of Ancient Rome. Independently Published.

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