Bold, B. (Bat-Ochiryn). Mongolian nomadic society: a reconstruction of the 'medieval' history of Mongolia

Table of Contents

Publication Information

1. Starting Point For Viewing The History Of The Mongols

Ways Of Approaching Mongolian History By Means Of Source Material And Research

Chinese Sources

Official Dynastic History

Legal Documentation

Writing In The Form Of Records

Persian Sources

Mongolian Sources And Research

European Sources And Research

Critical Analysis Of The Methodology Of Modern Mongolian Historiography

The Feudalism Concept In Relation To The History Of Mongolia

The Concept Of ‘nomadic Feudalism’

2. Economic Conditions And Their Development

Origin Of Nomadic Livestock Keeping In The Mongolian Part Of Central Asia

Ecological And Socio-cultural Prerequisites For Nomadic Livestock Keeping

Attempt At Classification

Production Character Of Nomadic Livestock Keeping In The Thirteenth To Nineteenth Centuries

Traditional Herd Animals

Kinds Of Livestock

Quantity Of Livestock

Role Of Pasture Land In The Nomadic Economy

Economic Parameters Of Pasture Land

Pasture Land For The Personal Use Of The Manchu Emperor

Pasture Land For Requirements Of The State

Pasture Land Of The Religious Head Of Mongolia

Pastoral Land For High-ranking Buddhist Dignitaries And Princes

The Right Of The Common Livestock Keepers To Use Pasture Land

Critical Comments Concerning The ‘feudal Conditions Of Pasture Land’

Migration To New Pasture As Traditional Strategy Of Pasture Land Use

Ecological Determinants Of Pastoral Area And Migration Patterns

Pasture Land, Migration And Territorial-administrative Divisions

Social Forms Of Organisation In Migration

Large-group Migrations

Small Group Migrations

Individual Migrations

Production Activity Of Livestock Keepers

General Livestock Keeping Work

Expenditure Of Labour

Division Of Labour According To Age And Sex

Children And Youth

Men's Work

Women's Work

Early Form Of Social Organisation Of Labour

Khot-ail As Social Organisation Of Labour

Economic Background Of The Khot-ail Union

Family Relations Within The Khot-ail

Appropriate Size Of A Khot-ail

Right Of A Khot-ail To Use A Pastoral Region

Other Economic Forms




3. Socio-political Organisation In The Development Of Mongolia

Features Of Mongolian Tribal Organisation Mongolian Tribes And Their Relations

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The Tribal Federation

Ey-e And Khurildai

Character Of Politico-administrative Organisation In The Thirteenth And Fourteenth Centuries

Decimally Structured Administration

The Group Of Ten And The Group Of A Hundred

The Group Of A Thousand

The Group Of Ten Thousand

The Criterion Of Feudalism In The Formation Of A Feudal State In The Thirteenth Century

The State System In Mongolia In The Period Of The Yuan Dynasty

Administrative Structure From The Fifteenth Century To The First Half Of The Seventeenth Century

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The Manchurian-chinese Administration System From The Second Half Of The Seventeenth Sentury To The Nineteenth Century

4. Social Strata Of Mongolian Nomadic Society

Social Differentiation In The Thirteenth Century

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Ütü Dürü-iin Kümün (persons Of Free Standing) 1

Böö Shamans 2

Blood Relatives Of The Tribal Head



Arad (aran, Haran)

Bool (bo'ol)

Zaluu (jilagu), Geriin Kümün And Inji

Social Strata Of Mongolian Society Before The Manchurian Conquest

Social Class Structure In Mongolia After The Manchurian Conquest

The Position Of The Mongolian Nobility

The Position Of The Livestock Keepers

Criticism Of ‘feudal Class Relations’ In Mongolia



5. The Effect Of Lamaism On Traditional Mongolian Nomadic Society

The Spread Of Lamaism In Mongolia

The Monastery Settlement As A New Phenomenon

Monastic Economy

Jas (jis) And Sang

Forms Of Exploitation In The Monastic Economy


Monastic Social Differentiation

High-ranking Monks

The Lower Social Strata: Khar-shavi And Lam- ( Or Lama-) Shavi


6. The Dynamics Of The Development Of Mongolian Nomadic Society

Constituents Of The Nomadic Social System

Nomadic Livestock Keeping As Basis Of Nomadism

Family Structure As An Appropriate Form Of Social Organisation

Military Conflict As An Attributive Functional Character Of Nomadic Life

Why Were The Nomads Of Central Asia Aggressive?

War-favouring Conditions Of The Mongols

Evolution Of Nomadic Society

Concluding Remarks

Publication Information

Paragraph Subjects (OCM)

Publication Information The main body of the Publication Information page contains all the metadata that HRAF holds for that document.

Author: Author's name as listed in Library of Congress records

Title: Mongolian nomadic society: a reconstruction of the 'medieval' history of Mongolia

Published By: Original publisher Richmond, Surrey [England]: Curzon. 2001. xvii, 204 p. ill., maps

By line: Author's name as appearing in the actual publication Bat-Ochir Bold

HRAF Publication Information: New Haven, Conn.: Human Relations Area Files, 2006. Computer File

Culture: Culture name from the Outline of World Cultures (OWC) with the alphanumberic OWC identifier in parenthesis. Mongolia (AH01)

Subjects: Document-level OCM identifiers given by the anthropology subject indexers at HRAF Annual cycle (221); Pastoral activities (233); Classes (565); Household (592); Community structure (621); Territorial hierarchy (631); Districts (634); Provinces (635); Taxation and public income (651); External relations (648); Prophets and ascetics (792);

Abstract: Brief abstract written by HRAF anthropologists who have done the subject indexing for the document This is a study of Mongolian nomadic society, which the author argues constitutes a unique social system. Bold examines the constitutive economic, social, political, and religious elements of nomadic society and its evolution from the time of Genghis Khaan in the12th century to the Manchurian conquest in the 18th century. Bold discusses how a herding, nomadic way of life was the only way for people to survive on the steppe and how tribal organization best suited a lifestyle based on spatial mobility. Bold points to long-term droughts as the impetus for migration and invasion of neighboring sedentary societies. Worship of the 'eternally blue sky' also suited long-distance migrations. Accoridng to Bold, the mobile herding lifestyle with its demands for flexibility, independence, and initiative accounts for the Mongolian success at war. Bold questions theories about Mongolian feudalism in a society in which there was no ownership of land and herding was organized by multiple households working together cooperatively.

Document Number: HRAF's in-house numbering system derived from the processing order of documents 22

Document ID: HRAF's unique document identifier. The first part is the OWC identifier and the second part is the document number in three digits. ah01-022

Document Type: May include journal articles, essays, collections of essays, monographs or chapters/parts of monographs. Monograph

Language: Language that the document is written in English

Note: Includes bibliographical references (p. 179-198) and index

Field Date: The date the researcher conducted the fieldwork or archival research that produced the document no date

Evaluation: In this alphanumeric code, the first part designates the type of person writing the document, e.g. Ethnographer, Missionary, Archaeologist, Folklorist, Linguist, Indigene, and so on. The second part is a ranking done by HRAF anthropologists based on the strength of the source material on a scale of 1 to 5, as follows: 1 - poor; 2 - fair; 3 - good, useful data, but not uniformly excellent; 4 - excellent secondary data; 5 - excellent primary data Historian-4

Analyst: The HRAF anthropologist who subject indexed the document and prepared other materials for the eHRAF culture/tradition collection. Ian Skoggard ; 2005

Coverage Date: The date or dates that the information in the document pertains to (often not the same as the field date). 1100-1800

Coverage Place: Location of the research culture or tradition (often a smaller unit such as a band, community, or archaeological site) Mongolia

LCSH: Library of Congress Subject Headings Mongolia


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