As Kazakhstan gears up to celebrate the 750th anniversary of the Golden Horde this year, some may be wondering what the significance of the occasion is about. Here are three things to know about this significant period in Kazakhstan’s history. Though the events happened hundreds of years ago, they were crucial in paving the way for Kazakhstan to achieve sovereignty.
The Golden Horde was founded by Genghis Khan’s grandson
The Golden Horde was a division of the Mongol empire, and was a multi-ethnic and multi-confessional Eurasian state that flourished from the mid-13th century to the end of the 14th-century. It was founded by Mongol ruler Batu Khan, the grandson of Genghis Khan. Batu Khan rose through the ranks to be the most respected prince in the Mongol empire following the deaths of Genghis Khan’s sons.
It was made up of hundreds of cities
At its peak, the Golden Horde comprised hundreds of cities. The territory encompassed parts of Central Asia, Russia, as well as Eastern Europe. At the peak, the Mongol raids from the Golden Horde extended from the Caucasus to Hungary to Constantinople, an ancient city in modern-day Turkey, inspiring fear across the world of the aggressive Mongol horesemen. Subsequently, several khanates emerged within the Golden Horde territory — the Kazakh Khanate, the Crimean Khanate, the Astrakhan Khanate, the Siberian Khanate and the Nogai Horde.
The Kazakh Khanate shares the same territory as present-day Kazakhstan
The Kazakh Khanate, which existed from 1465 to 1848, was located on roughly the same territory as modern-day Kazakhstan. At its height, the Kazakh Khanate was a powerful force that ruled over territories in most of Uzbekistan, Karakalpakstan, the Syr Darya river, and much of eastern Cumania, which lies in today’s West Kazakhstan. But its strength was weakened by a series of invasions, and the Kazakh Khanate was gradually incorporated into the expanding Russian Empire. In 2015, Kazakhstan commemorated the 550th anniversary of the formation of the Kazakh statehood.
Celebrating the 750th anniversary of the Golden Horde should increase public interest in the cultural heritage of Kazakhstan
Initiated in 2019 by Head of state Kassym-Jomart Tokayev, the idea of celebrating the 750th anniversary of the Golden Horde became a logical continuation of the idea of the First President of the Republic of Kazakhstan – Elbassy Nursultan Nazarbayev. Kazakhstan’s First President has always maintained that it was important for the Kazakh people to know about the country’s historical connection to one of the most powerful medieval states of the Eurasian continents. In fact, many mausoleums, tombstones and inscriptions from the era of the Golden Horde can still be found in Kazakhstan today. It is hoped that the celebration of the 750th anniversary of the Golden Horde will increase public interest in the cultural heritage of this state, stimulate domestic tourism and attract foreign tourists.