Öz Beg Khan

Mikhail of Tver before Uzbeg Khan, by Vasili Vereshchagin.
Reign 1313–1341
Born 1282
Birthplace Golden Horde
Died 1341
Place of death Sarai
Predecessor Toqta
Consort to Bulughan Khatun
Kabak Khatun
Sheritumgha Khatun
Taidula Khatun
Urduja Khatun
Bayalun Khatun
Royal House Borjigin
Dynasty Golden Horde
Father Togrilcha
Religious beliefs Islam

Uzbek Khan was born 1283 to Togru Khan (c1265-c1320) and died 1341 of unspecified causes.

Uzbek , Islamic title - Sultan Giyas ad-Din Muhammad ( tat. Ozbuk, ﺋو каз , kaz. Өzbek , c1283-1341) - Khan Ulus Juchi (Golden Horde) since 1313 [1][2][3][4] ] ; the son of Togru (Togruljaya, Togrulchi), the tenth son of Mengu-Timur ; Khan Tohta's nephew . Under him, the state religion of the Golden Horde was Islam . Uzbek especially actively asserted his power in the Russian principalities, gave his sister to the Moscow Prince Yuri III.. He patronized Moscow in its struggle with the princes of Tver. In the years of the reign of Uzbek, the gathering of Russian principalities began under the rule of Ivan Kalita (whose brother was married to Konchaka, the sister of Tsar Uzbek), which ultimately led to the release of the Grand Duchy of Moscow and then of Russia from the khans of the Golden Horde.

Uzbek rule was the time of the highest power of the Golden Horde. In the Russian chronicles known as Alabuga, Azbyak, Ozbyak.


Many Uzbek writers of the fourteenth and fifteenth centuries wrote about Uzbek Khan (Arabic/Pers. اوزبك ان) as a statesman and a man. Ibn Battuta , who was granted a personal audience with him in 1333, gave the khan the highest mark: " He is one of those seven kings who are the greatest and powerful kings of the world ." Historian-chronicler al- Mufaddal : " ... This is a young man of a beautiful appearance, excellent character, a wonderful Muslim, brave and energetic ." Geographer and historian al-Aini: “ He was a brave and courageous man, religious and pious, he respected lawyers, loved scientists, listened to them [advice], trusted them, was merciful to them, visited the sheikhs and provided them with good" [5].

Al-Birzali, for example, writes: “ When this king Toqta died, then Uzbek Khan, a man of thirty, reigned in after him. He professed Islam, was distinguished by his mind, beautiful appearance and figure . ” And in another place: "a young man of beautiful appearance, beautiful disposition, an excellent Muslim and a brave man ." Al-Zahabi speaks about him in the same spirit: " ... a brave hero, handsome by appearance, a Muslim who destroyed many emirs and wizards ." Even the Hulaguid historian Vassaf , who cannot be suspected of being friendly to Uzbek Khan, speaks of him with great praise: “The pious Tsarevich Uzbek, ” he writes, “son of Togluk, son of Toktai, son of Mengu-Timur , possessing divine faith and royal splendor ” [6].

Note that the name Uzbek was Turkic in origin and is mentioned in the Middle East before the campaigns of Genghis Khan . This name is found in Osama Ibn Munkiz (died in 1188) in his “Book of Edification”; describing the events that took place in Iran under the Seljukids , the author notes that one of the leaders of the troops of the ruler Hamadan Bursuk in 1115-1116 was the "emir of the troops" Uzbek - the ruler of Mosul [7]. According to Rashid al-Din , the last representative of the Turkic dynasty Ildegizidov, who reigned in Tabriz , was called Uzbek Muzaffar (1210–1225) [8].

The coming to power and the approval of Islam

Uzbek Khan was the nephew of Toqta Khan and the grandson of Khan Mengu-Timur. The son of Tokhta Iksar (Ilbasar, Ilbasmish) was proclaimed Khan by the patronage of the all-powerful Emir Kadak, and Kadak himself became the chief vizier . But in January 1313, Uzbek, along with backlarbek Kutlug-Timur , arrived from Urgench to say words of consolation to the relatives of the late Toqta Khan, and killed Ixar and Kadak. After, with the support of Kutlug-Timur and the wife of his father Bayalun, Uzbek seized power in the Golden Horde [9].[10].

According to Tarikh-i-Sheikh Uweiss [10]:

... the Horde emir Kadak wanted to erect the son of Tokhta Ilbasmysh to the throne, but Uzbek and Kutlug-Timur came from Khorezm and killed both. Accession of Uzbek was carried out with the support of supporters of Islam . The advance was preceded by a lively struggle, because the representatives of the nomadic aristocracy wanted to have a successor on the Horde throne Toqta Khan, a supporter of the traditional order and Tengrism . As a result, the Uzbek, who came to the throne with the support of the pro-Islamic forces, had to spend eight years in the Northern Arch. In January 1313, Uzbek Khan ascended the throne. And only in 1320 (1321), he officially accepted Islam from a descendant of Bab Arslan Zangi-Ata and his successor Seyid-Ata. Bab Arslan was the mentor of Ahmed Yasawi , a major Sufi , an ideologue among the Turkic tribes.

An anonymous author of a fifteenth-century work “Shadjarat al-Atrak” (The Genealogy of the Turks ) reports the following [11]:

after ascending to the khan's throne before the expiration of 8 years, he spent his life with all his il and ulus in the northern (arch) Desht-i-Kipchak countries , because (he) liked (water and air) of those countries and abundance of hunting (game). When 8 years had passed since the beginning of his Sultan, under the leadership of the holy sheikh of the sheikhs and Muslims, the pole of the world, Saint Zengi-Ata and the most important seyyid, who has high titles, pointing the way to devotion to the worlds, the leader of wandering and guide seekers, Saint Seyid Ata, the successor of Zengi-Ata, he (Uzbek) in the months of 720 AH (12 II 1320-30 I 1321), corresponding to the Turkic year of the hen, was honored to accept Islam. Becoming a khan, Uzbek, at the insistence of Kutlug-Timur [12], adopted Islam (according to the Simeon Chronicle : “ sat on the kingdom and desceced from the earth ”) and received the name Mohammed . An attempt to introduce Islam as a state religion met with resistance from the Horde aristocracy. Opposition leaders Tunguz, Taz and Emir Sarai Kutlug-Timur told Uzbek: “ You expect obedience and obedience from us, and what do you care about our faith and our confession and how will we leave the law and the charter of Genghis Khan and turn into the faith of the Arabs? “However, the supporters of the old Mongolian party — the emirs and the princes — were executed. It is reported about the execution of 120 Chingizids [13].


Preserved fragments of the Cathedral Mosque of the Uzbek Khan epoch in Narovchat

Uzbek Khan firmly held power in his hands and brutally suppressed all sorts of separatist actions on the outskirts. He abolished baskachestvo in Russia, transferring the right to collect tribute and send it to the Horde to the Russian princes. Uzbek Khan managed to eliminate internal disputes in the Horde and to achieve its rise. At the beginning of the 14th century, the khan carried out a major administrative-territorial reform, according to which the right wing of Ulus Juchi was divided into 4 large ulus :Sarai , Khorezm , Crimea and Desht-i-Kypchak , headed by appointed Khan by the ulus emirs (ulus backers), thereby lining up a more rigid vertical of power, which provided him with unquestioning obedience to the Volga region, Khorezm, the Crimea and the Kipchak steppe.

The rule of Uzbek Khan was the time of the highest power of the Golden Horde. The era is marked by a cultural rise and a wide urban construction. When it was built a new capital - Sarai al-Jedid . Khan paid much attention to the development of trade. Caravan routes were not only safe, but also well-maintained. The Horde led a lively trade with the countries of Western Europe, Asia Minor, Egypt, India, China.

Relations with the Russian princes

Mikhail Yaroslavich of Tverskoy and Khan Uzbek - Drawing by V. P. Vereshchagin

Death of Khan Uzbek. Thumbnail of the Facial Chronicle


In 1317, Uzbek Khan married his sister sister Konchaka to Yuri Danilovich, allowing her to convert to Orthodoxy, which allowed the prince to enlist the support of Khan in the struggle for great reign with Mikhail Yaroslavich. Uzbek gave Yuri the Horde squad led by Kavgadiyem , but Mikhail Yaroslavich defeated the united Moscow-Tatar army in the Battle of Bortenevo (1317). The sudden death of Konchaki in the captivity of Tver gave Yuri a reason to accuse Mikhail Yaroslavich of her poisoning before Uzbek. Mikhail Yaroslavich was summoned to the Horde, and here, due to Kavgadi’s hatred for him, he was killed by order of Uzbek.

"At the same time the king Azbyake Horde his command killed five great Russian princes, Grand Duke Mikhail Yaroslavich of Tver, and his two sons, the great Prince Dmitri and his brother Grand Duke Aleksandr Mikhailovich, Grand Duke Vasili Aleksandrovich, Grand Prince Ivan Yaroslavich; three princely princes: Prince Aleksandr Novoselsky, Prince Fyodor Aleksandrovich, grandson of the holy Blessed Grand Prince Mikhail Yaroslavich of Tver, and Prince Fyodor Ivanovich of Starodub. At the same time, Azbyak was killed in the Horde by the pious and Grand Duke Yuri Danilovich of Moscow, the Grand Duke Dmitri Mikhailovich of Tver, without the decree of Tsar Azbyak. And the king Azbyak was killed in the Horde of grand dukes and appanage princes - nine people ” ( Facial Chronicle ) .

The son of Mikhail of Tver, Alexander, who reigned in Tve , resumed his struggle with the Moscow Prince Ivan Kalita , taking part in an uprising in 1327 , in which the tartars killed the Horde ambassador Schelkan and his whole retinue. Uzbek Khan was angry when he learned of the murder, and sent for the Moscow prince. According to other sources, Ivan Kalita went to the Horde himself, hurrying to take advantage of the Tver incident. Uzbek gave him a label for reigning and 50,000 troops. In 1327, Ivan Kalita with the Tatar and Suzdal detachments defeated the Tver army, brutally suppressed the uprising and devastated the principality of Tver. After that, Uzbek divided the main territory of North-Eastern Russia (the Grand Duchy of Vladimir) in two parts, giving one of them to Ivan Kalita, and the other, together with the capital Vladimir , handed over to the insignificant Suzdal Prince Aleksandr Vasilyevich , after whose death in 1331 Ivan Kalita again went to the Horde and received a label for the whole principality.

Aleksandr Mikhailovich of Tver, fleeing from Uzbek's wrath, fled to the Grand Duchy of Lithuania. In 1337 he himself came to the khan and asked for mercy. Uzbek liked the courage of the prince and he forgave him. But on October 29, 1339, at the instigation of Ivan Kalita, Aleksandr Mikhailovich and his son Fyodor Mikhailovich were executed by the order of Uzbek as a painful death.

In 1340, Uzbek sent an army to Smolensk Prince Ivan Aleksandrovich of Smolensk, who did not want to pay tribute, which destroyed the Principality of Smolensk.

Foreign Policy

Despite the fact that Uzbek Khan led a rather active foreign policy, the territory of the state underwent no changes. Khan sought to prevent the seizure of the Polish Kingdom of Principality of Halych-Volhynia. In 1337, the combined Russian-Horde army marched on Lublin . Then, at the request of the Galician boyar Dmitry Dedko, Uzbek sent 40 thousand troops against King Casimir III the Great , which was defeated on the Vistula [14].

Continuing to act in line with the traditional policy of the Juchids , Uzbek claimed the Transcaucasian territories, the possessions of the Hulaguids . In 1318/1319, 1325 and 1335, Horde troops invaded Shirvan and Arran, but did not achieve tangible success. Beklyarbek Kutlug-Timur opposed the war with the Hulaguids, fearing that it would undermine the trade and internal stability of the Horde.

Uzbek Khan maintained diplomatic relations with Byzantium , India, and Western European countries. Relations with the Mamluk Egypt were renewed . Khan entered into a dynastic marriage with the Byzantine emperor Andronik II the Younger , marrying his daughter, and also entered into a kindred union with the Egyptian Sultan an-Nasir Mohammed , for whom he gave his niece, princess Tulunbai [15]. True, the sultan soon divorced her, and at the request of Uzbek (in 737/1336–1337) to marry him one of the daughters of the sultan (“ he, Uzbek, could be famous and enter into fraternity and friendship ”) an-Nasyr answered that his daughters are still young [16]. Nevertheless, relations between the two Muslim countries continued to remain very close and friendly, which is emphasized by the secretary of the Sultan an-Nasyr Ibn-Fadlullah al-Omari [15].

For some time, Uzbek Khan maintained good relations with Byzantium . However, at the end of the reign of Andronicus II they deteriorated sharply. Around 1320-1324, Uzbek Khan's troops invaded Thrace and sacked it again.

After the death of Uzbek in 1341, power in the Golden Horde for a short time passed to his son Tinibek .


  1. ^ Узбек — хан Золотой Орды и положение в русских княжествах и соседних странах — Литве и Польше (1312—1341 годы)
  2. ^ Encyclopedia of Mongolia and Mongol Empire, see: Golden Horde
  3. ^ Mihail-Dimitri Sturdza, Dictionnaire historique et Généalogique des grandes familles de Grèce, d’Albanie et de Constantinople (English: Great families of Greece, Albania and Constantinople: Historical and genealogical dictionary) (1983), page 373
  4. ^ Saunders, John Joseph (2001). The history of the Mongol conquests. University of Pennsylvania Press. ISBN 978-0-8122-1766-7. 
  5. ^ Период могущества. Узбек-хан
  6. ^ Личность Узбек-хана
  7. ^ Усама ибн Мункыз. Книга назидания. пер. Ю. И. Крачковского. Мoscow. Изд-во восточной литературы, 1958, c.134
  8. ^ Рашид ад-Дин Сборник летописей. Т.1., кн.1. Мoscow, 1952
  9. ^ Селезнёв Ю. В.. Элита Золотой Орды. 
  10. ^ a b Абу Бакр ал-Кутби ал-Ахари.. Тарих-и шейх Увейс. 
  11. ^ Родословие тюрков. Шаджарат ал-атрак
  12. ^ (1884) "Из летописи Бедреддина Элайни". 
  13. ^ "Из «Продолжения Сборника летописей»". 
  14. ^ Пашуто В. Т. (1959). Отв. редактор Л. В. Черепнин. ed. Образование Литовского государства. 
  15. ^ a b К вопросу о происхождении и составе узбеков Шейбани-хана. Оригинал: Труды академии наук Таджикской ССР. Том XII. 1953. — C.3-37
  16. ^ [См. извлечения из (Арабская графика — А. Р.) «Книги летописи султанов, царей и войск», анонимного автора, заключающей жизнеописание султана ал-Малик-ан-Насыра Мухаммеда, в том же «Сборн. матер.», стр. 254 ар. текста и стр. 262—263 рус. перев.]


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  • Костюков В. П. (2009). "Историзм в легенде об обращении Узбека в ислам": 67-80. 
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  • ВТ-ЭСБЕ- Узбек
  • БСЭ3 - Узбек Султан Мухаммед
  • ВС


#g1: Offspring of Togru Khan (c1265-c1320) and unknown parent
Name Birth Death Joined with
Uzbek Khan (c1283-1341) 1283 1341
Konchaka of the Golden Horde (c1295-1318) 1295 1318 Tver, Tver Oblast, Russia Yuri Danilovich of Moscow (1281-1325)


Footnotes (including sources)