Genghis Khan was first called Temjin in honor of a Tartar enemy his father had recently defeated. When the boy was nine, he was betrothed to Brte, who belonged to the Konkirat tribe - according to the rules, he was supposed to live there until he reached the marriageable age of 14. But rival tribal members killed his father, therefore, Temjin returned to his family.
This gave Temjin a claim to be the clan's chief, though his clan refused to be led by a boy and soon abandoned him and his family. They were forced into exile: for the next few years, Temjin and his family lived the life of impoverished nomads, surviving primarily on marmots and other small game.
They barely survived the harsh winter, but then, another tribe raided their camp and took Temjin prisoner, placing a heavy wooden collar around his neck to prevent escape. However, Temjin managed to free himself, return to his tribe, and by his early teens, gain the reputation as a furious warrior.
Around the age of 16, Temjin at last married Brte, thus he began to forge cooperation among the many clans and tribes through diplomacy. While the number of the young leader's alliances were still small, a rival tribe, the Merkits, raided Temjin's camp and kidnapped his wife.
Temjin called on his friend and later rival, Jamuka, for aid. ...Show more