Alexander the Great VS Genghis Khan

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wario1988

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Poll: Alexander the Great VS Genghis Khan (134 votes)

Alexander the Great 43%
Genghis Khan 56%

Who is the better General?

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WaveMotionCannon

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Khan punishes Alexander.

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Chibi_cute

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Khan's military would easily crush alexander's military. Khans battle tactics is beyond compare in his lifetime.

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flashback0180

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WTF!!!! Genghis Khan SLAUGHTERS ENTIRE KINGDOM OVERNIGHT

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vs

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THAT'S NOT EVEN CLOSE TO HALF OF THE MONGOL EMPIRE

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Diemon_Slayer

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#54  Edited By Diemon_Slayer

Didn't Khan die in 1227 that map shows the mongol empire in 1279 and didn't Alexander only stop because his soldiers refused to go any further

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MasterKungFu

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this is tough.............genghis had the greater empire..........but alexander had the greater respect

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Eisenfauste

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I believe Alexander to be more interesting by Khan was a lot better at his job.

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JwwProd

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Genghis

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The_Caped_Crusader

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Genghis Khan, by a mile.

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ThanoswithIG

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Genghis khan is a sex god

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Bruxae

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Khan.

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Pyrogram

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Size of empire does not = better general. The technological and time difference in Alexanders day meant progression was very hard. All armies were more or less equal to an extent, unlike Khan.

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nickel132

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Alexander is nothing compared to khan. Khan fought more battles, won more battles, and had worse odds then Alexander ever had yet still came out on top. Khan ftw

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swiftbullet

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Alexander, excellent leadership and a great warrior.

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The_Caped_Crusader

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Genghis Khan.

Highly trained and ruthless. Formed one of the largest, if not the largest empires in the world and a powerful army of Nomadic warriors.

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Chibi_cute

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KHAN'S LEGACY >>>>>>>>> ALEXANDER.

Khan impregnated so many women its not even funny and spawned millions of his grand sons/grand daughters.

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MisterGuyMan

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Randomly found this thread googling stuff.

Genghis Khan wins and it's not close. Alexander was born and inherited the greatest army in the world. Genghis Khan started his rise as a slave. Genghis Khan started infinitely lower than Alexander and accomplished more militarily. The long odds that Alexander overcame is nothing compared to the long odds Temujin overcame. Compare how insignificant the Mongols were in population to any one of the Chinese dynasties that dominated the east. That's worse than what Alexander had to contend with. Now add the other three Chinese dynasties and the Khwarazmian Empire and everyone else the Khan had to fight. Oh and don't forget that you're starting off as a slave too. By himself, Khan was responsible for more conquered land, nations and people than Alexander or even Rome in its entire history. Possibly even combined.

I think people don't realize how ridiculously outnumbered the Mongols really were. They were an insignificant Nomad Tribe that challenged Empires and Kingdoms that combined had a population of over 100 million.

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Asavar

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#69  Edited By Asavar

Vs in what? Single combat? Armies? A military campaign? Empire size? Legacy? Culture impact?

@misterguyman:Lol what? Mongol was not a nice little tribe of like 300 people. Mongol was filled with various tribes. Various. Tribes. That were eventually unified under Genghis Khan. There were tens of thousands of them when they first started their raids into China.

Nor did they fight a unified China. The China they faced at the time was broken up into numerous dynasties. When he eventually finished off the Xia, he had almost 200,000 men. Truly, what a mighty general leading a handful (you must have huge hands) in triumph over their enemies!

On Xia, he didn't invade, at first, he spent years raiding it, weakening Xia, its armies and gathering renown and more mongols to himself before finally invading, he couldn't even conquer Xia as he didn't know how to take a city, Xia willing entered Khan's empire (and they later betrayed them causing Khan to attack Xia with said nearly 200,000 men).

It also helped that many of China's own soldiers and citizens were leaving their own countries and joining up with the Mongols of their own free will (The Khans were eventually able to set up an entire central force just from deserters).

This, of course, glosses over the fact that Genghis Khan never conquered China.

The only Chinese Dynasty he defeated were the Xia.

Ogedei Khan conquered Jin after Genghis was already dead.

In another half-centry, the Dali and Song were conquered by Kublai Khan. Around this time (1270-1300s), the Mongols were dealing with internal wars and being pushed back not only in the Middle East by the Mamluks (whom they tried to invade again but were beaten back, in fact, the golden horde ended up switching to a majority holding islamic belief), but their attempts into Eastern Europe were failing horribly.

I get you like Genghis, but wheel it back a bit a lot.

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Pipxeroth

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I don't know how many times I've argued this, but Khan by far.

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Asavar

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#71  Edited By Asavar

@pipxeroth: I just wish the OP was clearer in what he wanted. I want to say he wanted to do a battle on battle topic, which I would agree, Khan would take that. Alexander's army is way too far behind in technology nor are they prepared to face a foe like the Mongols. Such a battle would be a rout, the only way it would not be is if you reallllllllllly twerked the terrain to Alexander's favor and forced the Mongols to engage them instead of using their much greater mobility to outmaneuver them.

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Pipxeroth

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@asavar: Well I mean his question is "who was the better general", so I assume he's talking about tactics. Maybe "by far" isn't correct when just talking about that, but I'd definitely put Khan above Alexander regardless.

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CWChandler

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@overlordarthas said:

Alexander, Khan was a great general/warlord, but never the statesman.

I would argue that Alexander was actually the one who wasn't a statesman, but possibly better as a pure general than Genghis Khan. Genghis was an extraordinarily shrew politician and diplomat whose chief strength lay not in winning battles - although he was good at that too - but in securing alliances and manipulating people. The unification of the Steppes relied just as much on negotiation and political deception as it did on open warfare, whereas Alexander was basically just a bloody good conqueror.

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MisterGuyMan

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#74  Edited By MisterGuyMan

@asavar said:

Vs in what? Single combat? Armies? A military campaign? Empire size? Legacy? Culture impact?

@misterguyman:Lol what? Mongol was not a nice little tribe of like 300 people. Mongol was filled with various tribes. Various. Tribes. That were eventually unified under Genghis Khan. There were tens of thousands of them when they first started their raids into China.

Nor did they fight a unified China. The China they faced at the time was broken up into numerous dynasties. When he eventually finished off the Xia, he had almost 200,000 men. Truly, what a mighty general leading a handful (you must have huge hands) in triumph over their enemies!

On Xia, he didn't invade, at first, he spent years raiding it, weakening Xia, its armies and gathering renown and more mongols to himself before finally invading, he couldn't even conquer Xia as he didn't know how to take a city, Xia willing entered Khan's empire (and they later betrayed them causing Khan to attack Xia with said nearly 200,000 men).

It also helped that many of China's own soldiers and citizens were leaving their own countries and joining up with the Mongols of their own free will (The Khans were eventually able to set up an entire central force just from deserters).

This, of course, glosses over the fact that Genghis Khan never conquered China.

The only Chinese Dynasty he defeated were the Xia.

Ogedei Khan conquered Jin after Genghis was already dead.

In another half-centry, the Dali and Song were conquered by Kublai Khan. Around this time (1270-1300s), the Mongols were dealing with internal wars and being pushed back not only in the Middle East by the Mamluks (whom they tried to invade again but were beaten back, in fact, the golden horde ended up switching to a majority holding islamic belief), but their attempts into Eastern Europe were failing horribly.

I get you like Genghis, but wheel it back a bit a lot.

1. What's your point in trying to downplay the huge numerical inferiority of the Mongol tribes and the settled societies? Also, I never said Genghis Khan conquered China. I'm just explaining in no uncertain terms, the scope of the enemies that he was surrounded with. Why exactly are you downplaying 200,000 men? Ok so he had 200,000 men. And...? IIRC the Song alone could field 650,000 at one time. That's just a single enemy the Mongols. The Mongol population at the time was a measly 750,000 according to their own census records. To compare, the Jin alone, not even their most populous enemy had 50 million. So explain that away please. A tiny unified band of 750,000 nomad herdsmen conquered more people and land under a single leader than the entirety of Rome in its entire millenia+ of existence. Oh and naturally this also dwarfs the military scope of Alexander the Great's achievements too. Alexander at Guagamela is always emphasized by the huge numerical inferiority of the Macedonians. That's par for the course for the Mongols.

2. Why are you holding it against Genghis Khan that he was able to draft the forces of his enemies to fight in his side? The impetus of these defections has always been military victory. Exploiting military victories to acquire the resources for more victories is now a reason to hold against the man...? How? Why? That's a military skill so it's to his favor not a reason to hold against him. In the East they have a concept called the Mandate of Heaven and the Mongols had to earn it by repeatedly destroying the enemies of his people. Thus people began to believe that he was appointed by heaven itself to rule and thus defected. Naturally this is due from actual military acumen whereas you just seem to imply that these people just wound up in the Mongols' hands from some fortuitous coincidence. I'm also pretty sure Alexander used conquered troops too though I'd have to double check. Should we use this against him now too? I honestly have no clue what the point of this argument is either way.

3. Why are you talking about Kublai Khan? I suspect you just want to nitpick achievement to downplay Genghis Khan's. Either way, his immediate successor was Ogedai Khan and the empire was strong under the immediate successor of Genghis Khan. Not that this matters anyway. It's completely irrelevant. Did I ever talk about the immediate collapse of Alexander's empire after his death? That's because it's not only irrelevant, I'm not going to use what happened after his death against him. We're comparing Alexander and Genghis. Not Ogedai and Antipater. Not Kublai and Ptolemy.

4. Your entire post was just nitpicking at Genghis Khan's achievements. He STILL conquered more land and people than Alexander while starting off literally as a slave. Genghis Khan still wins the comparison.

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Asavar

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#75  Edited By Asavar

@misterguyman: What an odd way of formatting, but I will continue with it.

1. Lol really? I was trying to downplay them? Me? When they had hundreds of thousands of just their own men not counting their Chinese levies and recruits? Me? Mister "Mongol was just a small tribe!" That is rather funny.

Because the training and skill of Chinese troops was pitiful (Also love how you used the Song despite the Genghis not being the one to conquer the Song, the Song were in far south China. Genghis fought in the north). Your average Chinese soldier was nothing more then a conscripted farmer. Any decently trained and equipped force could defeat a Chinese equivalent that was far larger. It tends to help when the Mongols are also extremely mobile and are not going to engage in large slug outs like the Chinese love to do unless they are weakened down enough already. I would fully expect a Roman Legion to beat down three times its number of Chinese troops, the fact that the Mongols, a far more advanced force, could do so isn't surprising, of course, this isn't talking about the difference in logistics. It was easier for the Mongols to move around (hence why they usually only used armies around 70kish in size such as when they attacked Jin), and it took a great deal of effort to mobilize hundreds of thousands of men, especially, for China at the time. (Stop and consider how much food it would take to keep the Chinese forces going... yeah, just think about it. The Mongols designed their military around being able to coop with this, the Chinese did not.)

The Mongols and Chinese didn't fight many battles in the open field, most of it were sieges where the Chinese hunkered down and waited because they couldn't face the Mongols in open field, kinda hard to do that against a heavily mounted force. Oh, this is hilarious, are you one of those people that think size means everything? Well, when you get to the bottom, prepare to be surprised.

But, let us examine this. The Mongols had 30ish thousand men against hundreds of thousands of Chineses. This seems oddly reminiscent of Alexander who had 30-50 thousand men facing down the hundreds of thousands of Persians... how odd, it is almost like both men went in with far outnumbered forces, but with superior troops, and won. Crazy.

2. It was to further show how far off you were about 'A single tribe' doing all this, when this is so wrong it isn't even funny. What you did was either ignorance or blatantly hiding facts to make Genghis out to be greater than what he was (which is ridiculous, Genghis doesn't need anyone embellishing his feats. They speak for themselves.) Yes, Alexander also did this as well. Using local troops to support his own. I can't think of a large conquering force that didn't do this. However, the Mongols were not nearly as outnumbered as you were attempting to make people believe, especially, as the years went on. Just like with Alexander, the initial invasion was when the number disparity was the highest, both overcame that number difference using tactics, superior equipment and troops.

3. I was going over the conquest of China. When they were so 'desperately outnumbered as a small tribe'. I talked about Ogedai and his conquest of Jin. I am going to assume you just didn't bother to remember that tidbit, but I will post it here for your enjoyment.

Ogedei Khan conquered Jin after Genghis was already dead.

What it was doing was saying how most of the conquest of the Mongols was not done under Genghis. It was done under his successors. Genghis got the ball rolling, and for that, he should be, rightly so, lauded, but he is not the God-King Conquering of the Mythical Mongol Hype that people seem to think he was.

4. My entire post was talking down a Genghis Fanatic. The Mongols were an incredibly fighting force for their day, they accomplished great things such as their control over the silk road, their military organization and tactics as well as their impressive rapid expansion, but I fight the Hype and look at the Real. Genghis Khan wasn't the best thing since sliced bread, he didn't conquer the world, his sons and grandson conquered the world.

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That was the size of the Mongol empire at his death. Impressive, but not 22% of the world like his kids would do, and barley bigger (perhaps not even) then Alexander's empire, and Alexander did it in a fraction of the time.

@pipxeroth: I would say Alexander would have a harder time adapting to Genghis' tactics then Genghis would have adapting to Alexander's, not sure if that would make me say Genghis was a better tactician... Hm, that said, a lot of Alexander's tactics and battle plans were really his dad's, on second thought, I would also back Genghis.

Although neither are as good as good ol' Hannibal Barca in this regard.

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#76  Edited By MisterGuyMan

@asavar:

1. The few Hundred Thousands of the Mongols is honestly nothing compared to their opponents. Did you miss the part where the entirety of the Mongol population was under 750k? Ok so let's stick with army sizes since you don't want to acknowledge how tiny the actual population for the Mongols were. The Xia and Jin alone are about 1.5 million soldiers between them. Now add the Khwarizm and you're pushing 2 million soldiers across multiple fronts. Also, modern estimates place the numbers at Guagamela at 100,000 Persians against 50,000 under Alexander. So Alexander being outnumbered 2 to 1 was a huge deal yet somehow here you are trying to pretend a tiny Mongol population of under a million fighting a combined 100 million+ is not noteworthy? Or add up all the populations Alexander fought. It honestly doesn't matter. The Mongols were more outnumbered any way you slice it. How does that make any sense? Yes, Alexander was vastly outnumbered. Do you know who was EVEN MORE outnumbered? Genghis Khan.

Also please at least understand the scopes we're talking about:

In all, Genghis conquered almost four times the lands of Alexander the Great.

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/home/moslive/article-1308014/Ten-greatest-Historical-conquerors.html

You don't have to accept that figure either. At the very least Genghis Khan conquered 2 or 3 times more landmass than Alexander and he didn't need Daddy's army to do it either. Or if you want to compare how fast they conquered their empires we can:

Alexander the Great :13 years (averaging 430,000 sq km/year )

Ghenghis Khan :21 years (averaging 571,000 sq km/year )

https://www.quora.com/Who-was-the-greatest-conqueror-in-the-world-Alexander-The-Great-Genghis-Khan-or-Chandragupta-Maurya

So Genghis Khan conquered MUCH more than Alexander and he conquered it faster. He also didn't have the luxury of inheriting the greatest army in the world from his Dad, Philip, who almost never gets any credit.

2. The Mongols weren't as outnumbered as I make them out to be...? How so? I'm sorry but facts are facts. Mongolia's population was under 750,000. That's not an opinion. That's a fact. Opposing Empires (plural) were in the tens of millions. That again, is not an opinion. That is a fact. While we're talking about them can you cite your sources for how poorly trained the Chinese army was? Which Chinese army?

I also did some quick googling to see how outnumbered Alexander was in comparison. Greece had a population of around 6 million. The Achaemenid Persian Empire at it's peak had a population of 50 million. So basically I'd have to agree (even though I never even disagreed in the first place) that Alexander was outnumbered in his Persian conquest by a factor of 8. Of course that still pales in comparison to how the Mongols were outnumbered by the Jin alone by a factor of 46 (35 million Jin compared to 750k Mongols). So if you're going to downplay how ridiculously outnumbered the Mongols were, then Alexander the Great was walking around with God Mode on or something. It's all in the comparisons and Genghis Khan wins the comparison. Easily.

3. Why are you talking about his sons? Yeah his sons conquered a lot. So...? Do you know who conquered more than Genghis' sons? Genghis Khan. He conquered more people and land than anyone in history. He also conquered it faster than Alexander the great. We don't NEED to talk about the conquests of his descendants. Just take Genghis Khan's accomplishments and ONLY Genghis Khan's accomplishments. He beats Alexander easily by any metric you want to use. He started out with less. He conquered more. He conquered it faster. You're shifting goalposts pretty blatantly here. You said he didn't conquer the world. Ok... and...? What does that prove?

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Asavar

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#77  Edited By Asavar

@misterguyman: I suggest you check your sources.

Those numbers that:

https://www.quora.com/Who-was-the-greatest-conqueror-in-the-world-Alexander-The-Great-Genghis-Khan-or-Chandragupta-Maurya

Ran are outright wrong.

No Caption Provided

That was the map they attempted to use. Do you see any problems with it? go on, I will give you time to look. Examine it. Turn it around in your mind..... Consider what you know of Genghis Khan... think about it some more. Look at the conquered lands...

Yeah, this is not the correct map.

No Caption Provided

^ That is the correct map. You know how I know? (Besides the fact this one is from National Geographic and date stamped?)

Your map taken from that dubious site shows the Mongol Empire owning the Song Dynasty (southern China), you know, that place that didn't fall till 1279. Over 50 yearsafter Genghis Khan had passed away.

Or how they have stretched into Siberia and conquered large parts of Russia.... you know what the problem with that is? The invasion of Kiev and Russia happened in 1237. A decade afterGenghis Khan had passed away.

But the biggest one? The one that should have made you go, hey, wait a minute.... was the GOLDEN HORDE. The Golden Horde did not become a thing till after Genghis Khan had died as he split control of his forces and land between his sons who then went on to conquer. One of which was the Golden Horde. Genghis Khan never pushed into Baghdad, when he had died, the Mongols were just starting to push into the Middle East.

Learn to double check your sources (It is sad when a dubious site like you used has to use the size of the Mongol Empire near its height to show how he conquered more land, and faster, then Alexander the Great... you know, despite the fact that half the land they show was never conquered by Genghis Khan. Whoops.). On this, I am highly curious as to where this 750k number comes from since most estimates puts Mongols population at the time to be well over a million.

I am going to give you a chance to go over your sources, pay attention to them, and then come back.

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MisterGuyMan

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#78  Edited By MisterGuyMan

How about we just forget the map and just focus on the actual numbers? I never cited the map. I cited the figure. Also I honestly suggest that you just stop arguing over pennies in an argument over dollars. Are you really going to argue against the fact that Genghis conquered more land than Alexander?

Here:

Between 1206 and his death in 1227, the Mongol leader Genghis Khan conquered nearly 12 million square miles of territory—more than any individual in history.

http://www.history.com/news/history-lists/10-things-you-may-not-know-about-genghis-khan

How about this?

◾1227: Genghis Khan's death; Mongol leaders returned to Mongolia for kuriltai. The empire at this point covered nearly 24 million km², about four times the size of the Roman or Macedonian Empires.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Timeline_of_the_Mongol_Empire

Right under that quote is a a map labeled "Mongol Empire in 1227 at Genghis' death" so.... yeah. This honestly isn't a real discussion. Don't like those figures? Ok... so cite your own. Then compare it to Alexander's conquests. Why are we wasting time here? I have no problem using a figure you provide. Why? It's because I know already that this is a question of how much more land Genghis Khan conquered compared to Alexander. You are arguing that this is a question of if. So go ahead. Tell me what figure you want to use. We can. It's not a big deal honestly.

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Asavar

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#79  Edited By Asavar

@misterguyman: If you are going to respond to me, tag me.

How about we just forget the map and just focus on the actual numbers? I never cited the map. I cited the figure. Also I honestly suggest that you just stop arguing over pennies in an argument over dollars. Are you really going to argue against the fact that Genghis conquered more land than Alexander?

Those numbers were wrong. They based those numbers on a map and conquest Genghis Khan never did.

They gave him credit for conquest that happened fifty years after he died, so yes, I expect you to find credible sources. Ones that aren't full of cow manure. That used those numbers to purposely screw the end result.

Arguing over pennies in an argument over dollars? You mean the fact you used misinformation and a dubious site to provide false evidence? That isn't arguing over pennies, that brings all of your 'evidence' into question, so yes, I am going to demand to see every source you have now to ensure it doesn't happen again.

The entire reason I am debating you is because of this. This constant misinformation and over-exaggeration of Genghis' achievements. This isn't pennies, this is the ENTIRE DEBATE.

Between 1206 and his death in 1227, the Mongol leader Genghis Khan conquered nearly 12 million square miles of territory—more than any individual in history. - www.History.com

^ That one is acceptable. It comes from a reputable history site. Unlike the wika one you provided (seriously, at least go to the reference section and get it from there.)

Do you know why that is 12 million while the others are 24? Because the others are wrong and use the same map that poor site you used earlier did. Gave him credit for land he didn't take.

Right under that quote is a a map labeled "Mongol Empire in 1227 at Genghis' death" so.... yeah. This honestly isn't a real discussion. Don't like those figures?

I have posted corrections to them and pointed out where you were wrong numerous times.

Ok... so cite your own.

I have.

Then compare it to Alexander's conquests.

Oh? Why are we doing this? Unless you seem to think this is about me debating Alexander wins? Which I never said (I said the opposite, funny enough, in post that I wrote to you at the bottom to another user), what I am debating on is your gross misrepresentation of facts.

Why are we wasting time here? I have no problem using a figure you provide. Why? It's because I know already that this is a question of how much more land Genghis Khan conquered compared to Alexander.

Because, up to about five minutes ago, you were still giving shoddy examples from dubious sites? (Still kinda are. A wikia man? Come on. At least go to the bottom and use the reference section).

Perhaps you should reread the debate we have had. I never said, not implied, Alexander wins or that Genghis Khan doesn't win (I said the opposite, funny enough) in terms of a military battle or empire size. What I am fighting against is your gross misrepresentation of facts in order to skew something to your personal views which is a very poor thing to do that I frown upon and so go out of my way to correct, as I am doing now. (Since you are finally using the correct maps and reputable sites, we are starting to make progress).

You are arguing that this is a question of if. So go ahead. Tell me what figure you want to use. We can. It's not a big deal honestly.

Which figure? I already provided you with the correct map of Genghis Khan's conquest till the time of his death.

There is no question of If. Agian, you are assuming I am debating for Alexander (No idea why people on here do that. They must just not read thoroughly), I am debating against your dubious debating tactics that you were employing earlier.

So, to summarize what this has been about (since you apparently don't know), you gave wrong information. You grossly exaggerated facts. You purposely skewed information to your whims. I took exception to that and went out of my way to correct you. That is what this is about. You are finally starting to use the right maps and numbers (although, again, don't use a Wikia, if you must, use the reference section to find the source of the information).

Still want to see your source for the Mongols only having 750k people.

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Pipxeroth

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@asavar:

I would say Alexander would have a harder time adapting to Genghis' tactics then Genghis would have adapting to Alexander's, not sure if that would make me say Genghis was a better tactician... Hm, that said, a lot of Alexander's tactics and battle plans were really his dad's, on second thought, I would also back Genghis.

Well I mean in a fight I don't even think tactics would matter that much due to the Mongol's tech advantage. Alexander often relied a lot on the quality of his troops moreso than just tactics alone.

Although neither are as good as good ol' Hannibal Barca in this regard.

Hannibal is overrated imo.

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Asavar

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#81  Edited By Asavar

@pipxeroth: Well I mean in a fight I don't even think tactics would matter thatmuch due to the Mongol's tech advantage. Alexander often relied a lot on the quality of his troops moreso than just tactics alone.

Yeah, they really wouldn't. The tech gap is way too large, especially in ranged warfare.

Hannibal is overrated imo.

Not at all. If anything, he barely gets mentioned which is a shame. His tactical ability was astonishing and was replicated by many other commanders in history because they were still effective (many are still effective to this day).

His.... campaign ability is more dubious as he couldn't quite capitalize on his victories as much as he could have, but his abilities, as a field commander, are incredibly impressive.

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Man I'm glad someone ELSE typed in all the research! Yes, Khan wins this "competition" easily.

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Alexander, he was...great

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Not at all. If anything, he barely gets mentioned which is a shame. His tactical ability was astonishing and was replicated by many other commanders in history because they were still effective (many are still effective to this day).

His.... campaign ability is more dubious as he couldn't quite capitalize on his victories as much as he could have, but his abilities, as a field commander, are incredibly impressive.

Eh, I wouldn't say he barely gets mentioned. Most things I read about generals and whatnot there is always some mention of him. Most of the time his victories came from just knowing his opponents and having an army that could counter it quite easily. While his victory at Cannae was extremely impressive, don't get me wrong it most certainly is, I just don't see how it's a greater feat of tactics than any of the times Genghis performed a feigned retreat against a larger force and utterly demolished them.

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#85  Edited By Cruel_Cosmos

Temujin easily.

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#86  Edited By MisterGuyMan
@asavar said:

Those numbers were wrong. They based those numbers on a map and conquest Genghis Khan never did.....The entire reason I am debating you is because of this. This constant misinformation and over-exaggeration of Genghis' achievements. This isn't pennies, this is the ENTIRE DEBATE.

Sigh... Again. Forget the map. I don't care about the map. The actual figure used was12.5 million square km. The figure you found acceptable is 12 million square miles. That's a difference of 4%. It doesn't change anything in any significant way.

@asavar said:

^ That one is acceptable. It comes from a reputable history site. Unlike the wika one you provided (seriously, at least go to the reference section and get it from there.)

Do you know why that is 12 million while the others are 24? Because the others are wrong and use the same map that poor site you used earlier did. Gave him credit for land he didn't take.

Which figure are you talking about? The calcs I cited used 12.5 million square miles. The acceptable figure you liked is 12 million. If you're referring to this: "1227: Genghis Khan's death; Mongol leaders returned to Mongolia for kuriltai. The empire at this point covered nearly 24 million km², about four times the size of the Roman or Macedonian Empires." then the difference is that it's measured in square kilometers. Everything else has used miles. That's 15 million square miles. So naturally the only problem here is that the estimates vary which is only natural. They're all still placing Genghis Khan's conquests well above anything Alexander has done. Genghis Khan still laps Alexander the Great. It's what...? 3 times now instead of 4 times?

@asavar said:

Which figure? I already provided you with the correct map of Genghis Khan's conquest till the time of his death.

There is no question of If. Agian, you are assuming I am debating for Alexander (No idea why people on here do that. They must just not read thoroughly), I am debating against your dubious debating tactics that you were employing earlier....Still want to see your source for the Mongols only having 750k people.

I honestly don't care if you're arguing for Alexander. There are two points of contention. The first one I cited an original figure of 12.5 million square miles for Genghis Khan's conquests. Now we've agreed on an acceptable figure of 12 million square miles which is honestly insignificant. A second issue is that you apparently mistook another figure that was in square kilometers as a figure for square miles. Again, the differences in these figures is still insigificant to my point. My original point is still correct and honestly it's just an issue of differing estimates. Please stop trying to pretend like this is some huge conspiracy. The difference is negligible.

The second issue is that you disagree with my claim that the Mongols were grossly outnumbered. In your response you argued that their numerical disadvantage was comparable to the numerical disadvantage of Alexander in his campaigns. On this point, I am most certainly correct and your comparison with the Mongol situation to the Macedonians is simply inaccurate. They're not the same. The Mongols even if we only use the Jin Dynasty are much worse off than Alexander compared to Persia.

So yeah. I'm responding SPECIFICALLY to the responses you wrote. It doesn't matter if you're arguing for Alexander or Genghis Khan. You made certain points as you responded to me. I'm responding to those points.

Also here's my source:

In 1241, the Mongols conducted a census yielded a total of 97,575 ethnic Mongol troops and a population of of 723,910. This provides roughly 7.4 members per household. With this average of one soldier per seven people, in 1206 the population was an estimated 665,000. However, elsewhere in the empire the typical recruitment figure was one out of ten, for instance amongst the sedentary population of Iran, or even one in 20, as in China, and it seems odd that an army organized along decimal lines should have used anything other than a decimal recruiting method. Thus the population of Mongolia may have been closer to 950,000 people, perhaps topping one million.

The Mongol Art of War by Timothy May

I use the census figures because the other figures just makes assumptions that can't be proven. Even then if we use the higher figure the Mongols drew on a population of around a million. That's still a sixth of the population of Alexander's Greece. No matter how much you play with the numbers, the Mongols were grossly more outnumbered than the Greeks. I also checked the same book above and it places the Jin population at 50 million which is the same as the Persian Empire Alexander defeated. There's no getting around it. The Mongols, with their miniscule population was doing more than Alexander's more populated Greece against much more numerous opponents.

All my original arguments remain exactly the same. I don't mind giving evidence but it's worth noting that everything I argued originally is still correct. While we're at it are you still arguing that the Mongols weren't outnumbered? Remember when you literally laughed when I said they were small? What exactly are you arguing against now? We're kinda at the point where you either concede your original point where you disagreed with me, or you just explain how the Mongols weren't actually outnumbered despite the figures I cited.

While I'm asking I haven't seen your source for why the Chinese were supposed to be such terribly trained soldiers.

So, to summarize what this has been about (since you apparently don't know), you gave wrong information. You grossly exaggerated facts. You purposely skewed information to your whims. I took exception to that and went out of my way to correct you. That is what this is about. You are finally starting to use the right maps and numbers (although, again, don't use a Wikia, if you must, use the reference section to find the source of the information).

So in conclusion I'll respond to this. My facts are not incorrect. Genghis Khan GREATLY conquered more territory than Alexander the Great. The Mongols were GROSSLY outnumbered by a completely different level compared to Alexander the great. Genghis Khan DID MORE with FAR LESS despite having a MASSIVE DISADVANTAGE.

Every point you kept trying to nitpick as inaccurate, was in fact, accurate. When you kept trying to act like I was exaggerating Genghis Khan's feats, I proved they weren't exaggerations at all.

Since people are talking about their favorite generals:

  • Massively Overrated: Zhuge Liang
  • Overrated : Julius Ceasar
  • Underrated: Hannibal
  • Massively Underrated: Belisarius
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#87  Edited By john1565

Sorry to revive an old post but I can't understand why Genghis Khan got more votes than Alexander the Great! With a short life of 33 years, Alexander touched almost whole world! Just compare their footprint/ battles from the images :

Map for Genghis Khan. Source: http://www.wikitour.io/tours/genghis-khan
Map for Genghis Khan. Source: http://www.wikitour.io/tours/genghis-khan

Alexander the Great (in 33 years) .
Alexander the Great (in 33 years) .

Source: http://www.wikitour.io/tours/alexander-the-great

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deactivated-5b84aca03eae8

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this is tough.............genghis had the greater empire..........but alexander had the greater respect

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Alexander never lost a battle, Genghis did. Had Alexander lived to be the age that Khan did the world might be a very different place right now.

These are arguably the two greatest ever and they lived in very different times so it’s impossible to say for certain, but I give Alexander the edge.

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#92  Edited By JacobPeters

I vote Alexander the Great. I’m only necroing this thread because there’s not a lot of worthwhile discussions elsewhere on the net.

My reasons:

1) Genghis Khan wasn’t that much of a general. He only united the Mongols the way Muhammad united Arabia. It was two of his generals that did all the conquering - Batu Khan and Subutei - after whom the Mongols only rely on their feigned retreat and horse archery to win anything.

2) The Mongols were not as invincible as people think. They’re just as mythologized as Alexander. The Europeans and others lost against them because they had poorer tactics. They just charged into battle. The better armored knights had way lower casualties (one could take hundreds of arrows and be hit by fewer than 10 darts noncritically as Jean de Joinville notes in the 7th crusade where the Egyptians did the same). The crossbowmen with their shields actually fought off the Mongols at Legnica in their own right. And there was some siege in Germany that failed in the 1241 invasion. Austria defeated them as did Hungary once they adapted. So Alexander would’ve adapted....like he did with the Persians employing elephants. He would’ve figured out to use steel etc, we’re not comparing 325BC with 1225, we’re comparing one mind against another.

3) The feigned retreat was nothing new. Hannibal used it on the Romans at Cannae and the Greeks accidentally pulled it in Marathon. (the guy who earlier says Hannibal was better than Alexander - lul; if Scipio Africanus pwned Hannibal just by looking at what the other did, what do you think Alexander would’ve done? Hannibal himself rates himself below Alexander; and if Pyrrhus fought them to a standstill, he certainly was better than any Roman general). Sure, Scipio was brilliant, such as his flexible square advance in Spain that he just made up. but he obviously had to learn Hannibal’s gimmicks. And he was losing at Zama but Hannibal’s ally Masinissa had bailed on him earlier and his cavalry saved the day. If Hannibal sucked enough to have an army in Italy for like 10 years and not be able to besiege Rome and be defeated by a student of his tactics...)

4) Not only Alexander, but Philip his father defeated Scythian cavalry archers against his phalanx.

5) The only reason the Mongols conquered so much so quickly was because of their horses. They adapted, such as the use of catapults, but their reliance was mainly on their horse archery, feigned retreat, and organization, which if the Europeans could figure out how to fend off after 1241, so would have Alexander

6) Alexander the Great reconquered Greece in 6 months when it took his father who was a capable general 20 years.

7) Alexander the Great did impossible things and thrived on it: the conquest of Tyre; the siege of Gaza which he was told was impossible to take, he took after 3 or 4 tries. Porus is another example. He liked battle so much that even the bloody romans considered him bloodthirsty. He preferred to figure things out rather than go in with pride or dogmatically - eg figured out Bucephalus was afraid of his shadow. or when he finally figured out what to do at Gaugamela, he was so overconfident he overslept on the day of the battle.

8) The Mongols used divide/hit and run tactics. In the 1220’s when an alliance of Cumans and Kievan Rus of 50k came at them, the Mongols told the Cumans that they were brother nomads and had no fight with them and they went away. The Mongols then defeated the Kievs, and went back and destroyed the Cumans. Sure, they saved troops you say: Caesar’s divide and conquer. But if you compare Alexander’s reply that he didn’t want to steal a victory by attacking at night, who would you say was the better commander if he pulled it off?

[Sidenote] The whole Alexander vs China similar debate: if the Mongols could pull it off with ~100K horsemen, so could Alexander imo, with similar reasoning. I think he was maybe even with Napoleon, but Napoleon I think sometimes made some stupid errors (like Acre)

And yeah, I made an account just to post this, cuz so many seem impressed by big land conquests over other factors

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#94  Edited By MisterGuyMan

@jacobpeters said:
1) Genghis Khan wasn’t that much of a general. He only united the Mongols the way Muhammad united Arabia. It was two of his generals that did all the conquering - Batu Khan and Subutei - after whom the Mongols only rely on their feigned retreat and horse archery to win anything.

2) The Mongols were not as invincible as people think. They’re just as mythologized as Alexander. The Europeans and others lost against them because they had poorer tactics. They just charged into battle. The better armored knights had way lower casualties (one could take hundreds of arrows and be hit by fewer than 10 darts noncritically as Jean de Joinville notes in the 7th crusade where the Egyptians did the same). The crossbowmen with their shields actually fought off the Mongols at Legnica in their own right. And there was some siege in Germany that failed in the 1241 invasion. Austria defeated them as did Hungary once they adapted. So Alexander would’ve adapted....like he did with the Persians employing elephants. He would’ve figured out to use steel etc, we’re not comparing 325BC with 1225, we’re comparing one mind against another.

3) The feigned retreat was nothing new. Hannibal used it on the Romans at Cannae and the Greeks accidentally pulled it in Marathon. (the guy who earlier says Hannibal was better than Alexander - lul; if Scipio Africanus pwned Hannibal just by looking at what the other did, what do you think Alexander would’ve done? Hannibal himself rates himself below Alexander; and if Pyrrhus fought them to a standstill, he certainly was better than any Roman general). Sure, Scipio was brilliant, such as his flexible square advance in Spain that he just made up. but he obviously had to learn Hannibal’s gimmicks. And he was losing at Zama but Hannibal’s ally Masinissa had bailed on him earlier and his cavalry saved the day. If Hannibal sucked enough to have an army in Italy for like 10 years and not be able to besiege Rome and be defeated by a student of his tactics...)

4) Not only Alexander, but Philip his father defeated Scythian cavalry archers against his phalanx.

5) The only reason the Mongols conquered so much so quickly was because of their horses. They adapted, such as the use of catapults, but their reliance was mainly on their horse archery, feigned retreat, and organization, which if the Europeans could figure out how to fend off after 1241, so would have Alexander

6) Alexander the Great reconquered Greece in 6 months when it took his father who was a capable general 20 years.

7) Alexander the Great did impossible things and thrived on it: the conquest of Tyre; the siege of Gaza which he was told was impossible to take, he took after 3 or 4 tries. Porus is another example. He liked battle so much that even the bloody romans considered him bloodthirsty. He preferred to figure things out rather than go in with pride or dogmatically - eg figured out Bucephalus was afraid of his shadow. or when he finally figured out what to do at Gaugamela, he was so overconfident he overslept on the day of the battle.

8) The Mongols used divide/hit and run tactics. In the 1220’s when an alliance of Cumans and Kievan Rus of 50k came at them, the Mongols told the Cumans that they were brother nomads and had no fight with them and they went away. The Mongols then defeated the Kievs, and went back and destroyed the Cumans. Sure, they saved troops you say: Caesar’s divide and conquer. But if you compare Alexander’s reply that he didn’t want to steal a victory by attacking at night, who would you say was the better commander if he pulled it off?

[Sidenote] The whole Alexander vs China similar debate: if the Mongols could pull it off with ~100K horsemen, so could Alexander imo, with similar reasoning. I think he was maybe even with Napoleon, but Napoleon I think sometimes made some stupid errors (like Acre)

And yeah, I made an account just to post this, cuz so many seem impressed by big land conquests over other factors

1. Genghis Khan was a better general than Alexander. He rose upwards to the ranks of Mongol warlords based entirely on merit. Had he not been an excellent commander then he would have been killed by the multipe competing tribes that were vying against him. And for his entire rise in Mongolia, he was outnumbered and represented a threat to the established hierarchy based on clan. And once he consolidated his power he turned a backwater tribe of nomads into what was the greatest military the world had ever seen. I'm sorry but any argument saying that he was anything but one of the greatest generals in history is purely wrong.

2. This is also not true. Genghis Khan's military machines fought the greatest militaries of his time, not just Europe. Europe was a military backwater actually and barely worth conquering. The Mongol military machine adapted to and defeated more modes of warfare than Alexander did as well.

3. Hannibal is a PERFECT example of how far better the Mongols were at warefar because if allowed to be in Hannibal's postion in the second Punic Wars, Genghis Khan would have destroyed Rome. The Romans couldn't beat Hannibal in the field so avoided outright combat in favor of harassment. Hannibal's allies were attacked instead and his logistical support was threatened. This is a battle of initiative and the Mongols simply would not have allowed it. They practiced a Nomad tradition called the Nerge where they corralled animals into a single spot to make slaughter easier. They did this as a military strategy too where they raised towns and villages and forced them into cities to burden their logistics. The Romans would never have the initiative to strike back and superior Mongol scouting and mobility ensures that any land battle would always favor the Mongols.

4 & 5. There's really no 'figuring out' the Mongol mobility. Saying people beat the Scythian cavalry so they could beat the Mongols is like saying people beat random medieval shield walls so they could beat the Romans. The problem with this matchup is Mongol logistics. An infantry army, even with cavalry, moves at the speed of their slowest unit. Civilized cavalry required an enormous amount of additional feed for their horses which explains why most of a civilize army was composed of infantry. That's means a long and vulnerable line of logistics that requires additional protection. And normal armies needed hours to array itself for battle. There was always a distinct line of separation between tactics and strategy because fighting was so distinct from movement. Mongol mobility though changes the entire nature of battle. Where ancient and medieval armies marches in straight lines because of logistical needs, Mongol armies fought more like modern armies and they could press across multiple points along an extended front. Armies were in direct communication hundreds of miles away mid battle. The difference between tactics and strategy was much more blurred.

6. Philip conquered Greece. Alexander put down a rebellion. Those are not in any way similar. It should be noted that Philip forged the military that Alexander used for his glory and Philip pushed Macedon from a nothing Greek City to the powerhouse that Alexander inherited. Genghis Khan is a combination of both of them and he started off as a slave.

7. No one's doubting what Alexander did as anything but impressive but what Genghis Khan did was even more impressive. He out-conquered Rome and Alexander combined by a factor of 3 or 4. And whereas Rome and Alexander had better militaries to start with, Genghis Khan made his military from scratch.

8. The Mongols actually. What you're describing is nothing new to even Alexander. He opted to conquer and pacify Egypt first before going into Persia specifically to protect his flank and cement his supply line. The difference is that the Mongols could do this on a much bigger scale and on a much faster timeline. Alexander had to secure his flank in Egypt first then continue his invasion of Persia. He could not do both. As a point of comparison, the Mongols invaded Poland just so they could secure their flank as they invaded Hungary, their primary target. These armies were also in constant contact. This also highlights the weaknesses of an infantry army compared to the Mongols. The Mongols could live off the land and their mobility made them hard to pin down. Alexander's logistical needs limited where he could go and his infantry speed limited how fast he could go.