Khutughtu Khan Kusala

Khutughtu Khan (Chinese: 忽都篤汗; Mongolian: Хутагт хаан, Hutagt haan, Qutuγtu qaγan), born Kuśala (Chinese: 和世剌; Mongolian: Хүслэн Höslen), also known by the temple name Mingzong (Emperor Mingzong of Yuan, Chinese: 元明宗; December 22, 1300 – August 30, 1329), was a son of Khayishan who seized the throne of the Yuan dynasty of China in 1329, but died soon after.[1] Apart from the Emperor of China, he is considered as the 13th Great Khan of the Mongol Empire, although it was only nominal due to the division of the empire.

Khutughtu Khan Kusala
Emperor Mingzong of Yuan
13th Khagan of the Mongol Empire
(Nominal due to the empire's division)
Emperor of China
Emperor of the Yuan dynasty
ReignFebruary 27, 1329 – August 30, 1329
CoronationFebruary 27, 1329
PredecessorJayaatu Khan Tugh Temür
SuccessorJayaatu Khan Tugh Temür
BornDecember 22, 1300
DiedSeptember 30, 1329(1329-09-30) (aged 28)
Onggachatu, Inner Mongolia, Yuan China
Mailaiti of Karluks
Mongolian: ᠬᠥᠰᠯᠡᠨ
Chinese: 和世㻋
Kusalaa/ Küsala(an)
Era dates
Tianli (天曆; "Heavenly Calendar", 1329)
Regnal name
Emperor Shuntian Lidao Ruiwen Zhiwu Dasheng Xiao (順天立道睿文智武大聖孝皇帝);
Khutughtu Khan (ᠬᠤᠲᠤᠭᠲᠤ ᠬᠠᠭᠠᠨ; 忽都篤汗)
Posthumous name
Emperor Yixian Jingxiao (翼獻景孝皇帝)
Temple name
Mingzong (明宗)
FatherKulug Khan

Early life and exileEdit

He was the eldest son of Khayishan (Külüg Khan or Emperor Wuzong) and a Mongol-Ikhires woman. Since the Khayishan administration was founded on the unstable balance between Khayishan, his younger brother Ayurbarwada and their mother Dagi of the Khunggirad clan, Khayishan appointed Ayurbarwada as Crown Prince on the condition that he would pass the status to Kuśala after succession.

However, after Khayishan's death Ayurbarwada succeeded to the throne in 1311. In 1320, Dagi, Temüder and other members of the Khunggirad faction installed Ayurbarwada's son Shidebala as the new ruler instead of Kuśala, because his mother came from the Ikhires clan, not the Khunggirad clan.

To ensure Shidebala's succession, Kuśala was rewarded with the title of king of Chou and relegated to Yunnan in 1316;[2] but fled to Esen Bukha-ruled Chagatai Khanate in Central Asia, as a pro-Khayishan official advised, after a failed revolt in Shaanxi. When the Chagatayid Khan Esen bukha heard that Kuśala was living near his realm, he came to greet him. After that, Kusala was backed by the Chagatayid princes.[3] While in exile in Central Asia, he married Mailaiti, a daughter of Temuder of the Qarluq.[4]

Brief accession and sudden deathEdit

Although the rival faction was purged by Yesün Temür Khan (Emperor Taiding) when Shidibala Khan (Emperor Yingzong) was assassinated, he remained in Central Asia. He extended his influence in his stronghold, which was located to the west of Altai Mountains.

In 1328, when Yesün Temür Khan died, a civil war known as the War of the Two Capitals erupted between Shangdu-based Ragibagh and Dadu-based Tugh Temür. The former was a son of Yesün Temür and was backed up the former Yesün Temür administration led by Dawlat Shah, and the latter was Kuśala's younger brother who was supported by the former Khayishan faction led by the Qipchaq commander El Temür and the Merkit commander Bayan, a governor in Henan. This ended in the victory of Tugh Temür since he secured support from most of the princes, aristocrats and warlords in the south of the Gobi Desert. Tugh Temür summoned his brother to come to Dadu.

At the same time, Kuśala, with support from the Chaghadayid leaders Eljigidey and Duwa Temür, entered Mongolia from the Tarbagatai region (in the Khangai Mountains). He also got support from princes and generals of Mongolia, and with overwhelming military power in the background, put pressure on Tugh Temür, who had already ascended the throne. Kuśala enthroned himself on February 27, 1329, north of Karakorum.[1]

Tugh Temür abdicated on April 3 the same year, and a month later El Temür brought the imperial seal to Kuśala in Mongolia, announcing Dadu's intent to welcome him. Kuśala responded by making Tugh Temür his heir apparent on May 15. Kuśala had proceeded to appoint his own loyal followers to important posts in the Secretariat, the Bureau of Military Affairs, and the Censorate.

Taking 1,800 men with him, Kuśala set out for Dadu. On August 26, he met with Tugh Temür in Ongghuchad (Onggachatu), where Tugh Temur had built the city of Zhongdu.[5] He suddenly died only 4 days after a banquet with Tugh Temür.[6] The Yuan shi states that the luckless Kuśala Khan died of violence.[7] It seems that Kuśala was poisoned by El Temür, who feared losing power to princes and officers of the Chagatai Khanate and Mongolia, who followed Kuśala.[8] Tugh Temür was restored to the throne on September 8.


Khutughtu Khan
Babusha Khatun

Khutughtu Khan had two wives who were Mailaiti, a descendant of the famous Qarluq chief, Arslan, who submitted to Genghis Khan and Babusha of the Naiman. They gave birth to two Mongol emperors, including Toghon Temür, the last Mongolian emperor who ruled China.

  • Parents:
    • Külüg, Wuzong (武宗 曲律汗; 4 August 1281 – 27 January 1311)
    • Concubine Shoutong (寿童妃子)
  • Wives and children:
    • Mailaiti (迈来迪; 1290's – 1320)
      • Toghon Temür, Huizong (惠宗 妥懽帖睦爾; 25 May 1320 – 23 May 1370), first son
    • Anchuhan (按出罕)
    • Yuelusha (月魯沙)
      • Princess Changguo (昌国公主)
    • Buyanhuludou (不顏忽鲁都)
    • Yesu (野蘇)
    • Tuohusi (脫忽思)
    • Babusha (八不沙; d. 1330)
      • Rinchinbal, Ningzong (寧宗 懿璘质班; 1 May 1326 – 14 December 1332), second son
    • Unknown
      • Princess Minghui Zhenyi (明慧貞懿公主), personal name Budaxini (不答昔你)

See alsoEdit


  • Ч.Далай – Монголын түүх 1260–1388
  • Д.Цэен-Ойдов – Чингис богдоос Лигдэн хутагт хүртэл монголын хаад
  1. ^ a b Herbert Franke, Denis Twitchett, John King Fairbank-The Cambridge History of China: Alien regimes and border states, 907–1368, p. 545.
  2. ^ Herbert Franke, Denis Twitchett, John King Fairbank-The Cambridge History of China: Alien regimes and border states, 907–1368, p. 542.
  3. ^ Yuan shi, 33. p. 694.
  4. ^ Andreas Radbruch-Flow cytometry and cell sorting, p. 1290.
  5. ^ Hsiao Kung-chin-Lun Yuan tai huang wei chi cheng wen ti, p. 33.
  6. ^ Yuan shi, 31. p. 700.
  7. ^ Yuan shi, 31. p. 701.
  8. ^ Fujishima Tateki-Gen no Minso no shogai, p. 22.
Khutughtu Khan Kusala
Born: 1300 Died: 1329
Regnal titles
Preceded by
Jayaatu Khan, Emperor Wenzong
Great Khan of the Mongol Empire
(Nominal due to the empire's division)

Succeeded by
Jayaatu Khan, Emperor Wenzong
Emperor of the Yuan dynasty
Emperor of China