The Mongolian empire was built over a long period of time in which the Mongols conquered various lands and countries, including China, Korea, Mongolia, Persia, and Thailand. This was done through the use of various strategies and tactics that proved to be successful over the course of time as the empire extended significantly. Of particular interest is the Persian-based sector of the Mongolian empire that was referred to as the khanate, which was led by Ahmed Tekuder from 1282 through 1284. He was the sultan and predecessor of his brother Abaqa Khan. Between him and his nephew Arghun Khan, conflict arose due to several reasons. This led to various effects that contributed to the legacy left behind by the two individuals. During the reign of Ahmed, various events transpired that fuelled the friction in the relationship that the two-family members shared. Therefore, this paper will analyze the rise to power of Ahmed through the origin of Hulegu, his father, as well as the causes of conflict between Arghun and Ahmed, which was the difference in religion and Ahmed’s pardon for his father’s supposed murderers. The paper will also analyze how the conflict occurred, ended, and the effects of the conflict. 

      The rise to power of Ahmed came as a result of the end of the rule of Hulegu, his father, who was the Mongol ruler of Iran. This occurred during the Il-Khanid dynasty, where Iran was conquered by the Mongols, and the Islamic world was subdued. Hulegu was a great ruler of the Mongols as he served as the fourth great khan who was appointed to extend and conquer the Mongol empire in the areas occupied by Islam. The Mongol army, ruled by Hulagu, marched for Baghdad, which was to be conquered, and under the command of Hulagu, the city was threatened from both sides with no means to escape (Morgan 132-140). During this siege, thousands of people who refused to surrender were killed as the Mongol army looted and destroyed various structures such as the library, palaces, and hospitals. After the conquest of Syria, the Mongols proceeded to conquer Syria with the collaboration of the Christians of the region. Part of the Ayyubid dynasty was conquered during this expedition. As a result of this success, the Mamluk sultan became the central power force. To neutralize this power and continue with the conquest, Hulegu went ahead to send a letter to the Mamluk demanding for the city to be opened; otherwise, it would be destroyed (Atwood 225). However, due to the insufficient food and fodder available, there was a withdrawal of these plans, and Hulegu departed for Mongolia to settle the succession conflict after the death of his brother Mongke. Once his other brother Kublai Khan became the Great Khan, Hulegu went into a civil war with Berke Khan, a Muslim convert seeking vengeance for Baghdad’s attack, therefore resulting in the alliance between himself and the Mamluks (Gearon 5). As a result, Hulegu was defeated in the first-ever open war between the Mongols and the territories that he conquered. Following attempts to form alliances with Europe, Hulegu failed. After his death, his son Abaqa Khan rose to power (Morgan 138). Abaqa Khan became the governor of Turkestan. Following the war between the Mongols of the Ilkhanate and those of the Golden Horde, it was present during Hulegu’s reign and continued to persist well into the reign of Abaqa. This led to the invasions of the Ilkhanate, which led to the death of the Golden Horde’s khan named Berke. Following this, Abaqa attempted to form alliances with the Christians of the West but these failed. Years later, he died due to excessive alcohol consumption, but it was suspected that his central minister of finance, Juvayani poisoned him. He was succeeded by his brother Ahmed.

During the rule of Ahmed, conflict ensued between himself and his nephew Arghun due to a number of reasons, one of them being the death of Abaqa Khan. Upon being enthroned as the Khan, Ahmed’s first move was to pardon one of the Juvayani brothers of the charges that had been forwarded, which accused him of embezzlement of state funds. The alleged involvement of the Juvayani brother in theft cost him his position in Baghdad’s government, which he was withdrawn from. However, upon Ahmed getting into a position of power, he cleared his name and restored him to his prior position, which was in the Baghdad government (Hope 92). However, this was not pleasing to Arghun. This is because Arghun believed that it was the Juyvani brothers who were responsible for the death of his father, Abaqa Khan. Arghun was of the notion that Juvayani poisoned his father. According to Aigle (71), he was his minister of finance, which led to Arghun carrying out further investigations on the matter to get to the truth of what actually happened. Therefore, Arghun went back to Baghdad to carry out his investigations, after which Juvayani died of a stroke. Therefore, the reinstating of the Juvayani brother was a point of conflict between Arghun and his uncle Ahmed as Arghun was of the belief that his father’s murderer was given privileges. In fact, he should have been punished not only for murder but for embezzlement as well.

Another possible point of conflict between Arghun and his uncle Ahmed may have been the fact that Ahmed converted to Islam. As Hulegu was a Buddhist by birth, so was his brother Ahmed. This Buddhist culture was also passed down to Arghun, who was a Buddhist (Pelliot 49). However, due to his Muslim mentor’s possible influence, Ahmed converted to Islam, and this was displeasing to the likes of Arghun as it may have been seen as a sign of disrespect to the religion of Buddhism, which was part of their heritage. (Gasimov & Azimli 15). He also attempted to educate and teach Islam to others, encouraging them to convert and join the growing fraternity. This was carried out in the Buddhist cultural society and was deemed disrespectful to the other individuals of the society. Therefore, this formed another reason behind the conflict between Arghun and Ahmed. Their belief and teachings may have changed, and this could have caused their rivalry.

Apart from religion, Arghun disagreed with the decision to release the Juvayani brother, who was previously accused of embezzling money as the minister of finance and the murder of the great Abaqa Khan, who was his father. This murder was suspected to be through poisoning that led him to his untimely death (Jackson, 198). Arghun was not pleased to hear this news as he was bitter that the individual who may have killed his father was released and pardoned by the deceased brother. This went against the interests of the family as Ahmed chose an individual to pardon who may have possibly killed his father. Therefore, not satisfied with the matter and how Ahmed cleared him of all accusations, Arghun sought allegiances with the nobles. These allegiances were sought after in a bid to contest the power and commands that were being issued by the ruler, who was his uncle. Upon hearing of the potential alliances that Arghun was making and with the suspicion that among these alliances was Ahmed’s half-brother, Ahmed was unhappy about this and decided to take action. Ahmed was threatened by his nephew’s actions, who sought to displace his authority, which did not sit right well with Ahmed. Ahmed’s outrage was because his half-brother, called Qonqurtai, was previously accused and arrested for conspiracy. Therefore, according to Ahmed, this was also an act of betrayal as it was a representation of the way family can turn their back on their own, plot against their own, and wish to see their own family fail and fall. The actions of Arghun further motivated Ahmed to go after his nephew, find him and bring him to justice, just like any other individual in the society who committed a wrongful act and required a punishment.

As the conflict between Arghun and Ahmed ensued, it was carried out in various ways to undermine the opposing party. Therefore, he sent Alinaq and an army of men consisting of approximately fifteen thousand to go against Arghun. Ahmed also followed the army together with his own army that consisted of Mongols, Armenians, and Georgians. However, despite the many army men who were taken to seize Arghun, he managed to escape and retreat to safety. Upon witnessing that he could be overpowered, Arghun attempted to have a truce with Ahmed. Ahmed refused this proposal despite the advice that came from the authorities, which consisted of informed councilors (Polo 849). Following negotiations on the truce that Arghun continued to make time and again, Ahmed finally gave in to the requests but under the single condition that Arghun would give up Gaykhatu, his brother, as a hostage. These conditions were accepted, and Arghun gave up his brother as he was accompanied by guards. Arghun’s brother was accepted by the opposing side as a sign of surrender, and it was expected that the situation would end. However, this was not the case as Ahmed continued pursuing Arghun by sending hostilities. This was not the fair action to be made, as the truce was already agreed upon by both parties – to the extent of Arghun giving up his brother.  Furthermore, this led to feelings of hate and resentment toward Ahmed as he was seen as being ruthless and with no mercy.

In addition to this, Arghun sought refuge in a fortress which was occupied by numerous individuals. However, a few days later, he was discovered and ordered to surrender to the authority of Alinaq, who was the General of the Army. Due to the resentment that was harbored by individuals toward Ahmed and his harsh and cruel commands, an individual named Buqa assisted Argun to escape (Hope 2016). Buqa saw this as the opportune moment to assist Arghun by setting him free from the capture of Alinaq. He achieved this by breaking into the camp where Alinaq was, setting Arghun free, and killing Alinaq. This led Ahmed to retreat, but this was not long before he was arrested and turned over to Arghun. Later on, Ahmed was executed, and Arghun took his place (Hope 2016). This signified the end of a rule led by Ahmed, a converted Buddhist of Hulegu’s bloodline. His death resulted from his actions against his nephew Arghun, and it ultimately led to his succession by the one person he was fighting against. This also marked the beginning of a new dynasty under Arghun, who took over after his uncle’s death who had fought against him and threatened his life. Therefore, this marked the start of a new beginning under the rule of Arghun.

The results of the conflict between Ahmed and Arghun were the death of Ahmed and the reign of Arghun, which occurred soon afterward. It also led to adversities within the appointment of various individuals into power. Buqa, who freed Arghun from the camp in which he was imprisoned, was appointed as the chief minister as well as Buqa’s brother, a noble in the high office (Uyar 378, Polo 203). As Arghun took his position very seriously, Buqa and his brother misused their positions, indulged themselves excessively, and ruled with arrogance. At the same time, arrogance led to them gaining many enemies. Buqa’s brother utilized his position wrongfully as he was based in Baghdad and ruled as he liked. He was accustomed to not paying his dues in the form of taxes and murdering some of the individuals who dared to critic his leadership and ways of the ruling (Uyar 380). Upon these realizations, Arghun conspired with other nobles to depose Buqa. Arghun carried out investigations into the taxes and collected enough to pay off the debt owed by Buqa. He went ahead to carry out the same investigation on Aruq, which led to the commencement of the control of Baghdad’s income, which was being mismanaged. Arghun replaced Aruq with another noble who was much more dependable. As Buqa realized the changes that were being carried out, he decided to hatch up a conspiracy plan to overthrow Arghun (Uyar 380 -386). This thought entailed him approaching Prince Jushkab, whom he promised a position at the throne, but in exchange, he would be appointed as a powerful ruler of the same empire. With Jushkab’s loyalty, he relayed this message back to Arghun, who then arrested Buqa on treachery and conspiracy accounts. Buqa was then persecuted and put to death as a result of his treachery. Other trustworthy individuals took up their positions later on. Therefore, the result of the initial conflict held between Arghun and his uncle Ahmed led to the rise in power of Arghun, who was a righteous leader and led by morals.

In conclusion, the records through sources are real, but exaggeration and fictional elements are mixed throughout the recording. For the conflict between Arghun and his uncle Ahmed, it was based on numerous factors. To get more background information about these parts of the history, it is necessary to acknowledge their ancestry and bloodline from the rule of Hulegu, who was the Mongolian ruler, as well as the father to Abaqa Khan and Ahmed. Abaqa Khan was the father of Arghun, who was initially displeased by the rule of his uncle. Hulegu was a great leader who led numerous expeditions and conquered numerous lands such as China, Korea, and Mongolia. He then passed on and was succeeded by this son Abaq Khan who was also a good leader but died an early death under the suspicion of poisoning. He was then succeeded by his brother Ahmed who was in conflict with his nephew Arghun. Ahmed, a Buddhist by birth, converted to Islam, and this was a possible point of conflict as it did not sit well with his nephew Arghun as he tried to teach and educate the society, therefore, converting them to Islam. Apart from this, upon Ahmed’s election as the new Ilkhan, the first command or action that he made was to clear the Juvayni brother from the accusation of embezzlement of funds that occurred as he was the minister of finance during the reign of Hulagu. In addition to this, the Juvayni brothers were also suspected of having poisoned Arghun’s father, Abaqa. This case did not sit well with Arghun and formed another point of conflict between himself and his uncle Ahmed. A pursuit then ensued where Ahmed began chasing down his nephew, and these attempts were unsuccessful as he was persecuted and killed. However, the conflict between the two led to some effects, such as realizing the true intentions of individuals such as Buqa and his brother, who misused the authority accorded to them by Arghun. Therefore, Arghun appointed better leaders to assist him in the ruling, and this was a success as his legacy was formed.