Identity Analysis Paper on Asian Studies

Identity Analysis Paper on Asian Studies

During ancient time, all the people used to travel from one place to another in the world. Not only the current generations enjoy travelling but the ancient generations also liked this hobby. In fact, people travel with particular reasons, which are pertinent. The reasons for travelling by the ancient generations were numerous and various. The trade was one of the reasons, why businessmen traveled long distances. Other reasons included the following: searching for pastures, looking for land appropriate for farming and many others.

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During the period of colonization, people frequently travelled because of special interest of different people from different nations. The reasons for travelling were specific to particular groups. Thus, people travelled for different reasons that were of high importance at that time. For example, people travelled extensively to spread Christianity around the world and to collect the raw materials needed for industrialization. Travelling can be performed using various means of travel, for example, people could just walk in groups. Other people use donkeys and horses in caravans and other means of travel to explore the world. This paper provides the comparison of the means of travel employed by John of Plano Carpini, William of Rubruck and Marco Polo. Moreover, the paper discusses how the travel affected the status of these famous people.  The paper also identifies the factors that account for the military successes of the Mongols through the course of the 13th century in Western Asia, Europe and East Asia.

John of Plano Carpini was one of the disciples of Saint Francis of Assisi. Plano Carpini was the last in the rank during the invasion in Mongolia in the parts of Eastern Europe in 1214. In fact, the leadership of Mongol Empire was threatened. The Pope Innocent IV introduced a formal catholic church to the Mongols, which was met with protests because of the invasion in the land that belonged to Christians.

The travel of Plano Carpini started from Lyon, which was the residence of the Pope. Stephen of Bohemia, who was left behind near Kiev, accompanied Plano Carpini (Mandeville, 2013). Benedykt Polak, who worked as an interpreter, joined Plano Caepini at Wroclaw. In fact, John of Pian de Carpine gave a name to two rivers. Plano Carpini used to travel and meet different groups of people on his way that joined him sometimes. The groups of different people greatly helped the traveler in interpretation. Plano Carpini was travelling with the purpose of spreading Christianity. In fact, the journey was very long and the faith of the travelers even met some resistance (Valtrová, 2010). The groups of people Carpini was travelling with found the pope at Lyon and provided a comprehensive report on the work done. Actually, the report was written in the form of a letter and delivered to the Pope. After the creation of the report, Plano Carpini was rewarded with the title of archbishopric of Primate in Dalmata. After the reward, Plano Carpini was sent as legate to Louis IX in France. In fact, Plano Carpini lived there only for five years because of the hardship of the long journey. Unfortunately, Plano Carpini died in 1252.

William of Rubruck was a missionary and an explorer. William of Rubruck was born in Flanders around 1220. In fact, he travelled around the Mongoi Empire in Asia before returning to Europe. The great mission of William of Rubruck was to convert Tatars to Christianity. The missionary followed the same route, which was explored by Plano Carpini in his first journey. Actually, William of Rubruck also used the interpreters, when he was travelling to Mongol Empire. The Empire was of a great interest to the majority of missionaries at that time. Bartolomeo da Cremona, who was also known as the Gosset, was one of the interpreters in the team of William of Rubruck.

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When William of Rubruck reached the town Crimean of Sudak, his journey was facilitated by using carts and oxen. After a few days, the missionary met the ruler of Khanate, who sent William to his father, Batu Khan, to the town near Volga. The Mongol ruler refused to be converted to Christianity. However, despite refusal, William and his companions continued the journey to Great Khan using horses. William of Rubruck and his team were met with warmth and good attitude. Thus, William converted many Muslims and Chinese to Christianity. In fact, William precisely described the markets and temples of the city. When the mission of William was completed, he set out the journey back home together with his team. The journey was very long and complicated, but the travelers never surrendered. In fact, they returned back home and created a report that motivated the king William to start another mission. Actually, William of Rubruck was a good observant and an extremely good writer. What is important, the missionary used to ask many questions during the journey. Since the fourth missionary, his work was exceptional in terms of the number of people, who were converted to Christianity.

The travel of Marco Polo took place between the years 1276 and 1291; he spent much time at the residence of Kublai Khan (Polo & Masefield, 2011).  Marco Polo started his journey at Venice in 1271. In fact, the total travel took him approximately 3 years before the arrival at Cathay (north China). Marco Polo travelled with his father and uncle. The companions of Marco Polo had travelled to China before and, thus, they performed the role of translators.  In the north China, the traveler met Kublai Khan, who was the grandson of Genghis Khan. In the early 1291, Polo and his companions left China and returned to Venice in 1295.

In fact, John of Plano Carpini, William of Rubruck and Marco Polo exploted different means of travel. Plano Carpini was travelling alone. Plano could search for the interpreters, when he needed them for a specific place of exploration, but he left the translators, as he needed to continue his journey. Plano was travelling by walking and, thus, he could not take the interpreters in his journey. Actually, the travel was so long and complicated that he died immediately after completing his mission.

William of Rubruck was travelling using caravans. In fact, many people accompanied William, as he was travelling using carts and oxen. Moreover, he and his companions even used horses at one point of the travel. The team of William consisted of more than two people. Actually, The King Khanate provided William of Rubruck with official escort at one point of the journey.

Marco Polo travelled in a group with a few people. The history proclaims that Marco Polo was travelling in the company of his father and his uncle (Polo & Masefield, 2011). The relatives performed the role of the translators, since they had been to China before. Marco Polo was travelling by walking and, thus, it took him a lot of time to complete his journey.

Actually, the travelling affected the missionaries in many ways. Firstly, they received the senior status in the church, for example, Plano was rewarded with the title of archbishopric. Secondly, the conditions of travelling were not favorable that caused many deaths  of the companions during the journey. Thirdly, the rugged terrain of the land greatly increased the time of the travel. For instance, it took 3 years for Marco Polo to travel to China and come back home that demonstrates that the journey was very long.

The military tactics of Mongol, which was known for the robust organization, made the Mongol Empire a very powerful empire that was able to conquer almost all the continent of Asia, some parts of Eastern Europe and the whole of Middle East (Landes, 2006).  The Mongol military was characterized by many factors that led to their successes during the 13th century. The factors mentioned above are explained below.

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Firstly, the military was characterized by high mobility. A single Mongol soldier had 3-4 horses that made the soldier travel at high speed for long time without becoming tired. In fact, the mobility increases the chances of becoming successful in the majority of missions. The process of gathering intelligence was very fast and the best terrain could be easily found to suit the Mongols.

Secondly, training and discipline of Mongols were at a very high level. High quality training was provided to the soldier. The armies actively practiced archery and horsemanship together with other tactics. The training of the army was performed continuously. Thus, the discipline among the Mongol soldiers was paramount.

Thirdly, the Mongols possessed effective communication systems such as postal-relay horse systems, which could easily transfer messages (Lane, 2006).

Fourthly, the Mongol soldier had a special type of clothing used for fighting. The costume was comprised of heavy coat and was also fastened by the leather belt, where the sword hanged.

Fifthly, the Mongol soldiers had weapons, which were more sophisticated than the weapons of their enemies. In fact, the weapons represented archers, spear, battle axes and many others. The weapons could be used to hurt the enemies that led to their demoralization. In fact, the Mongol army was very well armed (Lane, 2006). The weapons, which possessed great power, include Mongol bow, sword, fire weapon and gunpowder, catapults, machines and kharash.

Actually, the most important factor is training and discipline among the soldiers. The majority of the nations win the wars thanks to highly trained soldiers because skills and knowledge are important, when confronting an enemy. The training will provide tactics, how to use weapons and apply them during a mission. What is more important, a highly disciplined army is usually characterized by high level of loyalty. The loyalty will help in following the command of the majors. The obedience in the army makes the strategy work without any failure.

The history of the three missionaries has been briefly discussed. The missions of Plano, William and Polo are also analyzed in the paper. Moreover, the paper discusses the means of travel employed by each traveler i.e. Plano traveled alone by walking; William applied both caravans and official escort as a means of travel; and Polo traveled in a group of relatives. The paper has also discussed and analyzed the factors, which provided the military of Mongol with the success the wars, including high mobility, high level of training and discipline, strong and protective costumes, sophisticated weapons and good communication system. Actually, high level of training and discipline is the most important factor in the success of Mongol army.

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