The legacy of the Mongols has often been associated with their contributions to warfare and horror. A more realistic association would be their contribution to international trade and cultural exchange. Founding an empire ranging from Persia to China, Genghis Khan united a nomadic warrior. It was a society whose leaders waged successful war and increased their tribes' prosperity. But the Mongols also understood it would serve their purposes to maintain commerce and agriculture, and to cultivate the arts in order that the luxuries they coveted would be all the more readily available. Thematic chapters provide an accessible overview of the Steppe people from which Genghis Khan emerged, and chronicle his ascent as the Great Khan, as he subdued enemies and conquered lands to the east and west. This is followed by excellent overviews of the founding and cementing of Mongol rule in China - the Yuan Dynasty - and Persia. A concluding chapter provides a fresh perspective of the Mongol empire and demonstrates the relevance of this vast and influential period to the contemporary world. The book ends with useful materials for students and researchers, including sixteen biographical sketches of figures ranging from Qubilai Khan to famed Italian merchant and traveller Marco Polo. A score of annotated primary documents provide immediate access to the issues of the period through the eyes of the people living through them. Five maps, an annotated timeline, a glossary and annotated bibliography and several illustrations round out this engaging and valuable resource.