The Mother of Yuan Dynasty: Chabi Khatun
Necmettin Erbakan Üniversitesi, Sosyal ve Beşeri Bilimler Fakültesi, Tarih Bölümü, Konya/TÜRKİYE
Keywords: Chabi Khatun, Yuan Dynasty, Khubilai Khan, Mongol Empire, Tibetan Buddhism.
The second wife of Tolui’s son Khubilai Khan, Chabi Khatun, was the daughter of Alchi Noyan, nicknamed “the uncle of the empire”, from the Dei Secen family, one of the most important families in the Chinggis Dynasty. With her intelligence, resourcefulness, frugality, hard work and compassion, she came to the fore from the 1240s and became Khubilai’s most valued wife. Chabi Khatun, who was one of closest advisers of her husband during the process of his becoming a powerful member of the Mongol Empire, helped him to gain a significant advantage in the struggle for the throne with the advice she gave to Khubilai after Möngke Khan’s death. The Khatun, who had a great influence on the elimination of Khubilai’s younger brother Arıq Buqa, obtained the title of empress of the Yuan Dynasty in 1260. She gave birth to Khubilai Khan’s first four sons, Dorchi, Cimgim, Mangqala and Nomogan. Chabi Khatun, who stood out with fame of her family and personal talents, inherited Tibetan Buddhism in the early period, even though her family was of Shamanist. However, Chabi Khatun, who played a major role in Khubilai Khan’s conversion to this religion, made Tibetan Buddhism the official religion of the Yuan Dynasty. Until her death in 1281, she boldly expressed her views on all political, military, administrative and financial issues of the state, which were taken into account by Khubilai Khan.