Image of the Mongol empresses of the Yuan dynasty. Image Credit:

The land that constitutes modern-day Mongolia has been ruled over by several dynasties during its history, but perhaps none so famous as Genghis Khan and the formation of the Mongol Empire in the thirteenth century. The Mongol Empire was the largest contiguous land empire in history. The khan’s female counterparts are known as khatuns, and ruled alongside their husbands until the complete collapse of the khanates in the eighteenth century.

You can find out more about some of Mongolia’s khatuns below, and in our blog post by Katia Wright here!


Broadbridge, Anne F. Women and the Making of the Mongol Empire. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2018

De Nicola, Bruno. Women in Mongol Iran: The Khatuns, 1206-1335. Edinburgh: Edinburgh University Press, 2017

Weatherford, Jack. The Secret History of the Mongol Queens: How the Daughters of Genghis Khan Rescued his Empire. New York: Broadway Books, 2010.

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