Fascicle Two

Records in the Pointed Script


Taizu 2


(Wanli 39, 1611)


(15) ¡ In the second month of the White Pig year, when Sure Kundulen Khan was fifty-three sui, he ordered a census of all the unmarried men in all the villages of all his territories.  Since, if he were to give a wife to [each of] the thousands of his men, there would not be enough women to go around, he dispensed goods from his storehouses and told them to buy their own wives.  To each man he gave twenty or thirty pieces of fine cotton cloth.

To two leaders of the Ningguta region, Sengge and Nikari, who had submitted to him, Sure Kundulen Khan had given forty suits of armor, and Sengge and Nikari had stored those forty suits of armor in Suifun. People from the territories of Urgucen Muren raided Suifun and carried off those forty suits of armor.  Following this, Sure Kundelen Khan dispatched a man from Hūrha named Bojiri to order that the forty suits of armor be loaded onto forty horses and returned to him.  But the people of Urgucen Muren did not render up the forty suits of armor that they had taken in their raid.  With this territory now in rebellion, when Sure Kundelen Khan (16)was fifty-three sui, in the seventh month of the same year, the khan entrusted his sons Abatai Taiji, Fiongdon Jargūci, and Šongkoro Baturu with command of a thousand soldiers and sent them off.  They attacked the region of Urgucen Muren and took complete control of it.  They took a thousand prisoners.

¡ After the people of Jakuta of the Hūrha gurun submitted to Sure Kundulen Khan, he presented them with thirty suits of armor. They took the armor that he gave them and handed it over to the Sahaliyan gurun, whose people hung it from trees and used it as target practice.  Then, Bujantai of the Ula ordered them to submit and they accepted the cloth he had sent.  In the twelfth month of that same Year of the Pig, three prominent men – the khan’s son-in-law Hohori Efu, along with Eidu Baturu and Darhan Hiya – were assigned two thousand troops and sent out on campaign. Having invaded the Hūrha territory, they besieged the walled town of Jakūta for three days. When they called on the enemy to submit, they did not, so they attacked and captured the town.  They killed a thousand people and took two thousand prisoners.  They forced the rest of the surrounding Hūrha region to submit, and they brought back in custody the two officials Tulešen and Erešen, along with five hundred households.

¡ In the fourth month of the Black Mouse year, when Sure Kundulen Khan was fifty-four sui, (17) Minggan beile of the Mongol gurun sent his daughter to Sure Kundulen Khan as a wife.

¡ Bujantai, who, having been captured in battle, had been spared his life although he deserved execution; Bujantai, who had been given three daughters, had thus become [Sure Kundulen Han’s] son-in-law three times over; Bujantai, who had seven times sworn an oath, changed his mind, and twice suddenly attacked the Hūrha people (gurun) who were subordinate to his foster father Sure Kundulen Khan, and led them away.  Further, Bujantai said that he would steal the daughter of Bujai beile of Yehe, whom his foster father, Sure Kundulen Khan, had visited and given a dowry of livestock.  Finally, Sure Kundulen Khan heard that Bujantai had, with a [blunt] bone-tipped arrow, shot his daughter Onje gege, whom he had given to Bujantai.  Enraged by this, on the twenty-second day of the ninth month of this same Mouse year, the army set out from the khan’s walled city.  On the twenty-ninth day, 30,000 troops reached Ula gurun.

When they came to the western bank of the Ula River, the troops of Bujantai beile of Ula were positioned there on the eastern bank of the river, having come out to confront them.  Thereupon Sure Kundulen Khanhad hoisted a yellow parasol and passed [in front of the enemy] while horns and suonas were blown and drums and cymbals were beaten.  He dismounted on this side of the Ula River and stopped.  After the soldiers(18) had arrived, they made a sudden attack on the six towns on this side of the river and took them all.  They then set up a camp at a distance of two lifrom the western gates of the main city of Ula, at the town of Ginjeo [Jinzhou 金州], by the riverbank.

On the first day of the tenth month, Sure Kundulen Khan remained there, having gone out to make a sacrifice to the standard.  A blue-white line appeared right across the sky north of the main city of Ula from the east to the west.  For three days and three nights the army camped and set everything on fire so that [the enemy] would run out of grain.  The troops of Bujantai beile of Ula came out of the city during the day and took up positions at the side of the river and at night they entered the city and spent the night [there].  As for the Ula River, two sons of Sure Kundulen Khan, Manggūltai Taiji and the Fourth beile, said that they wanted to cross the river and attack.  When they said this, Sure Kundulen Khan answered: “Do not speak as though you were scooping up the water from the surface; you should speak as though you were scooping out completely from the bottom! If you try to break a big, thick piece of wood by bending it, will it break?  If you try to break it after you have cut it, chopped with an axe and whittled away at it with a knife, it will break for sure.  If we want to finish off another great gurun of comparable strength at one blow, will that be the end of it?  I want to cut off these outlying gurun and take them, (19) so that there will be only big villages left.  If you finish off the aha, how can the master survive?  If you finish off the jušen, how can the master continue to exist?”  But they did not listen.  After they had destroyed the walls surrounding them and all the houses of the six villages, they set them on fire.

On the fourth day the army moved out.  When it returned to the banks of the Ula River, it went to Fulha ford.  After Sure Kundulen Khan’s army positioned itself along the near bank, Bujantai Khan of Ula had Ubahai Baturu  stand up in a dugout canoe and sent him out into the middle of the Ula River, and shouted: “It appears that his majesty the Father Khan has became angry, and so has pursued me here.  But now it seems that his anger has subsided.  If I speak a word with him, would I be able to go?” Thereupon emissaries were dispatched three times to carry out discussions. Bujantai Khan of Ula took six companions, and, standing in a dugout canoe, they came to the middle of the Ula River.  In the boat, Bujantai knelt and prostrated himself before Sure Kundulen Khan, saying, “Ula gurun is your gurun, Father Khan!  The grain of Ula is your grain!  Will you cease burning the grain?” 

After Bujantai had prostrated himself and made his request, Sure Kundulen Khan dressed himself in plate armor and rode his great white horse, (20) separating himself from the crowd of troops.  Before them, with his horse chest-deep in the waters of the Ula River, he stopped and spoke with a gathering fury:  “I have captured you during battle, Bujantai, and spared your worthless life.  I sent you to Ula gurun and put you in charge there.  I gave you three of my daughters.  But then, saying ‘Heaven is high and the earth is wide,’ you reneged on vows you swore seven times.  You twice attacked by stealth and took control of my Hurha district.  You, Bujantai, said that you would carry off the Yehe maiden for whom I, as foster-father, provided a dowry.  When my own daughters left to go to [your] foreign gurun, I gave them away saying, ‘May you live as the wife of the lord of the land,’ right?  Did I give them away saying, ‘I hope you may you be shot’?  If my daughter has committed some terrible crime, then please tell me what it was.  Show me a case where a hand has been raised against someone of the heaven-given surname of the Aisin Gioro!  You may not know whether there has been such a case in the last one hundred generations, but do you know of any even in the last ten or fifteen?  If there has been such an instance where a hand has been raised against someone of my Aisin Gioro clan, then one can say that you, Bujantai, are right.  [In that case], let my army’s coming here be wrong!   But if there is no such precedent, then, Bujantai, for what reason did you shoot my daughter? (21)Will you be able to bear until you die the infamy of having shot [her]?  Can you live in the world, holding in your heart that evil fame?  As the old saying has it, ‘It is better for a person to break a bone than to break his good name.’  Now [you are afraid:] when you see a colorful rope, you think that it must be a poisonous snake; when you see rising waters, you think it must be the ocean.  But I did not come here desiring battle or relishing a fight.  I heard that my daughter had been shot with an arrow, and at that news I grew angry.  That is why I came here in person.”

Bujantai, Khan of Ula, said, “Someone is no doubt accusing me falsely in order to sow discord between us, father and son.  In fact, there was no talk of taking the girl you sent a dowry for.  If I have said that I would take the girl you sent a dowry for, then above me is heaven, I have been standing on water, and below me is the Dragon Khan Lord of the Water.  Am I wrong?  Father, truly, there was no one who shot your daughter with an arrow.”   As he made this plea, one of Bujantai’s men, Labtai Jargūci, said, “When there are hateful words like these, O Khan, why don’t you appoint someone to investigate it [instead of coming yourself?]”  Sure Kundulen Khan (22) replied, “[Do you think] I have no one like you, Labtai?  Are you saying it is not true that you shot her with an arrow?  Are you saying it is not true that there was talk of stealing the girl to whom I gave a proper dowry?  If these are lies, I could probably ask and ascertain the truth.  But if it is true, what good would it do to ask you?  Is this river still a road if it is not frozen over?  Am I still a road to you if I don’t stand idly by this once?  Are you able, Labtai, to take up my sword?”

After he said this, Bujantai said “Labtai, don’t speak.”  Karkama Beile, the younger brother of Bujantai, said, “Please say your final words, O Khan, and go.”  After he said this, Sure Kundulen Han replied “If you really say that my daughter has not been shot with an arrow, and you will not take the girl of Yehe whom I gave a dowry to marry, then if you, Bujantai, send your own children, and the children of the leaders of your village to me as hostages, you must be telling the truth.  But if you do not send your children as hostages, I will not trust you.”  He then began his return journey, resting once at a mountain in between, and the next day resting at Girin, spending a total of five nights in Ula.  On the sixth day, he had a walled fortification built by the bank of the Ula River, at the place called Olhon (23) Tung, by the Imahū cliffs.  He stationed a thousand troops there and returned home.

In the twelfth month of the same year, a heavenly beam of light from the direction of Ula shone south of the south tower of  the house where Sure Kundulen Khan was living, striking to the south of Hūlan Hada.  After that, Sure Kundulen Khan watched Bujantai until the New Year had passed, to see whether he would reform.   Not only did this not happen, but  he heard that Bujantai was going to take the Yehe girl and marry her, that he was going to drive Sure Kundulen Khan’s two daughters out from the house and imprison them in a high-walled house, and that he was going to send his own daughter Sahaliyan and his son Cokinai, and the children of the seventeen village leaders to Yehe as hostages.  It was reported that on the eighteenth day of the first month of the year of the Blackish Ox, the hostage children of Ula were going to be sent out.  So on the seventeenth day, when Sure Kundulen Khan was fifty-five sui, thirty thousand soldiers set out and laid siege to Sunjata, a walled town in Ula, and took it. Afterwards, [the troops] advanced and took the walled town of Godo, too.  After that, they continued in the same direction, and took the walled town of Omo, and spent the night in that town.

The next day Bujantai Khan of Ula took his own thirty thousand soldiers, (24) and, passing the walled town of Fulha, came to meet [Sure Kundulen Khan’s army].  The princes and ambans of Sure Kundulen Khan’s army said, “The army of Ula has come out from their walled city to meet us.  Let’s fight them!  Let’s go!”  When they said this, Sure Kundulen Khan said, “If you cut at a thick branch with an axe and whittle away at it with a knife, then try to break it, it will probably snap.  But if you bend a standing tree and try to break it, will it snap?  If we want to finish off the army of a major gurun, can we accomplish this if we have fought them in only one or two battles?  Let’s [first] take all of the surrounding country. Let’s destroy all of the surrounding walled villages.  Let’s deplete all of the surrounding grain.  How can they survive if we have completely cut them off from the surrounding country, and only their main city is left?  We will thoroughly finish the gurun off!”  When he said this, Sure Kundulen Khan’s son Guyeng Baturu, together with Amin Taiji, the five officials appointed by the khan, and the beiles of the army all said, “Weren’t we [just] saying, how are we going to be able to get Bujantai’s army out of the walls?  If we decide not to hack and attack the army that has come out to this plain, we won’t ever leave our homes again.  Indeed, we will not keep our horses fat, we will not maintain or repair our armor and helmets, our saddles and bridles, our bows and heavy arrows, or our spears and long-handled swords. (25) If we do not fight today, then after Bujantai succeeds in taking the girl from Yehe, how can we say that we have launched a punitive expedition?  Who could bear such a disgrace?”

At these words, Sure Kundulen Khan said, “When our two armies meet to do battle, we will not have our soldiers in front to do the fighting. [Instead,] I, together with the sons I have raised and the five officials I have appointed, we will lead the fight ourselves.  When we fight, having entered [the fray] by cutting down the leading princes and officials . . . .” [text missing in original]   . . . They defeated the thirty thousand soldiers of Bujantai, khan of Ula, and killed ten thousand people.  After that, fearing that the remainder of the army would succeed in getting back into the city, a select group of hardened troops were sent forward, and they entered into the city and seized the gates.  Sure Kundulen Khan followed them himself, and climbed the tower of that city and stationed himself there.  They defeated that enemy army of thirty thousand and killed ten thousand people.  They captured seven thousand suits of armor.  Having put an end to the generations-old legacy (banjiha doro) of the khans of the land of Ula, they captured the great city.  Having conquered the entire gurun, they set up camp in the capital and spent ten days there dividing up the captives. They made them into ten thousand households (26) and brought them back. Those two appearances of a heavenly ray of light, did they not foretell the road by which the land of Ula was captured?




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