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‘Dirty’ Hygiene Secrets of the Mongol Empire

Eighteen Songs of a Nomad Flute: The Story of Lady Wenji, early 15th century. Lady Wenji (Cai Yan) was abducted by barbarians c AD195 and spent twelve years among the Xiongnu people. The costumes in this scene are those of the Khitan people. Ming dynasty (1368-1644). Artist Unknown. (Photo Credit: Heritage Art/Heritage Images via Getty Images)

Genghis Khan founded the Mongol Empire in 1206. It lasted a little over a century and a half. Needless to say, health and safety weren’t priorities, at least by today’s standards.

Did the mighty ruler put hygiene on his enemies list? Yes and no. Find out more below…

Icky insulation

People living back then had an interesting way of keeping out the cold. Grease and lard built up on their clothing and insulated them.

Was the air of the Mongol Empire laden with lard or something? No – in fact, you’d be constantly wiping your hands on your shirt following a meal. After a while,…

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