Avarga

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Avarga (Аварга in Khalkha Mongolian) is the steppe where the first nomadic capital of the Mongol Empire was located after Genghis Khan seized the territory from the Jurkin clan. Avarga was located at the confluence of the Kherlen and Tsenker River, in present-day Khentii province, Mongolia.

The name Avraga is derived from the old Mongolian "a'urugh", which was a word that indicated a large camp that served as a rear supply base in times of war. It is believed to be the "Great Ordu (royal camp) of Genghis Khan" that is mentioned in several sources, the most important of Genghis Khan's three seasonal ordus. Archeological evidence shows the foundation of what was probably Genghis Khan's large palace tent, as well as Chinese-style shops and residences. Evidence of large-scale ironworking has led some to theorize that Avraga was also a major weapons-manufacturing site for the Mongol war machine. Evidence also shows that after Genghis Khan's death, his palace tent was transformed into a shrine where offerings were made, new khans were enthroned, and important meetings were held. Oral tradition maintains that Börte and other family members continued to live in Avarga during the Mongol invasion of Khorazm (1218–1223). It was a collection and distribution center for goods from around the empire; but it soon proved too small and the Mongol court established the base of Karakorum.

Under Kublai Khan and his successors, it became a shrine for the cult of the Genghis Khan.

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