Tögs-Ochiryn Namnansüren

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Tögs-Ochiryn Namnansüren
Төгс-Очирын Намнансүрэн
Namnansüren's picture in Parliament House of Mongolia
1st Prime Minister of Mongolia
In office
November 1912 – April 1919
Preceded by Da Lam Tserenchimed (as de facto Prime Minister)
Position established
Succeeded by Gonchigjalzangiin Badamdorj
Personal details
Born 1878
Uyanga district, Övörkhangai Province, Outer Mongolia, Qing dynasty, China
Died April 1919

Tögs-Ochiryn Namnansüren (Mongolian: Төгс-Очирын Намнансүрэн; Chinese: 那木囊蘇倫; Tibetan: རྣམ་སྣང་སྲུང་།; 1878 – April 1919), full title Sain Noyon Khan Namnansüren (Сайн ноён хан Намнансүрэн, Good noyon khan Namnansüren), was a powerful hereditary prince[1] and prominent early 20th-century Mongolian independence leader. He served as the first prime minister of Autonomous Mongolia in the government of the Bogd Khan from 1912 until 1915, when the office of prime minister was abolished, he was then appointed minister of the army.

Namnansüren, who allegedly could trace his heritage directly back to Genghis Khan, was born in 1878 in present-day Uyanga district of Övörkhangai Province; in 1896 he became prince, or "khan", of Sain Noyon Khan Province, one of the four Khalkh Mongol provinces established by the Manchurians during the Qing dynasty. He married in 1900.

In 1911, Namnansüren persuaded Mongolia's religious leader Bogd Khan to call a congress of Mongolian princes and high-ranking lamas in Khüree to initiate independence from China, the Bogd Khan then dispatched him to Saint Petersburg in July 1911 as part of a delegation to seek Russian and West European support for Mongolian independence.[2]

The Bogd Khan appointed Namnansüren prime minister of Autonomous Mongolia in July 1912, replacing Da Lam Tserenchimed who, as minister of internal affairs, had acted as de facto head of government since the elevation of the Bogd Khan as national leader in December 1911.[3] Other members of the Bogd Khan's government included the Da Lam Tserenchimed (minister for internal affairs), Mijiddorjiin Khanddorj (minister for foreign affairs), Dalai-Van Gombosuren (defense minister), Dambyn Chagdarjav (finance minister), and Erdene Van Namsrai (minister of justice).

Namnansüren's delegation in St. Petersburg

From November 1913 to January 1914 Namnansüren lead another delegation to St. Petersburg, this time to represent Mongolian interests during negotiations between Russia and China surrounding the tripartite Kyakhta treaty that would define the border between Russian Siberia and the Qing territories of Mongolia and Manchuria. Mongolian hopes for international recognition of its independence and support for a union between Inner and Outer Mongolia were ultimately dashed when the agreement re-confirmed the country's status as an autonomous region within China.[4] While in Russia, Namnansüren attempted to contact ambassadors from several western countries (United States, Great Britain, France, and Germany) and to organize a trip to Western Europe to gain international support for Mongolia's independence but was prevented from doing so by Russian officials.[5]

Having failed to obtain any of his objectives, Namnansüren found his political influence to have diminished upon his return to Mongolia in 1914;[6] in 1915 the Bogd Khan abolished the office of prime minister and Namnansüren was appointed minister of war. In June 1918, faced with increased threats from the Chinese who were demanding Mongolia renounce its Pan-Mongolia ambitions and sign a decree “voluntarily” relinquishing autonomy, Namnansüren again traveled to Russia, this time to Irkutsk, to seek Russian assistance. There he met with two Bolshevik representatives in what is believed to be the first meeting between Soviet and Outer Mongolian officials, the Bolsheviks, preoccupied with the revolution and the ongoing civil war in Russia, failed to offer much in the way of assistance.

Not long after his return home, Namnansüren fell seriously ill and died sometime in April 1919. Many suspected he was assassinated (poisoned) along with many others involved in the revival of Mongolia’s independence who died premature deaths. Shortly thereafter the Chinese warlord Xu Shuzheng occupied Niislel Khüree and installed the more pliable Gonchigjalzangiin Badamdorj as prime minister.[7]

In 1914 the Mongolian Namnansüren is known to have brought some films from Russia to show at the residence of the Bogd Khan, these are the first known film showings in Mongolia.


  1. ^ Brown, William A. and Onon, Urgunge (translators), "History of the Mongolian People's Republic", 1976, ISBN 0-674-39862-9. p 750, n. 157
  2. ^ Sanders, Alan J. K., Historical Dictionary of Mongolia, 1996, ISBN 0-8108-3077-9. p 37
  3. ^ Baabar, B., History of Mongolia, 1999, ISBN 978-99929-0-038-3, OCLC 515691746. p. 138
  4. ^ Baabar 1999, pp. 156-157
  5. ^ Baabar 1999, p. 160
  6. ^ Urgunge Onon, Derrick Pritchatt (1989). Asia's First Modern Revolution: Mongolia Proclaims Its Independence In 1911. BRILL. p. 118. ISBN 90-04-08390-1. 
  7. ^ Baabar 1999, p. 189
Political offices
Preceded by
Prime Minister of Mongolia
1912 - 1915
Succeeded by
Gonchigjalzangiin Badamdorj