Манай музей байнгын үзэсгэлэнгийн 9 танхимтай.

In the Prehistory hall visitors can examine the ancient cultures of prehistory peoples’ who inhabited the territory of modern-day Mongolia. The displayed artifacts were mostly recovered from archaeological digs. This hall shows objects from the Paleolithic period to the Early Iron Age or 800 000 to 209 BC. 

What is Prehistory?

Archaeologists commonly divide ancient human history into different periods based on technological advancement. The most widely used chronological framework divides past    cultures into Stone Age, Bronze Age and Iron Age. We generally follow this division.  


Prehistory Timeline

Paleolithic period                     800 000-15 000 BC

Mesolithic period                           15 000 - 8000 BC

Neolithic          8000 - 3000 BC

Bronze Age     3000 - 700 BC

Early Iron Age    700 - 209 BC

The archeological artifacts of this hall relate to the history and culture of the political entities that were established from the 3rd century BC onward in modern-day Mongolian territory. Since the 3rd century BC, which saw the beginning of state-like formations, nomadic tribes on Mongolian territory vied for power and created local spheres of influence. An example of the succession of powers in the 3rd century is the Hunnu Empire who lost territorial control to the Cyambi (Xianbei), who in return yielded to the Jujan State.


This hall exhibits items relating to the social and cultural life of the various powers and is organized along the following periods:


1.          Hunnu period                  3rd century BC - 1st C.

2.         Turkic period                   6th - 8th C.

3.         Uighur period                  8th – 9th C.

4.         Liao (Khidan) dynasty     10th - 12th C.


Exhibited here are the costumes of Mongolia’s ethnic groups together with state ceremonial attire, seasonal dress, jewelry and accessories. Mongolia has more than 20 ethnic groups originating from two nationalities; Mongolian and Turkish. As living conditions vary for these groups, their traditions, including those of costume patterning and design, differ accordingly. Each group has its traditional garments and decorations, differentiated according to age, gender and social position. Mongolian ethnic costumes reflect the norms and customs, as well as the material and spiritual   culture of the respective groups.         


Most of the items on display date from the 19th to early 20th century, though the origin of many ethnic groups can be traced back to the 13th century. The exhibits are organized as;


1.  Mongolian hats

2.  State ceremonial dress of 17th -20th C.

3.  Clothing and decorations of Khalh people, Western Mongolians and Eastern Mongolians and other ethnic groups

4.  Seasonal garments

5.  Men and women’s ornaments

The hall of the Mongolian Empire comprises two sections: One is dedicated to the period before Chinggis Khan and developments during his lifetime, the other focuses on the Mongolian Empire under his successors. The Mongolian Empire that was created in the 13th and 14th centuries by military expansion, stretched from Siberia to South Asia, and from the Korean peninsula to Bulgaria. Mongolians conquered more than 50 countries spread over a vast distance, a feat that has not been repeated in history.  According to some historical sources the Mongolian Empire was also referred to as the World Empire. In the 14th century the Mongolian Empire can be divided into five major geo-politically constituencies


  • Mongolia, center of the empire with the rise of Chinggis Khan and ending with the death of Munkh Khaan in 1259;
  • The Yuan Dynasty in China, beginning with the enthronement of Khubilai Khaan;
  • The llkhanates in Persia;
  • The Golden Horde in Russia;
  • The Chagadai Khanate in Central Asia.


The Mongolian Empire contained many people of different ethnic origins, religions, history and languages. Creating a unified political space that stretched from Asia to Europe, linking the Orient and the Occident, cultural exchange was made possible among these myriad societies. Mongolian influence can be clearly discerned in the political, economic, and cultural development of these na­tions.

This hall displays aspects of traditional Mongolian culture that are tied in with the nomadic lifestyle. Discussed here and illustrated are items of spiritual importance, manuscripts and scriptures and their production, musical instruments, games and toys, and the National festival called Eriin gurban naadam.


SHAMANIST HERITAGE: Shamanism, an amalgam of fetishism, animism and totemism, is probably humankind’s oldest belief system. In Mongolia, Shamanism has especially been practiced amongst a few ethnic groups: the Darkhad, Buriad, Khotgoid, Uriankhai and Tsaatan (reindeer people).


BUDDHISM:  During the 17th-20th century the Buddhist monasteries were not only centers of learning, but also were focal points of social life. From the end of the 16th century on wards Buddhism was widely propagated in Mongolia and in consequence many temples and monasteries were established. At the beginning of the 20th century there were over 800 monasteries and temples, and over 100 000 monks in Mongolia.


MONGOLIAN MANUSCRIPTS AND PRINTING: Traditionally manuscripts were handwritten, often beautifully executed with bamboo brushes. A number of documents were composed with iron or wooden pencils. In the 16th century Mongolia Buddhism and its associated literary culture flourished and many large and small printing houses were established. In these printing houses publications were printed using wooden, copper, and leaden printing blocks, among which wooden blocks were the most commonly employed.  


MUSICAL INSTRUMENTS: Musical instruments are generally divided into string, wind, drum and percussion instruments and are further classified according to their usage as either folk or religious. Apart from the unique local heritage of Mongolia is home to instruments that are borrowed from neighboring countries and cultures. Uniquely Mongolian instruments of ancient origin are folk instruments the horse- head fiddle in a variety of shapes sizes and the two-stringed plucked lute.


THE NATIONAL FESTIVAL OF THE THREE MANLY GAMES or Eriin gurvan naadam is a national competition in wrestling, archery, and horseracing. Mongolians have a deep-rooted tradition to get together to test their strength in wrestling, wisdom and accuracy in shooting and courage in horseracing.


MONGOLIAN GAMES AND TOYS profoundly reflect the characteristics of the nomadic lifestyle and have been handed down for many centuries. Traditional toys are classified into three categories depending on whether they are meant for sport competitions, private entertainment or for state rituals. According to their use and purpose bone, stone, or wood materials find their application in board games, puzzles, and moving toys. Oral traditions, such as riddles, form a class apart. One of the most popular games among adults and children are games that make use of anklebones.


This hall’s exhibition presents Mongolian nomadic life that is based on animal husbandry and also hunting, planting and other types of supplementary means of livelihood. It covers the pursuit of nomadic animal husbandry and surrounding social and cultural practices based on a nomadic lifestyle. Since ancient times the natural and climatic conditions of Mongolia were mostly suited for nomadic animal husbandry and hunting management. Besides animal husbandry Mongolians made use of the flora available, carried out land cultivation, and engaged in fishing and developed specific handicrafts.

Since Buddhism spread across Mongolia in the 16th century, many monasteries were built and accordingly some portion of the population settled down permanently or semi-permanently. Still the nomadic way of life and traditions were carried     on.  About 40 percent of the exhibits on display at the National Museum are of ethnological character. The most attractive exhibition for our distinguished guests is the Ger, the perfect housing designed for nomadic way of living that has retained its originality throughout the centuries.  

This hall’s exhibition is presents 17th to early 20th century Mongolia. The exhibition display is based on historical artifacts, documents and photos of that time.  At the beginning of the 17th century the Manchu Empire existed on the border of eastern Mongolia. The Manchus grew in power and established the Qing dynasty with the conquest of Ming China (1644). At the same time the Mongolian aristocracy fought over the Mongolian throne, and the Manchus exploited these differences to their political advantage. Consequently Mongolia was integrated into three constituencies: Outer, Inner and Western Mongolia. Outer Mongolia or Khalkha Mongolia lost its independence and became a frontier region of the Manchu dynasty in the second half of the 17th century. Until the 20th century, when Outer Mongolia managed to reclaim independence, it continuously offered resistance to the Manchu domination that it experienced in this period.  The museum display, detailing this period, showcases Qing policies with regards to Mongolian government, economy and culture.   The 20th Century in Mongolia was full of struggles for freedom and independence.

This hall displays the history of the national independence revolution that occurred in 1911. At that time Mongolia created its own independent government and the 8th Bogd Khaan, head of Buddhism in Mongolia, became the theocratic ruler of state of Mongolia.

In 1915, as a result of Tripartite Treaty between Mongolia, China and Russia, concluded in Kyakhta, Outer Mongolia became an autonomous state under the suzerainty of China and under the protectorate of Russia. However, at the end of 1919, the autonomy was abolished by China.

The period between 1911 and 1920 was a time of social, cultural, political and economic progress and renaissance of Mongolian identity. State law and history were written, and some small factories and a civil school were established. Some significant displays in this hall include;    a wax statue of the 8th Bogd Khaan Jebtsundamba and his Queen Dondogdulam and also the 1912 state flag of Mongolia as well as original documents and objects about Mongolian state leaders.

From the national democratic revolution in 1921 until the 1989’s Mongolia developed as an independent state and took its place in the international community. This hall displays the developments, achievements and difficulties in the political, social, economic and cultural areas during the socialist period.

Some significant displays here include; weapons and photographs of the revolutionaries of 1921, typewriters and film equipment of the 1930’s, a display about the political repressions of the 1930’s and a display Mongolian involvement in the war at Khalkh Gol (eastern border of Mongolia) against the Japanese in 1939. Also, a silver adorned wooden pail from 1945 used as an award for herders for raising over 1000 animals,  a voting sheet from the  referendum in which Mongolian people voted for their independence dated 20 October, 1945 and finally the clothes and personal belongings of government leaders H. Choibalsan, A. Amar,  U. Tsedenbal, S. Sambuu.

The display has two main sections:

1.1921 national democratic revolution and the granting of the independent Mongolian People’s Republic 1921-mid 1950’s

2. Mongolian People’s Republic during socialist period mid 1950’s -1990

The hall of democratic Mongolia is presenting as about Democratic Mongolia which beginning in 1990s. When in the late 1980’s the Soviet Union went through fundamental political changes (Perestroika) and the communist system finally collapsed, it signalled equally important changes for the Mongolian People’s Republic. Sensitive to the developments in their communist neighbourhood Mongolia’s national consciousness was awakened. In Mongolia established political groups and clubs with the objective to call for social justice, freedom and democratization.

In December 1989 the Mongolian Democratic Union was formed. As a “General Coordinator” of the MDU S. Zorig, a teacher of the State National University was elected. People participating in demonstrations held hands and urged others with songs and slogans to join their cause for freedom. Posters displayed mottos “We need a multiparty system”, “Let’s respect human rights to the fullest”, etc.

A great number of parties were founded; their names showing the already broad range of topics people felt needed to be addressed. The demonstrations drew more and more participants. Among others there was the Democratic Socialist Union, New Progressive Union, Mongolian Social Democratic Party, Mongolian National Democratic Party, Free Labour Party, and Mongolian Green Party.

On March 4, 1990 the fifth demonstration was held on the Victory Square and a crowd of 90 thousand gathered. The demonstrators demanded a special convention of the Congress of the Mongolian Revolutionary Party, to replace the standing members of the Central Committee and to separate the party’s activities from the government. Following the government’s to consider these demands a group of protestors went on hunger strike on Sukhbaatar Square. As a result the government conceded to round table discussions and accepted their call for democratic reforms. In the summer of that year the first free elections were held. In the election the MPRP obtained a majority and stayed in government. P.Ochirbat was elected as First President of Mongolia.

In 1991 the structure of the Mongolian parliament was decided to take the form of two chambers, the State Great Hural and the State Small Hural. On January 13, 1992 a new constitution was adopted and the Mongolia’s designated name changed from People’s Republic of Mongolia to Mongolia.

Paralleling the political transition to a democratic and parliamentarian state, Mongolia shifted economically towards a free market economy. In the immediate years of the transition to democracy Soviet trade and economic assistance were stopped and a rationing system of food products temporarily introduced.

The privatization of state property, the stock exchange and livestock was a milestone in the transition towards a market based on the principle of private ownership. Mongolia’s active foreign policy with developed foreign nations resulted in favorable economic relations. International organizations like the UNDP, World Bank, and a number of other institutions cooperate in economic and financial matters.

With the participation of developed countries the mining sector in Mongolia has received great impetus and has been steadily developed. Mongolia’s rich deposits carry the potential to bring great wealth to the whole country and society.

In the realm of culture re-establishing monastic centres of learning, building schools and universities as well as the education and training of students and scientists overseas were and are all matters of high priority.

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