'The Secret History of the Mongols' is the first literary monument
concerning the Mongols. It is believed to have been written in the year 1240 A.D.
The author of it still remains unknown. This is the only immediate source of information
about medieval mongolian life and self-consideration and also it is the invaluable
treasure for historians, linguists, ethnographs and ethnologist engaged in the field of
The copy of The Secret History which has survived to our days
were transcribed with Chinese characters from some original manuscript
in one of the mongolian scripts. Some scholars believe it to be the Uighur script,
others proposed h`Pags-pa script (Quadratschrift) only
few think that it was originally recorded by Chinese characters.
This copy was written about 14th century and contained Mongolian text (in Chinese fonetic transcription )
and the Chinese translation.
The transcription of Mongolian text was performed in order to compile the textbook for Chinese students studying Mongolian.
First man from Europe who discovered this manuscript was Russian monk archimandrite Palladij. He was a member of the Russian Orthodox Mission in China.
He was an outstanding sinologist not mention his missionarial abilities.
In 1866 he translated Chinese part of The Secret History into Russian with a considerable contractions.
The name of this work in russian translation was 'Старинное монгольское сказание о Чингис-хане'
('An old mongolian tale about Genghis Khan')
After that, the full text of the 'Secret History' was published by S.A.Kozin in Leningrad (1941),
E.Haenisch in Berlin (1948), P.Pelliot in Paris (1949).
Very important works were the dictionary of the language of the Secret History of the Mongols
(Haenisch E. 1962) and the index to the manuscript compiled by Igor de Rachewiltz (1972).