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A decree or pronouncement by a Mongol khan.

The yarlyk (Mongolian jarligh ; Tartar yarligh ) was one of three types of non-fundamental law (jasagh or yasa ) pronouncements that had the effect of a regulation or ordinance, the other two being debter (a record of precedence cases for administration and judicial decisions) and bilig (maxims or sayings attributed to Chinghis Khan). The yarlyki provide important information about the running of the Mongol Empire.

From the mid-thirteenth to mid-fifteenth centuries, all Rus princes received yarlyki authorizing their rule. Initially, those yarlyki came from the qaghan in Karakorum, but after Batu established his khanate, they came from Sarai. None of these yarlyki, however, is extant. In the mid-fifteenth century, Basil II began forbidding other Rus princes from receiving the yarlyk from Tatar khans, thus establishing the right of the Moscow grand prince to authorize local princely rule.

In the Rus metropolitan archive are preserved six yarlyki (constituting the so-called Short Collection) considered to be translations into Russian of authentic patents issued from the Qipchaq Khanate: (1) from Khan Tiuliak (Tulunbek) of Mamai's Horde to Metropolitan Mikhail (Mitia) (1379);(2) from Khatun Taydula to the Rus' princes (1347); (3) from Khan Mengu-Temir to Metropolitan Peter (1308); (4) from Khatun Taydula to Metropolitan Feognost (1343); (5) from Khan Berdibek to Metropolitan Alexei (1357); and (6) from Khatun Taydula to Metropolitan Alexei (1354). A seventh yarlyk, which purports to be from Khan Özbeg to Metropolitan Peter (found in the so-called full collection) has been determined to be a sixteenth-century forgery. The yarlyki to the metropolitans affirm the freedom of the Church from taxes and tributes, and declare that the Church's property should be protected from expropriation or damage as long as Rus churchmen pray for the well-being of the khan and his family.

See also: golden horde

Donald Ostrowski