1260s

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The 1260s is the decade starting January 1, 1260 and ending December 31, 1269.

In Asia, Kublai Khan was proclaimed the supreme leader of the Mongol Empire, although his title was only partially recognized. After defeating his younger brother Ariq Boke, he moved his capital to Beijing; while he fought the southern Chinese Song Dynasty, the empire saw its first significant military defeats — first in Palestine at the hands of the Mamluks of Egypt, and later in the Caucasus. The Mamluks, led by their new sultan Baibars, quickly became a regional power in the Middle East by capturing a number of crusader states and repulsing Mongol attacks. The Empire of Nicaea succeeded in capturing Constantinople and the rest of the Latin Empire, thus re-establishing the Byzantine Empire.

In Europe, political strife and territorial disputes led to widespread warfare around the continent. England witnessed the Second Barons' War, a civil war fought over the aristocracy's disillusionment with King Henry III's attempts to maintain an absolute monarchy. The pope of the Catholic Church, aligned against the Hohenstaufen dynasty of the Holy Roman Emperor, succeeded in eliminating the line when the last male heir, Conradin, was killed by papal ally Charles I of Sicily, a Frenchman. Meanwhile, King Otakar II of Bohemia became the most powerful prince in Europe, expanding his territories through both warfare and inheritance. In other developments, both Iceland and Greenland accepted the overlordship of Norway, but Scotland was able to repulse a Norse invasion and broker a favorable peace settlement. In Spain, the Reconquista continued as several important cities were recaptured from the Moors. Political reforms were instituted in the election procedures of the pope and the doges of Venice, and the parliaments of Ireland and England met for the first time.

Several important cultural achievements were made in the decade, including publication of Roger Bacon's important scientific work Opus Majus and Thomas Aquinas' Summa contra Gentiles. Masterpieces of architecture and sculpture were completed at cathedrals around Europe, including the Cathedral of Chartres and Nicola Pisano's pulpits for the Duomo di Siena and Pisa's Baptistery. In religion, the Sukhothai kingdom in Thailand adopted Buddhism as its official religion. In Europe anti-Semitism intensified, as several authorities promulgated laws requiring Jews to wear identifying yellow badges, Jews were massacred in England, and the Talmud was attacked and censored by the Catholic Church.

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