The Silk Road: A New History

The Silk Road: A New History

Valerie Hansen

The Silk street is as iconic in global background because the Colossus of Rhodes or the Suez Canal. yet what was once it, precisely? It evokes a hazy photo of a caravan of camels weighted down with silk on a dusty wasteland song, achieving from China to Rome. the truth was once different--and way more interesting--as published during this new history.

In The Silk Road, Valerie Hansen describes the striking archeological unearths that revolutionize our realizing of those alternate routes. for hundreds of years, key files remained hidden--sometimes intentionally buried via bureaucrats for secure preserving. however the sands of the Taklamakan wilderness have printed interesting fabric, occasionally preserved through illiterate locals who recycled legit files to make insoles for footwear or clothing for the lifeless. Hansen explores seven oases alongside the line, from Xi'an to Samarkand, the place retailers, envoys, pilgrims, and tourists jumbled together cosmopolitan groups, tolerant of religions from Buddhism to Zoroastrianism. there has been no unmarried, non-stop street, yet a series of markets that traded among east and west. China and the Roman Empire had little or no direct alternate. China's major companions have been the peoples of modern day Iran, whose tombs in China exhibit a lot approximately their Zoroastrian ideals. Silk was once now not an important solid at the street; paper, invented in China earlier than Julius Caesar used to be born, had a much bigger effect in Europe, whereas metals, spices, and glass have been simply as very important as silk. maybe most vital of all used to be the road's transmission of principles, applied sciences, and inventive motifs.

The Silk Road is an engaging tale of archeological discovery, cultural transmission, and the complex chains throughout important Asia and China.

Show sample text content

Download sample