Silk and Empire

Silk and Empire

In this book, Brenda M. King challenges the notion that Britain always exploited its empire. Creativity, innovation and entrepreneurship were all part of the Anglo-Indian silk trade and were nurtured in the era of empire through mutually beneficial collaboration. King presents a new picture of the trade, where the strong links between Indian designs, the English silk industry and prominent members of the English Arts and Crafts Movement led to the production of beautiful and luxurious textiles.

Empires of the Silk Road

A History of Central Eurasia from the Bronze Age to the Present

Empires of the Silk Road

The first complete history of Central Eurasia from ancient times to the present day, Empires of the Silk Road represents a fundamental rethinking of the origins, history, and significance of this major world region. Christopher Beckwith describes the rise and fall of the great Central Eurasian empires, including those of the Scythians, Attila the Hun, the Turks and Tibetans, and Genghis Khan and the Mongols. In addition, he explains why the heartland of Central Eurasia led the world economically, scientifically, and artistically for many centuries despite invasions by Persians, Greeks, Arabs, Chinese, and others. In retelling the story of the Old World from the perspective of Central Eurasia, Beckwith provides a new understanding of the internal and external dynamics of the Central Eurasian states and shows how their people repeatedly revolutionized Eurasian civilization. Beckwith recounts the Indo-Europeans' migration out of Central Eurasia, their mixture with local peoples, and the resulting development of the Graeco-Roman, Persian, Indian, and Chinese civilizations; he details the basis for the thriving economy of premodern Central Eurasia, the economy's disintegration following the region's partition by the Chinese and Russians in the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries, and the damaging of Central Eurasian culture by Modernism; and he discusses the significance for world history of the partial reemergence of Central Eurasian nations after the collapse of the Soviet Union. Empires of the Silk Road places Central Eurasia within a world historical framework and demonstrates why the region is central to understanding the history of civilization.

The Roman Empire and the Silk Routes

The Ancient World Economy & the Empires of Parthia, Central Asia & Han China

The Roman Empire and the Silk Routes

A fascinating history of the intricate web of trade routes connecting ancient Rome to Eastern civilizations, including its powerful rival, the Han Empire. The Roman Empire and the Silk Routes investigates the trade routes between Rome and the powerful empires of inner Asia, including the Parthian Empire of ancient Persia, and the Kushan Empire which seized power in Bactria (Afghanistan), laying claim to the Indus Kingdoms. Further chapters examine the development of Palmyra as a leading caravan city on the edge of Roman Syria. Raoul McLaughlin also delves deeply into Rome’s trade ventures through the Tarim territories, which led its merchants to the Han Empire of ancient China. Having established a system of Central Asian trade routes known as the Silk Road, the Han carried eastern products as far as Persia and the frontiers of the Roman Empire. Though they were matched in scale, the Han surpassed its European rival in military technology. The first book to address these subjects in a single comprehensive study, The Roman Empire and the Silk Routes explores Rome’s impact on the ancient world economy and reveals what the Chinese and Romans knew about their rival Empires.

The Silk Road and the Political Economy of the Mongol Empire

The Silk Road and the Political Economy of the Mongol Empire

The growing importance of Central and Inner Asia and the Silk Road is much discussed at present. This book compares the nature of present day networks in these regions with the patterns of similar connections which existed at the time of the Mongol Empire in the thirteenth century and its successor states. It considers settlement patterns, technology and technology transfer, trade, political arrangements, the role of religion and the impact of the powerful states which border the region. Overall, the book demonstrates that the Mongol Empire anticipated many of the networks and connections which exist in the region at present.

Empire of Style

Silk and Fashion in Tang China

Empire of Style

Tang dynasty (618–907) China hummed with cosmopolitan trends. Its capital at Chang’an was the most populous city in the world and was connected via the Silk Road with the critical markets and thriving cultures of Central Asia and the Middle East. In Empire of Style, BuYun Chen reveals a vibrant fashion system that emerged through the efforts of Tang artisans, wearers, and critics of clothing. Across the empire, elite men and women subverted regulations on dress to acquire majestic silks and au courant designs, as shifts in economic and social structures gave rise to what we now recognize as precursors of a modern fashion system: a new consciousness of time, a game of imitation and emulation, and a shift in modes of production. This first book on fashion in premodern China is informed by archaeological sources—paintings, figurines, and silk artifacts—and textual records such as dynastic annals, poetry, tax documents, economic treatises, and sumptuary laws. Tang fashion is shown to have flourished in response to a confluence of social, economic, and political changes that brought innovative weavers and chic court elites to the forefront of history.

The Silk Trade

The Silk Trade

Menachem was a young Jew who had been engaged in the silk and spice business for almost two years. The silk came from China, and the spices from India. Menachem and his friends bought the silk and the spices from Parthian businessmen in the city of Petra. Parthians bought these goods from China and from India, and sold these to enterprising Jews who traveled in caravans using camels, donkeys and horses. Menachem and his business associates had already made seven business travels since they began their trade.

Lost empire of the silk road

Buddhist art from Khara Khoto (X-XIIIth century [sic])

Lost empire of the silk road


An Economic and Social History of the Ottoman Empire

An Economic and Social History of the Ottoman Empire

A major contribution to Ottoman history, now published in paperback in two volumes.

Silk and Religion

An Exploration of Material Life and the Thought of People, AD 600-1200

Silk and Religion

This book deals with the silk trade in Eurasia between the seventh and twelfth centuries and explores how religious ideas and institutions affected economic behavior.

The Silk Road

Explore the World's Most Famous Trade Route with 20 Projects

The Silk Road

From Roman times until the Age of Exploration, the Silk Road carried goods and ideas across Central Asia between two major centers of civilization, the Mediterranean Sea and China. In The Silk Road: Explore the World’s Most Famous Trade Route, readers ages 9–12 will learn about the history, geography, culture, and people of the Silk Road region. Marco Polo was just one of many who set out on the Silk Road in search of wealth, power, or knowledge. These adventurers braved vast deserts, towering mountain peaks, warring tribes, and marauding bandits. Silk garments, wool rugs, and fine glass were the prizes for those who survived the trip. Activities using everyday materials bring the Silk Road to life. Young readers will see how ideas in math, science, religion, and art were spread by travelers along with the treasures they found. The Silk Road takes readers on an exciting, interactive adventure to a faraway place and celebrates its important role in human history and development. .