The Silk Road


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Introduction – The Silk Road

The Silk Road, which is also called the ‘Silk Route’, is the network linking trade routes, religious pathways and intercultural integration across the Afro-Eurasian landmass[1]. These land routes were complemented by sea routes where sea moving vessels were as well used as transport systems. In China for instance, silk was one of the major export commodity which was traded to other regions of Asia, Europe and Africa.

The name Silk Road was derived from the lucrative trade of Silk by China, which was the major cause of the interconnection among the regions in the Afro-Eurasian landmass. Particularly, the name ‘Silk Road’ was devised by Ferdinand Richthofen who facilitated various expeditions to China between the years 1868 and 1873[2].

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Various artifacts of the ‘Silk Road’ can be found in the Silk Road Museum in China, which shows how the silk route contributed to the development of art in the Ancient China[22].  

Conclusion

As it has been revealed, the Silk Road was accompanied various cultural exchanges between the Chinese and the other communities in the Afro-Eurasian landmass. The main routes that were used in the ‘Silk Road’ were both northwest and southern routes which originated from Xiang. Besides the routes in the main land, the maritime routes were also significant part of the ‘Silk Road’ as it was the main route through which silk was distributed to Italy. One of the major explorers by the name Marco Polo contributed a lot towards the explanation of the various activities arousing from the Silk Road, as evidenced by his naming of the road as ‘People Turks and Chinese Stretch’. Further, the rise of Roman Empire can be attributed to the prevalent interaction between Chinese and Romans through the Silk Road.

Bibliography

Boulnois, Luce. Silk Road: Monks, Warriors & Merchants. Hong Kong: Odyssey Books, 2005.

Boulnois, Lukens. Silk Road: The road to cultural integration. London: Odyssey Publications,      2005.

Foltz, Richard. Religions of the Silk Road. Manchester: Palgrave Macmillan, 2010.

Hallikainen, Saana. Connections from Europe to Asia and how the trading was affected by the       cultural exchange. Paris: Routledge Publishers,2002.

Hill, John. Through the Jade Gate to Rome: A Study of the Silk Routes during the Later Han          Dynasty, 1st to 2nd Centuries CE. South Carolina: BookSurge, Charleston, 2009.

Klimkeit, Hans-Joachim. Gnosis on the Silk Road: Gnostic Texts from Central Asia. San    Francisco: Transnational Publishers, 1999.

Kuzmina, Emmanuel. The Prehistory of the Silk Road. Philadelphia: University of Pennsylvania    Press, 2006. [/paycontent]

Litvinsky, Brown. History of civilizations of Central Asia, Volume III. The crossroads of    civilizations: 250 to 750. Paris: UNESCO Publishing, 1998.

Liu, Xinru, and Shaffer, Lynda. Connections across Eurasia: Transportation, communication,      and Cultural Exchange on the Silk Roads. New York: McGraw Hill, 2007.

Ming, Pao. Hong Kong proposes Silk Road on the Sea as World Heritage. Hong Kong: Xi             Publishing Co., 2005.

Waugh, Daniel. “Richthofen’s “Silk Roads”: Toward the Archaeology of a Concept.” The Silk       Road. 5(1) (2007): 4 -5.

Waugh, Daniel. “Silk Roads and the Ancient China”. The Silk Road. 5(1) (2007):1–10.

Whitfield, Susan. Life along the Silk Road. London: John Murray, 2007.

Wood, Francis. The Silk Road: Two Thousand Years in the Heart of Asia. Berkeley, CA:   University of California Press, 2002.

Yan, Chen. “Earliest Silk Route: The Southwest Route.” China Reconstructs, 15(10) (1996):59–   62.


[1] Daniel, Waugh, “Richthofen’s “Silk Roads”: Toward the Archaeology of a Concept.” The Silk Road. 5(1) (2007): 4 

[2] Francis, wood, The Silk Road: Two Thousand Years in the Heart of Asia, (Berkeley, CA: University of California Press, 2002), p.29

[3] Luce, Boulnois, Silk Road: Monks, Warriors & Merchants, (Hong Kong: Odyssey Books, 2005), p.66

[4] Richard, Foltz. Religions of the Silk Road, (Manchester: Palgrave Macmillan, 2010), p.72.

[5] John, Hill, Through the Jade Gate to Rome: A Study of the Silk Routes during the Later Han Dynasty, 1st to 2nd Centuries CE (South Carolina: BookSurge, Charleston, 2009), p.53.

[6] Hans-Joachim, Klimkeit, Gnosis on the Silk Road: Gnostic Texts from Central Asia (San Francisco: Transnational Publishers, 1999), p.41.

[7] Pao, Ming, Hong Kong proposes Silk Road on the Sea as World Heritage, (Hong Kong: Xi Publishing Co., 2005), p.7.

[8] Daniel, Waugh, “Silk Roads and the Ancient China”. The Silk Road. 5(1) (2007): 7

[9] Susan, Whitfield, Life along the Silk Road, (London: John Murray, 2007), p.51

[10] Chen, Yan. “Earliest Silk Route: The Southwest Route.” China Reconstructs, 15(10) (1996):59

[11] Lukens, Boulnois. Silk Road: The road to cultural integration. (London: Odyssey Publications, 2005), p.96.

[12] Saana, Hallikainen. Connections from Europe to Asia and how the trading was affected by the cultural exchange, (Paris: Routledge Publishers,2002), p.31

[13] Emmanuel, Kuzmina, The Prehistory of the Silk Road, (Philadelphia: University of Pennsylvania Press, 2006), p.135

[14] Xinru, Liu and Lynda, Shaffer. Connections across Eurasia: Transportation, communication, and Cultural Exchange on the Silk Roads. New York: McGraw Hill, 2007), p.79.

[15] Pao, Ming, Hong Kong proposes Silk Road on the Sea as World Heritage, (Hong Kong: Xi Publishing Co., 2005), p.7.

[16] Lukens, Boulnois. Silk Road: The road to cultural integration. (London: Odyssey Publications, 2005), p.98.

[17] Emmanuel, Kuzmina, The Prehistory of the Silk Road, (Philadelphia: University of Pennsylvania Press, 2006), p.135

[18] John, Hill, Through the Jade Gate to Rome: A Study of the Silk Routes during the Later Han Dynasty, 1st to 2nd Centuries CE (South Carolina: BookSurge, Charleston, 2009), p.59.

[19] Francis, wood, The Silk Road: Two Thousand Years in the Heart of Asia, (Berkeley, CA: University of California Press, 2002), p.29

[20] Chen, Yan. “Earliest Silk Route: The Southwest Route.” China Reconstructs, 15(10) (1996):68

[21] Lukens, Boulnois. Silk Road: The road to cultural integration. (London: Odyssey Publications, 2005), p.101.

[22] Xinru, Liu and Lynda, Shaffer. Connections across Eurasia: Transportation, communication, and Cultural Exchange on the Silk Roads. New York: McGraw Hill, 2007), p.81.