Foreign Devils on the Silk Road

The Search for the Lost Cities and Treasures of Chinese Central Asia

Author: Peter Hopkirk

Publisher: Oxford University Press, USA

ISBN: 9780192802118

Category: Archaeology

Page: 252

View: 8613

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The Silk Road, which linked imperial Rome and distant China, was once the greatest thoroughfare on earth. Along it travelled precious cargoes of silk, gold, and ivory, as well as revolutionary new ideas. Its oasis towns blossomed into thriving centres of Buddhist art and learning. In time it began to decline. The traffic slowed, the merchants left, and finally its towns vanished beneath the desert sands to be forgotten for a thousand years. But legends grew up of lost cities filled with treasurees and guarded by demons. In the early years of the 20th century, foreign explorers began to investigate these legends, and very soon an international race began for the art treasures of the Silk Road. Huge wall paintings, sculptures, and priceless manuscripts were carried away, literally by the ton, and are today scattered through the museums of a dozen countries. Peter Hopkirk tells the story of the intrepid men who, at great personal risk, led these long-range archaeological raids, incurring the undying wrath of the Chinese.

Foreign Devils on the Silk Road

The Search for the Lost Cities and Treasures of Chinese Central Asia

Author: Peter Hopkirk

Publisher: Univ of Massachusetts Press

ISBN: 9780870234354

Category: History

Page: 252

View: 1558

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The Silk Road, which linked imperial Rome and distant China, was once the greatest thoroughfare on earth. Along it traveled precious cargoes of silk, gold and ivory, as well as revolutionary new ideas. Its oasis towns blossomed into thriving centers of Buddhist art and learning. In time it began to decline. The traffic slowed, the merchants left and finally its towns vanished beneath the desert sands to be forgotten for a thousand years; however, legends grew up of lost cities filled with treasures and guarded by demons. In the early years of the last century foreign explorers began to investigate these legends, and very soon an international race began for the art treasures of the Silk Road. Huge wall paintings, sculptures and priceless manuscripts were carried away, literally by the ton, and are today scattered through the museums of a dozen countries. Peter Hopkirk tells the story of the intrepid men who, at great personal risk, led these long-range archaeological raids, incurring the undying wrath of the Chinese.

Foreign Devils on the Silk Road

The Search for the Lost Treasures of Central Asia

Author: Peter Hopkirk

Publisher: John Murray

ISBN: 1848546327

Category: History

Page: 300

View: 7928

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The Silk Road, which linked imperial Rome and distant China, was once the greatest thoroughfare on earth. Along it travelled precious cargoes of silk, gold and ivory, as well as revolutionary new ideas. Its oasis towns blossomed into thriving centres of Buddhist art and learning. In time it began to decline. The traffic slowed, the merchants left and finally its towns vanished beneath the desert sands to be forgotten for a thousand years. But legends grew up of lost cities filled with treasures and guarded by demons. In the early years of the last century foreign explorers began to investigate these legends, and very soon an international race began for the art treasures of the Silk Road. Huge wall paintings, sculptures and priceless manuscripts were carried away, literally by the ton, and are today scattered through the museums of a dozen countries. Peter Hopkirk tells the story of the intrepid men who, at great personal risk, led these long-range archaeological raids, incurring the undying wrath of the Chinese.

Journeys on the Silk Road

A Desert Explorer, Buddha's Secret Library, and the Unearthing of the World's Oldest Printed Book

Author: Joyce Morgan,Conrad Walters

Publisher: Rowman & Littlefield

ISBN: 0762787333

Category: History

Page: 336

View: 6174

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When a Chinese monk broke into a hidden cave in 1900, he uncovered one of the world’s great literary secrets: a time capsule from the ancient Silk Road. Inside, scrolls were piled from floor to ceiling, undisturbed for a thousand years. The gem within was the Diamond Sutra of AD 868. This key Buddhist teaching, made 500 years before Gutenberg inked his press, is the world’s oldest printed book. The Silk Road once linked China with the Mediterranean. It conveyed merchants, pilgrims and ideas. But its cultures and oases were swallowed by shifting sands. Central to the Silk Road’s rediscovery was a man named Aurel Stein, a Hungarian-born scholar and archaeologist employed by the British service. Undaunted by the vast Gobi Desert, Stein crossed thousands of desolate miles with his fox terrier Dash. Stein met the Chinese monk and secured the Diamond Sutra and much more. The scroll’s journey—by camel through arid desert, by boat to London’s curious scholars, by train to evade the bombs of World War II—merges an explorer’s adventures, political intrigue, and continued controversy. The Diamond Sutra has inspired Jack Kerouac and the Dalai Lama. Its journey has coincided with the growing appeal of Buddhism in the West. As the Gutenberg Age cedes to the Google Age, the survival of the Silk Road’s greatest treasure is testament to the endurance of the written word.

Quest for Kim

In Search of Kipling's Great Game

Author: Peter Hopkirk

Publisher: University of Michigan Press

ISBN: 9780472086344

Category: Literary Criticism

Page: 288

View: 8338

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Two authors' passion for India and the Great Game

Setting the East Ablaze

Lenin's Dream of an Empire in Asia

Author: Peter Hopkirk

Publisher: John Murray

ISBN: 1848547250

Category: Travel

Page: 272

View: 9992

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'Let us turn our faces towards Asia', exhorted Lenin when the long-awaited revolution in Europe failed to materialize. 'The East will help us conquer the West.' Peter Hopkirk's book tells for the first time the story of the Bolshevik attempt to set the East ablaze with the heady new gospel of Marxism. Lenin's dream was to liberate the whole of Asia, but his starting point was British India. A shadowy undeclared war followed. Among the players in this new Great Game were British spies, Communist revolutionaries, Muslim visionaries and Chinese warlords - as well as a White Russian baron who roasted his Bolshevik captives alive. Here is an extraordinary tale of intrigue and treachery, barbarism and civil war, whose violent repercussions continue to be felt in Central Asia today.

Buddhism and Islam on the Silk Road

Author: Johan Elverskog

Publisher: University of Pennsylvania Press

ISBN: 0812205316

Category: History

Page: 352

View: 850

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In the contemporary world the meeting of Buddhism and Islam is most often imagined as one of violent confrontation. Indeed, the Taliban's destruction of the Bamiyan Buddhas in 2001 seemed not only to reenact the infamous Muslim destruction of Nalanda monastery in the thirteenth century but also to reaffirm the stereotypes of Buddhism as a peaceful, rational philosophy and Islam as an inherently violent and irrational religion. But if Buddhist-Muslim history was simply repeated instances of Muslim militants attacking representations of the Buddha, how had the Bamiyan Buddha statues survived thirteen hundred years of Muslim rule? Buddhism and Islam on the Silk Road demonstrates that the history of Buddhist-Muslim interaction is much richer and more complex than many assume. This groundbreaking book covers Inner Asia from the eighth century through the Mongol empire and to the end of the Qing dynasty in the late nineteenth century. By exploring the meetings between Buddhists and Muslims along the Silk Road from Iran to China over more than a millennium, Johan Elverskog reveals that this long encounter was actually one of profound cross-cultural exchange in which two religious traditions were not only enriched but transformed in many ways.

Life along the Silk Road

Second Edition

Author: Susan Whitfield

Publisher: Univ of California Press

ISBN: 0520960297

Category: History

Page: 312

View: 2979

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In this long-awaited second edition, Susan Whitfield broadens her exploration of the Silk Road and expands her rich and varied portrait of life along the great pre-modern trade routes of Eurasia. This new edition is comprehensively updated to support further understanding of themes relevant to global and comparative history and remains the only history of the Silk Road to reconstruct the route through the personal experiences of travelers. In the first 1,000 years after Christ, merchants, missionaries, monks, mendicants, and military men traveled the vast network of Central Asian tracks that became known as the Silk Road. Whitfield recounts the lives of twelve individuals who lived at different times during this period, including two characters new to this edition: an African shipmaster and a Persian traveler and writer during the Arab caliphate. With these additional tales, Whitfield extends both geographical and chronological scope, bringing into view the maritime links across the Indian Ocean and depicting the network of north-south routes from the Baltic to the Gulf. Throughout the narrative, Whitfield conveys a strong sense of what life was like for ordinary men and women on the Silk Road, the individuals usually forgotten to history. A work of great scholarship, Life along the Silk Road continues to be both accessible and entertaining.

Eastern Approaches

Author: Fitzroy MaClean

Publisher: Penguin UK

ISBN: 0241973252

Category: Biography & Autobiography

Page: 576

View: 7754

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Fitztroy Maclean was one of the real-life inspirations for super-spy James Bond. After adventures in Soviet Russia before the war, Maclean fought with the SAS in North Africa in 1942. There he specialised in hair-raising commando raids behind enemy lines, including the daring and outrageous kidnapping of the German Consul in Axis-controlled Iraq. Maclean's extraordinary adventures in the Western Desert and later fighting alongside Tito's partisans in Yugoslavia are blistering reading and show what it took to be a British hero who broke the mould . . .

On Secret Service East of Constantinople

The Plot to Bring Down the British Empire

Author: Peter Hopkirk

Publisher: Oxford University Press, USA

ISBN: 9780192802309

Category: Asia

Page: 431

View: 8774

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Under the banner of a Holy War, masterminded in Berlin and unleashed from Constantinople, the Germans and the Turks set out in 1914 to foment violent revolutionary uprisings against the British in India and the Russians in Central Asia. It was a new and more sinister version of the old Great Game, with world domination as its ultimate aim. German hawks dreamed of driving the British out of India and creating a vast new Teutonic empire in the East, using their Turkish ally as a springboard. At the same time Turkey's leaders aimed to free the Muslim peoples of Central Asia from the Tsarist yoke - and rule them themselves as part of a new Ottoman empire. The shadowy and often bloody struggle which followed was fought out between the intelligence services of King, Kaiser, Sultan and Tsar. It was to spill over into Persia, Afghanistan, the Caucasus and Central Asia, and be felt as far afield as the United States and China. It was around this colossal conspiracy that John Buchan wove his immortal spy story Greenmantle. Here, told in epic detail and for the first time, is the extraordinary story of the Turco-German jihad of the First World War, recounted through the adventures and misadventures of the secret agents and others who took part in it. Pieced together fromthe secret intelligence reports of the day and the long-forgotten memoirs of the participants, Peter Hopkirk's latest narrative is an enthralling sequel to his best-selling The Great Game, and his three earlier works set in Central Asia. It is also highly topical in view of recent events in this volatile region where the Great Game has never really ceased. The rise of Islamic fundamentalism and fears of a resurgent Russia and Germany add greatly to its significance.

Aurel Stein

Pioneer of the Silk Road

Author: Annabel Walker

Publisher: Hong Kong University Press

ISBN: 9780295977300

Category: Biography & Autobiography

Page: 393

View: 6338

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For 30 years, brilliant archaeologist Sir Aurel Stein led the race to uncover a long-lost Buddhist civilization. "A delightful biography . . . (and) an unforgettable picture of this angular, indomitable man, with his faithful dog and his band of servants, tramping Asia from Syria to Xian in search of the secrets of the past".--THE LONDON INDEPENDENT. 29 photos.

Religions of the Silk Road

Premodern Patterns of Globalization

Author: R. Foltz

Publisher: Springer

ISBN: 0230109101

Category: Social Science

Page: 190

View: 2111

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Drawing on the latest research and scholarship, this newly revised and updated edition of Religions of the Silk Road explores the majestically fabled cities and exotic peoples that make up the romantic notions of the colonial era.

Trespassers on the Roof of the World

The Race for Lhasa

Author: Peter Hopkirk

Publisher: N.A

ISBN: 9780192802057

Category: Discovery and exploration

Page: 274

View: 4648

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Hidden behind the Himalayas and ruled over by a God-king, Tibet has always cast a powerful spell over travellers from the West. In this remarkable, and ultimately tragic narrative, Peter Hopkirk recounts the forcible opening up of this medieval land during the nineteenth and twentieth centuries, and the extraordinary race between agents, soldiers, missionaries, mountaineers, explorers, and mystics from nine different countries to reach Lhasa, Tibet's sacred capital.His story concludes with the ultimate act of trespass - the Chinese invasion of 1950.

Wild West China

The Taming of Xinjiang

Author: Christian Tyler

Publisher: Rutgers University Press

ISBN: 9780813535333

Category: History

Page: 314

View: 8773

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A portrait of the little-known wilderness of Xinjiang in northwestern China captures the region's rich past, punctuated by violence, its harsh landscape and climate, and a late, difficult colonization by China

The China Collectors

America's Century-Long Hunt for Asian Art Treasures

Author: Karl E. Meyer,Shareen Blair Brysac

Publisher: St. Martin's Press

ISBN: 1466879297

Category: Art

Page: 432

View: 5548

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Thanks to Salem sea captains, Gilded Age millionaires, curators on horseback and missionaries gone native, North American museums now possess the greatest collections of Chinese art outside of East Asia itself. How did it happen? The China Collectors is the first full account of a century-long treasure hunt in China from the Opium Wars and the Boxer Rebellion to Mao Zedong's 1949 ascent. The principal gatherers are mostly little known and defy invention. They included "foreign devils" who braved desert sandstorms, bandits and local warlords in acquiring significant works. Adventurous curators like Langdon Warner, a forebear of Indiana Jones, argued that the caves of Dunhuang were already threatened by vandals, thereby justifying the removal of frescoes and sculptures. Other Americans include George Kates, an alumnus of Harvard, Oxford and Hollywood, who fell in love with Ming furniture. The Chinese were divided between dealers who profited from the artworks' removal, and scholars who sought to protect their country's patrimony. Duanfang, the greatest Chinese collector of his era, was beheaded in a coup and his splendid bronzes now adorn major museums. Others in this rich tapestry include Charles Lang Freer, an enlightened Detroit entrepreneur, two generations of Rockefellers, and Avery Brundage, the imperious Olympian, and Arthur Sackler, the grand acquisitor. No less important are two museum directors, Cleveland's Sherman Lee and Kansas City's Laurence Sickman, who challenged the East Coast's hegemony. Shareen Blair Brysac and Karl E. Meyer even-handedly consider whether ancient treasures were looted or salvaged, and whether it was morally acceptable to spirit hitherto inaccessible objects westward, where they could be studied and preserved by trained museum personnel. And how should the US and Canada and their museums respond now that China has the means and will to reclaim its missing patrimony?

The Silk Road

A New History

Author: Valerie Hansen

Publisher: Oxford University Press

ISBN: 0190218428

Category: History

Page: 328

View: 5860

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The Silk Road is as iconic in world history as the Colossus of Rhodes or the Suez Canal. But what was it, exactly? It conjures up a hazy image of a caravan of camels laden with silk on a dusty desert track, reaching from China to Rome. The reality was different--and far more interesting--as revealed in this new history. In The Silk Road, Valerie Hansen describes the remarkable archeological finds that revolutionize our understanding of these trade routes. For centuries, key records remained hidden--sometimes deliberately buried by bureaucrats for safe keeping. But the sands of the Taklamakan Desert have revealed fascinating material, sometimes preserved by illiterate locals who recycled official documents to make insoles for shoes or garments for the dead. Hansen explores seven oases along the road, from Xi'an to Samarkand, where merchants, envoys, pilgrims, and travelers mixed in cosmopolitan communities, tolerant of religions from Buddhism to Zoroastrianism. There was no single, continuous road, but a chain of markets that traded between east and west. China and the Roman Empire had very little direct trade. China's main partners were the peoples of modern-day Iran, whose tombs in China reveal much about their Zoroastrian beliefs. Silk was not the most important good on the road; paper, invented in China before Julius Caesar was born, had a bigger impact in Europe, while metals, spices, and glass were just as important as silk. Perhaps most significant of all was the road's transmission of ideas, technologies, and artistic motifs. The Silk Road is a fascinating story of archeological discovery, cultural transmission, and the intricate chains across Central Asia and China.

On Secret Service East of Constantinople

The Plot to Bring Down the British Empire

Author: Peter Hopkirk

Publisher: John Murray

ISBN: 1848546335

Category: History

Page: 448

View: 4726

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Under the banner of a Holy War, masterminded in Berlin and unleashed from Constantinople, the Germans and the Turks set out in 1914 to foment violent revolutionary uprisings against the British in India and the Russians in Central Asia. It was a new and more sinister version of the old Great Game, with world domination as its ultimate aim. Here, told in epic detail and for the first time, is the true story behind John Buchan's classic wartime thriller Greenmantle, recounted through the adventures and misadventures of the secret agents and others who took part in it. It is an ominously topical tale today in view of the continuing turmoil in this volatile region where the Great Game has never really ceased.

Conservation of Ancient Sites on the Silk Road

Proceedings of the Second International Conference on the Conservation of Grotto Sites, Mogao Grottoes, Dunhuang, People's Republic of China, June 28–July 3, 2004

Author: Neville Agnew

Publisher: Getty Publications

ISBN: 1606060139

Category: Art

Page: 516

View: 2194

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Neville Agnew, senior principal project specialist at the GCI, is the author of numerous publications in research chemistry and conservation, including (with two coauthors) the book Cave Temples of Mogao: Art and History on the Silk Road. --Book Jacket.

Travels Into Bokhara

Being the Account of a Journey from India to Cabool, Tartary and Persia. Also, Narrative of a Voyage on the Indus, from the Sea to Lahore, Performed Under the Orders of the Supreme Government of India in 1831, 1832, 1833

Author: Sir Alexander Burnes

Publisher: N.A

ISBN: N.A

Category: Bukrhara (Uzbek S.S.R.)

Page: 239

View: 5622

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