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The Silk Road - China and the Karakorum Highway: A Travel Companion

The Silk Road - China and the Karakorum Highway: A Travel Companion
Jonathan Tucker

Foreword by: Paul Theroux

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Stretching from the ancient Chinese capital of Xian across the expanses of Central Asia to Rome, the Silk Road was, for 1,500 years, a vibrant network of arteries that carried the lifeblood of nations across the world. Along a multitude of routes everything was exchanged: exotic goods, art, knowledge, religion, philosophy, disease and war. From the East came silk, precious stones, tea, jade, paper, porcelain, spices and cotton; from the West, horses, weapons, wool and linen, aromatics, entertainers and exotic animals. From its earliest beginnings in the days of Alexander the Great and the Han dynasty, the Silk Road expanded and evolved, reaching its peak during the Tang dynasty and the Byzantine Empire and gradually withering away with the decline of the Mongol Empire.

In this beautifully illustrated book, which covers the China section of the Silk Road - from Xian through Loulan, Korla, Turfan and Khotan to Kashgar and onwards to India - Jonathan Tucker uses travellers' anecdotes and a wealth of literary and historical sources to celebrate the cultural heritage of the countries that lie along the Silk Road and illuminate the lives of those who once travelled through the very heart of the world.

Author Info

Jonathan Tucker is a specialist in Indian and Southeast Asian art and the author of 'The Silk Road: Art and History' (Philip Wilson Publishers), 'The Silk Road: Asia, Afghanistan and Iran' (I.B. Tauris), and 'The Troublesome Priest: Harold Davidson, Rector of Stiffkey'. He lived in Asia for many years and has explored the entire length of the Silk Road with the exception of Iraq.


'A considered trawl through this year’s best travel books is an odyssey in itself. Among the unmissables are Jonathan Tucker’s The Silk Road, a two-volume “travel companion” journeying across centuries and vast distances, from China through Central Asia to Iran. It’s a must-read accompaniment for readers seeking to touch any part of that daunting terrain.'
The Scotsman

‘...a wonderful reference book and an enlightening journey in itself’
Paul Theroux

‘This book is a Silk Road 'bible', a well constructed and beautiful collation of a mass of information and knowledge on a truly fascinating corner of the world. But be warned: read The Silk Road and you'll want to experience it for yourself… a feat worthy of accolades and to top it all off, the book is filled with excellent, and at times breathtaking, photography’

‘A most handsome volume, admirable in scope and reliable in detail… it will serve as a treasured compendium...'
John Keay, THES

‘this is a book to fascinate…not only those interested in the past, but also those keen to understand the present.’
Journal of the Royal Asiatic Society

‘This is a beautifully designed and produced work…undoubtedly one of the fullest and clearest - and certainly the best illustrated - introductions to this vast and bewildering subject.’
Asian Affairs

‘an exquisitely produced major achievement... very highly recommended’

Bibliographic Info

Imprint: I.B.Tauris
Publisher: I.B.Tauris & Co. Ltd.

ISBN: 9781780763569
Publication Date: 30 Mar 2015
Number of Pages: 288
Illustrations: 40 bw, 16 colour illustrations

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