Silk Road Trade & Travel Encyclopedia
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SILK ROAD & RELATED TRADE ROUTES
A journey of a 1,000 miles begins with a single step
In 1877 the term "Seidenstraße" (Die
was coined by the German geographer, cartographer and explorer Ferdinand von Richthofen.
The overland Silk Road & ancient routes cross the Asian continent, from China in Asia, to
Turkey and the Mediterranean,
where the routes extend by sea to Europe, Arabia, and North Africa. Central Asia is the heart of the largest landmass on earth, known as Eurasia.
Central Asia's role as the conduit between cultures is symbolized by the "Silk Road."
"Medieval Commerce (Asia)" From The Historical Atlas by William R. Shepherd, 1926
Though it may appear as a single road
(in red above),
the "Silk Road" was a network of centuries-old trade
which enabled traders to travel from Xian (Chang'an) in China, to Istanbul (Constantinople) in Turkey.
The ancient spice and incense routes were also connected to the Silk Routes by ports and sea routes.
As the most
well-known overland trading route of
the Silk Road grew under the Chinese Han Dynasty (202 BC - AD 220) during the first and second centuries AD,
and connected the Yellow River Valley of China to the Mediterranean Sea.
Click for further map details of China
More than half of the East-West Silk Routes are located in China.
The Chinese section of the Silk Road began in the city of Xi'an (in Shaanxi province colored red at right),
then passed through the provinces of Gansu, Ningxia, Qinghai, and Xinjiang (the largest province, colored orange to the left).
Click for deserts & mountains
The Chinese section of the Silk Routes, linking Central Asia to
was a region where ancient civilizations of the East and West interacted.
Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region, China
Northwest Xinjiang, Chinese section of Silk Road
Southwest Xinjiang, Chinese section of Silk Road
Northeast Xinjiang, Chinese section of Silk Road
Southeast Xinjiang, Chinese section of Silk Road
Maps of Overland & Maritime Routes
|Trade Items||Trade Items||Central Asia||Central Asia||Bactria|
|Han Routes||Phoenician||Adm.ZhengHe||Empire Routes||Bukhara-Mashhad|
|Kervansaray||Central Asia||Central Asia||Central Asia||Central Asia|
|Central Asia||Central Asia||China||Near East||Xian-Kashgar|
|East Asia||Asia||Great Wall||Gobi Desert||Taklamakan|
|Incense Trade||Hexi Corridor||Arabia||Arabian Routes||African-Sahara|
|Spice Routes||Slave Trade||Colony Routes||Routes||Nabataean|
|Spice||Sea Routes||Sea Routes||Eurasia||Eurasia|
|Silk & Spice||Routes||Sea Voyages||Global Routes||Maritime|
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