The vicissitudes of the Silk Road _ ancient people’s transportation

The mission opened by the Western Regions began with Chang an (now Xi an), passed through Gansu and Xinjiang, and reached Central and Western Asia, linking up the land channels of the Mediterranean countries. Therefore, it is called the Silk Road because the silk products have the greatest influence on the goods transported westward by this road, hence the name.

During the period of Emperor Han Wu of the Western Han Dynasty, Emperor Han Wu wanted to contact the Dayue clan who had been rushed by the Huns from Hexi to the Western Regions to fight against the Huns together, and then he sent a document to recruit the messengers of the Western Regions. At that time, going to the Western Regions was as dangerous as going to the Philippines today. Even so, someone still recommended himself, this person is Zhang Jian.

138 In 138 BC, Zhang Huan and more than 100 followers set out from Chang an and traveled day and night to the west. As Zhang Qian expected, as soon as Yumen Pass was passed, he and his men were caught by the Huns. The Huns detained them for more than 10 years, and in the end only one servant of the Huns remained with him. The master and servant secretly fled the Huns barracks one night by wit, and endured hardships and hunger, and finally escaped the territory controlled by the Huns. They have been in the Western Regions for more than a year and have been to Dawan, Dayue and Daxia. At that time, Otsuki had moved westward for a long time and did not want to fight the Huns anymore. Later , Zhang Jian returned to Chang an after several twists and turns, and made detailed reports to the Emperor Han Wu of the Western Regions.

Actually, Zhang Ye did not open up a road this time. Emperor Hanwu still hoped that there would be a road leading directly to the west. So in 119 BC, Emperor Han Wu sent Zhang Jian to the Western Regions. Zhang Ye had to lead the ambassador again and brought a lot of silk goods to many countries in the Western Regions. After Zhang Ye arrived in Wusun Kingdom, he began to live here, and then sent 300 envoys to Dawan, Kangju, Dayue, Daxia, Sabbath, Body Poison , and Yu Que Country. Zhang Huan and his men were warmly welcomed in the Western Regions, because he represented the Han empire who had just defeated the Huns. Countries in the Western Regions also sent envoys to visit China and returned to the Han Dynasty. In 60 BC, the Western Han Dynasty established the Western Regions Guardian, in charge of the Western Regions affairs.

Since Zhangye s mission to the Western Regions this time, the Western Regions and the Han Dynasty have become more and more frequent. There are a large number of messengers on the Silk Road every year. There are hundreds of people and at least a hundred people …

When the Eastern Han Dynasty was defeated, the Xiongnu defeated by the Western Han Dynasty became stronger again. Seeing the wind to make the rudder, King Guiz turned to the Huns, opposed the Han Dynasty, and bullied neighboring Shule by force. He also sent some people to kill King Shule, and set the title of King Qiuz to be King Shule.

73 In 73 AD, in order to ensure that the Silk Road blocked by the war was unobstructed, Emperor Hanming emulated Emperor Han Wu and sent a man named Ban Chao to the Western Regions. Ban Chao is different from Zhang Huan. He is very brave and has good luck. He travelled with only 36 followers. Ban Chao first came to Shule, overturned the question through a military coup, and then summoned the Minister of Civil and Military Affairs of Shule to explain his intentions. He announced in public that the old King of Shule was still the king and was supported by Shule people. Ban Chao also put back the question of the Turtles in accordance with the policy. These righteous actions have increased his prestige in the Western Regions.

In the 30 years in the Western Regions, Ban Chao did a lot of good things. He helped the countries in the Western Regions get rid of the control of the Huns, strengthened the connection between the Western Regions and the Mainland, and was appointed by the Eastern Han Dynasty as the Western Regions. Later, Ban Chao also sent Gan Ying to the Persian Gulf and communicated the road between the Central Plains, the Western Regions, and Arabia and the Persian Gulf. At this time, a safe passageway of 10,000 miles across vast fields, endless deserts, fertile grasslands, and precipitous mountains will link China s ancient capital, Chang an, with countries on the eastern coast of the Mediterranean. Since then, the Silk Road has officially become China s national road linking East and West.

Regardless of the later Eastern Jin Wuhu Sixteen Kingdoms, or the Northern and Southern Dynasties, there were constantly messengers going east to west on the Silk Road. These people are very famous, such as the Tianzhu (Indian) monk Buddha Tucheng, the Eastern Jin monk Fa Xian, the Northern Wei Dynasty Dong Zheng, Gao Ming. Han Sheepskin from the Northern Wei Dynasty sent Persia to Persia and brought back Persian messengers …

In the Tang Dynasty, the further integration of national culture and wider territory, the Silk Road became smoother. Cultural exchanges at the time also presented a dazzling scene. Jewelry, spices, and glassware from the West came in, and the lifestyles and cultural ideas of Central and Western Asia entered the Central Plains. While absorbing foreign cultures, with the help of the powerful political power of the Tang Dynasty, the original text of the Chinese language was also introduced to the West, which affected the Western countries in varying degrees .

In 629 AD, the Tang Dynasty monk Xuanzang set off from Chang an, along the Silk Road, passing Liangzhou, passing Liusha River, Hami, crossing the Tianshan Mountains, coming to Samarkand, then over the Snowy Mountains, and finally to India, an ancient civilization, Learn to communicate, and learn from the experience and return to the country, which caused a sensation in the field and had a profound impact. The character Tang Seng in Later Journey to the West was based on him. In the Yuan Dynasty, the famous Italian traveler Marco Polo set foot on the Silk Road again. With childhood dreams, he followed the footsteps of his ancestors, along the vast Silk Road, went through all kinds of hardships and came to China. He is an angel, letting the world know China.

Later, with the rise of the South China Sea route, the once prosperous ancient Silk Road gradually declined. However, the historical significance of the Silk Road is not dim, but rather more glorious. Because it used to be the main link between ancient and western civilizations, and the path of friendship for economic and cultural exchanges between Asia, Europe, and Africa.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *