Souvenirs from the Silk Road

Geographical, August 2006 | Go to article overview

Souvenirs from the Silk Road


The early-20th-century archaeological expeditions made by Sir Marc Aurel Stein into the desert wastelands of China captured the public's imagination. In the West, he was hailed as the greatest Silk Road explorer, but to the Chinese, he was an imperialist villain who robbed them of their history- the Lord Elgin of Asia. Over three decades and 40,000 kilometres, Stein liberated more than 100,000 manuscripts, paintings, murals and textiles from the deserts of Central Asia. An efficient leader, he seldom chose Western travelling companions, opting instead for local guides and a fox terrier named Dash. In 1909, he was awarded the Royal Geographical Society's Founders Medal for 'explorations in Central Asia'. Here, Geographical presents a selection of the 8,000 photographs Stein took to document his travels and his discoveries

Left: camels and horses approach the dunes to the south of Maralbushi in Turkestan (today part of the autonomous region of Xinjiang Uygur Zizhiqu in southwestern China) during Stein's third expedition to the region, c. 1913-16. During this trip, he revisited sites discovered in previous expeditions and traced an ancient route across the Lop and Gobi deserts; Above: Hungarian-born Stein led eight Silk Road expeditions over a period of 30 years, uncovering a wealth of historical artefacts that today reside in the museums of 12 countries. In 1904, he became a British citizen, but lived most his life in Lahore and Kashmir. His quest for knowledge lasted well into his old age. In 1943, at the age of 81, he arrived in Kabul, intending to explore Afghanistan's pre-Islamic past. Sadly, he became ill and died within a week, and was buried in a Christian cemetery

Below: the shifting sands of the Taklimakan Desert beyond the Kefiya River, c. 1925. Stein found mummified remains in coffins and tombs in the desert, the dry air keeping them in remarkably good condition. The mummies could be as much as 3,000 years old

Above left: an ancient burial ground at Loulan, on the edge of the Lop Nur salt flat, Sinkiang, c. 1906-08; Above right: rock-cut graveyards in Old Siraf, Iran, c. 1932. Stein spent four years exploring Iran, uncovering a 5,000-year-old Neolithic settlement; Below: crossing the Taklimakan Desert, 1906-08. During this expedition, Stein suffered from frostbite in the Qilan Shan mountains, east of the desert, and the toes of his left foot had to be amputated

Above: Kirghiz people and their ak-ois or yurts in the Pamir Mountains below Merki Pass, Mustagh-ata Range, on the border between Tajikistan and China, c.

The rest of this article is only available to active members of Questia

Sign up now for a free, 1-day trial and receive full access to:

  • Questia's entire collection
  • Automatic bibliography creation
  • More helpful research tools like notes, citations, and highlights
  • Ad-free environment

Already a member? Log in now.

Notes for this article

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Project items

Items saved from this article

This article has been saved
Highlights (0)
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

Citations (0)
Some of your citations are legacy items.

Any citation created before July 30, 2012 will labeled as a “Cited page.” New citations will be saved as cited passages, pages or articles.

We also added the ability to view new citations from your projects or the book or article where you created them.

Notes (0)
Bookmarks (0)

You have no saved items from this article

Project items include:
  • Saved book/article
  • Highlights
  • Quotes/citations
  • Notes
  • Bookmarks
Notes
Cite this article

Cited article

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited article

Souvenirs from the Silk Road
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger
Search within

Search within this article

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Full screen

matching results for page

Cited passage

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited passage

Welcome to the new Questia Reader

The Questia Reader has been updated to provide you with an even better online reading experience.  It is now 100% Responsive, which means you can read our books and articles on any sized device you wish.  All of your favorite tools like notes, highlights, and citations are still here, but the way you select text has been updated to be easier to use, especially on touchscreen devices.  Here's how:

1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
2. Click or tap the last word you want to select.

OK, got it!

Thanks for trying Questia!

Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

For full access in an ad-free environment, sign up now for a FREE, 1-day trial.

Already a member? Log in now.