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What caused the decline of the Silk Road?
Transcript of What caused the decline of the Silk Road?
The Heyday of The Silk Road
Initially, traders on the Silk Road brought Chinese silk to western areas. Then, when the Silk Road grew stronger, the Silk Route by Sea started. During the Tang Dynasty, more merchants started doing business on the Silk Road and the Silk Route by Sea.
The trade of the Silk Road reached to its peak during the Yuan Dynasty. At that time, empires sent diplomatic missions to establish diplomatic relations with each other.
Marco Polo, the Italian trader and explorer, even wrote a book about the busy commerce, The Travels of Marco Polo.
Decline of the Silk Road
The Silk Road was an important communication of the Western economy and culture, after the Yuan Dynasty it gradually declined. To the Southern Song Dynasty, Song government had no control over the entire Northwest. Thus the Silk Road started declining.
The Silk Route by Sea opened up, The shipbuilding of the Song Dynasty contributed to the prosperity of the Silk Route by Sea. In the Qing Dynasty, the government implemented a policy of seclusion, which accelerated the decline of the Silk Road.
Maritime and Northwest Silk Road
The Original Silk Road
The Silk Road started in around 138 B.C. when Han Dynasty sent Zhang Qian to countries of western Asia. The Silk Road was an ancient caravan route, also called the Silk Route.
It stretched from Changan, the ancient Chinese capital city, through Gansu and Xinjiang Provinces, to central and western Asia and Europe.
Trade of the Silk Road and World Business
and cultural exchanges
To Central and West Asia and Europe
Traded with camels
Traded with ships
Not so many obstructions in the ocean.
Many deserts and mountain ranges in the land
Monsoon in the China East Coast in summer and winter
Sandstorms and quicksands in the deserts
Although the Silk Road had already declined, it had historically played an unrivaled role. Silk Road spread the Western culture, and it promoted the exchange of business.
Silk Road spread papermaking and printing to Asia and Europe. Buddhism, Zoroastrianism, Manichaeism and Nestorian also came to Asia via the Silk Road.
Even now, the Silk Road still promotes the development of tourism. There are many famous attractions in the Silk Road, Dunhuang frescoes, Mingsha, Crescent Lake, Yumen Pass, etc.
However, there was a large part of the Silk Road in the desert. The temperatures of day and night in desert are very different. It could be 50 degrees at noon, but at night, the temperature even could be below 0 degree. Also, the supply of water was a major problem, and the sandstorms and quicksands are threats to lives of caravans.
In the Silk Route by Sea, there would be tornadoes and typhoons, but most of the storms could be predicted, and boats were strong. Also, boats in the near shore waters could provide supplies.
Thank You!!! :)
Route of the Silk Road
Li, Xiaoxiao. "Silk Road." World History: Ancient and Medieval Eras. ABC-CLIO, 2014. Web. 26 Mar. 2014. http://ancienthistory.abc-clio.com/
"Silk Road." Encyclopedia Americana. Grolier Online, 2014. Web. 20 Mar. 2014.
"Silk Road." The New Book of Knowledge. Grolier Online, 2014. Web. 20 Mar. 2014. http://go-middle.grolier.com/
Wei, Lilly. "Silk Road." Grolier Multimedia Encyclopedia. Grolier Online, n.d.
Web. 18 Mar. 2014. http://go-middle.grolier.com/
Darian, Steven. "Silk Road." Encyclopedia of Modern Asia. Ed. Karen Christensen and David Levinson. Vol. 5. New York: Charles Scribner's Sons, 2002. 207-209. World History in Context. Web. 3 Apr. 2014. http://ic.galegroup.com/
When I knew I would do the GATP project, my first idea was about the Silk Road. The Silk Road started long time ago, but it's still shining now.
During the long history of the Silk Road, it went though a lot of changes. At the beginning, the Silk Road was an exchange passage. In the middle period of the develpoment, the Silk Road was not only a business channel, but also a diplomatic route between countries. Then, the Silk Road declined, but it didn't quit the stage of the history. The Silk Road became a part of the tourism; its distinctive ancient atmosphere attract more tourists to visit those famous viewpoints. It's promoting the world business use its own way.
The Silk Road is always a pearl of east, it went through many difficulties. We are small when we face the endless history. Although we cannot change anything, but those experiences will be our valuables during the long history. They will be shining just like the Silk Road, and we will remember them forever.