'The Silk Road', consisted of a number of ancient long-distance trade routes between Europe and China. It was a conduit for humans, languages, objects and diseases and is a fascinating example of international cross-boundary interaction that has mutually enriched the cultures of Eurasia and Africa for at least 2000 years. This led to the exchange of ideas that triggered new scientific and technological developments, and modified languages.
Building on the multidisciplinary investigations of Islamic glass and glazed pottery production in the Middle East (the Raqqa project, directed by Julian Henderson), which supplied the Medieval Silk Road, this multidisciplinary project approaches the movement, exchange and areas of influence along the Silk Road in innovative ways.
Using a combination of archaeological, geographical, historical and scientific techniques (including chemical, isotopic and other techniques) we focus on the definitions of:
- cultural nodes and provenance of materials
- international trade
- economic growth and decline
Hongjiao Ma, Jian Zhu, Julian Henderson and Naisheng Li 2012. ‘Provenance of Zhangzhou export blue-and-white porcelain and its clay source’, Journal of Archaeological Science 39, 1218-1286.
Henderson, J. 2010. ‘The provenance of ancient man made glass: raw materials, and the use of chemical and isotopic analytical techniques’ in The provenance of man-made glass and obsidian, in eds. I. Liritzis and C. Stephenson, University of New Mexico Press, 185-201.
Henderson, J., Evans, J. and Barkoudah, Y. 2009.The roots of provenance: glass, plants and isotopes in the Islamic Middle East, Antiquity, 83, 414-429
The team includes colleagues in a range of faculties in The University of Nottingham and in universities and government institutions, ranging from China to Western Europe.
- Prof Dr Işik Adibelli, Ahi Evran Üniversitesi, Kirşehir,Turkey
- Dr Amridin Berdimurodov, The Academy of Sciences, Republic of Uzbekistan
- Dr Diego Calaon, University Ca' Foscari of Venice, Italy
- Prof Dr Gan Fuxi, Fudan University, Shanghai, China
- Prof Dr Sauro Gelichi, University Ca' Foscari of Venice, Italy;
- Professor Dr Richard Hodges, President of the American University of Rome, Italy
- The International Dunhuang Project (Director Dr Susan Whitfield)
- Prof Dr Uzlifat Ozgumus, Doğuş University, Istanbul, Turkey
- Dr Ravindra Nath Singh, Centre of Advanced Study, Banaras Hindu University, India
The following research students are focusing on production and trade in glass or Chinese ceramics along the Silk Road:
- Jingyi Shen
- Siu Ieong
- Thomas Smith
Prospective research students are encouraged to contact Julian Henderson
to discuss potential research proposals.
The following institutions have funded aspects of the project