HOME

TheInfoList




The Kingdom of Khotan was an ancient
Iranian Iranian may refer to: * Iran Iran ( fa, ایران ), also called Persia, and officially the Islamic Republic of Iran, is a country in Western Asia Western Asia, West Asia, or Southwest Asia, is the westernmost subregion A subreg ...
Saka The Saka, Śaka, Shaka, Śāka or Sacae ( ; Kharosthi: ; Brahmi script, Brahmi: , ; sa, wiktionary:शक#Sanskrit, शक , ; grc, Σάκαι ; la, Sacae; , Old Chinese, old , Pinyin, mod. , ; egy, wiktionary:sk#Etymology 2, 𓋴𓎝 ...

Saka
Buddhist Buddhism (, ) is the world's fourth-largest religion Religion is a social Social organisms, including humans, live collectively in interacting populations. This interaction is considered social whether they are aware of it or not, an ...

Buddhist
kingdom located on the branch of the
Silk Road The Silk Road () was and is a network of trade routes connecting the Eastern world, East and Western culture, West, from the 2nd century BCE to the 18th century CE. It was central to the economic, cultural, political, and religious interactions ...

Silk Road
that ran along the southern edge of the
Taklamakan Desert The Taklamakan Desert (; zh, s=塔克拉玛干沙漠, p=Tǎkèlāmǎgān Shāmò, Xiao'erjing Xiao'erjing or Xiao'erjin or Xiaor jin or in its shortened form, Xiaojing, literally meaning "children's script" or "minor script" (cf. "original ...

Taklamakan Desert
in the
Tarim Basin The Tarim Basin is an endorheic basin An endorheic basin (; also spelled endoreic basin or endorreic basin) is a drainage basin that normally retains water and allows no outflow to other external bodies of water, such as rivers or oceans ...
(modern
Xinjiang Xinjiang (),, SASM/GNC: ''Xinjang''; zh, c=, p=Xīnjiāng; alternately romanized as Sinkiang officially the Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region (XUAR) and formerly romanized as Sinkiang, is a landlocked autonomous region An autonomous ...

Xinjiang
,
China China (), officially the People's Republic of China (PRC; ), is a country in East Asia East Asia is the eastern region of Asia Asia () is Earth's largest and most populous continent, located primarily in the Eastern Hemisphere ...

China
). The ancient capital was originally sited to the west of modern-day
Hotan Hotan (also known as Gosthana, Gaustana, Godana, Godaniya, Khotan, Hetian, Hotien) is a major oasis town in southwestern Xinjiang, an Autonomous regions of China, autonomous region in Western China. The city proper of Hotan broke off from the l ...

Hotan
( zh, c=和田) at Yotkan (Chinese: 约特干; pinyin: Yuētègàn). From the
Han dynasty#REDIRECT Han dynasty The Han dynasty () was the second Dynasties in Chinese history, imperial dynasty of China (202 BC – 220 AD), established by the rebel leader Liu Bang and ruled by the House of Liu. Preceded by the short-lived Qin dynas ...

Han dynasty
until at least the
Tang dynasty The Tang dynasty (, ; ), or Tang Empire, was an imperial dynasty of China that ruled from 618 to 907, with an interregnum An interregnum (plural interregna or interregnums) is a period of discontinuity or "gap" in a government, organiza ...
it was known in Chinese as Yutian ( zh, t=于闐, , or ). This
largely Buddhist
largely Buddhist
kingdom existed for over a thousand years until it was conquered by the
Muslim Muslims () are people who follow or practice Islam Islam (; ar, اَلْإِسْلَامُ, al-’Islām, "submission o God Oh God may refer to: * An exclamation; similar to "oh no", "oh yes", "oh my", "aw goodness", "ah gosh", ...

Muslim
Kara-Khanid Khanate The Kara-Khanid Khanate (), also known as the Karakhanids, Qarakhanids, Ilek Khanids or the Afrasiabids (), was a Turkic khanate that ruled Central Asia Central Asia is a region in Asia which stretches from the Caspian Sea in the west to C ...

Kara-Khanid Khanate
in 1006, during the
Islamicisation and Turkicisation of Xinjiang The Turkic peoples were descended from a Transeurasian agricultural community based in northeast China China (), officially the People's Republic of China (PRC; ), is a country in . It is the world's , with a of more than 1.4 billio ...
. Built on an oasis, Khotan's mulberry groves allowed the production and export of
silk Silk is a natural Nature, in the broadest sense, is the natural, physical, material world or universe The universe ( la, universus) is all of space and time and their contents, including planets, stars, galaxies, and all o ...

silk
and
carpet A carpet is a textile A textile is a flexible material made by creating an interlocking bundle of yarn Yarn is a long continuous length of interlocked fibres, suitable for use in the production of textiles, sewing, crocheting, kni ...

carpet
s, in addition to the city's other major products such as its famous
nephrite Nephrite is a variety of the calcium, magnesium, and iron-rich amphibole Amphibole () is a group of Silicate minerals, inosilicate minerals, forming prism or needlelike crystals, composed of double chain tetrahedron, tetrahedra, linked at th ...

nephrite
jade and
pottery Pottery is the process and the products of forming vessels and other objects with clay Clay is a type of fine-grained natural soil Surface-water- gley developed in glacial till, Northern Ireland.">Northern_Ireland.html" ;"title="g ...

pottery
. Despite being a significant city on the silk road as well as a notable source of jade for ancient China, Khotan itself is relatively small – the circumference of the ancient city of Khotan at Yōtkan was about 2.5 to 3.2 km (1.5 to 2 miles). Much of the archaeological evidence of the ancient city of Khotan however had been obliterated due to centuries of treasure hunting by local people. The inhabitants of Khotan used Khotanese, an
Eastern Iranian language The Eastern Iranian languages are a subgroup of the Iranian languages The Iranian or Iranic languages are a branch of the Indo-Iranian languages in the Indo-European languages, Indo-European language family that are spoken natively by the Ira ...
, and Gandhari Prakrit, an
Indo-Aryan language The Indo-Aryan or Indic languages form a major language family A language is a structured system of communication used by humans, including speech ( spoken language), gestures (Signed language, sign language) and writing. Most languages h ...
related to
Sanskrit Sanskrit (; attributively , ; nominalization, nominally , , ) is a classical language of South Asia that belongs to the Indo-Aryan languages, Indo-Aryan branch of the Indo-European languages. It arose in South Asia after its predecessor langua ...

Sanskrit
. There is debate as to how much Khotan's original inhabitants were ethnically and anthropologically
South Asia South Asia is the southern region of Asia Asia () is 's largest and most populous , located primarily in the and . It shares the continental of with the continent of and the continental landmass of with both Europe and . Asia cov ...

South Asia
n and speakers of the
Gāndhārī language Gāndhārī is the modern name, coined by scholar Harold Walter Bailey Sir Harold Walter Bailey, (16 December 1899 – 11 January 1996), who published as H. W. Bailey, was an eminent English scholar of Khotanese, Sanskrit Sanskrit (, attrib ...
versus the
Saka The Saka, Śaka, Shaka, Śāka or Sacae ( ; Kharosthi: ; Brahmi script, Brahmi: , ; sa, wiktionary:शक#Sanskrit, शक , ; grc, Σάκαι ; la, Sacae; , Old Chinese, old , Pinyin, mod. , ; egy, wiktionary:sk#Etymology 2, 𓋴𓎝 ...

Saka
, an
Indo-European people The Proto-Indo-Europeans were a hypothetical prehistoric Prehistory, also known as pre-literary history, is the period of human history Human history, also known as world history, is the description of humanity's past. It is informed ...

Indo-European people
of
Iranian Iranian may refer to: * Iran Iran ( fa, ایران ), also called Persia, and officially the Islamic Republic of Iran, is a country in Western Asia Western Asia, West Asia, or Southwest Asia, is the westernmost subregion A subreg ...
branch from the
Eurasian Steppe The Eurasian Steppe, also simply called the Great Steppe or the steppes, is the vast steppe ecoregion of Eurasia in the temperate grasslands, savannas, and shrublands biome. It stretches through Hungary, Bulgaria, Romania, Moldova, Ukraine, Europ ...
. From the 3rd century onwards they also had a visible linguistic influence on the Gāndhārī language spoken at the royal court of Khotan. The Khotanese Saka language was also recognized as an official court language by the 10th century and used by the Khotanese rulers for administrative documentation.


Names

The kingdom of Khotan was given various names and transcriptions. The ancient Chinese called Khotan ''Yutian'' (, its ancient pronunciation was ''gi̯wo-d'ien'' or ''ji̯u-d'ien'') also written as and other similar-sounding names such as Yudun (), Huodan (), and Qudan (). Sometimes they also used ''Jusadanna'' (), derived from Indo-Iranian ''Gostan'' and ''Gostana'', the names of the town and region around it respectively. Others include Huanna (). To the Tibetans in the seventh and eighth centuries, the kingdom was called Li (or Li-yul) and the capital city ''Hu-ten'', ''Hu-den'', ''Hu-then'' and ''Yvu-then''. The name as written by the locals changed over time; in about the third century AD, the local people wrote ''Khotana'' in Kharoṣṭhī script, and ''Hvatäna'' in the
Brahmi script Brahmi (; ISO 15919 ISO 15919 "Transliteration of Devanagari and related Indic scripts into Latin characters" is one of a series of international standards for romanization Romanization or romanisation, in linguistics, is the conversion o ...

Brahmi script
some time later. From this came ''Hvamna'' and ''Hvam'' in their latest texts, where ''Hvam kṣīra'' or 'the land of Khotan' was the name given. Khotan became known to the west while the –''t''- was still unchanged, as is frequent in early
New Persian New Persian ( fa, فارسی نو), also known as Modern Persian () and Dari (), is the final stage of the Persian language Persian (), also known by its endonym An endonym (from Greek Greek may refer to: Greece Anything of, from, or re ...
. The local people also used ''Gaustana'' (''Gosthana'', ''Gostana'', ''Godana'', ''Godaniya'' or ''Kustana'') under the influence of
Buddhist Hybrid Sanskrit Buddhist Hybrid Sanskrit (BHS) is a modern linguistic category applied to the language used in a class of Indian Buddhist Buddhism (, ) is the world's fourth-largest religion Religion is a social system, social-cultural system of desig ...
, and ''Yūttina'' in the ninth century, when it was allied with the Chinese kingdom of Șacū (Shazhou or
Dunhuang Dunhuang () is a county-level city A county-level municipality (), county-level city or county city, formerly known as prefecture-controlled city (1949–1970: ; 1970–1983: ), is a county-level administrative division of the Peo ...
).


Location and geography

The geographical position of the oasis was the main factor in its success and wealth. To its north is one of the most arid and desolate desert climates on the earth, the
Taklamakan Desert The Taklamakan Desert (; zh, s=塔克拉玛干沙漠, p=Tǎkèlāmǎgān Shāmò, Xiao'erjing Xiao'erjing or Xiao'erjin or Xiaor jin or in its shortened form, Xiaojing, literally meaning "children's script" or "minor script" (cf. "original ...

Taklamakan Desert
, and to its south the largely uninhabited
Kunlun Mountains The Kunlun Mountains ( zh, s=昆仑山, t=崑崙山, p=Kūnlún Shān, ; ug, كۇئېنلۇن تاغ تىزمىسى) constitute one of the longest mountain chain A mountain chain is a row of high mountain summit A summit is a point on a su ...

Kunlun Mountains
(Qurum). To the east there were few oases beyond Niya, making travel difficult, and access is only relatively easy from the west. Khotan was irrigated from the Yurung-kàsh and Kara-kàsh rivers, which water the
Tarim Basin The Tarim Basin is an endorheic basin An endorheic basin (; also spelled endoreic basin or endorreic basin) is a drainage basin that normally retains water and allows no outflow to other external bodies of water, such as rivers or oceans ...
. These two rivers produce vast quantities of water, which made habitation possible in an otherwise arid climate. The location next to the mountain not only allowed irrigation for crops but also increased the fertility of the land, as the rivers reduced the gradient and deposited sediment on their banks, creating a more fertile soil. This more fertile soil increased the agricultural productivity that made Khotan famous for its cereal crops and fruit. Therefore, Khotan's lifeline was its proximity to the Kunlun mountain range, and without it Khotan would not have become one of the largest and most successful oasis cities along the Silk Roads. The kingdom of Khotan was one of the many small states found in the Tarim Basin, which included
Yarkand Yarkant County,, National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency, United States National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency also Shache County,, National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency, United States National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency also SASM/GNC rom ...
,
Loulan Loulan, also called Krorän or Kroraina ( zh, s=, t=, p=Lóulán Sand dunes in th .... The term Loulan is the Chinese transcription of the native name Krorän and is used to refer to the city near Lop Nur as well as the kingdom. The kingdom was re ...

Loulan
(
Shanshan Shanshan (; ug, پىچان, Pichan, Piqan) was a kingdom located at the north-eastern end of the Taklamakan Desert The Taklamakan Desert (; zh, s=塔克拉玛干沙漠, p=Tǎkèlāmǎgān Shāmò, Xiao'erjing Xiao'erjing or Xiao'erjin ...
),
Turfan Turpan (also known as Turfan or Tulufan, zh, 吐鲁番, pinyin: Tǔlǔfán, ug, تۇرپان) is a located in the east of the of , . It has an of and a population of 632,000 (2015). Geonyms The original name of the city is unknown. The for ...
, the
Kashgar Kashgar ( ug, قەشقەر – ''Qeshqer'') or Kashi ( zh, c=喀什) is an oasis In geography Geography (from Greek: , ''geographia'', literally "earth description") is a field of science devoted to the study of the lands, feat ...
, Karashahr, and
Kucha 250px, Location of Kucha within Aksu in yellow Kucha or Kuche (also: ''Kuçar'', ''Kuchar''; ug, كۇچار, Кучар; zh, t=wikt:龜茲, 龜茲, p=Qiūcí also zh, t=wikt:库车, 库车, p=Kùchē; sa, Kucina), was an ancient Buddhist ki ...
(the last three, together with Khotan, made up the four Garrisons during the
Tang dynasty The Tang dynasty (, ; ), or Tang Empire, was an imperial dynasty of China that ruled from 618 to 907, with an interregnum An interregnum (plural interregna or interregnums) is a period of discontinuity or "gap" in a government, organiza ...
). To the west were the Central Asian kingdoms of
Sogdiana Sogdia () ( sog, soɣd) or Sogdiana was an ancient Iranian peoples, Iranian civilization between between the Amu Darya and the Syr Darya, and in present-day Uzbekistan, Tajikistan, Kazakhstan, and Kyrgyzstan. Sogdiana was also a province of the Ac ...
and
Bactria Bactria (BactrianBactrian may refer to *Bactria Bactria ( Bactrian: , ), or Bactriana, was an ancient region in Central Asia Central Asia is a region in Asia which stretches from the Caspian Sea in the west to China and Mongolia in the ...
. It was surrounded by powerful neighbours, such as the
Kushan Empire The Kushan Empire ( grc, Βασιλεία Κοσσανῶν; xbc, Κυϸανο, kus, khasano, ; Brahmi script, Late Brahmi Sanskrit: , ', '; Devanagari sa, कुषाण राजवंश, ; Buddhist Hybrid Sanskrit, BHS: ; xpr, 𐭊 ...

Kushan Empire
,
China China (), officially the People's Republic of China (PRC; ), is a country in East Asia East Asia is the eastern region of Asia Asia () is Earth's largest and most populous continent, located primarily in the Eastern Hemisphere ...

China
,
Tibet Tibet (; ; ) is a region in East Asia covering much of the Tibetan Plateau spanning about . It is the traditional homeland of the Tibetan people as well as some other ethnic groups such as Monpa people, Monpa, Tamang people, Tamang, Qia ...

Tibet
, and for a time the
Xiongnu The Xiongnu (, ) were a tribal confederation A confederation (also known as a confederacy or league) is a union of sovereign groups or states united for purposes of common action. Usually created by a treaty A treaty is a formal ...

Xiongnu
, all of which had exerted or tried to exert their influence over Khotan at various times.


History

From an early period, the Tarim Basin had been inhabited by different groups of Indo-European speakers such as the
Tocharians The Tocharians, or Tokharians (American English, US: or ; British English, UK: ), were speakers of Tocharian languages, Indo-European languages known from around 7600 documents from around 400 to 1200 AD, found on the northern edge of the Tarim ...
and
Saka The Saka, Śaka, Shaka, Śāka or Sacae ( ; Kharosthi: ; Brahmi script, Brahmi: , ; sa, wiktionary:शक#Sanskrit, शक , ; grc, Σάκαι ; la, Sacae; , Old Chinese, old , Pinyin, mod. , ; egy, wiktionary:sk#Etymology 2, 𓋴𓎝 ...

Saka
people. Jade from Khotan had been traded into China for a long time before the founding of the city, as indicated by items made of jade from Khotan found in tombs from the
Shang The Shang dynasty (), also historically known as the Yin dynasty (), was a Chinese dynasty Dynasties in Chinese history, or Chinese dynasties, were hereditary monarchical regimes that ruled over China during much of its history. From ...

Shang
(Yin) and Zhou dynasties. The jade trade is thought to have been facilitated by the
Yuezhi The Yuezhi (, ) were an ancient people first described in Chinese Chinese can refer to: * Something related to China China, officially the People's Republic of China (PRC), is a country in East Asia. It is the List of countries and depe ...
.


Foundation legend

There are four versions of the legend of the founding of Khotan. These may be found in accounts given by the Chinese pilgrim
Xuanzang Xuanzang (; fl. 602 – 664), born Chen Hui / Chen Yi (), also known as Hiuen Tsang, was a 7th-century Chinese Buddhist monk A monk (, from el, μοναχός, ''monachos'', "single, solitary" via Latin Latin (, or , ) is a cla ...

Xuanzang
and in Tibetan translations of Khotanese documents. All four versions suggest that the city was founded around the third century BC by a group of Indians during the reign of
Ashoka Ashoka (; Brāhmi: 𑀅𑀲𑁄𑀓, ''Asoka'', IAST The International Alphabet of Sanskrit Transliteration (IAST) is a transliteration scheme that allows the lossless romanisation of Brahmic family, Indic scripts as employed by Sanskrit ...

Ashoka
. According to one version, the nobles of a tribe in ancient Taxila, who traced their ancestry to the deity
Vaiśravaṇa (Sanskrit Sanskrit (, attributively , ''saṃskṛta-'', nominalization, nominally , ''saṃskṛtam'') is a classical language of South Asia belonging to the Indo-Aryan languages, Indo-Aryan branch of the Indo-European languages. It arose ...
, were said to have blinded Kunãla, a son of
Ashoka Ashoka (; Brāhmi: 𑀅𑀲𑁄𑀓, ''Asoka'', IAST The International Alphabet of Sanskrit Transliteration (IAST) is a transliteration scheme that allows the lossless romanisation of Brahmic family, Indic scripts as employed by Sanskrit ...

Ashoka
. In punishment they were banished by the Mauryan emperor to the north of the Himalayas, where they settled in Khotan and elected one of their members as king. However war then ensued with another group from China whose leader then took over as king, and the two colonies merged. In a different version, it was Kunãla himself who was exiled and founded Khotan. The legend suggests that Khotan was settled by people from northwest India and China, and may explain the division of Khotan into an eastern and western city since the
Han dynasty#REDIRECT Han dynasty The Han dynasty () was the second Dynasties in Chinese history, imperial dynasty of China (202 BC – 220 AD), established by the rebel leader Liu Bang and ruled by the House of Liu. Preceded by the short-lived Qin dynas ...

Han dynasty
. Others however argued that the legend of the founding of Khotan is a fiction as it ignores the Iranian population, and that its purpose was to explain the Indian and Chinese influences that were present in Khotan in the 7th century AD. By Xuanzang's account, it was believed that the royal power had been transmitted unbroken since the founding of Khotan, and evidence indicates that the kings of Khotan had used an Iranian-based word as their title since at least the 3rd century AD, suggesting that they may be speakers of an Iranian language. In the 1900s,
Aurel Stein Sir Marc Aurel Stein, ( hu, Stein Márk Aurél; 26 November 1862 – 26 October 1943) was a Hungarian-born British archaeologist, primarily known for his explorations and archaeological discoveries in Central Asia. He was also a professor at I ...
discovered
Prakrit The Prakrits (; Early Brahmi 𑀧𑁆𑀭𑀸𑀓𑀾𑀢, ''prākṛta''; Devanagari Devanagari ( ; , , Sanskrit pronunciation: ), also called Nagari (),Kathleen Kuiper (2010), The Culture of India, New York: The Rosen Publishing Group, ...
documents written in
Kharoṣṭhī The Kharosthi script, also spelled Kharoshthi or Kharoṣṭhī (Kharosthi: 𐨑𐨪𐨆𐨯𐨠𐨁) was an ancient Indian script used in Gandhara Gandhāra ( sa, गन्धार, link=no) was an ancient region in the Valley of Pesha ...
in Niya, and together with the founding legend of Khotan, Stein proposed that these people in the Tarim Basin were Indian immigrants from Taxila who conquered and colonized Khotan. The use of
Prakrit The Prakrits (; Early Brahmi 𑀧𑁆𑀭𑀸𑀓𑀾𑀢, ''prākṛta''; Devanagari Devanagari ( ; , , Sanskrit pronunciation: ), also called Nagari (),Kathleen Kuiper (2010), The Culture of India, New York: The Rosen Publishing Group, ...
however may be a legacy of the influence of the
Kushan Empire The Kushan Empire ( grc, Βασιλεία Κοσσανῶν; xbc, Κυϸανο, kus, khasano, ; Brahmi script, Late Brahmi Sanskrit: , ', '; Devanagari sa, कुषाण राजवंश, ; Buddhist Hybrid Sanskrit, BHS: ; xpr, 𐭊 ...

Kushan Empire
. There were also Greek influences in early Khotan, based on evidence such as
Hellenistic art Hellenistic art is the art of the Hellenistic period The Hellenistic period covers the period of Mediterranean history between the death of Alexander the Great in 323 BC and the emergence of the Roman Empire, as signified by the Battle ...
works found at various sites in the Tarim Basin, for example, the
Sampul tapestry The Sampul tapestry is an ancient woolen wall-hanging found at the Tarim Basin settlement of Sampul in Lop County, Hotan Prefecture, Xinjiang, China, close to ancient city of Khotan. The object has many Hellenistic period features, including a Greek ...
found near Khotan, tapestries depicting the Greek god
Hermes Hermes (; grc-gre, Ἑρμῆς) is an Olympian deity in ancient Greek religion and Greek mythology, mythology. Hermes is considered the herald of the gods. He is also considered the protector of human heralds, travellers, thieves, mercha ...

Hermes
and the winged
pegasus Pegasus ( gr, Πήγασος, ''Pḗgasos''; la, Pegasus, Pegasos) is a mythical Myth is a folklore genre Folklore is the expressive body of culture shared by a particular group of people; it encompasses the traditions common to t ...

pegasus
found at nearby
Loulan Loulan, also called Krorän or Kroraina ( zh, s=, t=, p=Lóulán Sand dunes in th .... The term Loulan is the Chinese transcription of the native name Krorän and is used to refer to the city near Lop Nur as well as the kingdom. The kingdom was re ...

Loulan
, as well as
ceramics A ceramic is any of the various hard, brittle, heat-resistant and corrosion-resistant Corrosion is a Erosion, natural process that converts a refined metal into a more chemically stable form such as oxide, hydroxide, carbonate or sulfide. It ...
that may suggest influences from as far as the Hellenistic kingdom of
Ptolemaic Egypt The Ptolemaic Kingdom (; grc-koi, Πτολεμαϊκὴ βασιλεία, Ptolemaïkḕ basileía) was an Ancient Greek Ancient Greek includes the forms of the Greek language Greek ( el, label=Modern Greek Modern Greek (, , o ...
.Christopoulos, Lucas (August 2012), "Hellenes and Romans in Ancient China (240 BC – 1398 AD)," in Victor H. Mair (ed), ''Sino-Platonic Papers'', No. 230, Chinese Academy of Social Sciences, University of Pennsylvania Department of East Asian Languages and Civilizations, p. 26, ISSN 2157-9687. One suggestion is therefore that the early migrants to the region may have been an ethnically mixed people from the city of Taxila led by a Greco-Saka or an
Indo-Greek The Indo-Greek Kingdom, or Graeco-Indian Kingdom, also known historically as the Yavana Kingdom (Yavanarajya), was a Hellenistic-era Greek#REDIRECT Greek Greek may refer to: Greece Anything of, from, or related to Greece Greece ( el, ...
leader, who established Khotan using the administrative and social organizations of the
Greco-Bactrian Kingdom The Bactrian Kingdom, known to historians as the Greco-Bactrian Kingdom, was a Hellenistic-era Greek#REDIRECT Greek Greek may refer to: Greece Anything of, from, or related to Greece Greece ( el, Ελλάδα, , ), officially the Hellenic ...
.


Arrival of the Saka

Surviving documents from Khotan of later centuries indicate that the people of Khotan spoke the
Saka language Saka, or Sakan, was a variety of Eastern Iranian languages The Eastern Iranian languages are a subgroup of the Iranian languages The Iranian or Iranic languages are a branch of the Indo-Iranian languages in the Indo-European language ...
, an
Eastern Iranian language The Eastern Iranian languages are a subgroup of the Iranian languages The Iranian or Iranic languages are a branch of the Indo-Iranian languages in the Indo-European languages, Indo-European language family that are spoken natively by the Ira ...
that was closely related to the
Sogdian language The Sogdian language was an Eastern Iranian languages, Eastern Iranian language spoken mainly in the Central Asian region of Sogdia (capital: Samarkand; other chief cities: Panjakent, Fergana, Khujand, and Bukhara), located in modern-day Uzbekista ...
(of
Sogdiana Sogdia () ( sog, soɣd) or Sogdiana was an ancient Iranian peoples, Iranian civilization between between the Amu Darya and the Syr Darya, and in present-day Uzbekistan, Tajikistan, Kazakhstan, and Kyrgyzstan. Sogdiana was also a province of the Ac ...
); as an Indo-European language, Saka was more distantly related to the
Tocharian languages The Tocharian (sometimes Tokharian) languages ( or ), also known as ''Arśi-Kuči'', Agnean-Kuchean or Kuchean-Agnean, are an extinct branch of the Indo-European language family The Indo-European languages are a language family A lang ...

Tocharian languages
(also known as Agnean-Kuchean) spoken in adjoining areas of the Tarim Basin. It also shared
areal feature In linguistics Linguistics is the scientific study of language A language is a structured system of communication used by humans, including speech (spoken language), gestures (Signed language, sign language) and writing. Most languag ...
s with Tocharian. It is not certain when the moved into the Khotan area. Archaeological evidence from the
Sampul tapestry The Sampul tapestry is an ancient woolen wall-hanging found at the Tarim Basin settlement of Sampul in Lop County, Hotan Prefecture, Xinjiang, China, close to ancient city of Khotan. The object has many Hellenistic period features, including a Greek ...
of Sampul, (Shanpulu; , / ), near Khotan may indicate a settled Saka population in the last quarter of the first millennium BC, although some have suggested they may not have moved there until after the founding of the city. The Saka may have inhabited other parts of the Tarim Basin earlier – presence of a people believed to be Saka had been found in the Keriya region at Yumulak Kum (Djoumboulak Koum, Yuansha) around 200 km east of Khotan, possibly as early as the 7th century BC. The Saka people were known as the Sai (塞, sāi, ''sək'' in Old Sinitic) in ancient Chinese records. These records indicate that they originally inhabited the
Ili Ili, ILI, Illi may refer to: Abbreviations * Irish Life International, part of Irish Life and Permanent * Intuitive Logical Introvert, a personality type in socionics * Influenza-like illness * Iran Language Institute, a state-owned, non-profit o ...
and
Chu River The Chu (Shu or Chuy) ( kk, Шу, ''Shý'', شۋ; ky, Чүй, ''Çüy'', چۉي; dng, Чў, ''Çw'' (from , ''Chǔ''); russian: Чу) is a river in Northern Kyrgyzstan and Southern Kazakhstan. Of its total length of ,Kyrgyzstan russian: Киргизская Республика, Kirgizskaya Respublika , image_flag = Flag of Kyrgyzstan.svg , image_coat = Emblem of Kyrgyzstan.svg , symbol_type = Emblem , motto = " ...

Kyrgyzstan
and
Kazakhstan Kazakhstan ( kk, Қазақстан, Qazaqstan; russian: Казахстан, Kazakhstan), officially the Republic of Kazakhstan,; russian: Республика Казахстан, Respublika Kazakhstan, link=no) is a country located mainly in ...

Kazakhstan
. In the Chinese ''
Book of Han The ''Book of Han'' or ''History of the Former Han'' is a history of China The earliest known written records of the history of China date from as early as 1250 BC, from the Shang dynasty The Shang dynasty (), also historically ...
'', the area was called the "land of the Sai", i.e. the Saka.Yu Taishan (June 2010), "The Earliest Tocharians in China" in Victor H. Mair (ed), ''Sino-Platonic Papers'', Chinese Academy of Social Sciences, University of Pennsylvania Department of East Asian Languages and Civilizations, p. 13. According to the
Sima Qian Sima Qian (; ; ) was a Chinese historian of the early Han dynasty#REDIRECT Han dynasty The Han dynasty () was the second Dynasties in Chinese history, imperial dynasty of China (202 BC – 220 AD), established by the rebel leader Liu B ...

Sima Qian
's ''
Shiji The ''Records of the Grand Historian'', also known by its Chinese Chinese can refer to: * Something related to China China, officially the People's Republic of China (PRC), is a country in East Asia. It is the List of countries and dep ...

Shiji
'', the Indo-European
Yuezhi The Yuezhi (, ) were an ancient people first described in Chinese Chinese can refer to: * Something related to China China, officially the People's Republic of China (PRC), is a country in East Asia. It is the List of countries and depe ...
, originally from the area between Tängri Tagh (
Tian Shan The Tian Shan,; dng, Тянсан, ; otk, 𐰴𐰣 𐱅𐰭𐰼𐰃, ; tr, Tanrı Dağı; mn, Тэнгэр уул, ; ug, تەڭرىتاغ, , ; kk, Тәңіртауы / Алатау, , ; ky, Теңир-Тоо / Ала-Тоо, , ; uz, Tyan- ...

Tian Shan
) and
Dunhuang Dunhuang () is a county-level city A county-level municipality (), county-level city or county city, formerly known as prefecture-controlled city (1949–1970: ; 1970–1983: ), is a county-level administrative division of the Peo ...
of
Gansu Gansu (, ; alternately romanized as Kansu) is a landlocked province A province is almost always an administrative division Administrative division, administrative unitArticle 3(1). , country subdivision, administrative region, subnatio ...

Gansu
, China, were assaulted and forced to flee from the
Hexi Corridor The Hexi Corridor (, Xiao'erjing Xiao'erjing or Xiao'erjin or Xiaor jin or in its shortened form, Xiaojing, literally meaning "children's script" or "minor script" (cf. "original script" referring to the original Perso-Arabic script; zh, s= ...

Hexi Corridor
of Gansu by the Mongolic forces of the
Xiongnu The Xiongnu (, ) were a tribal confederation A confederation (also known as a confederacy or league) is a union of sovereign groups or states united for purposes of common action. Usually created by a treaty A treaty is a formal ...

Xiongnu
ruler
Modu Chanyu Modun, Maodun, Modu (, c. 234 – c. 174 BCE) was the son of Touman and the founder of the empire of the Xiongnu. He came to power by ordering his men to kill his father in 209 BCE. Modu ruled from 209 BCE to 174 BCE. He was a military leader un ...
in 177-176 BC. In turn the Yuezhi were responsible for attacking and pushing the Sai (i.e. Saka) south. The Saka crossed the
Syr Darya uz, Sirdaryo, Сирдарё tg, Сирдарё , name_native_lang = , name_other = Jaxartes, Seyhun , name_etymology = unknown , image = Syr Darya.jpg , image_size = 290px , image_caption = Syr Dary ...

Syr Darya
into
Bactria Bactria (BactrianBactrian may refer to *Bactria Bactria ( Bactrian: , ), or Bactriana, was an ancient region in Central Asia Central Asia is a region in Asia which stretches from the Caspian Sea in the west to China and Mongolia in the ...
around 140 B.C. Later the Saka would also move into Northern India, as well as other Tarim Basin sites like Khotan,
Karasahr Karasahr or Karashar ( ug, قاراشەھەر, Qarasheher, 6=Қарашәһәр), which was originally known, in the Tocharian languages The Tocharian (sometimes Tokharian) languages ( or ), also known as ''Arśi-Kuči'', Agnean-Kuchean or Kuche ...
(Yanqi),
Yarkand Yarkant County,, National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency, United States National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency also Shache County,, National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency, United States National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency also SASM/GNC rom ...
(Shache) and
Kucha 250px, Location of Kucha within Aksu in yellow Kucha or Kuche (also: ''Kuçar'', ''Kuchar''; ug, كۇچار, Кучар; zh, t=wikt:龜茲, 龜茲, p=Qiūcí also zh, t=wikt:库车, 库车, p=Kùchē; sa, Kucina), was an ancient Buddhist ki ...
(Qiuci). One suggestion is that the Saka became Hellenized in the
Greco-Bactrian Kingdom The Bactrian Kingdom, known to historians as the Greco-Bactrian Kingdom, was a Hellenistic-era Greek#REDIRECT Greek Greek may refer to: Greece Anything of, from, or related to Greece Greece ( el, Ελλάδα, , ), officially the Hellenic ...
, and they or an ethnically-mixed Greco-Scythians either migrated to
Yarkand Yarkant County,, National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency, United States National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency also Shache County,, National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency, United States National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency also SASM/GNC rom ...
and Khotan, or a bit earlier from
Taxila Taxila (from Pāli Pali () is a Middle Indo-AryanIndo-Aryan refers to: * Indo-Aryan languages ** Indo-Aryan superstrate in Mitanni or Mitanni-Aryan * Indo-Aryan peoples, the various peoples speaking these languages See also *Aryan inva ...
in the
Indo-Greek Kingdom The Indo-Greek Kingdom, or Graeco-Indian Kingdom, also known historically as the Yavana Kingdom (Yavanarajya), was a Hellenistic period, Hellenistic-era Ancient Greece, Greek kingdom covering various parts of Afghanistan and the northwest regio ...
.Kazuo Enoki (1998), "The So-called Sino-Kharoshthi Coins," in Rokuro Kono (ed.), ''Studia Asiatica: The Collected Papers in Western Languages of the Late Dr. Kazuo Enoki'', Tokyo: Kyu-Shoin, pp. 396–97. Documents written in
Prakrit The Prakrits (; Early Brahmi 𑀧𑁆𑀭𑀸𑀓𑀾𑀢, ''prākṛta''; Devanagari Devanagari ( ; , , Sanskrit pronunciation: ), also called Nagari (),Kathleen Kuiper (2010), The Culture of India, New York: The Rosen Publishing Group, ...
dating to the 3rd century AD from neighbouring
Shanshan Shanshan (; ug, پىچان, Pichan, Piqan) was a kingdom located at the north-eastern end of the Taklamakan Desert The Taklamakan Desert (; zh, s=塔克拉玛干沙漠, p=Tǎkèlāmǎgān Shāmò, Xiao'erjing Xiao'erjing or Xiao'erjin ...
show that the king of Khotan was given the title ''hinajha'' (i.e. "generalissimo"), a distinctively Iranian-based word equivalent to the
Sanskrit Sanskrit (; attributively , ; nominalization, nominally , , ) is a classical language of South Asia that belongs to the Indo-Aryan languages, Indo-Aryan branch of the Indo-European languages. It arose in South Asia after its predecessor langua ...

Sanskrit
title ''
senapati Senapati (Sanskrit: सेनापति ''sena-'' meaning "army", ''-pati'' meaning "lord") is a title in ancient India denoting the rank of military commander or general (military), general of the army. It was a hereditary title of nobility ...
''. This along with the fact that the king's recorded regnal periods were given as Khotanese ''kṣuṇa'', "implies an established connection between the Iranian inhabitants and the royal power," according to the late Professor of Iranian Studies Ronald E. Emmerick (d. 2001). He contended that Khotanese-Saka-language royal rescripts of Khotan dated to the 10th century "makes it likely that the ruler of Khotan was a speaker of
Iranian Iranian may refer to: * Iran Iran ( fa, ایران ), also called Persia, and officially the Islamic Republic of Iran, is a country in Western Asia Western Asia, West Asia, or Southwest Asia, is the westernmost subregion A subreg ...
." Furthermore, he elaborated on the early name of Khotan: Later Khotanese-Saka-language documents, ranging from medical texts to
Buddhist literature that he teach the Dharma after the Buddha's awakening. from Korea; circa 1340, Accordion-format book; gold and silver on indigo-dyed mulberry paper. Image:MET 24 DP238441r2 61E.jpg, Folio from a manuscript of the ''Prajnaparamita, Aṣṭasāha ...
, have been found in Khotan and
Tumshuq TumxukThe official spelling according to , (Beijing, '' SinoMaps Press'' 1997); (pronounced TUM-shook) is a sub-prefecture-level city in the western part of Xinjiang Xinjiang, SASM/GNC: ''Xinjang''; zh, c=, p=Xīnjiāng; alternately rom ...

Tumshuq
(northeast of Kashgar). Similar documents in the Khotanese-Saka language dating mostly to the 10th century have been found in
Dunhuang Dunhuang () is a county-level city A county-level municipality (), county-level city or county city, formerly known as prefecture-controlled city (1949–1970: ; 1970–1983: ), is a county-level administrative division of the Peo ...
.


Early period

In the second century AD a Khotanese king helped the famous ruler
Kanishka Kanishka I (: कनिष्क; : ΚΑΝΗϷΚΕ ''Kanēške''; : 𐨐𐨞𐨁𐨮𐨿𐨐 ', '; : '), or Kanishka the Great, was an emperor of the , under whose reign(c. 127-150 CE) the empire reached it's zenith. He is famous for his mi ...

Kanishka
of the
Kushan Empire The Kushan Empire ( grc, Βασιλεία Κοσσανῶν; xbc, Κυϸανο, kus, khasano, ; Brahmi script, Late Brahmi Sanskrit: , ', '; Devanagari sa, कुषाण राजवंश, ; Buddhist Hybrid Sanskrit, BHS: ; xpr, 𐭊 ...

Kushan Empire
of South Asia (founded by the
Yuezhi The Yuezhi (, ) were an ancient people first described in Chinese Chinese can refer to: * Something related to China China, officially the People's Republic of China (PRC), is a country in East Asia. It is the List of countries and depe ...
people) to conquer the key town of in the
Middle kingdoms of India The Middle kingdoms of India were the political entities in India from the 3rd century BCE to the 13th century CE. The period begins after the decline of the Maurya Empire and the corresponding rise of the Satavahana dynasty, starting with ...
: According to Chapter 96A of the ''
Book of Han The ''Book of Han'' or ''History of the Former Han'' is a history of China The earliest known written records of the history of China date from as early as 1250 BC, from the Shang dynasty The Shang dynasty (), also historically ...
'', covering the period from 125 BC to 23 AD, Khotan had 3,300 households, 19,300 individuals and 2,400 people able to bear arms.


Eastern Han period

Minted coins from Khotan dated to the 1st century AD bear dual inscriptions in Chinese and Gandhari Prakrit in the
Kharosthi The Kharosthi script, also spelled Kharoshthi or Kharoṣṭhī (Kharosthi: 𐨑𐨪𐨆𐨯𐨠𐨁) was an ancient Indian script used in Gandhara (now Pakistan and north-eastern Afghanistan) to write Gāndhārī language, Gandhari Prakrit an ...
script, showing links of Khotan to India and China in that period. Khotan began to exert its power in the first century AD. It was first ruled by
Yarkand Yarkant County,, National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency, United States National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency also Shache County,, National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency, United States National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency also SASM/GNC rom ...
, but revolted in 25-57 AD and took Yarkand and the territory as far as
Kashgar Kashgar ( ug, قەشقەر – ''Qeshqer'') or Kashi ( zh, c=喀什) is an oasis In geography Geography (from Greek: , ''geographia'', literally "earth description") is a field of science devoted to the study of the lands, feat ...
, thereby gaining control over part of the southern
silk road The Silk Road () was and is a network of trade routes connecting the Eastern world, East and Western culture, West, from the 2nd century BCE to the 18th century CE. It was central to the economic, cultural, political, and religious interactions ...

silk road
. The town grew very quickly after local trade developed into the interconnected chain of silk routes across Eurasia. King Guangde of Khotan submitted to the
Han dynasty#REDIRECT Han dynasty The Han dynasty () was the second Dynasties in Chinese history, imperial dynasty of China (202 BC – 220 AD), established by the rebel leader Liu Bang and ruled by the House of Liu. Preceded by the short-lived Qin dynas ...

Han dynasty
in 73 AD. Khotan at the time had relations with the
Xiongnu The Xiongnu (, ) were a tribal confederation A confederation (also known as a confederacy or league) is a union of sovereign groups or states united for purposes of common action. Usually created by a treaty A treaty is a formal ...

Xiongnu
, who during the reign of Emperor Ming of Han (57-75 AD) invaded Khotan and forced the Khotanese court to pay them large annual amounts of tribute in the form of silk and tapestries. When the Han military officer
Ban Chao Ban Chao (; 32–102 CE), courtesy name Zhongsheng, was a Chinese military general, explorer and diplomat of the Eastern Han Dynasty. He was born in Fufeng (region), Fufeng, now Xianyang, Shaanxi. Three of his family members—father Ban Biao, el ...
went to Khotan, he was received by the King with minimal courtesy. The soothsayer to the King suggested that he should demand the horse of Ban, and Ban killed the soothsayer on the spot. The King, impressed by Ban's action, then killed the Xiongnu agent in Khotan and offered his allegiance to Han. By the time the Han dynasty exerted its dominance over Khotan, the population had more than quadrupled. The ''
Book of the Later Han The ''Book of the Later Han'', also known as the ''History of the Later Han'' and by its Chinese Chinese can refer to: * Something related to China China, officially the People's Republic of China (PRC), is a country in East Asia. It ...
'', covering 6 to 189 AD, says: Han influence on Khotan, however, diminished when Han power declined.


Tang dynasty

The Tang campaign against the oasis states began in 640 AD and Khotan submitted to the Tang emperor. The
Four Garrisons of Anxi The Four Garrisons of Anxi were Chinese military garrison Garrison (various spellings) (from the French ''garnison'', itself from the verb ''garnir'', "to equip") is the collective term for any body of troops stationed in a particular ...
were established, one of them at Khotan. The Tibetans later defeated the Chinese and took control of the Four Garrisons. Khotan was first taken in 665, and the Khotanese helped the Tibetans to conquer Aksu. Tang China later regained control in 692, but eventually lost control of the entire
Western Regions The Western Regions or Xiyu (Hsi-yu; ) was a historical name specified in the Chinese chronicles between the 3rd century BC to the 8th century AD that referred to the regions west of Yumen Pass, most often Central Asia or sometimes more speci ...
after it was weakened considerably by the
An Lushan Rebellion The An Lushan Rebellion was an uprising against the Tang dynasty The Tang dynasty (, ; ), or Tang Empire, was an imperial dynasty of China that ruled from 618 to 907, with an interregnum An interregnum (plural interregna or interregn ...

An Lushan Rebellion
. After the Tang dynasty, Khotan formed an alliance with the rulers of
Dunhuang Dunhuang () is a county-level city A county-level municipality (), county-level city or county city, formerly known as prefecture-controlled city (1949–1970: ; 1970–1983: ), is a county-level administrative division of the Peo ...
. The Buddhist entitites of Dunhuang and Khotan had a tight-knit partnership, with intermarriage between Dunhuang and Khotan's rulers. Dunhuang's Mogao grottos and Buddhist temples were also funded and sponsored by the Khotan royals, whose likenesses were drawn in the Mogao grottoes. Khotan was conquered by the Tibetan Empire in 792 and gained its independence in 851.


Turkic-Islamic conquest of Buddhist Khotan

In the 10th century, the Iranic Saka Buddhist Kingdom of Khotan was the only city-state that was not conquered yet by the Turkic Uyghur (Buddhist) and the Turkic Qarakhanid (Muslim) states. During the latter part of the tenth century, Khotan became engaged in a struggle against the
Kara-Khanid Khanate The Kara-Khanid Khanate (), also known as the Karakhanids, Qarakhanids, Ilek Khanids or the Afrasiabids (), was a Turkic khanate that ruled Central Asia Central Asia is a region in Asia which stretches from the Caspian Sea in the west to C ...

Kara-Khanid Khanate
. The Islamic conquests of the Buddhist cities east of Kashgar began with the conversion of the Karakhanid
Sultan Satuq Bughra Khan Abdulkarim Satuq Bughra Khan ( ug, سۇلتان سۇتۇق بۇغراخان; also spelled Satuk; died 955) was a Kara-Khanid khan; in 934, he was one of the first Turkic Turkic may refer to: * anything related to the country of Turkey * Turkic la ...
to Islam in 934. Satuq Bughra Khan and later his son Musa directed endeavors to proselytize Islam among the Turks and engage in military conquests, and a long war ensued between Islamic Kashgar and Buddhist Khotan. Satuq Bughra Khan's nephew or grandson Ali Arslan was said to have been killed during the war with the Buddhists. Khotan briefly took
Kashgar Kashgar ( ug, قەشقەر – ''Qeshqer'') or Kashi ( zh, c=喀什) is an oasis In geography Geography (from Greek: , ''geographia'', literally "earth description") is a field of science devoted to the study of the lands, feat ...

Kashgar
from the Kara-Khanids in 970, and according to Chinese accounts, the King of Khotan offered to send in tribute to the Chinese court a dancing elephant captured from Kashgar. Accounts of the war between the Karakhanid and Khotan were given in '' Taẕkirah of the Four Sacrificed Imams'', written sometime in the period from 1700-1849 in the Eastern Turkic language (modern Uyghur) in
AltishahrAltishahr (, , ; romanized: ''Altä-şähär'' or ''Alti-şähär''), also known as Kashgaria, is a historical name for the Tarim Basin The Tarim Basin is an endorheic basin in Northwest China occupying an area of about and one of the largest ...
probably based on an older oral tradition. It contains a story about four Imams from Mada'in city (possibly in modern-day Iraq) who helped the Qarakhanid leader Yusuf Qadir Khan conquered Khotan, Yarkand, and Kashgar. There were years of battles where "blood flows like the Oxus", "heads litter the battlefield like stones" until the "infidels" were defeated and driven towards Khotan by Yusuf Qadir Khan and the four Imams. The imams however were assassinated by the Buddhists prior to the last Muslim victory. Despite their foreign origins, they are viewed as local saints by the current Muslim population in the region. In 1006, the Muslim Kara-Khanid ruler Yusuf Kadir (Qadir) Khan of Kashgar conquered Khotan, ending Khotan's existence as an independent Buddhist state. Some communications between Khotan and Song China continued intermittently, but it was noted in 1063 in a Song source that the ruler of Khotan referred to himself as kara-khan, indicating dominance of the Karakhanids over Khotan. It has been suggested Buddhists in Dunhuang, alarmed by the conquest of Khotan and ending of Buddhism there, sealed Cave 17 of the
Mogao Caves The Mogao Caves, also known as the Thousand Buddha Grottoes or Caves of the Thousand Buddhas, form a system of 500 temples southeast of the center of Dunhuang, an oasis located at a religious and cultural crossroads on the Silk Road, in Gansu pr ...

Mogao Caves
containing the Dunhuang manuscripts so to protect them. The Karakhanid Turkic Muslim writer
Mahmud al-Kashgari Mahmud ibn Hussayn ibn Muhammed al-Kashgari, ''Maḥmūd ibnu 'l-Ḥussayn ibn Muḥammad al-Kāšġarī'', tr, Kaşgarlı Mahmûd, ug, مەھمۇد قەشقىرى, ''Mehmud Qeshqiri'' / Мәһмуд Қәшқири uz, Mahmud Qashg'ariy / М ...
recorded a short Turkic language poem about the conquest: : According to Kashgari who wrote in the 11th century, the inhabitants of Khotan still spoke a different language and did not know the Turkic language well. It is however believed that the Turkic languages became the lingua franca throughout the Tarim Basin by the end of the 11th century. By the time
Marco Polo Marco Polo (, , ; September 15, 1254January 8, 1324) was a merchant, explorer, and writer who travelled through Asia along the between 1271 and 1295. His travels are recorded in ' (also known as ''Book of the Marvels of the World '' and '' ...

Marco Polo
visited Khotan, which was between 1271 and 1275, he reported that "the inhabitants all worship ."


Historical timeline

*The first inhabitants of the region appear to have been Indians from the
Maurya Empire The Maurya Empire was a geographically extensive Iron Age The Iron Age is the final epoch of the three-age division of the prehistory Prehistory, also known as pre-literary history, is the period of human history Human h ...
according to its founding legends. *The foundation of Khotan occurred when Kushtana, said to be a son of Ashoka, the Indian emperor belonging to the Maurya Empire settled there about 224 BC. *c.84 BC: Buddhism is reportedly introduced to Khotan., p.4-5. *c.56: Xian, the powerful and prosperous king of Yarkent, attacked and annexed Khotan. He transferred Yulin, its king, to become the king of Ligui, and set up his younger brother, Weishi, as king of Khotan. *61: Khotan defeats Yarkand. Khotan becomes very powerful after this and 13 kingdoms submitted to Khotan, which now, with
Shanshan Shanshan (; ug, پىچان, Pichan, Piqan) was a kingdom located at the north-eastern end of the Taklamakan Desert The Taklamakan Desert (; zh, s=塔克拉玛干沙漠, p=Tǎkèlāmǎgān Shāmò, Xiao'erjing Xiao'erjing or Xiao'erjin ...
, became the major power on the southern branch of the Silk Route. *78:
Ban Chao Ban Chao (; 32–102 CE), courtesy name Zhongsheng, was a Chinese military general, explorer and diplomat of the Eastern Han Dynasty. He was born in Fufeng (region), Fufeng, now Xianyang, Shaanxi. Three of his family members—father Ban Biao, el ...
, a Chinese General, subdues the kingdom. *105: The 'Western Regions' rebelled, and Khotan regained its independence. *127: The Khotanese king Vijaya Krīti is said to have helped the
Kanishka Kanishka I (: कनिष्क; : ΚΑΝΗϷΚΕ ''Kanēške''; : 𐨐𐨞𐨁𐨮𐨿𐨐 ', '; : '), or Kanishka the Great, was an emperor of the , under whose reign(c. 127-150 CE) the empire reached it's zenith. He is famous for his mi ...

Kanishka
in his conquest of Saket in India. *127: The Chinese general
Ban Yong Ban Yong (, died c. 128 CE), courtesy name A courtesy name (), also known as a style name, is a name bestowed upon one at adulthood in addition to one's given name. This practice is a tradition in the East Asian cultural sphere The East ...
attacked and subdued
Karasahr Karasahr or Karashar ( ug, قاراشەھەر, Qarasheher, 6=Қарашәһәр), which was originally known, in the Tocharian languages The Tocharian (sometimes Tokharian) languages ( or ), also known as ''Arśi-Kuči'', Agnean-Kuchean or Kuche ...
; and then
Kucha 250px, Location of Kucha within Aksu in yellow Kucha or Kuche (also: ''Kuçar'', ''Kuchar''; ug, كۇچار, Кучар; zh, t=wikt:龜茲, 龜茲, p=Qiūcí also zh, t=wikt:库车, 库车, p=Kùchē; sa, Kucina), was an ancient Buddhist ki ...
,
Kashgar Kashgar ( ug, قەشقەر – ''Qeshqer'') or Kashi ( zh, c=喀什) is an oasis In geography Geography (from Greek: , ''geographia'', literally "earth description") is a field of science devoted to the study of the lands, feat ...

Kashgar
, Khotan, Yarkand, and other kingdoms, seventeen altogether, who all came to submit to China. *129: Fangqian, the king of Khotan, killed the king of Keriya, Xing. He installed his son as the king of Keriya. Then he sent an envoy to offer tribute to Han. The Emperor pardoned the crime of the king of Khotan, ordering him to hand back the kingdom of Keriya. Fangqian refused. *131: Fangqian, the king of Khotan, sends one of his sons to serve and offer tribute at the Chinese Imperial Palace. *132: The Chinese sent the king of Kashgar, Chenpan, who with 20,000 men, attacked and defeated Khotan. He beheaded several hundred people, and released his soldiers to plunder freely. He replaced the king f Keriyaby installing Chengguo from the family of [the previous king] Xing, and then he returned. *151: Jian, the king of Khotan, was killed by Han chief clerk Wang Jing, who was in turn killed by Khotanese. Anguo, the son of Jian, was placed on the throne. *175: Anguo, the king of Khotan, attacked Keriya, and defeated it soundly. He killed the king and many others. *399 Chinese pilgrim monk, Faxian, visits and reports on the active Buddhist community there. *632: Khotan pays homage to
China China (), officially the People's Republic of China (PRC; ), is a country in East Asia East Asia is the eastern region of Asia Asia () is Earth's largest and most populous continent, located primarily in the Eastern Hemisphere ...

China
, and becomes a vassal state. *644: Chinese pilgrim monk,
Xuanzang Xuanzang (; fl. 602 – 664), born Chen Hui / Chen Yi (), also known as Hiuen Tsang, was a 7th-century Chinese Buddhist monk A monk (, from el, μοναχός, ''monachos'', "single, solitary" via Latin Latin (, or , ) is a cla ...

Xuanzang
, stays 7–8 months in Khotan and writes a detailed account of the kingdom. *670:
Tibet Tibet (; ; ) is a region in East Asia covering much of the Tibetan Plateau spanning about . It is the traditional homeland of the Tibetan people as well as some other ethnic groups such as Monpa people, Monpa, Tamang people, Tamang, Qia ...

Tibet
invades and conquers Khotan (now known as one of the "four garrisons"). *c.670-673: Khotan governed by Tibetan Mgar minister. *674: King Fudu Xiong (Vijaya Sangrāma IV), his family and followers flee to China after fighting the Tibetans. They are unable to return. *c.680 - c.692: 'Amacha Khemeg rules as regent of Khotan. *692: China under Wu Zetian reconquers the Kingdom from Tibet. Khotan is made a protectorate. *725: Yuchi Tiao (Vijaya Dharma III) is beheaded by the Chinese for conspiring with the Turks. Yuchi Fushizhan (Vijaya Sambhava II) is placed on the throne by the Chinese. *728: Yuchi Fushizhan (Vijaya Sambhava II) officially given the title "King of Khotan" by the Chinese emperor. *736: Fudu Da (Vijaya Vāhana the Great) succeeds Yuchi Fushizhan and the Chinese emperor bestows a title on his wife. *c. 740: King Yuchi Gui () succeeds Fudu Da (Vijaya Vāhana) and begins persecution of Buddhists. Khotanese Buddhist monks flee to Tibet, where they are given refuge by the Chinese wife of King Mes ag tshoms. Soon after, the queen died in a smallpox epidemic and the monks had to flee to Gandhara. *740: Chinese emperor bestows a title on wife of Yuchi Gui. *746: The ''Prophecy of the Li Country'' is completed and later added to the Tibetan Tengyur. *756: Yuchi Sheng hands over the government to his younger brother, Shihu (Jabgu) Yao. *786 to 788: Yuchi Yao still ruling Khotan at the time of the Chinese Buddhist pilgrim Wukong's visit to Khotan. *934: Viśa' Saṃbhava marries the daughter of Cao Yijin, the ruler of the Guiyi Circuit *969: The son of King Viśa' Saṃbhava, Li Shengtian (Viśa' Saṃbhava) named Zongchang sends a tribute mission to China. *971: A Buddhist priest (Jixiang) brings a letter from the king of Khotan to the Chinese emperor offering to send a dancing elephant which he had captured from Kashgar. *1006: Khotan held by the Muslim Yūsuf Qadr Khān, a brother or cousin of the Muslim ruler of Kāshgar and Balāsāghūn. *Between 1271 and 1275: Marco Polo visits Khotan.


Rulers

(Some names are in modern Mandarin pronunciations based on ancient Chinese records) *Yu Lin (俞林) 23 *Jun De (君得) 57 *Gurgamoya 30-60 *Xiu Moba (休莫霸) 60 *Guang De (廣德) 60 *Fang Qian (放前) 110 *Jian (建) 132 *An Guo (安國) 152 *Qiu Ren (秋仁) 446 *Polo the Second (婆羅二世) 471 *Sanjuluomo the Third (散瞿羅摩三世) 477 *She Duluo (舍都羅) 500 *Viśa' (尉遲) 530 *Bei Shilian (卑示練)/ Vijayavardhana? 590 *Viśa' Wumi (尉遲屋密) 620 *Fudu Xin (伏闍信) 642 *Fudu Xiong (伏闍雄) 665 *Viśa' Jing (尉遲璥) 691 / (Viśvajita?) *Viśa' Tiao (尉遲眺) 724 *Fu Shizhan (伏師戰) 725 *Fudu Da (伏闍達) 736 *Viśa' Gui (尉遲珪) 740 *Viśa' Sheng (尉遲勝) 745 *Viśa' Vāhaṃ (尉遲曜) 764 / (Viśvavāhana?) *Viśa' Jie (尉遲詰) 791 *Viśa' Chiye (尉遲遲耶) 829 *Viśa' Nanta (尉遲南塔) 844 / (Viśvānanda?) *Viśa' Wana (尉遲佤那) 859 *Viśa' Piqiluomo (尉遲毗訖羅摩) 888 *Viśa' Saṃbhava (尉遲僧烏波) 912 *Viśa' Śūra (尉遲蘇拉) 967 *Viśa' Dharma (尉達磨) 978 *Viśa' Sangrāma (尉遲僧伽羅摩) 986 *Viśa' Sagemayi (尉遲薩格瑪依) 999


Buddhism

The kingdom was one of the major centres of Buddhism, and up until the 11th century, the vast majority of the population was Buddhist. Initially, the people of the kingdom were not Buddhist, and Buddhism was said to have been adopted in the reign of Vijayasambhava in the first century BC, some 170 years after the founding of Khotan. However, an account by the Han general
Ban Chao Ban Chao (; 32–102 CE), courtesy name Zhongsheng, was a Chinese military general, explorer and diplomat of the Eastern Han Dynasty. He was born in Fufeng (region), Fufeng, now Xianyang, Shaanxi. Three of his family members—father Ban Biao, el ...
suggested that the people of Khotan in 73 AD still appeared to practice Mazdeism or Shamanism. His son
Ban Yong Ban Yong (, died c. 128 CE), courtesy name A courtesy name (), also known as a style name, is a name bestowed upon one at adulthood in addition to one's given name. This practice is a tradition in the East Asian cultural sphere The East ...
who spent time in the
Western Regions The Western Regions or Xiyu (Hsi-yu; ) was a historical name specified in the Chinese chronicles between the 3rd century BC to the 8th century AD that referred to the regions west of Yumen Pass, most often Central Asia or sometimes more speci ...
also did not mention Buddhism there, and with the absence of Buddhist art in the region before the beginning of Eastern Han, it has also been suggested that Buddhism may not have been adopted in the region until the middle of the second century AD. The kingdom is primarily associated with the Mahayana. According to the Chinese pilgrim Faxian who passed through Khotan in the fourth century: It differed in this respect to
Kucha 250px, Location of Kucha within Aksu in yellow Kucha or Kuche (also: ''Kuçar'', ''Kuchar''; ug, كۇچار, Кучар; zh, t=wikt:龜茲, 龜茲, p=Qiūcí also zh, t=wikt:库车, 库车, p=Kùchē; sa, Kucina), was an ancient Buddhist ki ...
, a Śrāvakayāna-dominated kingdom on the opposite side of the desert. Faxian's account of the city states it had fourteen large and many small viharas. Many foreign languages, including Chinese language, Chinese, Sanskrit,
Prakrit The Prakrits (; Early Brahmi 𑀧𑁆𑀭𑀸𑀓𑀾𑀢, ''prākṛta''; Devanagari Devanagari ( ; , , Sanskrit pronunciation: ), also called Nagari (),Kathleen Kuiper (2010), The Culture of India, New York: The Rosen Publishing Group, ...
s, Apabhraṃśas and Classical Tibetan were used in cultural exchange.


Social and economic life

Despite scant information on the socio-political structures of Khotan, the shared geography of the Tarim city-states and similarities in archaeological findings throughout the
Tarim Basin The Tarim Basin is an endorheic basin An endorheic basin (; also spelled endoreic basin or endorreic basin) is a drainage basin that normally retains water and allows no outflow to other external bodies of water, such as rivers or oceans ...
enable some conclusions on Khotanese life. A seventh-century Chinese pilgrim named
Xuanzang Xuanzang (; fl. 602 – 664), born Chen Hui / Chen Yi (), also known as Hiuen Tsang, was a 7th-century Chinese Buddhist monk A monk (, from el, μοναχός, ''monachos'', "single, solitary" via Latin Latin (, or , ) is a cla ...

Xuanzang
described Khotan as having limited arable land but apparently particularly fertility (soil), fertile, able to support "cereals and producing an abundance of fruits". He further commented that the city "manufactures carpets and fine-felts and silks" as well as "dark and white jade". The city's economy was chiefly based upon water from oases for irrigation and the manufacture of traded goods. Xuanzang also praised the culture of Khotan, commenting that its people "love to study literature", and said "[m]usic is much practiced in the country, and men love song and dance." The "urbanity" of the Khotan people is also mentioned in their dress, that of 'light silks and white clothes' as opposed to more rural "wools and furs".


Silk

Khotan was the first place outside of inland China to begin cultivating
silk Silk is a natural Nature, in the broadest sense, is the natural, physical, material world or universe The universe ( la, universus) is all of space and time and their contents, including planets, stars, galaxies, and all o ...

silk
. The legend, repeated in many sources, and illustrated in murals discovered by archaeologists, is that a Chinese princess brought Bombyx mori, silkworm eggs hidden in her hair when she was sent to marry the Khotanese king. This probably took place in the first half of the 1st century AD but is disputed by a number of scholars. One version of the story is told by the Chinese Buddhist bhikkhu, monk
Xuanzang Xuanzang (; fl. 602 – 664), born Chen Hui / Chen Yi (), also known as Hiuen Tsang, was a 7th-century Chinese Buddhist monk A monk (, from el, μοναχός, ''monachos'', "single, solitary" via Latin Latin (, or , ) is a cla ...

Xuanzang
who describes the covert transfer of silkworms to Khotan by a Chinese princess. Xuanzang, on his return from India between 640 and 645, crossed Central Asia passing through the kingdoms of
Kashgar Kashgar ( ug, قەشقەر – ''Qeshqer'') or Kashi ( zh, c=喀什) is an oasis In geography Geography (from Greek: , ''geographia'', literally "earth description") is a field of science devoted to the study of the lands, feat ...

Kashgar
and Khotan (Yutian in Chinese). According to Xuanzang, the introduction of sericulture to Khotan occurred in the first quarter of the 5th century. The King of Khotan wanted to obtain silkworm eggs, Morus (plant), mulberry seeds and Chinese know-how - the three crucial components of silk production. The Chinese court had strict rules against these items leaving China, to maintain the Chinese monopoly on silk manufacture. Xuanzang wrote that the King of Khotan asked for the hand of a Chinese princess in marriage as a token of his allegiance to the Chinese emperor. The request was granted, and an ambassador was sent to the Chinese court to escort the Chinese princess to Khotan. He advised the princess that she would need to bring silkworms and mulberry seeds in order to make herself robes in Khotan and to make the people prosperous. The princess concealed silkworm eggs and mulberry seeds in her headdress and smuggled them through the Chinese frontier. According to his text, silkworm eggs, mulberry trees and weaving techniques passed from Khotan to India, and from there eventually reached Europe.


Jade

Khotan, throughout and before the Silk Roads period, was a prominent trading oasis on the southern route of the Tarim Basin – the only major oasis "on the sole water course to cross the desert from the south". Aside from the geographical location of the towns of Khotan it was also important for its wide renown as a significant source of nephrite jade for export to China. There has been a long history of trade of jade from Khotan to China. Jade pieces from the Tarim Basin have been found in Chinese archaeological sites. Chinese carvers in Xinglongwa culture, Xinglongwa and Chahai had been carving ring-shaped pendants "from greenish jade from Khotan as early as 5000 BC". The hundreds of jade pieces found in the tomb of Fuhao from the late Shang dynasty by Zheng Zhenxiang and her team all originated from Khotan. According to the Chinese text ''Guanzi (text), Guanzi'', the
Yuezhi The Yuezhi (, ) were an ancient people first described in Chinese Chinese can refer to: * Something related to China China, officially the People's Republic of China (PRC), is a country in East Asia. It is the List of countries and depe ...
, described in the book as Yuzhi 禺氏, or Niuzhi 牛氏, supplied jade to the Chinese. It would seem, from secondary sources, the prevalence of jade from Khotan in ancient Chinese is due to its quality and the relative lack of such jade elsewhere. Xuanzang also observed jade on sale in Khotan in 645 and provided a number of examples of the jade trade.


Khotan coinage

The Kingdom of Khotan is known to have produced both Cash (Chinese coin), cash-style coinage and coins without holes


Mitochondrial DNA analysis

At the cemetery in Sampul (Chinese: 山普拉), ~14 km from the archaeological site of Khotan in Lop County, where
Hellenistic art Hellenistic art is the art of the Hellenistic period The Hellenistic period covers the period of Mediterranean history between the death of Alexander the Great in 323 BC and the emergence of the Roman Empire, as signified by the Battle ...
such as the
Sampul tapestry The Sampul tapestry is an ancient woolen wall-hanging found at the Tarim Basin settlement of Sampul in Lop County, Hotan Prefecture, Xinjiang, China, close to ancient city of Khotan. The object has many Hellenistic period features, including a Greek ...
has been found (its provenance most likely from the nearby
Greco-Bactrian Kingdom The Bactrian Kingdom, known to historians as the Greco-Bactrian Kingdom, was a Hellenistic-era Greek#REDIRECT Greek Greek may refer to: Greece Anything of, from, or related to Greece Greece ( el, Ελλάδα, , ), officially the Hellenic ...
),Christopoulos, Lucas (August 2012), "Hellenes and Romans in Ancient China (240 BC – 1398 AD)," in Victor H. Mair (ed), ''Sino-Platonic Papers'', No. 230, Chinese Academy of Social Sciences, University of Pennsylvania Department of East Asian Languages and Civilizations, pp 15-16, ISSN 2157-9687. the local inhabitants buried their dead there from roughly 217 BC to 283 AD. Mitochondrial DNA analysis of the human remains has revealed genetic affinities to peoples from the Caucasus, specifically a maternal lineage linked to Ossetians and Iranian peoples, Iranians, as well as an Eastern-Mediterranean paternal lineage.Christopoulos, Lucas (August 2012), "Hellenes and Romans in Ancient China (240 BC – 1398 AD)," in Victor H. Mair (ed), ''Sino-Platonic Papers'', No. 230, Chinese Academy of Social Sciences, University of Pennsylvania Department of East Asian Languages and Civilizations, p. 27 & footnote #46, ISSN 2157-9687. Seeming to confirm this link, from historical accounts it is known that Alexander the Great, who married a Sogdian woman from
Bactria Bactria (BactrianBactrian may refer to *Bactria Bactria ( Bactrian: , ), or Bactriana, was an ancient region in Central Asia Central Asia is a region in Asia which stretches from the Caspian Sea in the west to China and Mongolia in the ...
named Roxana,Livius.org.
Roxane
" ''Articles on Ancient History''. Page last modified 17 August 2015. Retrieved on 8 September 2016.
Strachan, Edward and Roy Bolton (2008), ''Russia and Europe in the Nineteenth Century'', London: Sphinx Fine Art, p. 87, . encouraged his soldiers and generals to marry local women; consequentially the later kings of the Seleucid Empire and Greco-Bactrian Kingdom had a mixed Persian people, Persian-Greek people, Greek ethnic background.Lucas Christopoulos writes the following: "''The kings (or soldiers) of the Sampul cemetery came from various origins, composing as they did a homogenous army made of Hellenized Persians, western Scythians, or Sacae Iranians from their mother’s side, just as were most of the second generation of Greeks colonists living in the Seleucid Empire. Most of the soldiers of Alexander the Great who stayed in Persia, India and central Asia had married local women, thus their leading generals were mostly Greeks from their father’s side or had Greco-Macedonian grandfathers. Antiochos had a Persian mother, and all the later Indo-Greeks or Greco-Bactrians were revered in the population as locals, as they used both Greek and Bactrian scripts on their coins and worshipped the local gods. The DNA testing of the Sampul cemetery shows that the occupants had paternal origins in the eastern part of the Mediterranean''"; see Christopoulos, Lucas (August 2012), "Hellenes and Romans in Ancient China (240 BC – 1398 AD)," in Victor H. Mair (ed), ''Sino-Platonic Papers'', No. 230, Chinese Academy of Social Sciences, University of Pennsylvania Department of East Asian Languages and Civilizations, p. 27 & footnote #46, ISSN 2157-9687.


See also

*Khatana *
Hotan Hotan (also known as Gosthana, Gaustana, Godana, Godaniya, Khotan, Hetian, Hotien) is a major oasis town in southwestern Xinjiang, an Autonomous regions of China, autonomous region in Western China. The city proper of Hotan broke off from the l ...

Hotan
*Rawak Stupa *Dandan Oilik *
Yuezhi The Yuezhi (, ) were an ancient people first described in Chinese Chinese can refer to: * Something related to China China, officially the People's Republic of China (PRC), is a country in East Asia. It is the List of countries and depe ...
*Silk Road transmission of Buddhism *Tarim mummies *Kamsabhoga


Notes


References


Book references


Web-references


Sources

* ''Histoire de la ville de Khotan: tirée des annales de la chine et traduite du chinois ; Suivie de Recherches sur la substance minérale appelée par les Chinois PIERRE DE IU, et sur le Jaspe des anciens''. Abel Rémusat. Paris. L’imprimerie de doublet. 1820. Downloadable from

* Bailey, H. W. (1961). ''Indo-Scythian Studies being Khotanese Texts. Volume IV''. Translated and edited by H. W. Bailey. Indo-Scythian Studies, Cambridge, The University Press. 1961. * Bailey, H. W. (1979). ''Dictionary of Khotan Saka''. Cambridge University Press. 1979. 1st Paperback edition 2010. . * Beal, Samuel. 1884. ''Si-Yu-Ki: Buddhist Records of the Western World, by Hiuen Tsiang.'' 2 vols. Trans. by Samuel Beal. London. Reprint: Delhi. Oriental Books Reprint Corporation. 1969. * Beal, Samuel. 1911. ''The Life of Hiuen-Tsiang by the Shaman Hwui Li, with an Introduction containing an account of the Works of I-Tsing''. Trans. by Samuel Beal. London. 1911. Reprint: Munshiram Manoharlal, New Delhi. 1973. * Emmerick, R. E. 1967. ''Tibetan Texts Concerning Khotan''. Oxford University Press, London. * Emmerick, R. E. 1979. ''Guide to the Literature of Khotan''. Reiyukai Library, Tokyo. * Grousset, Rene. 1970. ''The Empire of the Steppes: A History of Central Asia''. Trans. by Naomi Walford. New Brunswick, New Jersey. Rutgers University Press. * Hill, John E. July, 1988. "Notes on the Dating of Khotanese History." ''Indo-Iranian Journal'', Vol. 31, No. 3. See

for paid copy of original version. Updated version of this article is available for free download (with registration) at

* Hill, John E. 2004. ''The Peoples of the West from the Weilüe'' 魏略 ''by Yu Huan'' 魚豢'': A Third Century Chinese Account Composed between 239 and 265 CE.'' Draft annotated English translation

* * Legge, James. Trans. and ed. 1886. ''A Record of Buddhistic Kingdoms: being an account by the Chinese monk Fâ-hsien of his travels in India and Ceylon (A.D. 399-414) in search of the Buddhist Books of Discipline''. Reprint: Dover Publications, New York. 1965. * * * Sims-Williams, Ursula. 'The Kingdom of Khotan to AD 1000: A Meeting of Cultures.' ''Journal of Inner Asian Art and Archaeology'' 3 (2008). * Watters, Thomas (1904–1905). ''On Yuan Chwang's Travels in India''. London. Royal Asiatic Society. Reprint: 1973. * Whitfield, Susan. ''The Silk Road: Trade, Travel, War and Faith.'' London. The British Library 2004. * Williams, Joanna. 'Iconography of Khotanese Painting'. ''East & West'' (Rome) XXIII (1973), 109-54. * R. E. Emmerick. 'Tibetan texts concerning Khotan'. London, New York [etc.] Oxford U.P. 1967.


Further reading

* Hill, John E. (2003). Draft version of: "The Western Regions according to the ''Hou Hanshu''. 2nd Edition." "Appendix A: The Introduction of Silk Cultivation to Khotan in the 1st Century CE.

* Martini, G. (2011). "Mahāmaitrī in a Mahāyāna Sūtra in Khotanese - Continuity and Innovation in Buddhist Meditation", ''Chung-Hwa Buddhist Journal'' 24: 121-194.


1904 ''Sand-Buried Ruins of Khotan'', London, Hurst and Blackett, Ltd.
Reprint Asian Educational Services, New Delhi, Madras, 200
Sand-Buried Ruins of Khotan : vol.1

1907. ''Ancient Khotan: Detailed report of archaeological explorations in Chinese Turkestan'', 2 vols. Clarendon Press. Oxford.
http://dsr.nii.ac.jp/toyobunko/creator/marc_aurel_stein.html.en M. A. Stein – Digital Archive of Toyo Bunko Rare Books] at dsr.nii.ac.jpAncient Khotan : vol.1Ancient Khotan : vol.2


External links



*[http://www.zeno.ru/showgallery.php?cat=1086 ZENO coins page on Khotan]
Discussion on Sulekha.comSmallest ancient temple discovered
{{DEFAULTSORT:Kingdom of Khotan Former countries in Chinese history History of Xinjiang 1006 disestablishments in Asia States and territories established in the 50s Iranian countries and territories Sites along the Silk Road Central Asian Buddhist kingdoms Tributaries of Imperial China