Rome and China : Points of Contact book cover
1st Edition

Rome and China
Points of Contact

ISBN 9781138241275
Published May 18, 2021 by Routledge
134 Pages

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Book Description

Rome and China provides an updated history and analysis of contacts and mutual influence between two of ancient Eurasia’s most prominent imperial powers, Rome and China.

It highlights the extraordinary interconnectivity of ancient Eurasia which allowed for actual contacts between Rome and China (however fleeting) and examines in detail the influences from both ends of Eurasia which had cultural and political consequences for both Rome and China.

This volume will be of interest to anyone working on the Roman Empire, Inner Asia, the Silk Routes and China in the Classical and Late Antique periods.

Table of Contents


Hyun Jin Kim

Chapter 1: Roman envoys and trade ambassadors in Han China

Raoul McLaughlin and Hyun Jin Kim

Chapter 2: The Xiongnu Huns from China and the East to Europe and the Roman Empire

Hyun Jin Kim

Chapter 3: Sodgian ambassadors of the Göktürks and the Eastern Roman Empire

Raoul McLaughlin and Hyun Jin Kim

Chapter 4: ‘Nestorian’ Christians and Manichaeans as links between Rome and China

Samuel Lieu and Hyun Jin Kim


Hyun Jin Kim


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Hyun Jin Kim, the main editor of this volume, is Associate Professor in Classics at the University of Melbourne, Australia. He took his D.Phil. from the University of Oxford and is a Fellow of the Australian Academy of the Humanities. He is the author of seven books on a wide range of subjects ranging from Greece-Rome and early China Comparative studies and Greek Ethnography to Inner Asian steppe history (Huns) and Geopolitics. 


Emeritus Professor Samuel N.C. Lieu is the current President of the International Union of Academies (Union Académique Internationale – UAI) and a Fellow of the Australian Academy of the Humanities. Until 2016 he was Inaugural Distinguished Professor in Ancient History at Macquarie University and a holder of the Discovery Outstanding Research Award (DORA) of the Australian Research Council. He was previously Professor of Ancient History and Classical Studies (personal chair) at Warwick University (UK). He has published extensively on the history of Manichaeism and of Christianity on the Silk Road.


Raoul McLaughlin studied Ancient History and Archaeology at Queen’s University Belfast, completing his doctorate in Ancient History in 2006. He published his monograph as Rome and the Distant East (2010), followed by The Roman Empire and the Indian Ocean (2014) and The Roman Empire and the Silk Routes (2016). He tutored at Queen’s University Belfast until 2014 and currently works in a Clinical Care Facility. A founder member of The Classical Association in Northern Ireland, his recent research will lead to the publication of The Roman Empire and the Oasis Kingdoms and Ancient Ireland and the Roman Empire.


"Rome and China is that rare book that actually fills a significant gap in scholarship. Recently, books comparing aspects of Roman and Chinese civilization have proliferated, but a comprehensive study of relations between Rome and China has been lacking until now. In four lucidly written chapters, the authors trace contact between Eastern and Western Eurasia from the second century BCE to the seventh century CE... Recommended." - CHOICE