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Kingdom of Khotan

Kingdom of Khotan

Map of Tarim Basin in the 3rd century C.E. Khotan kingdom shown in green in the southern region.
Capital Khotan
Languages Gāndhārī language 3-4th century.[web 1]

Khotanese, a dialect of the Saka language, in a variant of the Brāhmī script.[web 2]

Religion Buddhism
Government Monarchy
 •  c. 56 Yulin: Jianwu period (25–56 CE)
 •  969 Nanzongchang (last)
 •  Khotan established c. 300 BCE
 •  Established 56
 •  Yarkant attacks and annexes Khotan. Yulin abdicates and becomes king of Ligui 56
 •  Tibet invades and conquers Khotan 670
 •  Khotan held by the Muslim, Yūsuf Qadr Khān 1006
 •  Disestablished 1006
 •  Islamization
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The Kingdom of Khotan was an ancient Buddhist kingdom that was located on the branch of the Silk Road that ran along the southern edge of the Taklamakan Desert in the Tarim Basin (modern Xinjiang, China). The ancient capital was originally located to the west of modern-day Hotan (Chinese: 和田) at Yotkan.[1][2] From the Han dynasty until at least the Tang dynasty it was known in Chinese as Yutian (Chinese: 于闐, 于窴, or 於闐). The kingdom existed for over a thousand years until it was conquered by the Muslims in 1006.


  • Geography 1
  • History 2
    • Foundation 2.1
    • Han rule 2.2
    • Tang dynasty 2.3
    • Turkic-Islamic conquest of Buddhist Khotan 2.4
  • Historical timeline 3
  • Early names 4
  • Buddhism 5
  • Social and economic life 6
  • Silk 7
  • Jade 8
  • Neighbours 9
  • See also 10
  • Notes 11
  • References 12
    • Book references 12.1
    • Web-references 12.2
  • Sources 13
  • Further reading 14
  • External links 15


Portrait of a king of Khotan, Dunhuang Mogao Caves, 10th century

The oasis geographical position is the main contributing factor to its success and wealth. The oasis of Khotan is situated in one of the most arid and desolate climates on the earth, the Taklamakan Desert. However Khotan is located at the far south of the Taklamakan at the foothills of the Kunlun Mountains, extending along the range for around 40 miles.

Khotan was irrigated from the Yurung-kàsh and Kara-kàsh rivers, which water the Tarim Basin. These two rivers produce vast quantities of water which made habitation possible in an otherwise arid climate. The position next to the mountain not only provided irrigation for crops but it also increased the fertility of the land as the rivers reduce the gradient and deposited their sediment, creating a more fertile soil. This therefore increased the productivity of the agricultural industry which has made Khotan famous for its cereal crops and fruits. Therefore, Khotan’s lifeline was its vicinity to the Kunlun mountain range and without this Khotan would not have become one of the largest and most successful oasis cities along the Silk Roads.


Coin of Gurgamoya, king of Khotan. Khotan, 1st century CE.
Obv: Kharosthi legend, "Of the great king of kings, king of Khotan, Gurgamoya.
Rev: Chinese legend: "Twenty-four grain copper coin". British Museum


According to legend, the foundation of Khotan occurred when Kushtana, said to be a son of Ashoka, the Mauryan emperor,[3] settled there about 224 BCE.[4][5] The first inhabitants of the region appear to have been Tibetans and Indians from South Asia.[6]

In the second century BCE a Khotanese king helped the famous Kushan Emperor Kanishka to conquer the key town of Saket in the Middle kingdoms of India: [1]

Afterwards king Vijaya Krīti, for whom a manifestation of the Ārya Mañjuśrī, the Arhat called Spyi-pri who was propagating the religion (dharma) in Kam-śeṅ [a district of Khotan] was acting as pious friend, through being inspired with faith, built the vihāra of Sru-ño. Originally, King Kanika, the king of Gu-zar [Kucha] and the Li [Khotanese] ruler, King Vijaya Krīti, and others led an army into India, and when they captured the city called So-ked [Saketa], King Vijaya Krīti obtained many relics and put them in the stūpa of Sru-ño.
— The Prophecy of the Li Country.[7]

According to Chapter 96A of the Book of Han, covering the period from 125 BCE to 23 CE, Khotan had 3,300 households, 19,300 individuals and 2,400 people able to bear arms.[8]

Daughter of the King of Khotan married to the ruler of Dunhuang, Cao Yanlu, shown here wearing elaborate headdress decorated with jade pieces. Mural in Mogao Cave 61, Five Dynasties.

Han rule

The town grew very quickly after local trade developed into the interconnected chain of silk routes across Eurasia. By the time of the Han conquest, the population had more than quadrupled. The Book of the Later Han, covering 6 to 189 CE, says:

The main centre of the kingdom of Yutian (Khotan) is the town of Xicheng ("Western Town", Yotkan). It is 5,300 li (c.2,204 km) from the residence of the Senior Clerk [in Lukchun], and 11,700 li (c.4,865 km) from Luoyang. It controls 32,000 households, 83,000 individuals, and more than 30,000 men able to bear arms.[9]

Khotan was conquered by the Han dynasty in 73 CE, but the Han influence on Khotan quickly diminished.[web 3]

During the Yongping period (58-76 CE), in the reign of Emperor Ming, Xiumo Ba, a Khotanese general, rebelled against Suoju (Yarkand), and made himself king of Yutian (in 60 CE). On the death of Xiumo Ba, Guangde, son of his elder brother, assumed power and then (in 61 CE) defeated Suoju (Yarkand). His kingdom became very prosperous after this. From Jingjue (Niya) northwest, as far as Shule (Kashgar), thirteen kingdoms submitted to him. Meanwhile, the king of Shanshan (the Lop Nor region, capital Charklik) had also begun to prosper. From then on, these two kingdoms were the only major ones on the Southern Route in the whole region to the east of the Congling (Pamir Mountains).[9]

Tang dynasty

Emperor Taizong's campaign against states of the Western Regions began in 640 CE and Khotan submitted to the Tang emperor. The Four Garrisons of Anxi was established, one of them at Khotan.

The Tibetans later defeated the Chinese and took control of the Four Garrisons, 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 after it was weakened considerably by the An Lushan Rebellion. After the Tang dynasty, Khotan formed an alliance with the rulers of Dunhuang until the arrival of Muslim invaders.

Turkic-Islamic conquest of Buddhist Khotan

Grotesque face, stucco, found at Khotan, 7th-8th century.

During the latter part of the tenth century, Khotan became engaged in a struggle against the Kara-Khanid Khanate. The Islamic attacks and conquest of the Buddhist cities east of Kashgar began with the conversion of the Karakhanid Sultan Satuq Bughra Khan 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,[10][11] and a long war ensued between Islamic Kashgar and Buddhist Khotan.[12] The war was described as a Muslim Jihad (holy war) by the Japanese Professor Takao Moriyasu. Satuq Bughra Khan's nephew or grandson Ali Arslan was said to have been killed during the war with the Buddhists.[13] Khotan briefly took 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.[14]

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 and its ruling family used Indian names and the population were devout Buddhists. The Buddhist entitites of Dunhuang and Khotan had a tight-knit partnership, with intermarriage between Dunhuang and Khotan's rulers and Dunhuang's Mogao grottos and Buddhist temples being funded and sponsored by the Khotan royals, whose likenesses were drawn in the Mogao grottoes.[11]

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 Altishahr probably based on an older oral tradition. It contains a story about Imams, from Mada'in city (possibly in modern-day Iraq) came 4 Imams who travelled to help the Islamic conquest of Khotan, Yarkand, and Kashgar by Yusuf Qadir Khan, the Qarakhanid leader.[15] 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.[16] Despite their foreign origins, they are viewed as local saints by the current Muslim population in the region.[17] In 1006, the Muslim Kara-Khanid ruler Yusuf Kadir (Qadir) Khan of Kashgar conquered Khotan, ending Khotan's existence as an independent state.[11]

The Islamic conquest of Khotan led to alarm in the east, and it has been suggested it lead to the sealing of Dunhuang's Cave 17, which contained the Dunhuang manuscripts, after its caretakers heard that Khotan's Buddhist buildings were razed by the Muslims, and the Buddhist religion had suddenly ceased to exist in Khotan.[10]

Muslim works such as Ḥudūd al-ʿĀlam contained anti-Buddhist rhetoric and polemic against Buddhist Khotan,[18] aimed at "dehumanizing" the Khotanese Buddhists, and the Muslims Kara-Khanids conquered Khotan just 26 years following the completion of Ḥudūd al-ʿĀlam.[18] The Karakhanid Turkic Muslim writer Mahmud al-Kashgari recorded a short Turkic language poem about the conquest:

In Turkic:[19][20]

|kälginläyü aqtïmïz
kändlär üzä čïqtïmïz
furxan ävin yïqtïmïz
burxan üzä sïčtïmïz

English translation:[10][18][21][22]

We came down on them like a flood,
We went out among their cities,
We tore down the idol-temples,
We shat on the Buddha's head!

Idols of "infidels" were subjected to desecration by being defecated upon by Muslims when the "infidel" country was conquered by the Muslims, according to Muslim tradition.[19]

By the time Marco Polo visited Khotan, which was between 1271 and 1275, he reported that "the inhabitants all worship Mohamet."[23][24]

Historical timeline

Gurgamoya coin. Obverse in Kharosthi: "Of the great king king of Khotan Gurgamoya". Reverse in Chinese: "6 grains coin". British Museum.
  • The first inhabitants of the region appear to have been Tibetans and Indians from adjacent India bordering the Kunlun Mountains.[6]
  • 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 BCE.[25]
  • c.84 BC: Buddhism is reportedly introduced to Khotan.[26]
  • 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, became the major power on the southern branch of the Silk Route.
  • 78: Ban Chao, 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 Kushan Emperor Kanishka in his conquest of Saket in India.
  • 127: The Chinese general Ban Yong attacked and subdued Karasahr; and then Kucha, 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 [of Keriya] by 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.[27]
  • 399 Chinese pilgrim monk, Faxian, visits and reports on the active Buddhist community there.[28]
  • 632: Khotan pays homage to China, and becomes a vassal state.
  • 644: Chinese pilgrim monk, Xuanzang, stays 7–8 months in Khotan and writes a detailed account of the kingdom.
Ceramic figurine showing Western influences, Yotkan near Khotan, 2-4th century CE.
  • 670: 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 (Wylie: btsan bzang btsan la brtan) 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.[29]
  • 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.[30]
  • 969: The son of King Lishengtian (Vijaya Sambhava) 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.[31]
  • Between 1271 and 1275: Marco Polo visits Khotan.[32]

Early names

Manuscript in Khotanese from Dandan Oilik, NE of Khotan. Now held in the British Library.

The name of the kingdom in the region now called Khotan has received many forms. The local people about the third century CE wrote Khotana in Kharoṣṭhī script; and Hvatäna- in Brahmi script in the somewhat later texts, whence as the language developed came Hvamna and Hvam, so that in the latest texts they have Hvam kṣīra ‘the land of Khotan’. The name became known to the west while the –t- was still unchanged, and as is frequent in early New Persian. But under different influences the local people wrote also Gaustana, when they felt the prestige of Buddhist Hybrid Sanskrit, or Kustana[33] and Yūttina, when the prestige of the Chinese kingdom in Śacu was at its height, in the ninth century. To the Tibetans in the seventh and eight centuries the land was Li and the capital city Hu-ten, Hu-den, Hu-then and Yvu-then.[34][35][36]


Head of Buddha found in Khotan, 3rd-4th century

The kingdom was one of the major centres of Buddhism. Buddhism was introduced in the first century BCE. Up until the 11th century, the vast majority of the population was Buddhist.[37]

The kingdom is primarily associated with the Mahayana.[38] According to the Chinese pilgrim Faxian who passed through Khotan in the fourth century:

The country is prosperous and the people are numerous; without exception they have faith in the Dharma and they entertain one another with religious music. The community of monks numbers several tens of thousands and they belong mostly to the Mahayana.[web 3]
It differed in this respect to Kucha, 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.[39] Many foreign languages, including Chinese, Sanskrit, Prakrits, Apabhraṃśas and Classical Tibetan were used in cultural exchange.

Social and economic life

Bronze coin of Kanishka, found in Khotan.

Despite having scant sources of information on the socio-political structures of Khotan, the shared geographical conditions of the Tarim city-states, as well similarities found in archaeological findings throughout the Tarim Basin enables the drawing of some overall conclusions on Khotanese life.[40] A seventh-century Chinese pilgrim, Xuanzang describes Khotan as having limited arable land but this seems to have been particularly fertile, being able to support "cereals and producing an abundance of fruits."[41] He goes further by commenting how the city "manufactures carpets and fine-felts and silks" as well as "dark and white jade". In short, the city’s chief economy was based upon using the water from oases to irrigate the land as well as the manufacture of crafts which could then be traded on.[42]

Xuanzang also praises the culture of the people of Khotan, commenting on how they "love to study literature" and how "[m]usic is much practised in the country, and men love the 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 the more rural "wools and furs".[43]


Khotan was the first place outside of China to begin cultivating silk. The story, repeated in many sources, and illustrated in murals discovered by archaeologists, is that a Chinese princess brought silkworm eggs hidden in her hairdo when she was sent to marry the Khotanese king. This probably took place in the first half of the 1st century CE but is disputed by different scholars.[44]

Painting on wooden panel discovered by Aurel Stein in Dandan Oilik, depicting the legend of the princess who hid silkworm eggs in her headdress to smuggle them out of China to the Kingdom of Khotan.

One version of the story is told by the Chinese Buddhist monk 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 and Khotan (Yutian in Chinese).[45]

According the Xuazang the introduction of sericulture to Khotan occurred in the first quarter of the 5th century. The King of Khotan wanted to obtain silkworm eggs, mulberry seeds and Chinese know-how - the three crucial components of silk production. The Chinese court had strict rules on these items leaving China as they were determined to maintain their monopoly on the manufacture of silk. Xuanzang states 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 she would need to bring silkworm 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 to Khotan, then to India, and from there eventually reached Europe.[46]

Built on an oasis, its mulberry groves allowed the production and export of silk and carpets, in addition to the city's other major products such as its famous nephrite jade and pottery.


Khotan, throughout and before the Silk Roads period, was a prominent trading oasis on the southern route of the Tarim Basin – the only major one “on the sole water course to cross the desert from the south”.[47] Aside from the geographical location of the towns of Khotan it was also widely renowned as a significant area of nephrite jade production for export to China.

Frances Wood provides a number of examples of Khotan jade trade by referring to jade on sale there in observations of Xuanzang in 645[48] as well as long-established jade sales to Chinese carvers in Xinglongwa and Chahai. She notes that these carvers had been carving ring-shaped pendants "from greenish jade from Khotan as early as 5000 BC".[48] It would seem, from secondary sources, the prevalence of jade from Khotan from east to west is due to the relative lack elsewhere and to its quality.

Evidence for the extent of the jade trade can be seen from archaeological remains as "polished and finished jade pieces were far more durable than ceramics and have survived for many millennia".[48] The jade from the rivers of Khotan continues to be transported along the southern Silk Road route to this day.[48]


Ceramic figurine with Western influences, Yotkan near Khotan, 2-4th century CE.

See also


  1. ^ If this is correct, and if modern dating of the beginning of Kanishka's era in 127 CE, this must have happened at about this date - just before Ban Yong reasserted Chinese influence over the region.


Book references

  1. ^
  2. ^
  3. ^ Sinha 1974.
  4. ^ Mukerjee 1964.
  5. ^
  6. ^ a b
  7. ^ Mentioned by the 8th-century Tibetan Buddhist history, The Prophecy of the Li Country. Emmerick, R. E. 1967. Tibetan Texts Concerning Khotan. Oxford University Press, London, p. 47.
  8. ^ , p. 97.
  9. ^ a b Hill 2009, p. 17-19.
  10. ^ a b c
  11. ^ a b c
  12. ^
  13. ^
  14. ^
  15. ^
  16. ^
  17. ^
  18. ^ a b c
  19. ^ a b , p 207
  20. ^ , p. 160
  21. ^
  22. ^ , p. 35
  23. ^
  24. ^
  25. ^
  26. ^ , p.4-5.
  27. ^ Hill (2009), p. 17.
  28. ^ 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, pp. 16-20.
  29. ^ Hill (1988), p. 184.
  30. ^ Hill (1988), p. 185.
  31. ^ Stein, Aurel M. 1907. Ancient Khotan: Detailed report of archaeological explorations in Chinese Turkestan, 2 vols., p. 180. Clarendon Press. Oxford. [1]
  32. ^ Stein, Aurel M. 1907. Ancient Khotan: Detailed report of archaeological explorations in Chinese Turkestan, 2 vols., p. 183. Clarendon Press. Oxford. [2]
  33. ^ 神秘消失的古国(十):于阗
  34. ^ Bailey (1961), p. 1.
  35. ^ Khotanese textsH.W. Bailey,
  36. ^ 藏文文献中“李域”(li-yul,于阗)的不同称谓
  37. ^ Ehsan Yar-Shater, William Bayne Fisher, The Cambridge history of Iran: The Seleucid, Parthian and Sasanian periods. Cambridge University Press, 1983, page 963.
  38. ^
  39. ^
  40. ^
  41. ^
  42. ^
  43. ^
  44. ^ Hill (2009). "Appendix A: Introduction of Silk Cultivation to Khotan in the 1st Century CE", pp. 466-467.
  45. ^
  46. ^
  47. ^
  48. ^ a b c d


  1. ^
  2. ^
  3. ^ a b The Buddhism of Khotan


  • 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: [3]
  • 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. ISBN 978-0-521-14250-2.
  • 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. ISBN 0-8135-1304-9
  • Hill, John E. July, 1988. "Notes on the Dating of Khotanese History." Indo-Iranian Journal, Vol. 31, No. 3. See: [4] for paid copy of original version. Updated version of this article is available for free download (with registration) at: [5]
  • 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. [6]
  • 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 Cultres.' 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." [7]
  • Martini, G. (2011). "Mahāmaitrī in a Mahāyāna Sūtra in Khotanese - Continuity and Innovation in Buddhist Meditation", Chung-Hwa Buddhist Journal 24: 121-194. ISSN: 1017-7132. [8]

External links

  • ZENO coins page on Khotan
  • Discussion on
  • Smallest ancient temple discovered
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