New Documents on the History of Exploration of East Turkestan from the Turfan-Sammlung

 
PIIS013038640013389-5-1
DOI10.31857/S013038640013389-5
Publication type Article
Status Published
Authors
Affiliation: Institute of World History, RAS
Address: Russian Federation, Moscow
Journal nameNovaia i noveishaia istoriia
EditionIssue 1
Pages214-222
Abstract

Northwest China, in General, and East Turkestan, in particular, played a significant role in the history of Antiquity and the Middle Ages, acting as a bridge between the civilizations of the Far East, Central and South Asia, the Middle East and the Mediterranean. From the end of the 19th century to the beginning of World War I, several archaeological expeditions explored the oases of East Turkestan. The most important role in this process was played by the expeditions of the Russian and Berlin committees, which worked under the leadership of S.F. Oldenburg from 1909‒1910 and 1914‒1915, and A. Grünwedel and A. von Le Coq, who worked in 1902‒1913, respectively. A significant part of the accumulated materials has not yet been published, and the least famous are the results of the expedition of M.M. Berezovsky (1905‒1907). The simultaneous work of Russian and German expeditions led to a conflict, to which German scholar had prepared in advance, relying, inter alia, on the support of British diplomats, in particular the British Consul in Kashgar G. Macartney. Below three documents from the Turfan-Sammlung (Museum of Asian Art, Berlin) are published. They shed more light on the history of the Russian-German-British confrontation in East Turkestan in 1906‒1908. According to these documents, all information about the activities of Russian archaeologists was immediately transmitted to Berlin; German scholars prepared in advance spare ways of returning to Germany through India, and not through Russia, preparing for the development of a conflict with Russian colleagues.

KeywordsCentral Asia, East Turkestan, Northwest China, “Big Game”, history of archeology
Received30.06.2020
Publication date29.01.2021
Number of characters20915
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