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A forgotten Eurasian empire: the Liao dynasty, 907-1125, Tuesday 17 March 2015

Three centuries before the rise of the Mongols,the Liao was the dominant power of its day, but it did not seek world domination.It ranged from present-day Mongolia south to Beijing, including only a smallstrip of territory within the line of the Great Wall. Rather than push furtherinto ‘China’, Liao emperors achieved a century of peaceful coexistence withtheir southern neighbour. 
In the absence of any written evidence Professor and historian, Naomi Standen,from the University of Birmingham, will shed some light on her research of thisforgotten Liao empire, a patrimonial political system shared by steppe andsedentary rulers across Northeastern Eurasia. 

Orthodox Chinese historiography omits thedynasty from the legitimist sequence, and historians have scarcely acknowledgedits existence. Archaeologists, by contrast, have excavated dozens of Liaotombs, which reveal the wealth of the elite but little about everyoneelse. 

Join us to hear about early cities in thegrasslands built by the Liao and fresh insights into the everyday life andsociety, politics and economics of a steppe-based empire that became theleading Buddhist society of the region and which developed administrativestructures to cope with multicultural populations of pastoralists and farmers.

Venue: The Golden Phoenix, 37-38 Gerard Street, London W1D 5QB
Schedule: 18.45 arrival & networking
19.30 - dinner
21.00 - Talk and Q&A
22.00 - Close

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