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The Battle at Tarus River Changes History

Updated on January 2, 2011
The Spread of Paper making
The Spread of Paper making
Mass Production of Paper
Mass Production of Paper

At the request of the third caliph of Islam, in 651 AD, an envoy was sent to the Emperor of China requesting he embrace Islam. The Emperor allowed the building of a Mosque in CantonCity.

Although relations between the Chinese and Muslims went fairly well, there were some skirmishes between them. One of these skirmishes became known as the Battle at TarusRiver. This took place in 751 AD on the banks of the river and during it; Islamic warriors captured a Chinese caravan. The prisoners from this caravan were sent to Samarkand, in the heart of the Muslim Empire.

Among these Chinese prisoners were some men practiced in the art of papermaking.

Papermaking flourished in Samarkand and slowly became widespread throughout the Muslim world. Then eventually in the 12th century the technique was carried by the Moors to Europe.

Paper had been invented in 105 AD by T’sai Lun, the chief eunuch to the Han Emperor Ho-Ti. Prior to this the Chinese had used silk cloth for their writings.

Whilst from China papermaking had spread through Vietnam, Tibet, India, the KoreanPeninsula and Japan.

To the west people were still using papyrus that had been invented by the Egyptians.

Since the invention of paper, true accounts and books have been able to be kept. This has allowed us to be able to know our history. This small little known battle therefore played a great part in the spreading and recording of history through the ages and without paper, our world would certainly be different today.


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    • PierAllegro profile image

      PierAllegro 7 years ago from Toronto, Canada

      Thank you for sharing this

    • dahoglund profile image

      Don A. Hoglund 7 years ago from Wisconsin Rapids

      It does seem that seemingly small things can have great influence.

    • drbj profile image

      drbj and sherry 7 years ago from south Florida

      Actually, Genghis did mention in my "Interview with Genghis Khan" that he developed paper currency in the early 1200s. I had forgotten. Thanks for reminding me. :)

    • rafken profile image

      rafken 7 years ago from The worlds my oyster

      drbj You surprise me I thought Gengis Khan would of mentioned something about it during your interview

    • drbj profile image

      drbj and sherry 7 years ago from south Florida

      Thanks for this educational hub, rafken. Now I am no longer paper-making-knowledge-challenged. :)