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Asian Topics in World History Asia for Educators Columbia University
China and Europe, 1500–2000 and Beyond: What is Modern?
Emperors and Reign Periods (PDF)
Timeline of Chinese Inventions (PDF)
China's Gifts to the West (PDF)
Chinese Ideas in the West (PDF)
Excerpts of Interest
Introduction: New Directions in World History, 1500–Present
Print Print
Faculty Consultants

Kenneth L. Pomeranz, Professor of History,
University of California at Irvine

R. Bin Wong, Professor of History and Director, Asia Institute
University of California at Los Angeles

Asia for Educators Program, Columbia University

Roberta Martin, Director
Karen Kane, Associate Director
Sara Leeun Huong, Producer

Columbia University Digital Knowledge Ventures

Vivian Ducat, Executive Editor
Kirsten Hudson, Project Manager
Sasha Mysakova, Art Director
Corrinne Collett, Research and Rights Manager
Jeffrey Florendo, Senior Web Developer
Vincent Aliberto, Director, Video Production
Jason Fox, Senior Director, Production and Editorial
Todd Hardy, Executive Director
David Millman, Senior Director, IT Services

Special thanks to:

Amy Vladeck Heinrich, Director, Starr East Asian Library, Columbia University

Huan Tien, Ph.D. Candidate, Columbia University

Video courtesy of Office of Public Affairs

Image Credits

Detail from View of Guangzhou (Canton) China (c. 1800). Artist unknown. Gouache on paper. Photo by Mark Sexton, 1995.
Peabody Essex Museum

Messrs. Burroughs, Wellcome & Co.'s factory, London and Suburbs, England. Photograph, Detroit Publishing Company (c.1895).
Library of Congress Prints and Photographs Division

Farmer with water buffalo, China. Photograph (c.1910).
American Museum of Natural History

Officials compose essays to demonstrate their knowledge of Confucian texts.
Bibliothèque nationale de France

Spanische hoftracht in den Niederlanden (Spanish court-dress in the Netherlands). German woodcut, inscribed Knilling (1600s). Color added c. 2000.
© North Wind Picture Archives

Rice transported to famine area in China. Photograph by Harrison Elliot (c.1906).
Courtesy Jean Elliott Johnson

Wood Cutters and Carriers in the Forest of Bretomme, Normandy. Illustration in Pictorial Gallery of Arts: Useful Arts (London: Charles Knight, 1847).
Avery Architectural and Fine Arts Library, Columbia University

Landleute bei der Ernte. (Aus dem Bauernleben des XVII Jahre). Zeitgenoessischer anonnm. Stich. Anonymous period engraving in The Farmer Life of the Seventeenth Century.
© North Wind Picture Archives

Rice field irrigation in China. Woodcut by Zhu Gui from Jiao Bingzhen, Yu zhi Geng zhi tu (c.1800).
C. V. Starr East Asian Library

Adam Smith, L.L.D.. Stipple engraving by Mackenzie.
Library of Congress Prints and Photographs Division.

Commemorative design celebrating the foundation of the Bank of England. Detail of illustration, inscribed M. Laurens (c. 1695).
The Governor and Company of the Bank of England, London.

Hop-Garden, Farnham, Surrey. Illustration in Pictorial Gallery of Arts: Useful Arts (London: Charles Knight, 1847).
Avery Architectural and Fine Arts Library, Columbia University.

Battista Agnese's map. Portolan atlas of nine charts and a world map (c. 1544).
Library of Congress, Geography and Maps Division

Zhong (Buyi) farming woman living in Qu Jing Prefecture (Eastern Yunnan Province). Illustration, in Fuheng . . . et al., Huang Qing zhi gong tu (China: Nei fu, between 1761 and 1805) vol. 7.
C. V. Starr East Asian Library

Qi Xing (He Zhe) man hunting boar living in Northeast China. Illustration in Fuheng . . . et al., Huang Qing zhi gong tu (China: Nei fu, between 1761 and 1805) vol. 3.
C. V. Starr East Asian Library, Columbia University

Ba Fan (Buyi) woman living in Ding Fan Prefecture (near current Guiyang, Guizhou Province). Illustration, in Fuheng . . . et al., Huang Qing zhi gong tu (China: Nei fu, between 1761 and 1805) vol. 8.
C. V. Starr East Asian Library, Columbia University

Yi or Miao man weaving basket, living in Guang Nan (Southeast Yunnan Province). Illustration, in Fuheng . . . et al., Huang Qing zhi gong tu (China: Nei fu, between 1761 and 1805) vol. 8.
C. V. Starr East Asian Library, Columbia University

Tibetan living in San Yan and Guo Luo Ke Area in Zhang La Ying (now part of Sichuan). Illustration in Fuheng . . . et al., Huang Qing zhi gong tu (China: Nei fu, between 1761 and 1805) vol. 6.
C. V. Starr East Asian Library, Columbia University.

Porteuse d'eau a Venise. Engraving in Moeurs, usages et costumes de tous les peuples du monde, d'apres des documents authentiques et les voyages les plus recents; publie par Auguste Wahlen Chevalier de plusiers orders; Europe, (Bruxelles, Librarie historique-artistique, 1844).
Avery Architectural and Fine Arts Library, Columbia University

Paysan du gouvernement Tw'er (Russie). Illustration, in Moeurs, usages et costumes de tous les peuples du monde, d'apres des documents authentiques et les voyages les plus recents; publie par Auguste Wahlen Chevalier de plusiers orders; Europe (Bruxelles, Librarie historique-artistique, 1844).
Avery Architectural and Fine Arts Library , Columbia University

Maconaise et Bressane. Illustration, in Moeurs, usages et costumes de tous les peuples du monde, d'apres des documents authentiques et les voyages les plus recents; publie par Auguste Wahlen Chevalier de plusiers orders; Europe. (Bruxelles, Librarie historique-artistique, 1844).
Avery Architectural and Fine Arts Library, Columbia University

Marchand de volaille de Pardilho (Portugal). Illustration, in Moeurs, usages et costumes de tous les peuples du monde, d'apres des documents authentiques et les voyages les plus recents; publie par Auguste Wahlen Chevalier de plusiers orders; Europe (Bruxelles, Librarie historique-artistique, 1844).
Avery Architectural and Fine Arts Library, Columbia University

Homme et Femme des environs d'Ulm. Illustration, in Moeurs, usages et costumes de tous les peuples du monde, d'apres des documents authentiques et les voyages les plus recents; publie par Auguste Wahlen Chevalier de plusiers orders; Europe (Bruxelles, Librarie historique-artistique, 1844).
Avery Architectural and Fine Arts Library, Columbia University

A water-turned wheel for irrigation. Illustration, in Sung, Ying-Hsing, T'ien-Kung K'wai-Wu: Chinese Technology in the Seventeenth Century, trans. E-Tu Zen Sun and Shiou-Chuan Sun (Mineola: Dover, 1997).

A water-powered pounding mill. Illustration, in Sung, Ying-Hsing, T'ien-Kung K'wai-Wu: Chinese Technology in the Seventeenth Century, trans. E-Tu Zen Sun and Shiou-Chuan Sun (Mineola: Dover, 1997).

A woman working at a simple loom. Illustration, originally published in seventeenth-century encyclopedia T'ien-Kung K'ai-Wu by Sung Ying-Hsing. This version found in Zhang Xiong, Wu Jie Tian gong kai wu yan jiu lun wen ji (Beijing: Shang wu yin shu guan, 1959).
C. V. Starr East Asian Library, Columbia University

Irrigating a cotton field. Ink rubbing from stone engraving. In Fang Guancheng, Yu ti mian hua tu Qianlong ti shi, 1698–1768.
C. V. Starr East Asian Library, Columbia University

Jingsha River, Szechuan, China.
www.china.org

The slave deck of the bark "Wildfire," brought into Key West on April 30, 1860. Wood engraving after daguerreotype, in Harper's Weekly (June 2, 1860), 344.
Library of Congress Prints and Photographs Division

Peasants sowing and cultivating fields outside a walled town in the Middle Ages.
© North Wind Picture Archives

Peasants sowing and cultivating fields outside a walled town in the Middle Ages.
© North Wind Picture Archives

Landlord in rice field. Illustration, in Jiao Bingzhen, Yu zhi geng zhi tu (Shanghai: dian shi zhai, 1886).
C. V. Starr East Asian Library, Columbia University

Making tofu. Photograph, Harrison Elliot (c. 1906).
Courtesy Jean Elliott Johnson

Selling silk cloth in China. Woodcut by Zhu Gui from Jiao Bingzhen, Yu zhi Geng zhi tu (c.1800).
C. V. Starr East Asian Library, Columbia University

Grain Tribute Boat. Illustration, in Sung, Ying-Hsing, T'ien-Kung K'wai-Wu: Chinese Technology in the Seventeenth Century, translated by E-Tu Zen Sun and Shiou-Chuan Sun. (Mineola: Dover, 1997).

"Giving Out Corn to the People, During a Season of Scarcity." Detail of engraving by G. F. Sargent. In The history of China and India, pictorial and descriptive; by Miss Corner, author of "the Historical Library," Questions on the history of Europe. (London: H. Washbourne, 1847.)
Columbia University Libraries

Picking cotton. Ink rubbing from stone engraving. In Fang Guancheng, Yu ti mian hua tu Qianlong ti shi, 1698–1768.
C. V. Starr East Asian Library, Columbia University

Selecting and drying cotton in the sun. Ink rubbing from stone engraving. In Fang Guancheng, Yu ti mian hua tu Qianlong ti shi, 1698–1768.
C. V. Starr East Asian Library, Columbia University

Weaving cotton cloth. Ink rubbing from stone engraving. In Fang Guancheng, Yu ti mian hua tu Qianlong ti shi, 1698–1768.
C. V. Starr East Asian Library, Columbia University

Dying cotton cloth. Ink rubbing from stone engraving. In Fang Guancheng, Yu ti mian hua tu Qianlong ti shi, 1698–1768.
C. V. Starr East Asian Library, Columbia University

Kingfisher-feather and silver earrings, China (c.1900).
American Museum of Natural History

Illustration of Chinese paper money, Ming dynasty. Hand colored c. 2000.
© North Wind Picture Archives

The drying room of an opium factory in India. Detail of an engraving, possibly from a British newspaper, late nineteenth century.
© North Wind Picture Archives

Detail of an engraving of a Mexican silver mine by Theodor de Bry, published 1602.
© North Wind Picture Archives

Mexican silver eight-Reale coin, with bust of Carlos IV (1798).
Courtesy asiannumismatic.com

Indian corn plant.
© North Wind Picture Archives

Sweet potato.
© North Wind Picture Archives

Terracing on embankment showing erosion, Szechuan, China.
© Karen Kane

French fashion plate showing four women at table, with teacups. Illustration, Anais Toudouze for Le Follet, c. 1845.
Mary Evans Picture Library

A club for wealthy Chinese, nineteenth century. Photograph by John Stuart Thomson, in John Stuart Thomson, The Chinese, Illustrated from Photographs (Indianapolis, Bobbs-Merrill, 1909). Columbia University Libraries

Stocks Market and the statue of King Charles II, 1738. Detail of engraving, in Charles Welch, Modern History of the City of London A record of Municipal and Social Progress from 1760 to the present day. With illustrations drawn and selected by Philip Norman (London: Blades East and Blades, 1896).
Avery Architectural and Fine Arts Library, Columbia University

Village in Hebei Province, north China.
© Karen Kane

Detail from "Coal Mines at Ying Tin." Drawn by T. Allom. Engraved by W.A. Le Petit. In Thomas Allom, China, in a Series of Views, Displaying the Scenery, Architecture, and Social Habits, of That Ancient Empire. Drawn, from Original and Authentic Sketches, by Thomas Allom, Esq. With Historical and Descriptive Notices by the Rev. G. N. Wright. (London: Fisher, c. 1843).
Avery Architectural and Fine Arts Library, Columbia University

Arrangement at the Mouth of a Coal-pit. Engraving, in Pictorial gallery of Arts: Useful Arts(London: Charles Knight, 1847).
Avery Architecture and Fine Arts Library, Columbia University

The English Factories at Canton. Drawing by B. Clayton from a painting by Piqua. Engraved on stone by G. W. Giles. In The history of China and India, pictorial and descriptive; by Miss Corner, author of "the Historical Library," Questions on the history of Europe. (London: H. Washbourne, 1847.)
Columbia University Libraries

Interior of Mitsubishi plant, Kobe, Japan (c. 1925).
Library of Congress Prints and Photographs Division

"Chinese Staff Member of Gottlieb Taussig Co." photograph, (c. 1905).
Courtesy of www.collect.at

Poster from the time of the Cultural Revolution in China. The text says, "Fear neither hardship nor death. Emulate the lofty spirit of comrade Wang Jie's whole-hearted devotion to the revolution." Ha Qi-wen, artist. (Shanghai: People's Fine Arts Publishing House, 1965).
Yanker Poster Collection, Library of Congress Prints and Photographs Division

Exhibition Repudiating Lin Piao and Confucius. Painting, in Yang Chih-hsien, Peasant Paintings from Huhsien County. Compiled by the Fine Arts Collection Section of the Cultural Group Under the State Council of the People's Republic of China (Peking: People's Fine Arts Publishing House, 1974).

"Another Modern Hydroelectric Power Station in Construction," photograph, in Tibet Today. (Peking: Foreign Languages Press, 1974).