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A Thriving Trade Center at the Starting Point of the Silk Road


As the eastern terminus of the Silk Road, the Tang West Market was once an active and prominent participant in the history of the world trade. The inclusiveness and openness of the Tang Dynasty (AD618—907) contributed in making the market a place where businesses from everywhere of the world could be found.

At that time, stores were standing side by side and merchants flocked here from everywhere. The market boasted the center of all possible commodities one can imagine. People felt intoxicatingly free in making choices. For a period of 320 years the market remained a highly prosperous place of commerce, handicrafts and local culture.

The West Market was not only the paradise for consumers, but also a dreamland for many merchants in making a fortune. Chinese culture and western culture met and melted harmoniously here. It highly demonstrated the diversity of the brilliant international metropolis of the capital city of Chang’an (name for Xi’an in the Tang Dynasty). This place is the only remaining commercial site found so far from the Tang Dynasty.

The splendor of the place has gone with time. But the memories will be refreshed in the museum where you will be able to envision the grandeur of the Tang Dynasty by visiting the West Market Museum on the original market site.

Concluding Remarks

The West Market is the only existing commercial site along the ancient Silk Road. It has great historical and cultural value. With the permission of the State Administration of Cultural Heritage of China in 2007, the West Market was listed as one of the sites on the list as a combined effort of the countries along the Silk Road to apply for World Cultural Heritage title. It was named “The Eastern Starting Point of the Silk Road in the Sui and Tang Dynasties”. The market is now brought back to life after being forgotten for over ten centuries.

In the spirit of protecting cultural relics, Shaanxi Jiaxin Group sponsored the construction of the museum. This modern and large scale on-site museum will contribute greatly to the better preservation and displaying of the ancient market. It will also help to generate positive social effect.

As an economic and cultural meeting place between West and East, the Tang West Market once created a splendid history. The spiritual legacy that it leaves to China and the world will continue to be cherished and appreciated for the time to come.