Empire's Shadow: The Ming Court in Eurasia


ACLS Fellowship Program




This project looks at how successor states in Eurasia dealt with the legacy of the Mongol empire, focusing most especially on the Ming court of China, 1368-1644. It explores how the Ming court vilified the fallen Mongol rulers at the same time that the court attempted to cash in on the prestige of the mighty Mongol empire and its institutions. Seeing the Ming court as one of several successor states across Eurasia, including the Timurids, Mughals, Rus, and smaller polities in Central Asia gives us a better sense of China’s place in the early modern world and moves us away from misleading ideas about Chinese isolation or exceptionalism.