IXXX11 PRELIMINARY ESSAY.
embassy from the Khalif Abu Jafar al Mansûr, accompanied by auxiliary troops. But even these ministers of timely aid are related in the Chinese annals to have been compelled to perform the kotow in spite of their strong remonstrances. Uigur and other western troops also joined the emperor's standard, and the rebel was completely defeated in the immediate neighbourhood of Singanfu. These auxiliaries seem to have been found very unmanageable ; the eastern capital, Loyang, was pillaged by them, and, as we have seen, one account ascribes to them, on their way to embark for the west, the sack of Canton which oc-
curred at this time.'
Mention has been made in a preceding page how about 787 the emperor applied to the khalif to join in a-league against the Tibetans. Some years later (798) the celebrated Khalif Harun Al Rashid sent three ambassadors to the Court of China, and it is recorded of them that they performed, apparently without remonstrance, the ceremonies to which the former Arab envoys, like ours in modern times, had so strongly objected.'
An embassy from the khalif is said to have also reached the Chinese Court in 974, and another to have visited the Northern Sung in 1011.3
V. INTERCOURSE WITH ARMENIA AND PERSIA, ETC.
60. Besides that communication by land and sea with Arabia, and with the various states of India, of which illustrations have been given, there existed from an old date other and obscurer streams of intercourse between China and Western Asia, of 'which we have but fragmentary notices, but which seem to indicate a somewhat fuller mutual knowledge and freer communication than most persons probably have been prepared to recognise. Thus, China appears to have been well known from an early period to the Armenians. Moses of Chorene, who wrote a little after A.D. 440, and who probably drew from earlier authors, speaks of JENASDAN (i.e. C2inistan or China) as a great plain
' See Mem. de l' Acad. (old), xvi, p. 254, and supra, p. lxxx.
3 Deguignes, in Acad., xlvi, 544 ; H. des Huns, i, 66, scgg.