A Possible Archaeological Case for the Taxation of Medieval Eurasian Nomads

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At several locations in the Mongolian steppe, the archaeological remains of large enclosure walls have been found in association with structures and ceramics related to the Mongol and Khitan-Liao empires. These structures are probably the remains of infrastructure built to support large-scale extraction of livestock from the pastoralist population in Mongolia between the ninth and fourteenth centuries. This may be evidence of little-documented taxation policies of steppe states during this period, the scale of the production of resource surplus from the steppe, and examples of state-structured pastoralist landscapes and the state itself in the everyday experience of medieval herders.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)267-292
Number of pages26
JournalThe Journal of Economic and Social History of the Orient
Issue number3
Early online date6 Jul 2015
Publication statusPublished - 2015


  • archaeology
  • taxation
  • Mongol Empire
  • Khitan-Liao Empire
  • pastoralists


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