Borobudur, or Barabudur is a 9th-century Mahayana Buddhist temple in Magelang, Central Java, Indonesia, as well as the world's largest Buddhist temple, and also one of the greatest Buddhist monuments in the world.
Battle of Talas: First recorded encounter (and the last) between Arab and Chinese forces. The rulers of
Ferghana are both nominal
vassals of the
Tang Dynasty; the Chinese have intervened on behalf of Ferghana in a conflict between the two; the
Abbasid Caliphate, competing with the Chinese for control of
Central Asia, has become involved. Arab forces from
Samarkand have marched to challenge a Chinese army (30,000 men) under
Gao Xianzhi. Gao has had a series of military victories in the region, but his
Karluk mercenaries, defects. Out of 10,000 Tang troops, only 2,000 manage to return from the
Talas River to
China. The Arabs triumph, and they will remain the dominant force in
Transoxiana for the next 150 years.
Muslim introduction of
papermaking: The first
paper mill in the
Islamic world begins production at Samarkand. Captured craftsmen, taken at the Battle of Talas River, have by some accounts revealed the technique of papermaking (although
paper may have arrived from China much earlier via the
Silk Road). Arab scholars will use paper to produce translations of
Ancient Greek and Roman writings.
Like the storm of
storm of this year at the southern Chinese seaport of
Yangzhou reportedly destroys over 1,000 ships engaged in canal and river traffic (approximate date).
First Muslim assault on
Sardinia under Abd al-Rahman ibn Habib al-Fihri, perhaps the beginning of the occupation of the island by the
Muslim Arabs that lasts until
1005. He also attempts to invade
Sicily, but finds the defenses too strong.
Buddhist monk, arrives in
Nara, where he is welcomed by former emperor
Shōmu and empress
Kōmyō. During his visit Jianzhen introduces
sugar to the Japanese court, using it to mask the flavors of foul-tasting
Tang census shows that 75% of the Chinese live north of the
Chang Jiang (Yangtze) River. The capital of
Chang'an has a population of 2 million and more than 25 other cities have well over 500,000 citizens (approximate date).
Battle of Marcellae: Constantine V sends a Byzantine expeditionary force (500 ships and 6,000
Thrace, and defeats the Bulgars around the
Danube Delta and near the fortress city of
Bulgaria). Kormisosh is forced to accept a
peace treaty, and confirms the existing frontier. Due to the constant political crisis, the Bulgarian Empire is on the verge of destruction. Kormisosh is deposed during a palace
coup and succeeded by
Vinekh, a member of the
Ibn al-Muqaffa', Muslim writer and thinker, is tortured at
Iraq), on orders from Caliph
al-Mansur. His limbs are severed and he is thrown, still alive, into a burning oven (approximate date).
Battle of Yongqiu: A
Tang garrison (2,000 men), under
Zhang Xun, successfully defends their fortress against the rebel army at
Yongqiu. Zang achieves a victory after a 4-month
siege, and prevents the rebels from capturing the fertile Tang territory south of the
February 5 – An Lushan declares himself emperor at Luoyang, establishing a new empire, called the
Great Yan. He pushes on towards the primary Tang capital at
Xi'an). An decides to seize southern China, to cut off loyalist reinforcements. Meanwhile, numerous soldiers join the rebellion.
May – Emperor
Xuan Zong hires 4,000 Muslim
mercenaries to help defend Chang'an against the rebels. Loyalist forces take defensible positions in the mountain passes, but chancellor
Yang Guozhong give orders to leave their posts. An Lushan crushes the Tang troops, leaving the capital wide open.
July 15 – Xuan Zong is ordered by his
Imperial Guards to execute Yang Guozhong, by forcing him to commit suicide or face a mutiny. He permits his consort
Yang Guifei to be strangled by his chief
eunuch. An Lushan has also other members of the emperor's family killed.
August 12 – Xuan Zong abdicates the throne after a 44-year reign. He is succeeded by his son
Su Zong, as emperor of the
Tang Dynasty. He hires 22,000 Muslim mercenaries to reinforce his decimated army at
Battle of Suiyang: A Tang
garrison (7,000 men) under
Zhang Xun defends their
fortress against the rebel army at
Suiyang. Zhang makes multiple attempts to get food from nearby fortresses, but this is refused. After a desperate 10-month siege, Suiyang is overrun by rebel forces who take the city. Because of famine an estimated 20,000 to 30,000 citizens are
cannibalized, only 400 people are left.
Abbasid Arabs and
Uyghur Turks arrive simultaneously at the
Tang capital of
Chang'an, in order to offer
tribute to the
imperial court. The Arabs and Turks bicker and fight over diplomatic prominence at the
gate, to present tribute before the other. A settlement is reached when both are allowed to enter at the same time, but through different gates to the palace.
An Lushan Rebellion: Tang forces under
Guo Ziyi lay siege to the city of
China) as they increase their efforts to end the rebellion. The fightings create such a shortage of
food within its walls that
rats sell at enormous prices.