Before the sails of Columbus breached the horizons of the New World, there were empires—vast, mighty, and relentless in their quest for dominion. These empires, their legacies etched not merely in ancient stones but ingrained in the very fabric of modern civilisation, painted the vast stretches of the known world with the colours of their banners.
The European colonisation wave that swept the globe from the fifteenth to the twentieth century is a narrative often underscored by tales of enslavement, exploitation, and cultural obliteration. Yet, it’s not the whole story of conquest.
Long before Europe set its sights on distant shores, ancient empires had already embarked on their own journeys of expansion. The Persians, Umayyads, Mongols, Ottomans, and the Qing—each of these civilisations marked their path with more than just military might. They brought with them an exchange of ideas, a melding of cultures, and an administrative acumen that often left the core of subjugated societies intact.
The Persians didn’t merely conquer but assimilated, creating a rich tapestry unified in administration yet diverse in its cultural threads. Or the Umayyads, whose dominion stretched far and wide, fostering societies rich in intellectual pursuit and fervent in faith.
These ancient conquerors offered a different breed of conquest, not solely defined by the sword’s might but also by the pen’s influence. Their legacies indicate a time when the path to power was not just about ruling over lands but also about understanding and integrating the cultures within them.
Watch the video to learn more.