By the later part of the 13th Century, Genghis Khan and his heirs had conquered a vast empire, stretching from west Russia to China, from Siberia to Syria. This power complex brought the people of the Eurasian continent into contact with each other like never before and made it possible for Europeans to travel, for whom this world could open itself. The most famous of these travellers today is the Venetian Marco Polo, the son of a merchant, who became renowned for his comprehensive reports. Even if it has been questioned again and again through the ages: Marco Polo travelled, he was in China, and he was not the only European of his time, but one of the first among many.
Dr. Felicitas Schmieder Professor of History and the Present of Old Europe at the University of Hagen.