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Σηρική). A country in the extreme east of Asia, famous as the native region of the silkworm, which was also called σήρ; and hence the adjective sericus for “silken.” The name was known to the Western nations at a very early period, through the use of silk, first in Western Asia, and afterwards in Greece. It is clear, however, that until some time after the commencement of our era the name had no distinct geographical signification. The Serica of Ptolemy corresponds to the northwestern part of China and the adjacent portions of Thibet and Chinese Tartary. The capital, Sera, is supposed by most to be Singan, on the Hoang-ho, but by some Peking. The Great Wall of China is mentioned by Ammianus Marcellinus (xxiii. 6, 64) under the name of Aggeres Serium. See Sericum.

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