The Avars were a pastoral nomadic group from the Eurasian steppe who conquered the Carpathian Basin and became a major force in central and eastern Europe from the late sixth through eighth centuries. Walter Pohl’s monograph is a detailed study of Avar political, military, diplomatic, economic, and social history which was originally published in three German editions from 1988 to 2015. Pohl revised the English translation by cutting outdated material and including new research findings, particularly in the field of archaeology. So, in essence, the book is not only the first translation, but also the third revision of the original publication. Since the reviewer is a specialist in China’s relations with the steppe, this review will focus on Pohl’s analysis of the Avars as a case study of pastoral nomadic rule over a mixed society of farmers and pastoralists....

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